The feast of Saint Thomas Aquinas is on January 28!
This powerhouse saint and Church doctor left us with an outstanding amount of timeless knowledge.
His writings include ways to prove the existence of God, a comprehensive guide to vice and virtue, and even lifestyle tips we can regularly use or recommend to a struggling friend.
In one of his most notable works, "Summa Theologiae," he provided five powerful remedies for overcoming sadness (refer to "Summa Theologiae," I-II, q. 38).
"Pints with Aquinas" podcast host Matt Fradd discussed this at length in his book, “How to Be Happy: Saint Thomas’ Secret to a Good Life.”
“No matter how good we have it, no matter how wealthy we are, or how many good friends we have, or even how holy we are, all of us will experience sorrow in this life,” Fradd explained in an article for Christendom College.
The article continued with an explanation of the sorrows Saint Thomas Aquinas detailed in his writings.
“Aquinas, following St. John Damascene, lists pity, anxiety, envy, and torpor as the species of sorrow.”
Fradd also explained why the remedies presented by Aquinas are so important and often counter-cultural.
“In order to counteract these sorrows, Aquinas recommends five treatments that keep us from destructively turning inward. They orient us to some good that we can pursue, leading us to relief and eventually, a return to happiness.”
Next time you fall into sorrow, give one of these resolutions a try!
The helpful infographic below is a simplified way to use them in daily life.
Saint Thomas Aquinas' 5 Remedies for Sadness
1) Indulge in something you like.
2) Give yourself a good cry.
3) Share your sorrow with a friend.
4) Contemplate the truth.
5) Rest and bathe.
The Prayer of Saint Thomas Aquinas:
Grant me, O Lord my God, a mind to know you, a heart to seek you, wisdom to find you, conduct pleasing to you, faithful perseverance in waiting for you, and a hope of finally embracing you.