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  • Reverend James Squire

Why Do Some People Survive Hardship?

Updated: Feb 8, 2021

As we move through our time coping with the pandemic, let’s consider some of the approaches that are mentioned on my website. I am currently reading Erik Larson’s The Splendid and the Vile, “A Saga Of The Churchill Family, And Defiance During the Blitz”. Lives were at stake during the Blitz as they are for us now with the virus. There was so much that was uncertain for the British as it is for us now. When and where would the next bomb be dropped.

There are parallels between Larson’s book and what I cover in my book. One example from my book, Logotherapy, is also seen in Larson’s work. It was created by Victor Frankl who endured imprisonment in a camp during the Holocaust. When he was freed, he raised the question of why did some survive and others didn’t. Through countless interviews with survivors, he identified two things that would be important to us today to survive Covid-19. First he noticed that the survivors of the camp had a sense of identity. They knew who they were and second, they had a sense of destiny and could identify what it would be like when they were freed. Frankl also discovered that he and his survivors remembered their loved ones, picturing them during better days.

During the Blitz, the British did the same thing. They had a clear identity of being both British, a national identity, and beyond that, their sense of personal identity. We should stand before a mirror and ask ourselves who we are and also dream about what our future will hold supported by memories of our loved ones. Having a sense of destiny or future is important. Let’s consider the words of a wonderful hymn, “Be not afraid, I go before you always, come follow me, and I will give you rest.”

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