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Batya Yaniger, PsyD
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Logomensch is a weekly blog about meaning that draws from ancient Jewish wisdom and from Viktor Frankl’s Logotherapy to assist in hearing the call to meaning that addresses us each, moment by moment.
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Showing Results 1 - 10 (31 total)
Unity in Diversity
Author: Batya Yaniger, PsyD
June 3rd, 2020
Logos is deeper than logic. We have within us a deep, intuitive grasp of meaning. This inner guide is more reliable than rational explanations and it is in our best interest to trust it.   The logotherapeutic goal is to identify the meaning crisis and uncover the client’s intuitive sense that will allow them to make meaningful choices. To this end, the logotherapist does not sit with a pen and paper to carefully gather lots of informa …
Free to Love
Author: Batya Yaniger, PsyD
May 28th, 2020
People who have had near death experiences report that they learned they we were sent to this world in order to learn certain things and in order to love. Viktor Frankl wrote that salvation is in and through love. In the words of rabbi Akiva, love is the ‘great principle’ of Torah (i.e the written and oral Jewish tradition). Another Torah giant, Hillel the elder commented that ‘Love your neighbor as yourself’ sums up the e …
Is Fear Only a Fight Flight or Freeze Response?
Author: Batya Yaniger, PsyD
May 20th, 2020
Fear of God generates courage. Yet, it is still called fear. People put their foot on the brake when the sign warns of a speed trap because they don’t want to get a ticket. In Jewish tradition, this is called fear of punishment. It is viewed as a lower spiritual level because it is egocentric. The driver would not be afraid if he didn’t think a camera was filming him. Even without a camera, knowing that someone is watching stops you. …
The Choice of Fear
Author: Batya Yaniger, PsyD
May 13th, 2020
If you had an intentional choice to make, would you choose fear? A Talmudic source believes that fear is the basis for our healthy choices.   An angel by the name of Layla is appointed over pregnancy. The angel takes a drop [of semen], holds it up before the Creator and says ‘Master of the Universe, what will become of this drop: courageous or weak, wise or foolish, rich or poor?’ The angel does not say ‘evil or righteous,& …
Freedom of No Choice
Author: Batya Yaniger, PsyD
May 6th, 2020
Why does choice matter? It is only because we are free to choose that we are held accountable for our choices. If we have no choice in our actions then there is no such thing as crime and we might as well let all the prisoners go free. As a society we assume that when someone chooses wrongly they could have chosen rightly.   What kind of power is the power of choice?   See, I set before you this day life and prosperity, death and adver …
The Choice to Play One's Part
Author: Batya Yaniger, PsyD
April 29th, 2020
My newly organized music jamming group was interrupted when the ministry of health banned social gatherings. My daughter gave birth but I could not visit my newborn grandchild. Everyone has similar stories. There is a saying in Yiddish ‘Man plans and God laughs.’ This is the year of disrupted plans. Disrupted plans cast doubt on our freedom of choice. Someone builds a house and it’s swept away by a tsunami. A newly certified pr …
You Have a Choice
Author: Batya Yaniger, PsyD
April 23rd, 2020
Do you feel like your life is going where you want it to? Do you believe that your past experience makes change impossible? Establishing freedom of choice is the first step towards spiritual and emotional and progress. Inner change depends on inner freedom. How do you know you have freedom of choice? For Viktor Frankl choice is self-evident. Actually only two types of people maintain that their will is not free; schizophrenic patients suffering f …
Finding the 'What For?'
Author: Batya Yaniger, PsyD
April 16th, 2020
We are being challenged today at a fast pace to change our habits and our lifestyle. It feels a little bit like being an adolescent again, being imposed upon by stifling rules that cause me to declare with an impudent tone ‘Why should I?’ The truth is, it is a legitimate question. Why should I sacrifice my comfort? Why should I invest time and effort? I have to have a good reason. Sometimes all we want is pity. We want to complain. We …
The Most Empowering Self-Perception
Author: Batya Yaniger, PsyD
April 1st, 2020
The most empowering self-perception is that you are a spiritual being. Believing that you are more than your body and your psychological mechanisms implies belief in your ability to reason, to have mastery over yourself and your environment, to discern and to choose wisely. You think about yourself. You reach for higher values and you know that everything you do matters. Having the perception that you were created in the divine image, you recogni …
Empowering Self-Image
Author: Batya Yaniger, PsyD
March 25th, 2020
How do you see yourself? Does your self-image empower you or dis-empower you? Logotherapy is based on what makes us uniquely human, including our ability to think about the meaning of our life, choose our attitude towards situations, focus outside our self and respond to what life is asking of us. We can further deepen our understanding of what it means to be human by looking at the Biblical creation story. Man was created in the ‘image of …