Momento Espírita
Curitiba, 21 de Maio de 2019
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ícone In search of meaning

He owned an office of neurology and psychiatry in Vienna. Then, the Nazis invaded Austria in 1938.

As the director of the Rothschild Hospital´s neurological department, risking his own life, he decided to sabotage the orders he had received to carry out euthanasia of the mentally ill under his care.

Imprisoned, in September of 1942, he was sent to Theresienstadt Ghetto, in the city of Terezin, where his father would die from exhaustion.

Becoming prisoner number one hundred and nineteen thousand, one hundred and four, Viktor Frankl experienced the horror of the concentration camps of Auschwitz, Kaufering and Türkheim.

The manuscript of the book he had written and brought, as his treasure, was taken from him and destroyed. A great project, a work he had dedicated himself to, was simply despised and shattered.

When he arrived at the shed destined for him, in Auschwitz, he commented that he had lost sight of his friend because he had been selected to the other line.

Whoever was beside him, aware of the cruel reality, pointed him the window and, indicating the smoke that came from the chimneys of another huge shed, said:

You can see him there!

And his calvary was just beginning. Until he was released on April 27 of 1945, by the US troops, he suffered the most difficult situations.

He dug tunnels, worked in excavations and constructions of railroads. He suffered the terribly homesickness of the family, the harshness of the total absence of news.

His wife, at the age of twenty-four, died in Auschwitz. Fact that he would know when arriving in Vienna, at the end of the war.

From family, after all, survived only his sister Stella, who had ran away to Australia.

This Viennese psychiatrist wrote, in only nine days, his most extraordinary book: In Search of Meaning.

It is the autobiographical report of what he suffered and what he witnessed his companions of misfortune suffer.

In a sincere, tragic description of his pains, he does the psychological analysis of prisoners and jailers, in which, necessarily, the first are not good and the second are not bad.

He used whatever time he had for careful observation of the behavior, of the human reactions facing adversity.

He is a living example that, even under terrible conditions, the human being can adapt and survive.

And it is precisely in this atrocious suffering that he finds his central thesis on the meaning of life and human psychology.

It is there that he sediments the ideas about Logotherapy, considered the third Viennese school of psychotherapy.

Life is suffering, and surviving is finding meaning in pain.

When all the goals of life are broken, man only has one freedom: the ability to choose the personal attitude that he will assume facing the circumstances that surround him.

Viktor Frankl chose to survive. But, not only that: he exemplified the human capacity to rise above its fate, however adverse it is, to literally, turn it over, and to build a dignified and honorable life.

Moreover: a life that gives meaning and contributes to the benefit of other lives.

Let us look at his example.

Spiritism Moment Team, based on biographical data
of Viktor Emil Frankl and quotations taken from the book
In
search of meaning, by Viktor E. Frankl, publisher Vozes
and Sinodal.
March 12,2019.

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