What about good humor?

Felipé on important fact finding mission, Marynell to the right of me, Dale to the left.
(photo W Volker)


Dear Caminoheads,

In these musings on joy and happiness, other thoughts have come to me and if you are willing to, I would love to discuss with you too…  One of them is “good humor”.


Have you ever thought how you would define “good humor”? Is it an emotion? Is it a feeling? Is is a state of the mind?… The thing is that ages ago, in the middle of pandemics, wars, famines, when someone was “healthy”, it was said this person had “good humor”… had something innate that kept them healthy in a world that was falling apart… and it was supposed that whatever was that they had, was circulating in the blood, still there are some fluids in the body that are called “humor”, like the “aqueous humor” which is the fluid in the eye that keeps the eyeball maintain its shape.


These days, that we know so much about neurotransmitters, endorphins, oxytocin, dopamine, antibodies, interleukins, and other difficult names, probably we could confirm that what kept those folks “healthy” in such difficult times was indeed in their humors, and in fact, their humors was a good one… Are you following me?


Now… how do we make our humor be good? I have a few thoughts that I believe we can unravel in the next days… today, I will share a fun fact from Pope Francis,  you can find it in the Netflix documentary “Pope Francis: a man of his word”.

In the final close-up interview, Pope Francis summarizes what he believes will help us move into the future, despite the fears and disappointments. Almost mischievous, he says : “We have to smile and laugh”, and admits that every day after his morning prayers, he recites Saint Thomas More’s “Prayer for Good Humor”:

“Grant me, O Lord, good digestion, and also something to digest.

Grant me a healthy body, and the necessary good humor to maintain it.

Grant me a simple soul that knows to treasure all that is good

and that doesn’t frighten easily at the sight of evil,

but rather finds the means to put things back in their place.

Give me a soul that knows not boredom, grumblings, sighs and laments,

nor excess of stress, because of that obstructing thing called “I.”

Grant me, O Lord, a sense of good humor.

Allow me the grace to be able to take a joke to discover in life a bit of joy,

and to be able to share it with others.”

I am a firm believer that Phil understood this thing about the “good humor” more than perfectly…

Alperfect good humor loves,


6 thoughts on “What about good humor?”

  1. Dear Chris,

    By the sparkle in Felipe’s eyes one could be assured of his good humor. I’m thankful for the moments I witnessed and was bathed in that sparkle. Ann

  2. Ahhh, just lovely! I have been musing over similar subjects in advance of the discussion on Saturday about Mission:Joy, the film based on the book you have been mentioning. We will all e viewing the film in an online screening room, then discussing it on Saturday at our Pilgrim Table zooms. I have been thinking about the difference between joy and happiness. This post is right in step. But aren’t we always in step, we Caminoheads. Sending lots of love our way, and to all of us. <3
    PS if anyone would like to be in the discussion on Saturday, just shoot me an email at [email protected] and I can send you the link to watch the film, and the link to the Saturday Pilgrim Table (9 AM and 3 PM Pacific Time) zooms. It's really good! All here are welcome.

    1. I love it too… I find a lot of sense of humor in the line “give me something to digest”, somehow it always makes me laugh!

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