Saturday, November 14, 2009

Man's Search for Meaning by Viktor E. Frankl

Rating: 3/5

This book is part memoir about the author's experiences in Nazi concentration camp, and part explanation of his psychotherapeutic theory, logotherapy. It was interesting, but I found logotherapy as he explains it to be a bit simplistic and superficial. Yes, a person who sees meaning in his life can suffer through anything, and reframing your suffering into positive, meaningful experience is an excellent attitude. But shouldn't we strive for a bit more? Surviving a concentration camp is surely a heroic acheivement, and anything one does afterwards is grand icing on the cake. But there should be more to ordinary life than surviving our own suffering. Frankl does not have any thoughts about what the next step should be, that is, how to go from meaningful suffering to finding a life of happiness.

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