That year they’d decided on fondue for Christmas lunch. But before dunking their forks into the bubbling hot cheese, they put their hats on and danced around the tulips. It made them feel silly and delightfully dizzy and like children again. Because Christmas is for kids, they decided to play.
Meanings are mobile and change when necessary. The meaning of Christmas is an example. It does not remain static but changes as we change. The meaning of Christmas for a child is not that of an adult.
Viktor Frankl spent three years as a prisoner in Nazi concentration camps. Like Freud, he was from Vienna and had studied psychology. Frankl understood that to survive he needed to give his life meaning regardless as to the situation. Once freed, Frankl wrote a book Man’s Search for Meaning and how this meaning influences the way we live.
Three things, he wrote, were necessary to give meaning to one’s life even in a concentration camp. First of all it was important to give yourself a purpose such as having a project then give yourself pleasure by actualizing it. Appreciation and gratitude are also important in creating meaning as is the ability to adapt.