August 28, 2010
Man’s Search for Meaning
I. Key Concepts Obtained from the Assigned Reading
Logotherapy is a technique of therapeutic intervention that is meant to help an individual find their particular meaning in life. He discusses how each person’s meaning is going to be different from another’s and stresses that no therapist can dictate to any person what their particular meaning of life is. He also shared that one’s meaning of life could be different depending on the given moment in time. It can change as one grows in life. According to Frankl, when a person is blocked from relating with his will to meaning, it can result in great frustration and, in the long run, a mental collapse. Therefore, the role of logotherapy is absolutely important in helping the individual to uncover the obscure meaning of his or her existence and therefore bring back and sustain mental health. A human being’s will to meaning is defined as his or her basic striving to find and fulfill meaning and purpose in life. Psychotherapy helps a person to cope and adjust to society and the environment around them and does not typically address the meaning of an individual’s life. The existential vacuum is Frankl’s term for humanity’s loss of natural instinct through evolution. Because of this loss of instinct, people are forced to make choices. Often this leads to conformism or the acceptance of totalitarianism in order to avoid making so many choices. Boredom ensues and, according to Frankl, boredom causes more psychological problems than suffering. When one is in distress, he or she has something to remain focused on. Frankl states that “logotherapy sees in responsibleness the very essence of human existence”. In logotherapy, a person must be willing to take full responsibility for discovering his or her meaning of life. It goes beyond just oneself but extends to other people or perhaps a cause.
II. Merits and Demerits of the...
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