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cabala

or cab·ba·la, kab·a·la, kab·ba·la, kab·ba·lah

[kab-uh-luh, kuh-bah-]
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noun
  1. a system of esoteric theosophy and theurgy developed by rabbis, reaching its peak about the 12th and 13th centuries, and influencing certain medieval and Renaissance Christian thinkers. It was based on a mystical method of interpreting Scripture by which initiates claimed to penetrate sacred mysteries. Among its central doctrines are, all creation is an emanation from the Deity and the soul exists from eternity.
  2. any occult or secret doctrine or science.
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Origin of cabala

1515–25; < Medieval Latin cab(b)ala < Hebrew qabbālāh ‘tradition’, literally, something received, i.e., handed down
Can be confusedcabal cabala
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for cabala

Historical Examples

  • But if you were to teach me the cabala, you would impart to me these holy names?

    The Memoires of Casanova, Complete

    Jacques Casanova de Seingalt

  • The Cabala teaches us the infinite significance of words and names.

  • Astrology as well as the Cabala gives various methods for this purpose.

  • The Cabala, as we have seen, was made up of these heterogeneous elements.

  • This may be so, yet imperceptibly the Cabala has moulded the mind of the Jew.


British Dictionary definitions for cabala

cabala

noun
  1. a variant spelling of kabbalah
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Derived Formscabalism (ˈkæbəˌlɪzəm), nouncabalist, nouncabalistic, adjective
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for cabala

n.

1670s, variant of cabbala. Related: Cabalist.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper