It is a mistake to suppose that he accepted any kind of manichaeism as his solution of the problem of the universe.
manichaeism, that mixed product of Zoroastrian and Christian-gnostic elements, first enthralled him.
In reality his thought is much more permeated with Christian feeling than with manichaeism.
manichaeism seemed to him to solve the mysteries of the world, and of his own experiences by which he was perplexed.
manichaeism was thus able to satisfy the new wants of an old world.
There is not a single point in manichaeism which demands for its explanation an appeal to Buddhism.
From the beginning of the 4th century they began to die out in the West, or rather they fell a prey to manichaeism.
It was only subsequent to about 330 that manichaeism spread rapidly in the Roman Empire.
Augustine stayed for a year in Rome, occupied in literary work, particularly in controversy with manichaeism.
manichaeism in the West had also some experience of attempts at reformation from the ascetic side, but of these we know little.
1550s, "the religion of the Manichees" (late 14c.) a Gnostic Christian sect named for its founder, Mani (Latin Manichæus), c.215-275, Syriac-speaking apostle from a Jesus cult in Mesopotamia in 240s, who taught a universal religion. Vegetarian and visionary, they saw "particles of light and goodness" trapped in evil matter and regarded Satan as co-eternal with God. The universe was a scene of struggle between good and evil. The sect was characterized by dualism and a double-standard of perfectionist "elects" and a larger group of fellow travelers who would require several reincarnations before their particles of light would be liberated.