Manicheism

Discipline: Philosophy

Religious system founded by Mani of Persia (c. AD 215-76) and emphasizing fundamental dualism of good and evil as independent principles, represented by spirit and body and symbolized by light and dark.

Sometimes treated as a Christian heresy, Manicheism is rather a separate religion with its roots in Zoroastrianism (founded by Zoroaster (or Zarathustra) of Persia probably in the 6th century BC).

St Augustine (AD 354-430) briefly adhered to it, and the Albigensian creed of medieval France was strongly influenced by it.

Its adherents sought to ally themselves to Good by a thorough asceticism, including in Albigensian times an explicit readiness to go to the stake.

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