I will (re?) read this book, as I recall reading at least two books by V. Frankl, but having stumbled across this wonderful blog with quotes, now I must read more.
“In my view, that Frankl’s book – at least those one hundred pages of the concentration camp chapter – must be read by everyone who is trying to understand the why of our so comfortable and safe life. In a new school curriculum, I would recommend this book for our teenagers as one of the most important textbooks.
…A long column of inmates, the walking skeletons, suffering from hunger, exhaustion, and, on the top of everything, edema of their legs and feet. Some do not have socks – their frostbitten and chilblain feet are so swollen, that there is no space for socks, even if they had them… Suddenly, the man marching next to Frankl whisper: “If our wives could see us now! I do hope they are better off in their camps and don’t know what is happening to us.” Frankl continues: “And as we stumbled on for miles, slipping on icy spots, supporting each other time and again, dragging one another up and onward, nothing was said, but we both knew: each of us was thinking of his wife” (p. 56).
Thoughts of their loved ones were an important component of that will to meaning that enabled people to survive. .îFor the first time in my life I saw the truth, as it is set into songs by so many poets, proclaimed as the final wisdom by so many thinkers. The truth is that love is the ultimate and the highest goal to which man can aspire. Then I grasped the meaning of the greatest secret that human poetry and human thought and belief have to impart: The salvation of man is through love and in love. I understood how a man who has nothing left in this world still may know bliss, be it only for a brief moment, in the contemplation of his beloved.”(p. 57; italics by Frankl). In that marching column, and on hundreds of other occasions when Frankl and his comrades were uniting in thoughts with those they loved, they did not even know if they were alive. “I knew only one thing – which I have learned well by now: Love goes very far beyond the physical person of the beloved.”(p. 58).”
“to find meaning in life”
Genrich L. Krasko is a retired physicist still affiliated with Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, MA. He lives in Peabody, MA with his wife Zeya. ”
Peace, Meaning and Community,
MEOW Date: 8 September 12014 H.E.