- Spiritual or mental sloth; apathy.
“Many medical students report feeling a sense of acedia during the long hours of their residencies.”
“The meditation retreat relieved the mood of acedia I had been feeling for the past year.”
“I was overwhelmed with acedia when I tried to take two extra courses last semester.”
Greek, early 17th century
Why this word?
If you’ve ever used the phrase “no worries,” a more fanciful replacement would be the word “acedia.” The historical usage describes a state of mental or spiritual apathy, but the Greek etymology comes from “a-” (meaning “without”) and “kēdos” (meaning “care”). While the original intent of “acedia” described something closer to a modern state of burnout, the roots of the word could be reclaimed with a more positive twist. Perhaps use “acedia” when you’re going to let go of your worries instead of letting them drag you down.
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