In addition to the Spiritual Direction, which is highly recommended for those who suffer from scrupulosity, there are also available resources that are helpful to control OCD. In this blog post, we are talking about some of the books on scrupulosity you can buy and start reading now.
Note: Some of the books discuss scrupulosity in general while some focus on catholic scrupulosity.
Here are the best books on scrupulosity.
Understanding Scrupulosity: 3rd Edition of Questions and Encouragement
Author: Fr. Thomas M. Santa, CSsR
Fr. Thomas M. Santa is one of the renowned persons in the world of scrupulosity. I would say, he is the most renowned! He is the author of the Ten Commandments for the scrupulous, a resource by Scrupulous Anonymous talking about the dos and don’ts of individuals suffering from religious OCD. When you search the internet all things related to scrupulosity, Scrupulous Anonymous would usually pop out on the first page of google. They are the authority as much as scrupulosity is a concern.
This book is geared towards the scrupulosity Catholics experience. If you already read the Ten Commandments for scrupulous, this piece is even more detailed. It has realistic examples and instructions you could follow whenever scruples attack. Also, it seamlessly connects faith and science by giving updates on scientific findings with regard to religious OCD.
If you need a single book that best discusses scrupulosity in Catholicism, I highly recommend this one.
Scruples and Sainthood: Overcoming Scrupulosity with the help of the Saints
Author: Trent Beattie
It blew my mind when I first found out that some saints also suffered scrupulosity. I was astonished because I never thought holy people can struggle with this disorder too. When I started searching about religious OCD, I realized that those who are afraid of offending God are more prone to be scrupulous. The simple logic is we love Him so we do not want to displease Him. And this could probably lead to an extreme fear.
As Catholics, if we think of the best figures we can emulate, these are certainly the saints. And this is what this book is all about.
It contains the writings of the scrupulous saints as they battled the doubting disease. Plus,it also includes the quotes from these saints which the scrupulous could find consolation into.
Additionally, it also presents the teachings of the Church that are relevant to scrupulosity in a concise and simple manner which could be beneficial to the scrupulous because guess what, we want things to be certain and straightforward.
RELATED– Prayer Journal for Scrupulous
The Doubting Disease: Help for Scrupulosity and Religious Compulsions (Integration Books)
Author: Joseph W. Ciarrocchi
If you are looking for a reference that extensively talks about OCD, this is exactly what this book offers. Divided into three parts, Orientation and Overview of Scruples, Changing Scruples and Practice and Theory, this book explains OCD in general eventually digging deep and bridging it to the religion. Presenting not only the effects of OCD but also the reason why it happens.
This book is not only good for scrupulous individuals but also for those who assist them. It gives them a better understanding of what scrupulous feels during the episodes of obsession and compulsion. It answers, guides, and encourages the persons struggling with religious OCD.
Divine Mercy In My Soul-Diary of Sister M. Faustina Kowalska
Author: Saint Maria Faustina Kowalska
Yes, I can virtually see your forehead wrinkling, wondering and asking, “Is this a book on scrupulosity?”.
Simple answer, absolutely.
One piece of advice I got to see when I was stalking numerous posts in different forums was to trust in God’s mercy. Seems bland, but no. This is actually a great one. Remember, we have scruples because of fear. Fear of offending God because we see Him as vindictive and punishing. The antidote to this view is believing His mercy. Trusting that He is a compassionate God.
This book by St. Faustina shows us the unfathomable mercy of God. It is her diary thus personal. It is relatable because St. Faustina herself is scrupulous. She also felt what we are feeling right now which is another reason to read this book. You will come across her story of battle with scrupulosity indicated in this diary.
You might be thinking about how to read it. That was actually my predicament at first. Unlike other books, this one is not instructional. I watched this video that shows how to read it without being discouraged and be overwhelmed.
The tip is to turn to any page. Surely, you would find spiritual gems.
Religious OCD (Scrupulosity) Recovery
Author: Ali Greymond
Recovery from scrupulosity is a lifetime journey. It is a chronic disease thus we need to find a solution to control it.
This book highlights a particular technique in managing scruples. It explains the mechanics of OCD in a professional way. Helping scrupulous to understand how their mind works to control the thoughts that come and go. Despite the author is not a doctor, she, however, is scrupulous who has recovered with the technique she is discussing in this book.
The workbook contains a proven method to overcome OCD with daily charts and practical tasks that push sufferers to progress in recovery. As scrupulous, accountability is good for us. And this offers that. A simple yet effective and helpful book.
Overcoming Unwanted Intrusive Thoughts: A CBT-Based Guide to Getting Over Frightening, Obsessive, or Disturbing Thoughts
Author: Sally M. Winston
Having intrusive thoughts is one of the signs of scrupulosity. Actually, this is what stresses me so much as a scrupulous. This makes me repeat my prayers multiple times. If you are also struggling with these thoughts, this book is for you!
This guide presents various kinds of disturbing thoughts, myths that surround them and how brain tends to get stuck in a cycle of rumination. It has plenty of examples and practical advices from the authors who are both specialists in the field. To add, it also includes cognitive behavioral skills to help you cope with these unwanted thoughts. It is well-written and easy to understand. Indeed, life changing. This is a must-have!
These are some of the books I highly recommend for the scrupulous.
One tip, focus on one book and apply all the instructions and techniques given before moving on to the next.
If there is one book I would advise you to read first, it would be Understanding Scrupulosity: 3rd Edition of Questions and Encouragement by Fr. Thomas Santa. If followed, this book could suffice. On the other hand, The Diary of St. Faustina is good for meditation. You can incorporate it into other books for scrupulous without being confused.
Books can be a good resource but always remember, that it is not about what we read, it is about how do we apply what we read in our lives. As scrupulous, we should take each step with a willingness to learn and be changed so as not to put our readings to waste. I know it’s hard but gradually we can defeat scrupulosity with the right book and with the right action.
Hope you got something from this post. If you did, feel free to share it. Happy reading!
For more Catholic books on depression and anxiety, check this out.
St. Dymphna, pray for us.
Irene M Gutmann
Thank you for these resources. I have diminished my scrupulosity about 90% with the help of a wonderful spiritual director. When it kicks up, I use a thought stopping technique and it goes away. I say to myself “I’ll talk to my spiritual director next session” and then I usually forget. If it’s truly a moral dilemma, I’ll remember. I read Thomas Santa’s book which helped a good deal. I so appreciate seeing more resources on this. If you have scrupulosity, please get help. I used to suffer so much and now I am so free and happy in a healthier relationship with God.
Thanks for taking the time to read and share what works for you. Yes, I totally agree with therapy. Although I overcame my OCD at Mass, I still struggle with OCD in prayer. I am looking for a therapist and Spiritual Director with experience with scrupulosity now. Have a great day and may we overcome this cross fully. 🙂
Irene M Gutmann
P.S. you may also need therapy because it is an OCD type of issue. I have had therapy as well.