Finding True Happiness is a short book on happiness composed of excerpts from Venerable Fulton Sheen.  It is published by and is available through Dynamic Catholic.  I highly recommend it this upcoming Lent (or anytime) as it has brief, digestible reflections on our desire for true happiness.  There are sixteen brief chapters and I’ve pulled one quote out from each for easy reflection.

Finding Perfect Happiness

“Every earthly ideal is lost by being possessed…Nothing short of Infinite satisfies you, and to ask you to be satisfied with less would be to destroy your nature.”

Philosophy of Pleasure

“Our enjoyment of life is vastly increased if we follow the spiritual injunction to bring some mortification and self-denial into our lives.”


“The love of noise and excitement in modern civilization is due in part to the fact that people are unhappy on the inside…It is all very well to plaster our church lawn with placards saying: “Leave the world better than you find it,” but we will never leave the world better until, through silence, contemplation, and prayer we improve ourselves.”


“Never before have men possessed so many time-saving devices.  Never before have they had so little time for leisure or repose.”


“The humble are not cast down by the censures or the slights of others.  If they have unconsciously given occasion for them, they amend their faults; if they deserve them not, they treat them as trifles.”


“Humility…does not consist so much in humbling ourselves before others as it does in recognizing our own littleness in comparison to what we ought to be.”


“When we know our desires, we know the direction our soul is taking.  If desire is heavenly, we go upwards.  If it is wholly earthly, we go downwards.”


“Pleasure comes from without, but joy comes from within, and it is, therefore, within the reach of everyone in the world.  For if there is sadness in our hearts it is because there is not enough love.  But to be loved, we must be lovable; to be lovable, we must be good; to be good, we must know Goodness, and to know Goodness is to love God, and neighbor, and everybody in the world.”


“Rainy days do make some people sad, but the author remembers saying once to a resident of Killarney: “Too bad it’s raining.” He answered: “But it’s a good day to save your soul.”

Mental Cases are Increasing

“Our generation has been raised on the idea of ‘self-expression,’ which, being translated negatively, means there should never be any self-restraint.”


“The basic reason for loneliness is that man today has divorced himself from both love of God and love of neighbor.”


“Submission is one of the deepest needs of the human heart.  After a century-and-a-half of false liberalism, in which it was denied that anything was true, and that it makes no difference what you believe, the world reacted [through] totalitarianism.”


“The winning of the battle of life is nothing but the winning of our souls, and souls are won by patience under tribulation.”


“One of the greatest mistakes is to think that contentment comes from something outside us rather than from a quality of the soul.”


“No earthly happiness would be thorough if it were not associated with a good conscience.”

The Will

“There is one thing in the world that is definitely and absolutely your won, and that is your will.  Health, power, life, and honor can all be snatched from you, but your will is irrevocably your own, even in Hell.”