On Prudence as a Weapon Against Anxiety

Dr. Ricardo B. de los Santos, PhD

One after hears about faith, hope, and charity and takes them for granted as naturally emanating from man as Divine Gifts. Only a few however know that these virtues do not occur naturally. They can only be given as graces by the Trinity of the virtue of man’s desire to be good by exercising the four essential virtues.

One of these is prudence which in itself is quite difficult to practice for very obvious reasons namely: man’s pride in believing that he is already wise, intentional neglect of memories, and the unwillingness to be responsible.

Being prudent necessarily means that a man should always be willing to learn or be corrected to learn. His meekness and mild manner could mean his graduation into a true gentleman (or lady) because he is willing to listen to elders or experienced ones even if they are younger. Negating correction by being oversensitive and being too quick to anger can only bring about anxieties which can make one depressed in the end. Too much pride is therefore the antithesis of prudence.

“Great is the power of memory,” says Saint Augustine, and one who does not recognize this is imprudent. With the stock of memories, one can gain a circumspect of experiences from where one can recall a bad experience and therefore refrain from doing such an unfortunate judgment again. Moreover, the recollection of a good experience is quite rewarding and allows a man to gain insight into doing things right.

One does not have to be a sage to discern right from wrong. The sagacious person perceives right away the tactical situation and comes up with a good judgment. An easy examination of the situation could be what motivates a good action as the intent or purpose and a pre-evaluation of the possible results. By such a timely analysis, one could not reasonably and responsibly worthy as a home sapiens. Consequently, memory enables a person to be wise in dealing with the situation. Even in conditions of eminent loss, the good man mitigates or lessens the impact such that great losses would not lead to anxiety and eventually to depression.

Such sagacity was shown by the three wise men who discerned that Herod was trying to deceive them as a kindred spirit. Recognizing his deceit from deviant characters, the magic did not come back to locate the Immanuel. Hence, the malignant spirit in Herod caused the massacre of the innocents.

This evil act of thus anti-christ in itself is a great example of imprudence. One that comes out of cowardice; the fears of being threatened by a True King for the throne, despair; for losing the only chance to eliminate his rival, envy, and jealousy; for the worship accorded to the Real King and covetousness; of being insecure with his material possessions. Therefore, one must not be quick to anger or be clouded with emotions to make a good judgment like a prudent person. Do not be therefore too sensitive, or judge using only impressions for emotions are deterrents for prudent actions.

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