frankl: meaning as a sheep in wolfs clothing

Logotherapy based on the idea that meaning is an objective reality, contrary to various forms of illusion, arising and conjured up within the perceptual capabilities of the observer. Is it true? It would seem that objective reality is an oxymoron. Nomadic fluidity without fixed address becoming rooted in a plot of land to serve the Seigneur in a feudalistic relationship. Could Viktor Frankl’s religiosity be the source of some of its own peculiar and proper neuroses embedded within an experience that can slide into delusional re-enactents? Its based on a presumption of access to the soul or is it really a series of spaces, stations on the cross that can veer off towards a tragic of life where liberation itself is an illusion… From Eric Maisel:

…. In noimetic psychology, we claim exactly the opposite, that meaning is a subjective reality. If the difference between “meaning” being an objective reality that you must work to discern and that you are obliged to obey and “meaning” being a subjective psychological experience that you can create sounds like no difference to you, you are not finely attuned to the difference between believing authoritarian dogma and embracing freedom….

Michelangelo. Moses. Zizek:In his Wissen und Gewissen, Viktor Frankl reports on one of his post-WWII patients, a concentration camp survivor who reunited with his wife after the war; however, due to an illness contracted in the camp, she died soon afterwards. The patient fell into total despair, and all Frankl’s attempts to drag him out of depression failed, till, one day, he told the patient: “Imagine that God would give me the power to create a woman who would have all the features of your dead wife, so that she would be indistinguishable from her—would you ask me to create her?” The patient was silent for a short time, then he stood up, said “No, thanks, doctor,” shook his hand, left and started to lead a new normal life.9 This patient did what Scottie, who precisely tried to recreate the same woman, wasn’t able to do: he became aware that, while one can find the same woman as to her positive features, one cannot recreate the unfathomable objet a in her. Read More:

Logotherapy, the psychotherapy that emerged from Frankl’s views, and noimetic psychology have little in common except that we both employ the word “meaning.” As soon as someone informs you that “meaning is objective” you can be sure that soon he will be announcing, “And here’s what it is.” In the authoritarian view objective meaning must be found, since it is “out there somewhere”; in the noimetic view subjective meaning, which is all that we have and exactly what we have, is always available if and when we decide to embrace the truth of that reality….

Poussin. Shepherds of Arcadia.---That is to say, Frankl, as he noted in his "The Unheard Cry For Meaning," when traveling through Mexico in 1975, came upon a Benedictine monastery. He happened to discuss with the prior who ran the monastery the issue of neurosis and freedom from it, evidently including the question of the acquisition of religiosity. He learned that the prior had insisted that the monks in his monastery undergo a strictly Freudian psychoanalysis, and they did so. The outcome? Only 20 percent remained in the Monastery! This finding is supportive of Freud's conception and mine too, that by reducing the neurotic conflicts and other 'hang-ups' underlying religiosity, one can be expected to evolve a more normal, rational life orientation. Read More:

…Our contemporary conversations about meaning are not exhausted because religious zealots like Frankl have used the word a lot. Rollo May, the existential thinker and writer, publicly took Frankl to task for disguising religion as psychology. It is funny that Frankl is revered as a figure in the history of freedom. He is actually a figure in the history of the authoritarian personality, one who just happened to use the word “meaning” in felicitous ways. He surely did not end our conversation about meaning; in fact, he never really began it. Read More:

Thomas Cole. Dream of Arcadia reproduction. ---What sets Frankl apart from Rollo May and Irvin Yalom (2000) is his unconditional affirmation of life’s meaning, including the ultimate meaning. The main objective of logotherapy is twofold: facilitate clients’ quest for meaning and empower them to live responsibly, regardless of their life circumstances. Logotherapy literally means “healing or therapy through meaning”. It comes from the Greek word logos, which may mean the word, meaning, or God’s will (Fabry, 1994). Most people do not realize that logotherapy is actually a spiritually-oriented approach towards psychotherapy. “A psychotherapy which not only recognizes man’s spirit, but actually starts from it may be termed logotherapy. In this connection, logos is intended to signify ‘the spiritual’ and beyond that ‘the meaning’” --- Read More:


viktor frankl spoke of never forgetting to exercise our freedom to chose our own attitude and approach to life despite whatever depth of adversity reality has enveloped our lives in. this of course is not a call in favor of passivity and resignation, nor for coming to terms. it is precisely its opposite: it is a call to action, to not give up, and to find the inner strength of the free man to chose to rebel and overthrow oppression….in his essay “a critique of pure encounter”, Viktor Frankl argues that the I-Thou encounter, as proposed by Buber, Ebner and Levi-Moreno, leaves out the dimension of logos, and in that, it cannot accomplish the state of being envisioned by its proponents. Frankl defines logos as meaning or purpose to be fulfilled in acts of self-transcendence. logos, for Frankl, also means the love of another person. according to Frankl, the I-Thou dialogue, as Buber, ebner and Levi-Moreno propose, might indeed be a moving towards the other, but in Frankl’s view, these forms of dialogue are self-contained encounters. a self-contained encounter is a form of dialogue that functions without the crucial element of a logos, and in that they are not genuine dialogue. for Frankl, dialogue needs to transcend itself towards a meaning or purpose that is beyond the encounter itself, otherwise it is like a mutual-monologue….Read More:

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Stein:In essence, the acquiring of religiosity is both prompted by and enables the individual, otherwise seemingly mature in his or her psychological functioning, to make experiencing the world a fantasized or delusional reenactment, or both, of the dyadic infant and mother/father relationship. In effect, Mickey Mouse-like “nursery” of comic proportions, a vestige of the naïve, pres

tific thinking, superstition, and ignorance of humankind’s primitive past appears.

Religiosity may afford a noteworthy degree of surcease; it is true, from anxieties, frustrations, and insecurity that dog one in the course of independent living. It does so, however, at the cost of doing violence to the crown of humankinds evolutionary achievement — the phylogenic flowering of the supremacy of its intelligence, its unsurpassed capacity for rationality, among the animal kingdom….

…Thus, the ecstatic experience of religious conversion, of being “reborn again,” that persons afflicted with religiosity so often stridently claim, can be better understood as solely a pathopsychological phenomenon: the transitory reestablishment, through regression, of the original “oceanic feeling” — as Freud and Sandor Rado, an American psychoanalyst, labeled it — that characterized the unity, the deep passive dependence, that the infant experienced with the all giving mother. Read More:

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