Cabala...is a system of mysticism with its origins in Judaism, stemming in part from the "chariot" visions of first-century mystics, in part from Gnosticism and Neoplatonism, in part from the theological speculations of medieval Spanish Jews, and in part from later thinkers. For many centuries, cabala was the accepted form of mysticism and theology within Judaism, but for the most part it has now fallen out of favor in religious contexts. Nevertheless, many rabbis and Jewish scholars still take an interest in it. As a philosophy and as a way of looking at God and the universe, it survives in yet wider quarters. Especially in the form developed by Christian enthusiasts in the Italian Renaissance and by 19th-century Christian and pagan occultists, cabalism retains vast importance as the key to mystical thinking outside of the mainstream and to the practice of ceremonial magic.