Under the Father of Greatness, the Manichaean Faith has a traditional hierarchical structure.
1. The Third Messenger, sent by Abba d’Rabbuta (Father of Greatness) is considered the highest spiritual being in our presence. He guides the Council of the Elect.
2. The Prophet Mani was chosen and anointed by God as a prophet to dispense the Message of Light to the world. Manichaeans revere the Prophet and believe him to be among us today.
3. The Arkhegos serves the Manichaean Faith in guiding the flock in the original teachings of Blessed Mani as he originally founded it and as further instructed by the Third Messenger.
4. There are others within the Church who assist in leading the flock of the children of Light in truth, purity and unity such as overseers, elders and others.
The Arkhegos is consecrated and appointed directly by the Council of the Elect. The Arkhegos guides and oversees all Manichaeans in the Holy and Ancient Manichaean Faith on behalf of the Third Messenger and the Prophet and serves as the Emissary to Manichaeans worldwide.
Apostles are members of the Council of the Elect. They serve the Faith in all fields in bringing the Message of Light to humanity. Apostles offer insights and guidance on a variety of areas affecting the faith of Manichaeans as a whole, and offer insights to the Arkhegos where appropriate.
The General Assembly of Elders is a body of Elect clerics (men and women) appointed by and in service to the Arkhegos to oversee the administrative affairs of the Faith as a whole. The General Assembly serves both as a synod under the Arkhegos and also as teaching body that helps to make the Message of Light practical in day to day life through disseminating the scriptures, revelations and religious instructions into the lives of each Manichaean. The General Assembly addresses the concerns of members on behalf of the Arkhegos. All members of the General Assembly of Elders are Elect servants of God.
A Manichaean Monk or Nun may either be Elect or a Hearer. There is no restriction on monastic life because a person is a Hearer. All Manichaean Monks and Nuns are required to follow their monastic rule and are answerable to their community head. A person who feels he or she has been called to live a religious solitary life, or other form of dedicated prayer life, should contact the Arkhegosate.
All Manichaeans study and seek to practically implement the Prophet’s teachings daily, attending services weekly and making regular tithes and alms in the prescribed manner traditional to the Holy Manichaean Faith. The goal of all Manichaeans should be the proper cultivation of the Twelve Virtues, the practice of the Manichaean Ten Commandments and the liberation of the Light from Matter.
About this Site
This site represents the Manichaean Faith as it is practised in Afghanistan and Iran, and those from such backgrounds.
The religion of Mani has often been referred to as “Religion of Light” or “Luminous Religion”. There are certain groups and organizations using the phrase “Religion of Light.” For example, a group in Paris, Tennessee, USA was once using the name “Religion of Light Foundation” and misrepresenting our Faith. The Manichaean Faith, as represented on manichaean.org is not affiliated with any such groups or organizations, although it was prior to 2019. Prior to 2019 our main site was taken over by individuals we believe did not have Manichaeans’ best interest at heart. Those individuals are no longer associated with the Manichaean Faith.
We also wish to make known that some websites, PDFs and Power Point presentations have been created which contain some of our older content. Some have even claimed to be under the leadership of the Third Messenger (Syriac: Izgadda). We are not affiliated with such groups. Our primary purpose is to serve as a resource for Manichaeans who believe in the Gospel of the Prophet Mani through the cultural lens of Iran and Afghanistan.
The domain manichaean.org is the only domain name now affiliated with Ayin-e Mani (Manichaean Faith) as promulgated by the Arkhegosate of Iran. With the help of sincere brethren, we are slowly rebuilding the site.
The site is under the administration of Farzad Azadi.