Few educated persons, and certainly none belonging to the class of students for which this work is more especially designed, will require to be told that the Kabalah is a form of esoteric philosophy, that it makes for itself a high claim, or that this claim has, from time to time, been admitted by persons who are entitled to our consideration. Nor will it be needful to state that the literature called Kabalistic rose up among the Jews during the Christian centuries which succeeded their dispersal and the destruction of their Holy City. It offers a strong contrast to the sacred scriptures of Israel, which are direct, beautiful and simple, while Kabalism is involved, obscure and in many ways repellent as regards its outward form.
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