Finally read the seminal psychology text yesterday.
Didn't realize the concept of purpose being the driving force in life is so directly attributed to logotherapy, or the Third Viennese School of psychotherapy.
Some passages and concepts I found particularly interesting:
- Self-transcendence as step toward self-actualization (must be by-product, not aim)
- Humans can discover meaning in three different ways; (1) by creating a work or doing a deed; (2) by experiencing something or encountering someone; and (3) by the attitude we take toward unavoidable suffering.
The second way of finding a meaning in life is by experiencing something--such as goodness, truth and beauty--by experiencing nature and culture or, last but not least, by experiencing another human being in his very uniqueness;--by loving him.
The meaning of love
Love is the only way to grasp another human being in the innermost core of his personality. No one can become fully aware of the very essence of another human being unless he loves him. By his love he is enabled to see the essential traits and features in the beloved person; and even more, he sees that which is potential to him, which is not yet actualized buy yet out to be actualized. Furthermore, by his love, the loving person enables the beloved person to actualize these potentialities. By making him aware of what he can be and what he should become, he makes these potentialities come true.
- On anticipatory anxiety, hyper-intention (paradoxical intentional) and hyper-reflection.
While many of the books concepts have by now trickled down into mainstream culture, I still found it a quick and enlightening read.