An Episcopal Dictionary of the Church

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Manicheism, Manichaeism

This dualistic heresy was named after Manes, a third-century Babylonian. He taught that matter is evil and salvation consists in freeing the human soul from its commingling with the physical body. The soul was understood to return to an original state of separation from everything material in a purely spiritual realm of light. The movement emphasized self-knowledge and strict ascetical discipline.

Glossary definitions provided courtesy of Church Publishing Incorporated, New York, NY,(All Rights reserved) from "An Episcopal Dictionary of the Church, A User Friendly Reference for Episcopalians," Don S. Armentrout and Robert Boak Slocum, editors.