(redirected from empathic)
Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Medical, Legal, Wikipedia.


the feeling of being able to experience vicariously what another person is experiencing. The ability to empathize is crucial in many interpersonal relationships and social settings. If family members do not experience empathy with each other, discord is more likely than if a climate of EMPATHIC UNDERSTANDING exists. Close friends, by definition, have an empathic relationship.

Empathy is one of ROGERS’ (1951) three conditions for a successful client-counsellor relationship, the other two being genuine warmth, and unconditional positive regard. Empathy is central to PERSON-CENTRED COUNSELLING, since this perspective holds the view that the client's problems can only be understood by the counsellor through experiencing the client's phenemonological field. For this empathy is required.

Empathy is also sometimes seen as central to techniques of MEANINGFUL UNDERSTANDING AND EXPLANATION widely used in sociology See also EMPATHIC UNDERSTANDING, VERSTEHEN.



(German, Einfuhlung), term used in psychology, art, and aesthetics to designate the transference to an object of the feelings and moods which it has evoked. The feelings of sadness or joy which a person experiences on beholding a certain landscape, for example, are projected into that landscape and are perceived as its properties; thus it appears as a sad or a happy landscape.

The concept of empathy was first set forth by F. T. Vischer in 1887, and it became a fundamental principle in the aesthetics of the German philosopher T. Lipps, who defined empathy as “objectified feeling.” It became widespread in the theory of art at the beginning of the 20th century—Vernon Lee and W. Worringer, among others, used the term—and it was frequently interpreted in a subjective and idealist spirit.


Vygotskii, L. S. Psikhologiia iskusstva, 2nd ed. Moscow, 1968.
Worringer, W. “Abstraktsiia i vchuvstvovaniie.” In Sovremennaia kniga po estetike: Antologiia. Moscow, 1957. (Translated from English.)
Lipps, T. Zur Einfühlung. Leipzig, 1913.
References in periodicals archive ?
But what is important is that there is a contrast between the Neanderthal's ostensibly confirmed capacities for empathic reasoning, as demonstrated in these recent cave findings, and the uncertainty there is regarding scientific findings on the origins of language.
marks which a high-volume mental health worker puts into the margin of a pre-printed or hand written psychotherapy interview schedule that is about to be followed during an appointment--seeing the dots reminds the worker to say something warmly empathic and/or understanding at intervals within the interview.
Empathic care is thought to inspire helpful behaviors, but empathic distress is thought by some to be a deterrent, initiating a desire to withdraw or turn away.
When we feel compassion for others rather than empathic distress, it also results in an increase in oxytocin in our systems.
Impaired empathic abilities are associated with reduced empathy-related brain response in amygdala and periaqueductal gray that is necessary for an empathic experience.
Given the paucity of research investigating linkages involving FC perceptions of patient functional limitations after a stroke and FC emotional states with FC empathic responses, a descriptive correlational study was employed.
Empathic Tendency Scale is a Likert-type scale developed by Dokmen (16) in order to measure the empathic tendencies of individuals.
Identifying potential empathic deficits and addressing them through coursework and supervision may mitigate difficulties in the role of therapist that can lead to burnout, dissatisfaction, and resentment towards clients (Luchner et al.
Across very different contexts, from mock interviews to controlled environments where only limited facial cues are available, an effortful mode of thought is associated with empathic accuracy, they conclude.
Promoting attitudes and behaviors such as self-awareness, nonjudgmental positive regard for others, and self-reflection is important in the development of nursing students who will demonstrate empathic willingness.
Although few researchers have explored UPR apart from congruence and empathic understanding, Farber and Doolin (2011) found a positive relationship between UPR and therapeutic outcome in their meta-analytic review.
These benefits and others sometimes stem from people using empathic listening during some of their conversations.