Dushin O.E. The Transformation of Manichaeism in the Middle Ages

DOI: https://doi.org/10.15688/lp.jvolsu.2023.4.3

Oleg E. Dushin
Doctor of Sciences (Philosophy), Professor, Department of Philosophy, History and Theory of Art, Vaganova Ballet Academy
Zodchego Rossi St, 2, 191023 Saint Petersburg, Russian Federation
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https://orcid.org/0000-0001-8770-9036


Abstract. Firstly, the article discusses the general significance of the phenomenon of "heresy" in the history of European culture. At the same time, it is indicated that in the long term of the social development process, inversions of assessments and understanding of orthodox and non-orthodox views and beliefs occur quite often, when the persecuted become true heroes and their persecutors are declared retrograde. It is also emphasized that the very practice of knowing the truth implies the need for certain experiences that go beyond the scope of traditional intellectual activity, which causes rejection by society. The article notes that heretics were often sacrificed to preserve the social status quo, but, in the end, this led to the exact opposite results. Secondly, the article examines the medieval transformation of the heresy of the Manichaeans, the attitude towards which in modern culture has fundamentally changed, and a wide scientific and philistine interest in the heritage of the Cathars has developed. In this regard, the article studies the problem of the continuity of Manichaeism and Catharism, the relationship between the Cathar doctrine and the principles of Christian religiosity, and demonstrates the special significance and role of the Cathar movement in the development of the social space of cities and the mentality of medieval townspeople. Thirdly, on the example of understanding the world and man, the fundamentally dualistic nature of the worldview of the Cathars or Albigensians is revealed, which led them to the implementation of extreme forms of asceticism up to the practice of self-mortification (endura). Fourthly, as a conclusion, it is indicated that the Cathar movement played a special role in the history of the Middle Ages, demonstrating new social demands of the dynamically developing ethos of the burghers while paying attention to the fact that the experience of traditional monastic ascetics was based not on mortification of the flesh but on the fundamental transformation of whole human nature (theosis).
Key words: heresy, Manichaeism, Bogomils, Cathars, Albigensians, dualism.

Citation. Dushin O.E. The Transformation of Manichaeism in the Middle Ages. Logos et Praxis, 2023, vol. 22, no. 4, pp. 28-34. (in Russian). DOI: https://doi.org/10.15688/lp.jvolsu.2023.4.3

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