Yes to Life: In Spite of Everything

Viktor E. Frankl. Beacon, $19.95 (136p) ISBN 978-0-8070-0555-2
Based on three public lectures delivered in Vienna in 1946, this slim, powerful collection from Austrian neurologist and psychiatrist Frankl (Man’s Search for Meaning) attests to life’s meaning, even in desperate circumstances. Coming less than a year after Frankl’s liberation from Auschwitz, Frankl’s writings address a postwar “spiritually bombed out” audience that knows the evils of which humanity is capable. Frankl (1905–1997) claims that it is not humanity’s role to question life’s meaning, but rather it’s life that demands people reflect on their purpose. Frankl posits three ways in which humans find meaning: through work; through experiencing nature, art, or love; and through how they accept unwelcome circumstances. He offers an example of a patient of his who lived a meaningful life: a graphic designer who had fallen ill and, no longer able to work, enjoyed reading and music; when dying, he asked for his final morphine shot at the doctor’s convenience, thus thinking of others at his last hour. An afterward by Frank Vesely, Frankl’s son-in-law, attests to how Frankl’s own sense of purpose helped him survive both the Holocaust and subsequent losses. This lovely work transcends its original context, offering wisdom and guidance. (May)
Reviewed on : 03/11/2020
Release date: 05/05/2020
Genre: Religion
Book - 978-0-8070-0556-9
MP3 CD - 978-1-66200-500-8
Compact Disc - 978-1-66200-499-5
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