Eugene Heimler

A Hero of the Twentieth Century

in European Judaism
View More View Less
Restricted access


Eugene Heimler, writer, psychiatric social worker, Hungarian survivor of Auschwitz, Buchenwald and other concentration camps, created an approach whereby frustration is used as potential for creative, satisfying action. In his book Night of the Mist (and other books), he wrote about his experiences in the camps ( He answers his question ‘On what does it depend whether we are defeated by life or whether we succeed?’ by saying that human beings need meaning and purpose. The Heimler Method of Social Functioning is about integrating frustrating experiences as useful elements in the present and potentially satisfying elements for the future. An integral part of the method is the Heimler Scale, a tool that measures satisfactions and frustrations and highlights the potential of a person. Pain and suffering are motivating forces that we need in order to function successfully. During a recent visit to Szombathely, Dr Heimler’s hometown, his widow launched his first volume of Hungarian poetry.

Contributor Notes

Miriam Bracha Heimler, MSW is a therapist and senior lecturer in the Heimler Method of Social Functioning. She works in private practice in Jerusalem and Netanya, Israel ( As trustee of the Eugene Heimler Literary Trust, she is publishing, republishing and translating many of Dr Heimler’s writings. In addition, Mrs. Heimler gives presentations worldwide on Dr Heimler’s life, philosophy, his books and his Method of Social Functioning. (also see

European Judaism

A Journal for the New Europe