Messalianism is a Christian sect, condemned as heretical in a synod of 383 AD. The name 'Messalian' comes from the Syriac ܡܨܠܝܢܐ (mṣallyānā), meaning 'one who prays'. Messalians teach that once a person has experienced the essence of God they are freed from moral obligations or ecclesiastical discipline. They have male and female teachers whom they honor more than the clergy, the perfecti. In-game, Messalians can commit incest, considering it sacred as it was practiced by the children of Adam and Eve. However, most historians agree that this was untrue in relevance to real history.
The Messalians, or Euchites ("Those who Pray"), are a heretical Christian sect that originated in Mesopotamia, influenced by dualistic faiths like Zoroastrianism. Messalians believe that God can be perceived by the carnal senses, and that this perception is necessary to reach perfection. Each person is born with an inner demon, and only intense prayer can drive it out. They also believe that Lucifer is the elder son of God and a force for good, and that incest is sacred since it was practised by the children of Adam and Eve. They have no formal rites and no strict church hierarchy. Defining features in-game:
- There is no religious head.
- Messalians may install women as priests
- Rulers can marry close kin to improve vassal opinions.
Messalianism is a heresy of Nestorianism.
Absolute Cognatic Succession Law - Messalian rulers have access to the Absolute Cognatic Succession Law. Like the Cathars, Messalian women can lead armies and hold council positions if their liege is Messalian (since patch 2.4).