In the truest sense, contrition is feeling sorry for committing a religious sin and being scared about the consequences. But anyone can feel general contrition for something they've done wrong.

Contrition is a strong, powerful feeling that people get when they've done something wrong. Originally, this feeling came from having sinned and a fear of going to hell for it. But over the years, the idea of contrition has gotten broader. Anyone can feel contrition if they do something wrong, whether it's a tiny thing like littering or a huge thing like murdering. If you did wrong and feel bad about it, you're feeling contrition — you're contrite.

Definitions of contrition
  1. noun
    sorrow for sin arising from fear of damnation
    synonyms: attrition, contriteness
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    type of:
    regret, rue, ruefulness, sorrow
    sadness associated with some wrong done or some disappointment
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