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OTHER WORDS FROM epiphany
In Western Christianity , the feast commemorates principally but not solely the visit of the Magi to the Christ Child , and thus Jesus' physical manifestation to the Gentiles. Eastern Christians , on the other hand, commemorate the baptism of Jesus in the Jordan River , seen as his manifestation to the world as the Son of God. The traditional date for the feast is January 6.
Epiphany is one of the three principal and oldest festival days of the Christian church the other two are Easter and Christmas. Eastern traditions that follow the Julian calendar rather than the Gregorian calendar celebrate Epiphany on January 19, since their Christmas Eve falls on January 6. In Eastern traditions, baptism is common during Epiphany, and houses may be blessed with holy water. In the Western church the festival primarily commemorates the visit by the Magi to the infant Jesus, which is seen as evidence that Christ, the Jewish Messiah , came also for the salvation of Gentiles. In the East it primarily commemorates the baptism of Jesus and celebrates the revelation that the incarnate Christ was both fully God and fully man. In the West the evening preceding Epiphany is called Twelfth Night.
Generally the term is used to describe scientific breakthrough, religious or philosophical discoveries, but it can apply in any situation in which an enlightening realization allows a problem or situation to be understood from a new and deeper perspective. Epiphanies are studied by psychologists   and other scholars, particularly those attempting to study the process of innovation. Epiphanies are relatively rare occurrences and generally follow a process of significant thought about a problem. Often they are triggered by a new and key piece of information, but importantly, a depth of prior knowledge is required to allow the leap of understanding. The word epiphany originally referred to insight through the divine. The word's secular usage may owe much of its popularity to Irish novelist James Joyce. The Joycean epiphany has been defined as "a sudden spiritual manifestation, whether from some object, scene, event, or memorable phase of the mind — the manifestation being out of proportion to the significance or strictly logical relevance of whatever produces it. Joyce had first expounded on epiphany's meaning in the fragment Stephen Hero , although this was only published posthumously in In traditional and pre-modern cultures, initiation rites and mystery religions have served as vehicles of epiphany, as well as the arts. The Greek dramatists and poets would, in the ideal, induct the audience into states of catharsis or kenosis , respectively.