The mitzvah of improving our middos – emulating Hashem’s 13 Attributes of Mercy is a demonstration of love and awe of Hashem

What mitzvah is it that we are doing when we choose to have compassion on Hashem over our natural urges?

 

According to the Rambam, it is the mitzvah of working on our middos. But ultimately, working on our middos means to emulate Hashem’s 13 Attributes of Mercy, for we are made in that image and we are sent here to serve Hashem by choosing to make a Kiddush Hashem by reflecting Him into the world over our natural urges. In so doing, we fulfill the mitzvah of loving Hashem as well as reflecting to Hashem our awe in how He has created the world, in order to give us benefit, for serving Him by emulating Him and keeping the Torah.

 

 

The Torah speaks a great deal about Hashem giving us a choice between the blessing and a curse, directing us to choose life!. When we respond to choose life, it is an act of emunah that proves our love and awe of Hashem!

 

When we bear the burden of our own confusion of mind at times when the natural world seeks to define happiness in terms of time and space worldly matters, we are doing the mitzvah of emulating Hashem’s 13 attributes of mercy which Tomer Devorah tells us we are obligated to do lest these attributes disappear from the world. Happiness is a byproduct of learning Torah, praying fervently to Hashem, and emulating His 13 attributes of mercy. It is such a relief the first time we gain insight that having compassion on what seems like Hashem is in fact redeeming a part of the tzelem elokim He gives us. The part of our tzelem elokim trapped in darkness can literally heal us and help us live happier, more loving lives.

 

Asking Hashem to give us back the part of our tzelem elokim that is being drawn toward the negativity so that we can use it to reflect Him into the world releases the light from being pulled into the whirlpool and down the vortex of natural existence in the taivas and gaivas.  In fervent prayer, we evoke the wisdom given to us from Torah, giving us a gifted and inspired way of releasing what we need to actually heal ourselves and bring light and blessing to the matter.

 

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