PLO 517 Attentive Meaning Sensitivity: Honing the Competence

FACULTY:  Maria Marshall, PhD. (Profile)


This course is based on the work of Dr. Viktor Emil Frankl (1905-1997), an Austrian neurologist and psychiatrist and the founder of the Third Viennese School of Psychotherapy, also known as Logotherapy and Existential Analysis. Central to the tenets of this orientation is the recognition that the basic motivation in human life is the will to meaning. Finding meaning is a protective factor against existential despair. Actualizing meaning has benefits for one’s physical and emotional well-being. This course offers an overview of the basic tenets of logotherapy with its view of the human person as a three-dimensional entity of body, mind, and spirit. Frankl asserted that human beings have a free will, they have a will to meaning, and meaning is available in every situation. Unique to this course is the conceptualization of Attentive Meaning Sensitivity as a competence that can be noticed, developed, and refined. The heuristic value of this capacity is discussed in relation to the work of pastoral counselors and chaplains.

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