“What is to give light must endure burning.” — sage Viktor Frankl

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fg52C1828lI

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go to timeclock 3:14 for imagery  [Bicycles of Belsize]

http://www.youtube.com/watch?NR=1&v=35qEAbOP5n8&feature=endscreen

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http://www.goodreads.com/author/quotes/2782.Viktor_E_Frankl

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“When we are no longer able to change a situation, we are challenged to change ourselves.”
Viktor E. Frankl, Man’s Search for Meaning
 
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“We who lived in concentration camps can remember the men who walked through the huts comforting others, giving away their last piece of bread. They may have been few in number, but they offer sufficient proof 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.”
Viktor E. Frankl
 
 
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“Our greatest freedom is the freedom to choose our attitude.”
Viktor E. Frankl
 
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“It is not freedom from conditions, but it is freedom to take a stand toward the conditions.”   ― Viktor E. Frankl, Man’s Search for Meaning
 
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“The one thing you can’t take away from me is the way I choose to respond to what you do to me. The last of one’s freedoms is to choose one’s attitude in any given circumstance.”
Viktor E. Frankl
 
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“By declaring that man is responsible and must actualize the potential meaning of his life, I wish to stress that the true meaning of life is to be discovered in the world rather than within man or his own psyche, as though it were a closed system. I have termed this constitutive characteristic “the self-transcendence of human existence.” It denotes the fact that being human always points, and is directed, to something or someone, other than oneself–be it a meaning to fulfill or another human being to encounter. The more one forgets himself–by giving himself to a cause to serve or another person to love–the more human he is and the more he actualizes himself. What is called self-actualization is not an attainable aim at all, for the simple reason that the more one would strive for it, the more he would miss it. In other words, self-actualization is possible only as a side-effect of self-transcendence.”
Viktor E. Frankl, Man’s Search for Meaning
 
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“For what then matters is to bear witness to the uniquely human potential at its best, which is to transform a personal tragedy into a triumph, to turn one’s predicament into a human achievement.”
Viktor E. Frankl
 
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“What is demanded of man is not, as some existential philosophers teach, to endure the meaninglessness of life, but rather to bear his incapacity to grasp its unconditional meaninglessness in rational terms.”
Viktor E. Frankl, Man’s Search for Meaning
 
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“Our generation is realistic, for we have come to know man as he really is. After all, man is that being who invented the gas chambers of Auschwitz; however, he is also that being who entered those gas chambers upright, with the Lord’s Prayer or the Shema Yisrael on his lips.”
Viktor E. Frankl
 
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“As each situation in life represents a challenge to man and presents a problem for him to solve, the question of the meaning of life may actually be reversed. Ultimately, man should not ask what the meaning of his life is, but rather he must recognize that it is he who is asked. In a word, each man is questioned by life; and he can only answer to life by answering for his own life.    ― Viktor E. Frankl, Man’s Search for Meaning
 
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“But today’s society is characterized by achievement orientation, and consequently it adores people who are successful and happy and, in particular, it adores the young. It virtually ignores the value of all those who are otherwise, and in so doing blurs the decisive difference between being valuable in the sense of dignity and being valuable in the sense of usefulness. If one is not cognizant of this difference and holds that an individual’s value stems only from his present usefulness, then, believe me, one owes it only to personal inconsistency not to plead for euthanasia along the lines of Hitler’s program, that is to say, ‘mercy’ killing of all those who have lost their social usefulness, be it because of old age, incurable illness, mental deterioration, or whatever handicap they may suffer. Confounding the dignity of man with mere usefulness arises from conceptual confusion that in turn may be traced back to the contemporary nihilism transmitted on many an academic campus and many an analytical couch.”
Viktor E. Frankl, Man’s Search for Meaning
 
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Dostoevski said once, “There is only one thing I dread: not to be worthy of my sufferings.” These words frequently came to my mind after I became acquainted with those martyrs whose behavior in camp, whose suffering and death, bore witness to the fact that the last inner freedom cannot be lost. It can be said that they were worthy of the their sufferings; the way they bore their suffering was a genuine inner achievement. It is this spiritual freedom—which cannot be taken away—that makes life meaningful and purposeful.”
Viktor E. Frankl, Man’s Search for Meaning
 
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“Man is originally characterized by his “search for meaning” rather than his “search for himself.” The more he forgets himself—giving himself to a cause or another person—the more human he is. And the more he is immersed and absorbed in something or someone other than himself the more he really becomes himself. p.85”
Viktor E. Frankl, Man’s Search For Ultimate Meaning
 
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“As a professor in two fields, neurology and psychiatry, I am fully aware of the extent to which man is subject to biological, psychological and sociological conditions. But in addition to being a professor in two fields I am a survivor of four camps – concentration camps, that is – and as such I also bear witness to the unexpected extent to which man is capable of defying and braving even the worst conditions conceivable.”
Viktor E. Frankl, Man’s Search for Meaning
 
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“There are some authors who contend that meanings and values are “nothing but defense mechanisms, reaction formations and sublimations.” But as for myself, I would not be willing to live merely for the sake of my “defense mechanisms,” nor would I be ready to die merely for the sake of my “reaction formations.”
Viktor E. Frankl, Man’s Search for Meaning
 
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“To be sure, man’s search for meaning may arouse inner tension rather than inner equilibrium. However, precisely such tension is an indispensable prerequisite of mental health. There is nothing in the world, I venture to say, that would so effectively help one to survive even the worst conditions as the knowledge that there is a meaning in one’s life. There is much wisdom in the words of Nietzsche: “He who has a why to live for can bear almost any how”
Viktor E. Frankl, Man’s Search for Meaning
 
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“At the beginning of human history, man lost some of the basic animal instincts in which an animal’s behavior is embedded and by which it is secured. Such security, like paradise, is closed to man forever; man has to make choices. In addition to this, however, man has suffered another loss in his more recent development inasmuch as the traditions which buttressed his behavior are now rapidly diminishing. No instinct tells him what he has to do, and no tradition tells him what he ought to do; sometimes he does not even know what he wishes to do. Instead, he either wishes to do what other people do (conformism) or he does what other people tell him to do (totalitarianism).”
Viktor E. Frankl, Man’s Search for Meaning
 
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“Since Auschwitz we know what man is capable of. And since Hiroshima we know what is at stake.”
Viktor E. Frankl, Man’s Search for Meaning
 
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“Just consider a child who, absorbed in play, forgets himself—this is the moment to take a snapshot; when you wait until he notices that you are taking a picture, his face congeals and freezes, showing his unnatural self-consciousness rather than his natural graciousness. Why do most people have that stereotyped expression on their faces whenever they are photographed? This expression stems from their concern with the impression they are going to leave on the onlooker. It is “cheese” that makes them so ugly. Forgetting themselves, the photographer, and the future onlooker would make them beautiful.”
Viktor E. Frankl, Man’s Search For Ultimate Meaning
 
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“One evening, when we were already resting on the floor of our hut, dead tired, soup bowls in hand, a fellow prisoner rushed in and asked us to run out to the assembly grounds and see the wonderful sunset. Standing outside we saw sinister clouds glowing in the west and the whole sky alive with clouds of ever-changing shapes and colors, from steel blue to blood red. The desolate grey mud huts provided a sharp contrast, while the puddles on the muddy ground reflected the glowing sky. Then, after minutes of moving silence, one prisoner said to another, “How beautiful the world could be…”
Viktor E. Frankl, Man’s Search for Meaning
 
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“Because of social pressure, individualism is rejected by most people in favor of conformity. Thus the individual relies mainly upon the actions of others and neglects the meaning of his own personal life. Hence he sees his own life as meaningless and falls into the “existential vacuum” feeling inner void. Progressive automation causes increasing alcoholism, juvenile delinquency, and suicide.”
Viktor E. Frankl
 
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“Thus it can be seen that mental health is based on a certain degree of tension, the tension between what one has already achieved and what one still ought to accomplish, or the gap between what one is and what one should become. Such a tension is inherent in the human being and therefore is indispensable to mental well-being. We should not, then, be hesitant about challenging man with a potential meaning for him to fulfill. It is only thus that we evoke his will to meaning from its state of latency. I consider it a dangerous misconception of mental hygiene to assume that what man needs in the first place is equilibrium or, as it is called in biology “homeostasis”, i.e., a tensionless state. What man actually needs is not a tensionless state but rather the striving and struggling for a worthwhile goal, a freely chosen task. What he needs is not the discharge of tension at any cost but the call of a potential meaning waiting to be fulfilled by him.”
Viktor E. Frankl, Man’s Search for Meaning
 
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“I shall never forget how I was roused one night by the groans of a fellow prisoner, who threw himself about in his sleep, obviously having a horrible nightmare. Since I had always been especially sorry for people who suffered from fearful dreams or deliria, I wanted to wake the poor man. Suddenly I drew back the hand which was ready to shake him, frightened at the thing I was about to do. At that moment I became intensely conscious of the fact that no dream, no matter how horrible, could be as bad as the reality of the camp which surrounded us, and to which I was about to recall him.”
Viktor E. Frankl, Man’s Search for Meaning
 
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“Human potential at its best is to transform a tragedy into a personal triumph, to turn one’s predicament into a human achievement.”
Viktor E. Frankl
 
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For the first time in my life I was able to understand the meaning of the words,”The angels are lost in perpetual contemplation of an infinite glory.”
Viktor E. Frankl, Man’s Search For Ultimate Meaning
 
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“Sigmund Freud once asserted, “Let one attempt to expose a number of the most diverse people uniformly to hunger. With the increase of the imperative urge of hunger all individual differences will blur, and in their stead will appear the uniform expression of the one unstilled urge.” Thank heaven, Sigmund Freud was spared knowing the concentration camps from the inside. His subjects lay on a couch designed in the plush style of Victorian culture, not in the filth of Auschwitz. There, the “individual differences” did not “blur” but, on the contrary, people became more different; people unmasked themselves, both the sinners and the saints.”
Viktor E. Frankl, Man’s Search for Meaning
 
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“Here lies the chance for a man either to make use of or to forgo the opportunities of attaining the moral values that a difficult situation may afford him. And this decides whether he is worthy of his sufferings or not.    Fundamentally, therefore, any man can, even under such circumstances, decide what shall become of him-mentally and spiritually. He may retain his human dignity even in a concentration camp. Dostoevski said once, “There is only one thing that I dread: not to be worthy of my sufferings.”These words frequently came to my mind after I became acquainted with those martyrs whose behavior in camp, whose suffering and death, bore witness to the fact that the last inner freedom cannot be lost. It can be said that they were worthy of their sufferings; the way they bore their suffering was a genuine inner achievement. It is this spiritual freedom- which cannot be taken away- that makes life meaningful and purposeful.”
Viktor E. Frankl, Man’s Search for Meaning

 
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“Having been is also a kind of being, and perhaps the surest kind.”
Viktor E. Frankl, Man’s Search for Meaning
 
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“For too long a time–for half a century, in fact–psychiatry tried to interpret the human mind merely as a mechanism, and consequently the therapy of mental disease merely in terms of technique. I believe this dream has been dreamt out. What now begins to loom on the horizon is not psychologized medicine but rather those of human psychiatry.”
Viktor E. Frankl, Man’s Search for Meaning
 
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“An active life serves the purpose of giving man the opportunity to realize values in creative work, while a passive life of enjoyment affords him the opportunity to obtain fulfillment in experiencing beauty, art, or nature.”
Viktor E. Frankl, Man’s Search for Meaning
 
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33 Responses to “What is to give light must endure burning.” — sage Viktor Frankl

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