Christian dualism originated in the reign of Constans II (641-68). It was a popular religion, which shared with orthodoxy an acceptance of scriptual authority and apostolic tradition and held a sacramental doctrine of salvation, but understood all these in a radically different way to the Orthodox Church. One of the differences was the strong part demonology played in the belief system. This text traces, through original sources, the origins of dualist Christianity throughout the Byzantine Empire, focusing on the Paulician movement in Armenia and Bogomilism in Bulgaria. It presents not only the theological texts, but puts the movements into their social and political context.
Janet Hamilton, Bernard Hamilton, and Yuri Stoyanov
This introduction provides an overview of the origins of Christian dualism, the Paulicians, the Bogomils and the translated sources. Christian dualism formed a very important dissenting tradition in the Orthodox world of Byzantium for 800 years, and in the twelfth and thirteenth centuries was to spread to western Europe, where its adherents were known as Cathars. All the sources for the study of Paulicianism were written by their religious opponents, apart from some extracts from the letters of their leader Sergius-Tychicus, which are quoted by Peter of Sicily, and some statements made by Paulicians which are recorded in other Orthodox sources.