Today a post about Viktor Frankl caught my eye in my facebook feed: Pain is to be avoided where possible but where this can’t be done – we need to find a meaning. I am not very familiar with Frankl’s writing and how it may have changed over the decades after his liberation from Auschwitz. From my experience, however, I’d like to add that ‘finding meaning’ can be misunderstood either as ‘making meaning’ or as ‘finding an authoritative meaning’ (as in: ‘God’s/biblical/religious decree’). My perspective is rather: To find the very individual meaning (and that is what Frankl started of with – the love for his wife that saw him through -), one needs to be open to let meaning arrive. Someone said, we all have an inner mystic. I prefer to speak of levels of consciousness – and the deepest one appears as insight or intuition arriving. That in my experience is the way meaning arrives, deeply personal insights that provide meaning – sometimes for a lifetime. I have in 15 years of looking for people with such an inner experience only met a handful in religious circles. Perhaps I did not recognise all I met. But it seems more likely that our inner mystic may show up, shine through at different points or aspects in our lives – love, a passion for science, a calling for a particular line of work or carrying forward a tradition… And this is where the annoying and frustrating inescapable lockdown at present can perhaps help – to dig a bit deeper into our respective personal sense of meaning – which we may have encountered before or it may have been with us only unconsciously. Now may be a time to ask: What is really important to me, what would I really want to live for – and it can arrive more deeply, more authentically in aloneness, that I am sure of. Even if it is a personal love for something or someone – it is personal and deep. So let it be. By all means, practice a new skill or renew a type of exercise – but don’t let’s amuse ourselves to death, as Neil Postman a generation ago warned. Let’s be real, let’s be fully alive, or as fully as we can. Human. Let the lockdown open us inside.

~ by Barbara S on March 23, 2020.

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