If there is meaning in life at all, then there must be a meaning in suffering. Suffering is an ineradicable part of life, even as fate and death. Without suffering and death human life cannot be complete.
The third aspect of the tragic triad concerns death. But it concerns life as well, for at any time each of the moments of which life consists is dying, and that moment will never recur. And yet is not this transitoriness a reminder that challenges us to make the best possible use of each moment of our lives?
... nothing could touch the strength of my love, and the thoughts of my beloved. Had I known then that my wife was dead, I think that I still would have given myself, undisturbed by that knowledge, to the contemplation of that image, and that my mental conversation with her would have been just as vivid and just as satisfying. 'Set me like a seal upon thy heart, love is as strong as death.'
Even though conditions such as lack of sleep, insufficient food and various mental stresses may suggest that the inmates were bound to react in certain ways, in the final analysis it becomes clear that the sort of person the prisoner became was the result of an inner decision, and not the result of camp influences alone. Fundamentally, therefore, any man can, even under such circumstances, decide what shall become of him mentally and spiritually. He may retain his human dignity even in a concentration camp. I became acquainted with those martyrs whose behavior in camp, whose suffering and death, bore witness to the fact that the last inner freedom cannot be lost.
In a last violent protest against the hopelessness of imminent death, I sensed my spirit piercing through the enveloping gloom. I felt it transcend that hopeless, meaningless world, and from somewhere I heard a victorious 'Yes' in answer to my question of the existence of an ultimate purpose. At that moment a light was lit in a distant farmhouse, which stood on the horizon as if painted there, in the midst of the miserable gray of a dawning morning in Bavaria. 'Et lux in tenebris lucet'and the light shineth in the darkness.
Those who know how close the connection is between the state of mind of a manhis courage and hope, or lack of themand the state of immunity of his body will understand that the sudden loss of hope and courage can have a deadly effect. The ultimate cause of my friends death was that the expected liberation did not come and he was severely disappointed.
More Viktor E. Frankl Quotations (Based on Topics)
Life - Man - Suffering - Death & Dying - Love - Success - Duty - Liberty & Freedom - Contemplation - Happiness - Courage - World - Opportunity - Purposes - Mind - Work & Career - Facts - Value - Potential - View All Viktor E. Frankl Quotations
More Viktor E. Frankl Quotations (By Book Titles)
- Man's Search for Meaning
Viktor E. Frankl - Sigmund Freud - Phil McGraw - Wayne Dyer - Rollo May - Ram Dass - Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi - Jean Piaget - Howard Gardner - Alfred Adler