|MANECHISM and CATHARISM|
1. The faith of Manechism,
from which CATHARISM was derived
In the year 240AD, Mani, the founder of the Manechean doctrine, was born. Although this prophet was put to death by Bahram 1st in 277AD, notions of good, enlightenment and eternity had been initiated in Essenian thinking :
- " Souls are prisoners of darkness, and they must fight to recover their original destiny, abandonning the body that imprisons them. "
Mani (in Greek Manes - in Latin Manichaeus), was twice " visited by an angel : the Messenger of the light of Paradise ", who asked him to proclaim his doctrine far and wide. After a pilgrimage to India, he came back to preach in Iran, where the Zoroastrian Magi of the court managed to put him in jail
This is another example of blind orthodox theories that change the pure concepts of universal religion, in order to maintain their temporal possessions, by using their own personal dogmas.
Mani considered Zoroaster, Buddha and "Jesus the illuminated one" as the prophets and Messengers of the Father
2. The Doctrine of Catharism : (from the Greek kataros = pure)
This was a religious sect of Manicheism, which flourished in France (Beziers, Carcassonne, Albi, Toulouse...) that the Inquisition and the kingsom of France persecuted until the XIIth and XIIIth century. Cathars considered themselves to be pure brothers and sisters living either in a chaste community, or taking on a mission in the lay world. They practiced charity and searched ardently for truth in a life full of simplicity.
Their doctrine argued that the devil is a creature of God who rebelled, and that souls are neither good nor evil. The earth, the material world and the bodies of humans were created by the fallen angel, who endeavors to attract by trickery the souls of men, who belong by nature to the Kingdom of Heaven. As soon as they succumb, Satan imprisons them in a carnal body, (excepting Christ, who only wore the semblance of a body), given Him by an angel, the Virgin Mary, who appeared as a Jewish woman.
Consequently, the cross must not be worshiped, nor the idle Christian church, (which only worries about temporal things) and does not work to bring salvation to our souls.
For the Cathars, the gospel is the only SOURCE of truth, and the quide to salvation. In their theory the spirit of those not chosen return in animal bodies (!)
Death for the Cathar was the liberation of the soul, and the only sacrament they recognized was called the CONSOLAMENTUM. It was a laic spiritual ordination. A postulant had to wait sometimes for up to 3 years before undergoing the tests of the noviciate (which lasted two years), after which he or she became part of the community, wearing the cap andd black robe.
From then on the man or woman were accepted "among the perfect and the pure" agreeing to abstain from all carnal contact, (even though they were married), to fast, and to observe very strict food laws:a vegetarian regime which prohibited milk, eggs and cheese.
The Cathar Castle of Puivert (Aude)
On this topic we recommend that you read our site (in French) called "SEVEN CENTURIES of the history OF EUROPE", comprising :
- The history of all the kings of France and of England, and the Emperors of the Holy roman Empire as well as the history and influence of the great popes of the Middle Ages.
- All these people are classified in chronological order, comparing them with their contemporaries to give an overall view.
- In this controversial document, we are going to retrace all the history of the Crusades to the Middle East, and also those (less known and for good reason!) of Europe : in Germany and the south of France against the Vaudois and the Cathars.
You will find an indepth look at the (Knights) Templars, the life of Saint Louis, the story of Joan of Arc, the truth about the Spanish Inquisition, about the first Jewish ghettos in Europe, and the genocide of the New World by the Spaniards...
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