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Thought for the Day: Improving Quality of Life with Chesed

The tanna devei eliyahu says that acts of g'milus chasadim give a person a "guf shalom" -- a body at peace.  As noted before, shalom does not mean the absence of fighting; rather it means that the component parts are doing their job and the the system as a whole is working at maximum efficiency.  Given that, what does chesed have to to with shalom?

The Chovos HaLevavos gives a beautiful mashal.  Imagine a king who hires a agent to conduct some important business for the king in a distant land.  Of course, the king is also going to supply the agent with everything he needs to accomplish his task -- including servants of the king who will be assigned (temporarily) to the king's agent.  The servants are loyal to the agent, but only so long as he is loyal to the king.  If the agent starts to do things that are counter to the king's wishes or even not in line with the agent's mission, then the servants are also likely to rebel.  So too, says the Chovos HaLevavos, our n'shama is an agent sent by the Supreme King and we are given the servants we need: 248 limbs and 365 sinews.  When we do our job (ratzon HaShem), our body does its job; if not, not.

Our mission: olam chesed yibaneh (the world was built for chesed) (T'hillim 89:3).  When we deliver, our body is working at maximum efficiency with all the parts doing their job.  If not, not.


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