Monday 20 August 2018

Mindful moment… Finding meaning in a mad world

'Frankl observed that people who gave away their last piece of bread and cared for others usually survived the longest'
'Frankl observed that people who gave away their last piece of bread and cared for others usually survived the longest'

Marianne Power

In his 1946 book, Man's Search for Meaning, the Austrian psychiatrist Viktor Frankl writes about how he and others survived - and in some cases didn't survive - concentration camps during World War II.

Frankl observed that people who gave away their last piece of bread and cared for others usually survived the longest.

He concluded that man's deepest need is to have meaning and purpose - and the meaning and purpose which came from helping others was a lifeline.

Frankl also concluded that: "Everything can be taken from a man but one thing: the last of the human freedoms - to choose one's attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one's own way."

This is something we can all remember, even when our lives are a million away from the horrors that Frankl endured.

We might not be able to control what happens in our lives but what we can always control is our reactions to it.

* Marianne Power is the author of helpmeblog.net

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