Irvin D. Yalom · 304 pages
Rating: (17.7K votes)
“Some day soon, perhaps in forty years, there will be no one alive who has ever known me. That's when I will be truly dead - when I exist in no one's memory. I thought a lot about how someone very old is the last living individual to have known some person or cluster of people. When that person dies, the whole cluster dies, too, vanishes from the living memory. I wonder who that person will be for me. Whose death will make me truly dead?”
“Love is not just a passion spark between two people; there is infinite difference between falling in love and standing in love. Rather, love is a way of being, a "giving to," not a 'falling for"; a mode of relating at large, not an act limited to a single person.”
“I think my quarry is illusion. I war against magic. I believe that, though illusion often cheers and comforts, it ultimately and invariably weakens and constricts the spirit.”
“Four givens are particularly relevant for psycho-therapy: the inevitability of death for each of us and for those we love; the freedom to make our lives as we will; our ultimate aloneness; and, finally, the absence of any obvious meaning or sense to life.”
“I do not like to work with patients who are in love. Perhaps it is because of envy—I, too, crave enchantment. Perhaps it is because love and psychotherapy are fundamentally incompatible. The good therapist fights darkness and seeks illumination, while romantic love is sustained by mystery and crumbles upon inspection. I hate to be love’s executioner.”
“Indeed, the capacity to tolerate uncertainty is a prerequisite for the profession. Though the public may believe that therapists guide patients systematically and sure-handedly through predictable stages of therapy to a foreknown goal, such is rarely the case: instead, as these stories bear witness, therapists frequently wobble, improvise, and grope for direction. The powerful temptation to achieve certainty through embracing an ideological school and a tight therapeutic system is treacherous: such belief may block the uncertain and spontaneous encounter necessary for effective therapy. This encounter, the very heart of psychotherapy, is a caring, deeply human meeting between two people, one (generally, but not always, the patient) more troubled than the other. Therapists have a dual role: they must both observe and participate in the lives of their patients. As observer, one must be sufficiently objective to provide necessary rudimentary guidance to the patient. As participant, one enters into the life of the patient and is affected and sometimes changed by the encounter.”
“The creative members of an orthodoxy, any orthodoxy, ultimately outgrow their disciplines.”
“One of the great paradoxes of life is that self-awareness breeds anxiety.”
“Some people are wish-blocked, knowing neither what they feel nor what they want. Without opinions, without impulses, without inclinations, they become parasites on the desires of others.”
“Παρόλο που η ψευδαίσθηση συχνά αναπτερώνει και ανακουφίζει, στο τέλος πάντα αδυνατίζει και περιορίζει την ψυχή.”
“The human being either asserts autonomy by heroic self-assertion or seeks safety through fusing with a superior force: that is, one either emerges or merges, separates or embeds. One becomes one’s own parent or remains the eternal child.”
“come to believe that the fear of death is always greatest in those who feel that they have not lived their life fully. A good working formula is: the more unlived life, or unrealized potential, the greater one’s death anxiety.”
“People who feel empty never heal by merging with another incomplete person. On the contrary, two broken-winged birds coupled into one make for clumsy flight. No amount of patience will help it fly; and, ultimately, each must be pried from the other, and wounds separately splinted. The”
“In general, e mai bine sa nu ataci un mecanism de aparare, decat daca acesta creeaza mai multe probleme decat solutii si daca ai ceva mai bun de pus in loc.”
“Translation error is compounded by bias error. We distort others by forcing into them our preferred ideas and gestalts, a process Proust beautifully describes: We pack the physical outline of the creature we see with all the ideas we already formed about him, and in the complete picture of him which we compose in our minds, these ideas have certainly the principal place. In the end they come to fill out so completely the curve of his cheeks, to follow so exactly the line of his nose, they blend so harmoniously in the sound of his voice that these seem to be no more than a transparent envelope, so that each time we see the face or hear the voice it is our own ideas of him which we recognize and to which we listen.”
“Four major existential concerns—death, meaning in life, isolation, and freedom—play a crucial role in the inner life of every human being and”
“That was the first important discovery I made about Betty: she was desperately isolated, and she survived this isolation only by virtue of the sustaining myth that her intimate life was being lived elsewhere. Her friends, her circle of acquaintances, were not here, but elsewhere, in New York, in Texas, in the past. In fact, everything of importance was elsewhere. It was at this time that I first began to suspect that for Betty there was no “here” there.”
“Asa-zisa „psihologie pentru mase” bate intr-una moneda pe „asumarea responsabilitatii”, dar nu sunt decat vorbe goale: este extraordinar de greu, ba chiar terifiant, sa accepti ideea ca tu si numai tu esti acela care iti construiesti viata, felul in care o traiesti. Ca urmare, problema in psihoterapie consta intotdeauna in a sti cum sa treci de la o apreciere in plan intelectual, care se dovedeste ineficace, a unui adevar despre tine insuti la un mod saul altul de a-l simti in plan emotional. Abia din clipa in care terapia mobilizeaza emotii profunde, incepe sa devina o forta redutabila in favoarea schimbarii.”
“Ubijeđen sam da su, u tim zanosima prvih susreta, Dan i žena pogrešno tumačili ono što u vidjeli jedno u drugom. Svako od njih je vidjeo odraz sopstvenog preklinjanja, ranjen pogled i pogrešno ga protumačio kao želju i ispunjenost. Oboje su bill ptići sa slomljenim krilima, koji su tražili da lete privijeni uz drugu pticu sa slomljenim krilima. Ljudi koje se osjećaju isprazno nikada se ne izliječe stapanjem sa drugom nepotpunom osobom. Naprotiv, dvije ptice sa slomljenim krilima spojene u jednu će letjeti nespretno. Nikakva količina strpljenja im neće pomoći da lete; i, konačno, svaki mora biti poduprt različitim stvarima, a rane se stavljaju u odvojene udlage.”
“If one is to learn to live with the dead, one must first learn to live with the living!”
“Many a friendship or marriage has failed because, instead of relating to, and caring for, one another, one person uses another as a shield against isolation. A”
“Whereas the truth is that fullness of soul can sometimes over flow in utter vapidity of language, for none of us can ever express the exact measure of his needs or his thoughts or his sorrows; and human speech is like a cracked kettle on which we tap crude rhythms for bears to dance to, while we long to make music that will melt the stars.”
“though the fact, the physicality, of death destroys us, the idea of death may save us.”
“The more the therapist is able to tolerate the anxiety of not knowing, the less need there is for the therapist to embrace orthodoxy.”
“Therapists have a dual role: they must both observe and participate in the lives of their patients. As observer, one must be sufficiently objective to provide necessary rudimentary guidance to the patient. As participant, one enters into the life of the patient and is affected and sometimes changed by the encounter. In”
“How disquieting to realise that reality is an illusion, at best a democratisation of perception based on participant consensus.”
“Mind thinks in images but, to communicate with another, must transform image into thought and then thought into language. That march, from image to thought to language, is treacherous. Casualties occur: the rich, fleecy texture of image, its extraordinary plasticity and flexibility, its private nostalgic emotional hues - all are lost when image is crammed into language.”
“Love is not just a passion spark between two people; there is infinite difference between falling in love and standing in love. Rather, love is a way of being, a “giving to,” not a “falling for”; a mode of relating at large, not an act limited to a single person.”
“Όποτε ο ασθενής αρχίζει ν' αναπτύσσει συμπτώματα στη σχέση του με τον θεραπευτή, τότε έχει πραγματικά αρχίσει η θεραπεία, και η εξερεύνηση αυτών των συμπτωμάτων θ' ανοίξει το δρόμο για τα κεντρικά του ζητήματα.”
“MAY IN MINNEAPOLIS IS LILAC TIME. AS IF TO COMPENSATE for the punitive winter, the city explodes with flowers overnight—making it, if only for a week or two, one of the most beautiful places on earth. First there are sunny starbursts of forsythia; then the cherry and dogwood trees burst into life, showering petals everywhere, pink and cream, drifting thick as snow on the sidewalks. But it is the lilacs that truly herald the coming of spring: lavender and white and blue and sometimes a purple deep as grapes, they bloom in the alleys and over backyard fences and in graveyards. Beauty is everywhere, including the most unexpected places. There is no respite from it.”
“Ben had never seen his mother cry before, and it startled him, so he didn't ask again. Right afterward she'd put on her favorite record and played a mysterious song called "Space Oddity," about an astronaut named Major Tom who gets lost in space. She used to listen to the song over and over again. With her eyes closed, she'd place the palm of her hand against the fabric of the speaker, so she could feel it vibrate against her skin.”
“It's a long hard road ahead for you, little warrior. Enjoy a happy day while you can.
“Luke!...We have to be able to do cool dancing so we don't embarrass our child!"
"I'm a very cool dancer," replies Luke. "Very cool indeed,"
"No you're not!"
"I had dance lessons in my teens, you know," he retorts. "I can waltz like Fred Astire."
"Waltz?" I echo derisively. "That's not cool! We need to know all the street moves. Watch me."
I do a couple funky head-wriggle body-pop maneuvers, like they do on rap videos. When I look up, Luke is gaping at me.
"Sweetheart," he says. "What are you doing?"
"It's hip-hop!" I say. "It's street!"
"Becky! Love!" Mum has pushed her way through her dancing guests to reach me. "What's wrong? Has labour started?"
Honestly. My family has no idea about contemporary urban steet dance trends.”
“Wasn't that the point of life? To find someone to share it with?
And if you got that part right, how far wrong could you go? If you were standing next to the person you loved more than everything else, wasn't everything else just scenery?”
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