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A Manichaen Lectionary

Updated: Jul 14, 2023







This lectionary incorporates references to several Manichaean texts including the Manichaean Psalm-Book, Shapuragan, Kephalaia, and practices like The Lord’s Prayer and weekly fast.


Day 1 - Day 7:

Focus: Introduction to Manichaeism

Readings: An overview of the Manichaean faith, its origins and religious practices, including a dedication to light and darkness duality.


Day 8 - Day 14:

Focus: The Manichaean Creation Story

Readings: The Manichaean narrative of cosmogony, focusing on the primal Man's encounter with darkness.


Day 15 - Day 21:

Focus: The Manichaean Anthropology

Readings: Exploration of the Manichaean conception of humanity, creation, and the concept of the soul.


Day 22 - Day 28:

Focus: The Manichaean Psalm-Book

Readings: Selections from the Manichaean Psalm-Book, focusing on an interpretation of the battle between light and darkness.


Day 29 - Day 35:

Focus: The Shapuragan

Readings: Exploration and interpretation of the remnants of the Shapuragan, a principal Manichaean text written by Mani himself.


Day 36 - Day 42:

Focus: The Manichaean Morality

Readings: Analysis of the moral and ethical dimensions, celibacy, veganism, and the dualism of Manichaeism.


Day 43- Day 49:

Focus: The Parthian Hymn Cycles

Readings: Diving into the Parthian hymn cycles and their significance in the Manichaean liturgy.


Day 50 - Day 56:

Focus: Manichaean Art and Iconography

Readings: Observations and analysis of surviving Manichaean art and scripts.


Day 57 - Day 63:

Focus: Kephalaia

Readings: Reflections on instructions on the Manichaean way of life as articulated in the Kephalaia.


Day 64 - Day 70:

Focus: Manichaean Eschatology

Readings: Study of the Manichaean beliefs about the end of the world and afterlife.


Day 71 - Day 365:

Focus: Deepening Understanding

Readings: Revisit each topic from days 1 to 70, including additional readings and comparative studies over the remaining 295 days.


Each seventh day, engage in Manichaean practices like The Lord’s Prayers and weekly fast in emulation of the sun. Remember, this lectionary is a creative interpretation owing to the scarcity and fragmented nature of the Manichaean texts.

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