The following story illustrates how past wrongs may be corrected through reincarnation:

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Once, a poor man complained to the Ba’al Shem Tov about his suffering. The rabbi sent him to a certain man in a distant town that might be able to help him. When he arrived and asked directions to the man’s house, one person after another spat and cursed at the mention of his name. Finally he reached the house only to have the door slammed in his face. After pleading with the owner of the house for an explanation, he was told that the man he wants, a terrible miser hated by all, died long ago. Bewildered, the man returned to the Baal Shem Tov and told him what happened. The rabbi looked him square in the eyes and said “the man you were looking for was you!” The man realized the reason for his poverty, and started giving whatever he had to charity. Eventually he was able to give extensively.

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