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Gurevich, P. S. Confessionality as a Sacrament

Published in journal "Psychology and Psychotechnics", 2014-5 in rubric "Editor-in-Chief's column", pages 463-467.

Resume: Can we actually entrust our secrets to another person? Are we allowed to open up our inner world for everyone and tell everything about us? Or should be better follow the advice given by Shakespeareĺs Polonius ĹGive thy thoughts no tongue, nor any unproportioned thought his act. Be though familiar, but by no means vulgarĺ? If we base only on our internal experience and ignore the opinion of others, we can understand ourselves as we truly are. At the same time, if we keep our experience to ourselves and stay away from others, others can create the wrong image of us. However, the author notes, there is a certain period of life when we all are ready to open up and entrust our secrets to other people and to feel better sharing our sorrows or sins. Sometimes it happens to a criminal who was not convicted guilty but at some moment he is ready to tell everything himself. Sometimes such a desire to confess is typical for a person who is about to die. This is what happened to a French philosopher Walter for instance. Even though he was absolutely against religion all his life, before his death he declared his sins, adopted religion and acquired the spiritual comfort before his meeting with God. The author bases his research on different sources and refers to the memorials of different epochs. He uses the method of historical comparison. At the same time, he also uses the method of psychological reconstruction and psychological analysis. The author also appeals to introspection as the method of receiving knowledge about psychological phenomena. The novelty of the research is in the authorĺs an attempt to create the history of development of the confession literature and traces back particular common and different features in their development. Philosophy and fiction have the genre of confession. Confession is usually in demand during historical, social and cultural transformations and breakthroughs. However, confession always reflects a personal, spiritual catastrophe. Existential drama shows the life of the epoch or, on the contrary, peculiarities of personal existence that have not been taken into account. The confession genre is usually associated with philosophical and psychological literature.

Keywords: psychology, confession, confessionality, soul, passions, frankness, self-consciousness, dialectics of feelings, compassion, faith.

DOI: 10.7256/2070-8955.2014.5.12183

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