He who has a why to live for can bear almost any How ~ Nietzsche
Quoting here from the preface of the book which sums up the idea of this masterpiece on Survival.
“There is a scene in Arthur Miller’s play Incident at Vichy in which an upper-middle-class professional man appears before the Nazi authority that has occupied his town and shows his credentials: his university degrees, his letters of reference from prominent citizens,and so on. The Nazi asks him, “Is that everything you have?” The man nods. The Nazi throws it all in the wastebasket and tells him:“Good, now you have nothing.” The man, whose self-esteem had always depended on the respect of others, is emotionally destroyed.Frankl would have argued that we are never left with nothing as long as we retain the freedom to choose how we will respond.My own congregational experience has shown me the truth ofFrankl’s insights. I have known successful businessmen who, upon retirement, lost all zest for life. Their work had given their lives meaning. Often it was the only thing that had given their lives meaning and, without it, they spent day after day sitting at home, depressed, “with nothing to do.” I have known people who rose to the challenge of enduring the most terrible aʀictions and situations as long as they believed there was a point to their suʃering. Whether it was a family milestone they wanted to live long enough to share or the prospect of doctors ɹnding a cure by studying their illness, having a why to live for enabled them to bear the how.”