Charles Conley has shown that for a flow on a compact metric space, a point x is chain recurrent if and only if any attractor which contains the & ω-limit set of x also contains x. In this paper we show that the same statement holds for a continuous map of a compact metric space to itself, and additional equivalent conditions can be given. A stronger result is obtained if the space is locally connected.It follows, as a special case, that if a map of the circle to itself has no periodic points then every point is chain recurrent. Also, for any homeomorphism of the circle to itself, the chain recurrent set is either the set of periodic points or the entire circle. Finally, we use the equivalent conditions mentioned above to show that for any continuous map f of a compact space to itself, if the non-wandering set equals the chain recurrent set then f does not permit Ω-explosions. The converse holds on manifolds.