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Existential Therapy

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  • C. S. Wyatt
    One topic I receive a lot of questions about is existential psychology and therapy. I have gathered the following quotes on the topic, which in some way
    Message 1 of 2 , Jul 14, 2003
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      One topic I receive a lot of questions about is "existential
      psychology" and therapy. I have gathered the following quotes on the
      topic, which in some way illustrate how Frankl and Jaspers, as
      theological existentialists, differ from Sartre in their explanations
      and terminologies.

      Anyway, here is existential logotherapy's definition from the New
      Dictionary of Existentialism. I thought it would add yet another
      interesting thread to the current discussions here:

      Logotherapy - (from DE) In Existential psychology, the term for Dr.
      Viktor Frankl's therapy. The theory states that the spiritual aspects
      of the distressed individuals require treatment rather than the
      physical symptoms. Thus it is names Logotherapy, from the Greek word
      "logos," which is "word," "meanings," or "spiritual."

      "Logos" being the meaning — and, beyond that, something pertaining to
      the noetic, and not the psychic, dimension of man. — Frankl, From
      Death Camp to Existentialism

      According to logotherapy, the striving to a meaning in one's own life
      is the primary motivational force in man. — Frankl, Man's Search for
      Meaning

      It is, of course, not the aim of logotherapy to take the place of
      existing psycho-therapy, but only to complement it… which includes the
      spiritual dimension. — Frankl, Doctor of the Soul

      Thus, logotherapy is a personalistic psychotherapy which does not
      concern itself primarily with symptoms, but rather tries to bring
      about a change in orientation with respect to the symptoms. The
      therapeutic aim of logotherapy is to make the individual aware of him
      purpose in life and to bring him to a fuller understanding of it.

      Logotherapy is based on the observation that uncertainty about life's
      meaning is one of the most important causes of emotional problems in
      the world today.

      Sartre applied the basics of logotherapy, but replaced "spiritual"
      motivation with "emotional" motivation. The basics remained the same,
      however.

      -- Anyway, some food for the brain, I suppose. It is interesting to
      post a bit of what I am researching to this group and let everyone
      know what is being added to the web site.

      CSW
      http://www.tameri.com/csw/exist
    • Mary Jo Malo
      CSW, Thanks for the information. Here s a portion of something I just read about him: Viktor Frankl at Ninety: An Interview Matthew Scully Copyright (c) 1995
      Message 2 of 2 , Jul 31, 2003
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        CSW,

        Thanks for the information. Here's a portion of something I just read
        about him:

        Viktor Frankl at Ninety:
        An Interview

        Matthew Scully

        Copyright (c) 1995 First Things 52 (April 1995): 39-43.

        Frankl is the rare intellectual called to live out his theories, and
        then rewarded against staggering odds for his faithfulness. Man's
        Search for Meaning itself attests to his notion of hyperintention.
        Had he used the visa and the excuse of professional obligation he
        would not be the same compelling witness. The camps, he wrote, reveal
        man much as Freud and others had described him-a creature driven by
        ego and instinct and sublimated drives. But they reveal something
        even more fundamental-our defining "capacity for self-
        transcendence." "Man is that being who invented the gas chambers of
        Auschwitz; however, he is also that being who entered those chambers
        upright, with the Lord's Prayer or the Shema Yisrael on his lips."
        Frankl-who in the early thirties coined the word "existentialism"-is
        the man who reminded modern psychology of one detail it had
        overlooked, the patient's soul.

        Matthew Scully, a former Literary Editor for National Review and
        speechwriter for Vice President Dan Quayle, is a writer living in
        Arlington, Virginia.


        --- In existlist@yahoogroups.com, "C. S. Wyatt" <existlist1@t...>
        wrote:
        > One topic I receive a lot of questions about is "existential
        > psychology" and therapy. I have gathered the following quotes on the
        > topic, which in some way illustrate how Frankl and Jaspers, as
        > theological existentialists, differ from Sartre in their
        explanations
        > and terminologies.
        >
        > Anyway, here is existential logotherapy's definition from the New
        > Dictionary of Existentialism. I thought it would add yet another
        > interesting thread to the current discussions here:
        >
        > Logotherapy - (from DE) In Existential psychology, the term for Dr.
        > Viktor Frankl's therapy. The theory states that the spiritual
        aspects
        > of the distressed individuals require treatment rather than the
        > physical symptoms. Thus it is names Logotherapy, from the Greek word
        > "logos," which is "word," "meanings," or "spiritual."
        >
        > "Logos" being the meaning — and, beyond that, something pertaining
        to
        > the noetic, and not the psychic, dimension of man. — Frankl, From
        > Death Camp to Existentialism
        >
        > According to logotherapy, the striving to a meaning in one's own
        life
        > is the primary motivational force in man. — Frankl, Man's Search for
        > Meaning
        >
        > It is, of course, not the aim of logotherapy to take the place of
        > existing psycho-therapy, but only to complement it… which includes
        the
        > spiritual dimension. — Frankl, Doctor of the Soul
        >
        > Thus, logotherapy is a personalistic psychotherapy which does not
        > concern itself primarily with symptoms, but rather tries to bring
        > about a change in orientation with respect to the symptoms. The
        > therapeutic aim of logotherapy is to make the individual aware of
        him
        > purpose in life and to bring him to a fuller understanding of it.
        >
        > Logotherapy is based on the observation that uncertainty about
        life's
        > meaning is one of the most important causes of emotional problems in
        > the world today.
        >
        > Sartre applied the basics of logotherapy, but replaced "spiritual"
        > motivation with "emotional" motivation. The basics remained the
        same,
        > however.
        >
        > -- Anyway, some food for the brain, I suppose. It is interesting to
        > post a bit of what I am researching to this group and let everyone
        > know what is being added to the web site.
        >
        > CSW
        > http://www.tameri.com/csw/exist
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