ALEXANDER LOWEN QUOTES

American physician & Psychotherapist (1910-2008)

Power seems to confer on its possessor a mantle of superiority, specialness, and sexual potency, which the envious person desperately wants because he feels himself on some level to be inferior, unimportant, and impotent.

ALEXANDER LOWEN, Narcissism: Denial of the True Self

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In my opinion the hectic and almost frantic pace of modern living is a clear sign of the fear we have of being and of life. And as long as this fear exists in a person's unconscious, he will run faster and do more so as not to feel his fear.

ALEXANDER LOWEN, Fear of Life

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I would describe a hero as a person who has no fear of life, who can face life squarely.

ALEXANDER LOWEN, Fear of Life

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Fear is another emotion that is strongly suppressed. We cannot afford to be afraid, and so we don't allow ourselves to sense and feel the fear within us. We lower our brows to deny it, set our jaws to defy it, and smile to deceive ourselves. But inwardly we remain scared to death.

ALEXANDER LOWEN, Fear of Life

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Death is the fate no one can escape. The question, then, is, How does one die? A person can die like a hero or like a coward. The difference is that the hero can face death without fear, whereas the coward can't.

ALEXANDER LOWEN, Fear of Life

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It is only by making the past alive again for a person that a true growth in the present is facilitated. If the past is cut off, the future does not exist.

ALEXANDER LOWEN, Bioenergetics

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The feeling of love is a rich feeling, but the expression of love in word or deed is a joy.

ALEXANDER LOWEN, Depression and the Body

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Not to fear a person with power--to profess, instead, one's love--is to deny that that person has power.

ALEXANDER LOWEN, Narcissism: Denial of the True Self

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The primary nature of every human being is to be open to life and love. Being guarded, armoured, distrustful and enclosed is second nature in our culture. It is the means we adopt to protect ourselves against being hurt, but when such attitudes become characterological or structured in the personality, they constitute a more severe hurt and create a greater crippling than the one originally suffered.

ALEXANDER LOWEN, Bioenergetics

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Life is not a mixture of matter and energy but energy in matter, bound in such a way that dissociation is impossible so long as the living process continues.

ALEXANDER LOWEN, The Language of the Body

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A person who doesn't breathe deeply reduces the life of his body. If he doesn't move freely, he restricts the life of his body. If he doesn't feel fully, he narrows the life of his body. And if his self-expression is constricted, he limits the life of his body.

ALEXANDER LOWEN, attributed, Wisdom for the Soul: Five Millennia of Prescriptions for Spiritual Healing

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The single factor most responsible for the disruption of the family is the automobile. Its full effect cannot be assessed. Modern life, as we know, would be impossible without the ubiquitous motorcar. It broke up the old family and community.

ALEXANDER LOWEN, Depression and the Body

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Contact with reality is not an all-or-nothing condition.

ALEXANDER LOWEN, Joy: The Surrender to the Body and to Life

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It is a grave injustice to a child or adult to insist that they stop crying. One can comfort a person who is crying which enables him to relax and makes further crying unnecessary; but to humiliate a crying child is to increase his pain, and augment his rigidity. We stop other people from crying because we cannot stand the sounds and movements of their bodies. It threatens our own rigidity. It induces similar feelings in ourselves which we dare not express and it evokes a resonance in our own bodies which we resist.

ALEXANDER LOWEN, The Voice of the Body

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Mature love is not a surrender of the self but a surrender to the self. The ego surrenders its hegemony of the personality to the heart, but in this surrender it is not annihilated. Rather it is strengthened because its roots in the body are nourished by the joy that the body feels.

ALEXANDER LOWEN, Joy: The Surrender to the Body and to Life

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No one is exempt from the rule that learning occurs through recognition of error.

ALEXANDER LOWEN, Bioenergetics

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Sustenance for the infant and child is more than alimentary nourishment. The child needs love, security, narcissistic supplies -- however one may describe it.

ALEXANDER LOWEN, The Language of the Body

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The repression of the memory is dependent upon and related to the suppression of feeling, for as long as the feeling persists, the memory remains vivid.

ALEXANDER LOWEN, Fear of Life

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If the ego is inflated it must be gradually deflated.

ALEXANDER LOWEN, The Language of the Body

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Everyone who becomes a psychotherapist eventually adopts a theory that suits his needs.

ALEXANDER LOWEN, "Alexander Lowen: An Energetic Man", Journal of Counseling & Development, September/October 1992

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