BE A PROMOTER OF PEACE

It is written: “For whoever promotes charity promotes peace, both in the upper world and in the lower world” (Zohar 200b, Mikets), that is, here in the Olam HaAsiyah (our material reality), where all things happen. As such, we learn that although giving tzedakah clearly helps the “receiver”, this act goes much further, to wit, it promotes peace in the world through the beauty, the greatness and the light that means giving to one who needs. As such, a person who fulfills this mitzva of tzedakah directly participates in the Tikkun/Rectification process of the world. This also implies on the “sweetening” of the severe decrees (in Hebrew, gevurot) that afflict us all in this most troublesome time and world. This “sweetening” is particularly important in the place the person lives: in one’s country, state, city and even neighborhood, where there can be many severe decrees, chaz v’shalom. Now, the holy Zohar brings a Psalm to speak on the subject of tzedakah: צדקתו עמדת לעד Tsidkato omedet laad, “His righteousness endures forever” (Tehilim 112:9). Here, we are taught something even greater than observed before: not only the person receives merits and divine kindness for his practice of charity – which helps his own environment, the world at large and even the “spiritual worlds” – but the effects of the tzedakah last forever. It is a mitzva with eternal value, always giving merit in the lifetime of the person and even his descendants. Behold, when we investigate the ordinal gematria (mispar siduri) of צדקתו עמדת לעד Tsidkato omedet laad, the result is 156, that being the same as gematria of the word Yosef. Truly, he was called Yosef HaTzadik/The Righteous, where tzedakah/charity, tzedek/justice and tzadik/righteous all are correlate words. Yosef the tzadik is intrinsically connected with tzedakah, as the Torah is teaching us on another level that the person who gives charity is like a tzadik. Moreover, we can see the “seal” of Hashem in these holy words, because 156 is also the gematria YKVK (26, known as the Tetragram) times six (26 x 6 = 156). And six is the numerical value of the Hebrew letter Vav, which in the reality of our soul, represents the person’s character. A person desirous of true character rectification in all of its major components (which are six, for “six sefirot“) is one who merits to be called a tzadik, for he has Hashem (26) directing and healing all of his personal traits (6). The path of righteousness (156) is truly a blessed one.

 

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