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cabala

[kab-uh-luh, kuh-bah-] /ˈkæb ə lə, kəˈbɑ-/
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.
Also, cabbala, kabala, kabbala, kabbalah.
Origin
1515-1525
1515-25; < Medieval Latin cab(b)ala < Hebrew qabbālāh ‘tradition’, literally, something received, i.e., handed down
Can be confused
cabal, cabala.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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British Dictionary definitions for cabala

cabala

/kəˈbɑːlə/
noun
1.
a variant spelling of kabbalah
Derived Forms
cabalism (ˈkæbəˌlɪzəm) noun
cabalist, noun
cabalistic, adjective

kabbalah

/kəˈbɑːlə/
noun
1.
an ancient Jewish mystical tradition based on an esoteric interpretation of the Old Testament
2.
any secret or occult doctrine or science
Derived Forms
kabbalism, kabalism, cabbalism, cabalism, qabalism (ˈkæbəˌlɪzəm) noun
kabbalist, kabalist, cabbalist, cabalist, qabalist, noun
kabbalistic, kabalistic, cabbalistic, cabalistic, qabalistic, adjective
Word Origin
C16: from Medieval Latin, from Hebrew qabbālāh tradition, what is received, from qābal to receive
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
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Word Origin and History for cabala
cabala
1670s, variant of cabbala. Related: Cabalist.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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