Digest of terms


the practice of sexual abstinence and avoidance of marriage, as found globally in most religious traditions, and motivated by such views as the impurity of sexual activity and the danger of distraction from more important priorities (asceticism). In Christian ethics it came to be thought of as one of the counsels of perfection, and contributed to the revered status of monks, nuns and friars, and in Roman Catholicism to a celibate priesthood.

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