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We Choose How We Respond

We Choose How We Respond

“Between stimulus and response there is a space. In that space is our power to choose our response. In our response lies our growth and our freedom.”

- Viktor Frankl

 

Our Last Freedom

Viktor Frankl spent three years in Nazi concentration camps. Prisoner No.119104. Auschwitz. Then Dachau.

 

His wife, parents, and brother were there too. They all died, except Viktor.

Viktor survived.

 

When he returned home in 1946, he wrote the book Man’s Search for Meaning in nine days.

 

It became an international best seller. The Library of Congress named it one of the 10 most influential books in America. Still today, Man’s Search for Meaning is on Amazon’s list of Top 100 Books to Read in a Lifetime.

 

Here’s an excerpt:

“In concentration camps… we watched and witnessed some of our comrades behave like swine while others behaved like saints.

Man has both potentialities within himself. After all, man is the being who has invented the gas chambers of Auschwitz; however, he is also that being who has entered those gas chambers upright, with the Lord’s prayer or the Shema Yisrael on his lips.”

Almost every human freedom can be taken from us. We can’t avoid suffering. Viktor Frankl understood that better than most of us ever will.

 

But our last freedom is the freedom to choose our response to circumstances.

“Between stimulus and response there is a space. In that space is our power to choose our response. In our response lies our growth and our freedom.”

- Viktor Frankl

Suffering is part of the human condition. But no matter our circumstances, we can still choose our response.

 

This last freedom can’t ever be taken from us.

 

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