Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Sabaean Mandaean new year

MANDEAN (MANDAEAN) WATCH: Sabian Mandaeans Perform New Year Rituals in Iran. On the anniversary of the Mandaean New Year, the Sabians in southwestern Iran performed their baptism rite by immersing themselves in Karun River. A photo essay. The rite took place yesterday (Monday).

For review: the Mandeans (Mandaeans) are a Middle Eastern Gnostic religious group coming from an Aramaic-speaking background and with an Aramaic liturgy. They believe that John the Baptist was their founder. Their movement can be traced back to late antiquity and perhaps even to the early centuries CE. The term Sabian (Sabean, Sabaean) is often applied to them, but I am not sure of its exact import.

Most past PaleoJudaica posts on the Sabean Mandeans deal with those in Iraq, whose lot after the war has been very difficult. Background here and links.

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