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On The Light-Mind, The Apostles, And The Saints

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Chapter Summary

In this chapter, Kephalaia compilers draw on three canonical pentads, namely the "Five Sons of the Living Spirit," the "Five Limbs," and the "Five Virtues," to communicate their message. The central importance of five-part patterning is made evident by its initial literary frame, since in an effort to have Mani address the issue of theodicy, the unnamed disciple is made to pose a series of five questions. Basically, what the disciple wants to know is how a great and noble divine power such as the Light-Mind can inhabit a small and defiled body. Here, Mani is made to go to great lengths to explain to a reticent disciple his assertion that the human body is really just a microcosmic representation of the macrocosm and that both domains display an equally pentadic structure in which a divine guardian watches over five districts continually disturbed by the rebellions of the dark powers.

Keywords:five-part pattern; Kephalaia; land of darkness; light-mind; living spirit; Manichaean cosmology



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