Avatar

Please consider registering
guest

sp_LogInOut Log In sp_Registration Register

Register | Lost password?
Advanced Search

— Forum Scope —




— Match —





— Forum Options —





Minimum search word length is 3 characters - maximum search word length is 84 characters

No permission to create posts
sp_TopicIcon
Man's Search for Meaning
October 8, 1999
1:02 pm
Avatar
Cici
New Member
Members
Forum Posts: -1
Member Since:
September 24, 2010
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline

This is already posted on another thread, but I thought others mightbenefit from the quotes...

Tears, have you ever read "Man's Search for Meaning" by Viktor Frankl? It's a wonderful eye-opener.

"Ultimately, man should not ask what the meaning of his life is, but rather 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; to life he can only respond by being responsible."
- Viktor Frankl, Man's Search for Meaning, p.172

Viktor Frankl was a Jewish scientist sent to Auschwitz during World War II. He survived the Nazi's worst, most deplorable concentration camp and went on to found his own school of psychotherapy in Vienna in the 1940s.
He worked with other great psychological figures like Freud and Heidegger. Of his experience in Auschwitz he says:

"'You asked me earlier, Do I still think of these things? Not a day goes by when I do not! And in a way I do pity those younger people who did not know the camps or live during the war, who have nothing like that to
compare [their own hardships] with... Even today, as I lose my sight or with any severe problem or adverse situation,...I have only to think for a fraction of a second and I draw a deep breath. What I would have given then if I could have had no greater problem than I face today!'"

Of the soul he says, "I was not put on the earth to save souls, but to heal them."

Cici 🙂

October 8, 1999
2:04 pm
Avatar
Anonymous
New Member
Members
Forum Posts: -1
Member Since:
September 24, 2010
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline

MANDATORY READING FOR EVERYONE WHO IS CONSIDERING TAKING THEIR LIFE, DEPRESSED OR FEELING HELPLESS OR OUT OF CONTROL. AFTER READING THIS I PROMISE YOU THINGS WILL BE VERY DIFFERENT FOR YOU.

October 8, 1999
9:21 pm
Avatar
Guest
Guests

Cici.

In that magnificent book Frankl also said "He who knows the WHY can bear almost any HOW". When meaning is found in that suffering, all unbearable suffering can be moderated to bearable pain. The yogis in India have a saying that, with understanding of the meaning, the 'gallows' can become a 'pin prick'. This is, in my opinion, the essence of Frankl's insightful message in this book.

He further emphasizes this point when he said that the last freedom over which the Nazis had no control was his freedom to choose his ATTITUDE to his suffering and his tormentors.

Finding meaning in our life experiences and our obvious physical vulnerability can turn discontentment and unhappiness into peace and joy. Even in the horrors of Auschwitz, occasionally this happened.

I guess this message is at the very heart of Existentialist Theory. An existential vacuum of meaning in our lives leads to depression and worse.

It is one of my favorite books. The message is timeless and can precipitate the beginning of the spiritual journey. Thanks for the thread.

October 8, 1999
10:50 pm
Avatar
Anonymous
New Member
Members
Forum Posts: -1
Member Since:
September 24, 2010
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline

80% of depressed people responded to the concept of meaning saying their life lacked it completely, and they felt this had a big bearing on their depression.
Remember we can always choose our attitude to any situation that may cause us suffering, this is where our true stress test resides. The stress is not so much in the event but in our ATTITUDE towards the event. Blessings
Im going to go reread victor frankyl. It is an amazing book. Did you know that during his captivity in auschwitz a young non jew german girl would come by the fence every day and throw him an apple. They would exchange smiles and he eventually grew to love her so much. She was an angel to him, untill the worst came about and he was transferred to another camp, never to see his beloved again. Her vision to him was that of complete beauty, when you can imagine all he saw was squalor, emancipation and torture. He ached for her every day in this other camp, just to see her face and smile again,. He would visualise her everyday and she gave him strength and hope, this visualising for him was becoming another reality that sustained him.
The clincher was years after he was released from the death camps he met up with this woman in a freak meeting and married her!!!!!!!!!!! Talk about a godincident! wow They stayed married till the end..what romance,,what hope..what joy!

October 9, 1999
4:04 pm
Avatar
Cici
New Member
Members
Forum Posts: -1
Member Since:
September 24, 2010
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline

I've been interested in existential philosophy since I was 15, after reading some Camus (The Myth of Sysiphus) and some Satre, and recently I've begun being interested in de Beavoir as well.

It's a philosophy born out of what Marx referred to as man's feeling of alienation in an increasingly technological society (which probablyled to his idealistic view of human nature as portrayed in socialist political ideology)...we search for meaning in something patently absurd. We wander around, bouncing off of various traumas, trying to understand how God could make us into a modern day Job.

Too many people, I think, (myself included), search for some kind of external impetus...something outside of themselves to explain why things are as they are, and to tell them what to do. I suppose that's why most existentialists are agnostic/atheist...it's difficult to force yourself to find some internal motivationfor understanding life whenyou lean on someone else's moral or ethical code (ie your parents...hahaha).

As you can see, Tears, since moving home and getting away from teh drug scene I've been spending a lot of time reading. I know you're a pretty religious woman...I thought you might like the book "The Varieties of Religious Experience" by William James...it talkes about the psychology of religion, which is a point of some interest to myself as well.

Anyways, regardless of all this blathering, I think everyone should read this book too. Frankl complained in an interview when he was 90 that too many people focused on that one work. He was an extremely prolific writer after his arrival in vienna. Has anyone read any of his other works? Are they as interesting?

Cici 🙂

October 9, 1999
5:27 pm
Avatar
guest_guest
Guest
Guests

Hey according to the topic of this thread, i think anyone looking for any 'meaning' should always consult the dictionary.. and your search will end... yuk yuk yuk ... just kidding 🙂

October 9, 1999
7:16 pm
Avatar
Anonymous
New Member
Members
Forum Posts: -1
Member Since:
September 24, 2010
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline

Cici, I am NOT religious at all I am a spiritual person who does not attend church, fundamentalist christian dogma is very condemning, guilt inducing and fear based, not MY belief in who or what our creator really is. I see our creator is being part of all of us not a Male "out there"
I used to read a lot of Kafka as a teen, then Bukowski ( a philospher unto himself, an alcoholic depraved writer holding great intelligence and amazing human insight) I love plato and aristotle as well as Jung.
I have not read anything else of of Frankl's but I WILL look for more of his work now.
Blessings
I am so glad, your brain is too wonderful to burn out with drugs girl, good going!

October 10, 1999
3:53 pm
Avatar
Cici
New Member
Members
Forum Posts: -1
Member Since:
September 24, 2010
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline

Oh I love Kafka. There's something in extistentialism that appeals to those teen angst years, don't you think?

AS for religion...I'm not religious, either, but I found the William James book to be very interesting. It talkes about the psychology of religion as it relates to everyone's personal experience. His premise is that it is the personal rather than the communal religious experience that holds so much meaning to people. Thus, it sort of explains away the ngst that some people feel because they can't reconcile their personal and public dogmas. I've seen that book cause the most strict Catholics to at least ponder their faith.

Anyways...I'm rereading Frankl as we type (ha ha) because it helps me to get over the whole depression as per withdrawal thingy. Very useful. I think it should be required reading for all teenagers. It sort of puts things in perspective.

October 10, 1999
4:48 pm
Avatar
Guest
Guests

All. What is both psychological and physical pain? What is its relationship to its polar opposite - pleasure?

October 10, 1999
4:58 pm
Avatar
Anonymous
New Member
Members
Forum Posts: -1
Member Since:
September 24, 2010
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline

I feel it should be required reading for a;; highschool students too, you are so right.
My spiritual beliefs are quite personal therefore not subject to outward religious dogma or shame or righteousness.
It is what is truth to the individual if it works, dont fix it i always say.
I believe god to be our highest self that connects to all the higher selves of humanity and is the creative loving force behind all of nature (including us) This "force" is proven in quantum physics now, I love it when science comes together with spirituality, this is a true defining moment of our roles as advanced people. I am really proud of the human race despite the negatives. Blessings

October 10, 1999
7:31 pm
Avatar
guest_guest
Guest
Guests

I think the relation between pain and pleasure is that they are relative, maybe... Also, any person always goes for pleasure. Someone (maybe Freud?) said 'man is here to seek pleasure and to avoid pain'. So man always seeks pleasure, although it may sometimes appear, why is this guy doing this? Is he crazy? But, maybe he is doing something which may appear that he is hurting himself (e.g. hurting himself physically), because he thinks it will give him peace of mind or psychological relief. I say, go for the pleasure !!

October 10, 1999
7:32 pm
Avatar
Anonymous
New Member
Members
Forum Posts: -1
Member Since:
September 24, 2010
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline

??????

October 10, 1999
8:12 pm
Avatar
guest_guest
Guest
Guests

tears you missed Tez's question above 🙂

October 10, 1999
8:16 pm
Avatar
guest_guest
Guest
Guests

Pain is the absence of pleasure, just as hunger is the absence of satisfaction or food. Still, a cyclic defination. Pain is an unpleasant position, something which makes living or life difficult. Pleasure makes living easy. Pain is the thing you always want to get away from. Pinch yourself right now and you'll see :). What else...? Anyone?

October 10, 1999
8:46 pm
Avatar
Anonymous
New Member
Members
Forum Posts: -1
Member Since:
September 24, 2010
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline

ahhh now i see:)

October 11, 1999
12:05 am
Avatar
guest_guest
Guest
Guests

Tears: What i wanted to say was that to know the meaning of pain (and how you want it to stop), pinch yourselves. 🙂

October 11, 1999
8:30 am
Avatar
dagney
New Member
Members
Forum Posts: -1
Member Since:
September 24, 2010
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline

i would have to disagree guest. pain is not the absence of pleasure, they are not strict opposites. We feel pain even as we are getting pleasure. In the example of thirst, one can be dying of thirst, get a drink, feel pleasure by drinking but still be pained by dehydration. I don't believe that pain has a polar opposite. Socrates makes an intelligent arguement in Plato's Gorgia's.

October 11, 1999
1:01 pm
Avatar
guest_guest
Guest
Guests

You're right, pain is not the absence of pleasure... e.g. you can just be plain bored, i.e. there will be no pleasure but there will also be no pain... hmm.. i dont know...fundamental definations are difficult.

October 11, 1999
7:14 pm
Avatar
Guest
Guests

All. When we break a leg we feel physical pain. This sensation is nature's way of telling us to do something about the injury. This pain has survival value.

When we are threatened with the 'sack' by our boss we may feel psychological pain as a result of fear of loss of our income. In other words the possibility of our survival being compromised, results in psychological pain.

On the other hand we take great pleasure in the knowledge that we got a 'raise' in our wages.

We men take great pleasure in the nurturing love of a good woman. Women take great pleasure in the protecting and understanding love of a good man.

It seems to me that the relationship between pleasure and pain is that we experience both along a continuum depending upon our perceptions of 'survival' value of the events occuring in our lives at that instant.

Perhaps there is another more spiritual continuum that is unrelated to the more body conscious Pleasure-Pain continuum. Is this other continuum, a Joy-Sorrow continuum perhaps?

Perhaps the 'meaning' that we find in our life determines what percentage of our time that we spend on each continuum and thus our emotional state. What do you all think?

October 12, 1999
12:34 am
Avatar
kitten
New Member
Members
Forum Posts: -1
Member Since:
September 24, 2010
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline

mayhap Tez, that last line was confusing? Me thinks it was a bit of a circle. I do not wish for sorrow in my life, yet it always seems to shadow me. Now is it an external shadow or merely the physical manifestation of the Shadow within. Who is to say. And what of love? If the opposite of love is not hate, but rather apathy, then, can that be true of pleasure? Isn't pleasure a form of love? To not feel pleasure might then only be apathy-- an uncaring one way or the other. Maybe I've read a wee bit too much Jung. Now, if only I could maintain my Jungian approach in my relationship. I'd be much saner...

October 12, 1999
5:19 am
Avatar
guest_guest
Guest
Guests

i didnt get the last 3 paragraphs... too heavy for me 🙂

October 12, 1999
1:08 pm
Avatar
Cici
New Member
Members
Forum Posts: -1
Member Since:
September 24, 2010
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline

It seems to me, although I've been out of it for the last few days, that pain and pleasure occur physically when homeostasis is disturbed. Thus, when we are moved from our normal levels of staus quo, we feel physical pain or physical pleasure.

The same could be said psychologically. We all exist with a certain baseline from which we function. Let's call that our paradigm (please forgive the jargon...I couldn't think of a more precise way to say world-view) and think of it as a calm pool of water. This is created from our personal moral and eithical views, our past experiences, &c. (as hydrogen and oxygen make up water) Any outside influence that moves us away from the baseline causes a ripple in our paradigm. This can be either pain or pleasure.

We are all familira with sado-masochists, who confuse the plaeasure-pain sensations in a pathological sense. This indicates that both sesations affect similar areas of the brain. Faulty wiring causes the confusion (or faulty associations, as the case may be).

How d'ya like them apples, Tez?

Thoughtfully yours,
Cici

October 12, 1999
1:21 pm
Avatar
Anonymous
New Member
Members
Forum Posts: -1
Member Since:
September 24, 2010
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline

Great discussion guys! Well as far as the pleasure/pain affecting the same portion of the brain in sado masochistic people, i think this is because of past programming or early programming in our childhood....somehow the two were confused as one. This perhaps relates to women such as Kitten, karin, myself etc who have relationships with men who are not only good to us but cruel to us thus reinforcing that belief that the two go together and equal love as in our childhood patterns and memories..sadomasochism in a way i guess.
I feel that the Paradigm as cici eloquently states is different for everyone. We all have our own status quo or comfort zone for ourselves. This is way i often state to codependent women that it is up to them to cognitivly change their paradigm from one of constant pain and survival to one of living and joy. It is really a matter of inner work, cognitive changes, behavioral changes and spiritual changes. As
Tez questions the spirit (great question Tez) I believe this plays a all important role in what we intutively feel is real please/happiness and what we intutively (as well as physically) feel is real pain FOR US.
I would like to use the analogy of our soul as a Master ship that leads all the smaller ship when one is working and growing from the soul as opposed to the intellectual mind/ego. The smaller ships (mind,body, dreams, desires, dislikes etc...all fall in line perfectly if we begin to listen to our heart and soul on matters that normally would cause our mind to run around on itself, cancelling itself our or judging itself. When we are caught up in our ego and over intellectualising our life instead of acting from our heart. intution/inner voice life becomes very complicated and i believe we present ourselves with certain difficulties that all bring us back to the basic fundamental truth, that being to trust in ones own inner voice and heart.
Blessings.
I will explain more later, have to go.....

October 12, 1999
6:02 pm
Avatar
Guest
Guests

Kitten.

You said, "... I do not wish for sorrow in my life, yet it always seems to shadow me..." When we experience great joy in life, we must inevitably suffer the 'sorrow' of the loss of that joy. How many of us still remember the loss of the joy of our first 'true' love experiences. Our sad remanesciences of what 'might have been' have a degree of sorrow in them.

When we feel great pleasure and satisfaction we must sooner or later feel the deprivation of the pleasure and thus some dissatisfaction or pain.

If we plot Pleasure and Pain on the extremities of the Y axis of a cartesian plot and Joy and Sorrow at the extremities of the X axis, then we have a two dimensional representation of our emotionmal state. If we plot our instantaneous feelings on such a plot, it would be represented by a 'dot'. Over time the 'dot' would be seen to trace out a loci of points all over the plot. Apathy such as experienced when taking Prozac is when the 'dot' is close to the origin.

The 'dot' of more spiritual people tends to travel close to the X axis; whilst that of the materialistic (hedonists) travels close to the Y axis; those in between close to the diagonals.

Sorry about the mathematical approach to graphing feelings. I find that it is the easiest way to present a complex issue.

I believe that the 'personal' Jungian 'shadow' is a mixture of the negative associated and dissociated emotional memories stored in our 'old brain' and the associated negative 'narrative memories' stored in the cortex.

I believe that Jung was right when he said that unless we accept our own 'shadow' then we are bound to act these negative emotions out. I further believe that our 'shadow' is what is often referred to as the 'unfinished business' of childhood issues.

The butchers of Auschwitz were certainly acting out their 'shadow'. They were probably giving vent to emotional memories in an attempt to satisfy insatiable desires of early childhood to punish their caregivers for perceived 'abandonments'. Now that is Freudian isn't it. This is conjecture that has some theoretical support.

Now back to the real issue. What is the meaning of each instant? Is its purpose in order that the next instant occur? Or has each instant intrinsic value independent of any other? Have the instantaneous feelings of joy, sorrow, pleasure, pain or apathy differing values? If so why?

October 12, 1999
6:16 pm
Avatar
Guest
Guests

Cici. Yes, I don't disagree with what you said. Put simply, you said that when we move out of our physical or psychological comfort zone wherein we feel safe, then we suffer pain. Within our comfort zone we feel pleasure.

However this does not account for our spiritual experiences of ecstacy, joy, sadness and sorrow. For example what has the joy of appreciation for the beauty of a sunset to do with comfort zones and survival?

I see an orthogonal feelings spectrum to that of the pleasure pain spectrum. Whilst they may be experienced concurrently,I see that joy and pleasure are causually unrelated.

Again on what criteria is the meaning and value of the instantaneous experiences based? The search for meaning continues...

No permission to create posts
Forum Timezone: UTC -8

Most Users Ever Online: 247

Currently Online:
47 Guest(s)

Currently Browsing this Page:
1 Guest(s)

Top Posters:

onedaythiswillpass: 1134

zarathustra: 562

StronginHim77: 453

free: 433

2013ways: 431

curious64: 408

Member Stats:

Guest Posters: 49

Members: 109452

Moderators: 5

Admins: 3

Forum Stats:

Groups: 8

Forums: 74

Topics: 38532

Posts: 714179

Newest Members:

fynjybysxDazy, DenisDazy, DeniskaDazy, gelinaDazy, hemeDazy, gushVar

Moderators: arochaIB: 1, devadmin: 9, Tincho: 0, Donn Gruta: 0, Germain Palacios: 0

Administrators: admin: 21, ShiningLight: 572, emily430: 29

Copyright © 2019 MH Sub I, LLC. All rights reserved. Terms of Use | Privacy Policy | Cookie Policy | Health Disclaimer