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A modern dictionary of Catholic terms, both common and obscure. Find accurate definitions of words and phrases.

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ILLUMINATION

Any manifestation of the truth, or assistance to the intellect in better understanding the truth. In Augustinian philosophy, the function of the divine light within the human mind to enable it to acquire new spiritual knowledge. In Thomistic philosophy the operation of the "active intellect" to "light up" the essence of sense perceptions so they become intelligible to the "passive intellect." In theology, the role of divine grace to illumine the intellect in order to believe what God has revealed and assist the mind to better understand what it believes.

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

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