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Reincarnation is not directly mentioned in the Hebrew Bible, yet belief in an afterlife is evident in many biblical laws. Job 1:20-21 tells us that he came naked from his mother's womb and that he would return to the womb in the same way. This is a reference to rebirth.Jewish scholars acknowledge that certain references are difficult to understand without turning to reincarnation. For example, karmic law and reincarnation seem to be implied by Solomon in Ecclesiasticus 41:9, "Woe be unto you, ungodly men, which have forsaken the law of the most high God! For when you are born, you shall be born to a curse." Solomon also speaks of his own previous merit that resulted in his birth as the son of a king, "For I was a wise child, and possessed a good mind. Yea, rather, being good, I came into an undefiled body" (Wisdom: 8:19-20).
The Kabbalah is said to be the mystical, secret wisdom of the Torah and is meant for those Jews who are already accomplished in their spiritual practices. The Kabbalists realised that not all righteous individuals in this world receive their due rewards. Some suffer, even though they observe the commandments of the Torah. Reincarnation seemed a plausible answer to this 'injustice'. Kabbalists also used reincarnation to explain odd or unusual occurrences of human characteristics. They asked, for example, why some individuals act like animals. Many of the early Kabbalists felt that reincarnation was clearly supported by the Hebrew scriptures, which declare that unless one perfectly follows the 613 commandments of the Torah, one cannot secure his place in the world-to-come.Hints of reincarnation are also common in the history of Judaism and early Christianity. Information about past and future lives is found throughout the Kabbalah. In the Zohar, one of the principal Kabbalistic texts, it is said, "The souls must reenter the absolute substance whence they have emerged. But to accomplish this, they must develop all the perfections, the germ of which is planted in them; and if they have not fulfilled this condition during one life, they must commence another, a third, and so forth, until they have acquired the condition which fits them for reunion with God".