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Subject Religion

DOI: 10.1111/b.9780631181392.1995.x


[ xxii ] The main text of the K abbalah. It appeared in mysterious circumstances in Spain towards the end of the 13th century. The Kabbalist Moses de Leon ( c. 1240–1305) started circulating manuscripts purporting to be the teachings of a circle of mystics living in Palestine in the 2nd and 3rd centuries. Despite doubts expressed by individual kabbalists, including contemporaries of de Leon, about the authenticity of de Leon's claim, the kabbalistic tradition has come to accept that the Zohar is a genuinely ancient text [70: 99]. It is thought to preserve the mystical teachings of R abbi Simeon bar Yochai and his disciples, although exactly how the original manuscript reached Spain is unclear. Modern scholarship views the Zoharic literature as a series of pseudepigraphic texts composed by Moses de Leon and other unknown Kabbalists in the late 13th and early 14th centuries [61: v ]. The Zohar is in the form of a M idrash on the B ible. [14 vol. 16: 1193]. Its main teaching concerns the 10 emanations (S efirah ) through which the world came into being, and which underlie all reality. ... log in or subscribe to read full text

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