„The way in which a man accepts his fate and all the suffering it entails, the way in which he takes up his cross, gives him ample opportunity — even under the most difficult circumstances — to add a deeper meaning to his life.“

Man's Search for Meaning (1946; 1959; 1984)
Context: The way in which a man accepts his fate and all the suffering it entails, the way in which he takes up his cross, gives him ample opportunity — even under the most difficult circumstances — to add a deeper meaning to his life. It may remain brave, dignified and unselfish. Or in the bitter fight for self-preservation he may forget his human dignity and become no more than an animal. 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.

Last update Oct. 16, 2020. History
Viktor E. Frankl photo
Viktor E. Frankl63
Austrian neurologist and psychiatrist, and Holocaust surviv… 1905 - 1997

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„A man who has blown all his options can't afford the luxury of changing his ways. He has to capitalize on whatever he has left, and he can't afford to admit — no matter how often he's reminded of it — that every day of his life takes him farther and farther down a blind alley…“

—  Hunter S. Thompson American journalist and author 1937 - 2005

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„The essential is
That all the 'I's should remain separate
Propped up under flowers, and no one suffer
For his neighbour. Then horror is postponed
For everyone until it settles on him
And drags him to that incommunicable grief
Which is all mystery or nothing.“

—  Stephen Spender English poet and man of letters 1909 - 1995

"Thoughts During An Air Raid"
The Still Centre (1939)
Context: Yet supposing that a bomb should dive
Its nose right through this bed, with me upon it?
The thought is obscene. Still, there are many
To whom my death would only be a name,
One figure in a column. The essential is
That all the 'I's should remain separate
Propped up under flowers, and no one suffer
For his neighbour. Then horror is postponed
For everyone until it settles on him
And drags him to that incommunicable grief
Which is all mystery or nothing.

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„There is no meaning to life except the meaning man gives his life by the unfolding of his powers.“

—  Erich Fromm German social psychologist and psychoanalyst 1900 - 1980

Source: Man for Himself: An Inquiry into the Psychology of Ethics

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