Tzedaká Meaning

Tzedaká is a Hebrew Word that means “solidarity” and has its roots in the word tzedek, justice.

Tzedaká means Justice and Solidarity. It means reinstating your fellow man’s right to live with dignity.

Thus, helping those in need is not an act of kindness, but rather a moral obligation.

In Judaism, poverty is not an inexorable curse. Its increase or decrease will depend on Human beings´ will and on the way their societies are organized. Insensitivity towards poverty is a very serious omission. It is not just a material matter; it has the deepest implications.

“You shall open your hand (…) to cover his need in what he needs.” (Deut.15.8).

Some verses by which the Bible teaches us solidarity:

You will not harden your heart to the needy man” (Deut.15.7)

There shall be no poor amongst you. It is the Lord’s commandment. Poverty must be eradicated. ( Deut. 15.4)

For the poor shall never cease out of the land; therefore I command thee, saying: tour shall surely open thy hand unto thy poor and needy brother, in thy land.” (Deut. 15.11)

Every person has the obligation to practice tzedakah according to his means, even those assisted by tzedakah, as long as he has sufficient means to live by.

The poor and needy seek water and there is none, and their tongue faileth for thirst; I, the Lord, will answer them. I, the god of Israel will not forsake them.” (Isaíah 41.17).

All men are responsible for the needs of each individual member of the community.

The Book of Precepts

“It is so worthy to give to the poor that our wise men have not hesitated to say that what a poor man can do for his master is more than what the master can do for a poor man.” (Deut.15.7)

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