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CATHARSIS

Purging or purification, especially of the emotions or conscience. The emotions can be purified by a strong affective experience in which a person identifies himself with someone else's generally tragic experience. The conscience can be purified by a sincere admission of guilt and begging God's mercy for whatever wrong had been done. (Etym. Greek katharsis, purgative.)

All items in this dictionary are from Fr. John Hardon's Modern Catholic Dictionary, © Eternal Life. Used with permission.

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