Man’s Search for Meaning
Why this book?
I love this book, written by a secular Jewish psychiatrist: a brilliant, short autobiographical account of his experiences as a prisoner in Auschwitz. Frankl tells what he observed there—how some people survived the worst kind of situation imaginable. While not himself a participant in religious tradition, Frankl came to the conviction that “finding meaning” is a fundamental human need. What’s original—and illuminating—is his insight that such meaning cannot be some generalized cliché. Instead, it must engage each person’s own situation, and the specific kind of meaning found in our own life. And when there’s none to “find,” he powerfully demonstrates how we can—and often must—“create meaning.”