Manichaeism is a multi-faceted religion that was founded by Iranian prophet Mani. After a revelation with the angel Eltaum, Mani prepared for 12 years to proclaim himself to the people. Manichaeism was developed in Mani’s several writings, which depicted a battle between forces, and a creation of man and the universe which was founded on the conflict between light and dark. For several centuries, Manichaeism spread far and wide, at one point being considered a main rival to Christianity.
Sermon on Mani’s Teaching of Salvation, Cathayan/Chinese Manichaean silk painting, 13th century. (Public Domain)
Who was the Founder of Manichaeism?
The story of Manichaeism prophet Mani was largely biased by the religion’s detractors until a Greek parchment was discovered in 1969. The document dates to 400 AD and is known as the Codex Manichaicus Coloniensis. With that codex, researchers have now gained better insight into who Mani was and his teachings.