Mandaeans are an ethno-religious minority who have lived in Iraq and Iran for almost two thousand years and consider John the Baptist their great teacher.  This extreme pacifist religion, which prohibits self defense, is the only surviving Gnostic people from the Late Antiquity, and possibly the last link between the present and biblical times.  They are also rapidly becoming extinct. 

The Mandaeans are also one of Iraq’s smallest and most vulnerable minorities with no safe enclave.  At our height, we numbered anywhere from 60,000 to 75,000. Today, less than 5,000 of our members remain in Iraq.  The mass exodus of Mandaeans is a result of religious persecution, forced conversion to Islam and direct assaults, rapes and other violence directed at our community.  In fact, our members can no longer practice their religious rituals, such as baptism, or attend our temples for worship.  

 Our ancient traditions and multi-baptisms today are done exactly as they were done two thousands years ago- and exactly the way in which Jesus was baptized by John the Baptist. 









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