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Celebrities gave Kabbalah Centre cachet, and spurred its growth

Celebrities gave Kabbalah Centre cachet, and spurred its growth

The heightened profile of the L.A.-based Kabbalah Centre popularizing previously secret Jewish mysticism came with a continued emphasis on soliciting donations, sometimes in ways some found offensive. Then the IRS stepped in.

Madonna, left holding a book, seen here in Tel Aviv, enrolled at the Los Angeles center in 1996 at Sandra Bernhard's suggestion. Demi Moore and Ashton Kutcher, right, were married by a Kabbalah Centre teacher. (Kabbalah Centre / Associated Press)

By Harriet Ryan and Kim Christensen, Los Angeles Times

October 18, 2011

Second of two parts

When Philip Berg decided in the early 1970s to teach kabbalah to the masses, he...

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