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Marriage, Custodian of the Future

by Rabbi Avraham B. Hecht

  

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A great Sage, Rabbi Shimon ben Gamliel, in "Ethics of the Fathers", prescribed a formula for the existence of the world. He said: "The world exists on three things: Truth, Justice and Peace."

In marriage, a new world is called into being, its inhabitants are husband and wife. In Rabbi Gamliel's words we find solicitous advice for the new couple.

The first prerequisite for the stability and security of this new world is truth. Husband and wife must be truthful and honest with one another. If there is deceit, dishonesty, lack of trust and faith, it is impossible for a good marriage to exist. The first law, therefore, is to be truthful, candid and frank with each other. By discussing problems and facing issues squarely and truthfully, differences are more easily resolved and relationships cemented.

Seek and find reasons to admire and respect one another, rather than look for the unfavorable attributes each possesses
The second axiom is judgement. This simply means that each partner should judge the other with compassion and understanding. Even if quarrels take place and harsh words are spoken, you are advised not to be adamant, stubborn or unforgiving. Give each other the benefit of the doubt and judge each other on the scale of merit.

Seek and find reasons to admire and respect one another, rather than look for the unfavorable attributes each possesses. Try to use reasoned judgement, don't follow impetuous and emotional flashes of action.

Finally, a home must have Shalom, peace and tranquility. There are many causes for the disruption of family harmony. Peace of mind can easily be destroyed by constant complaining and displeasure. Tranquility can disappear because of unreasonable demands by either partner. Each must think of the greater good, the peaceful home where dissension has no place.

A husband and wife should consider themselves partners in the same team working for their mutual benefit, rather than adversaries seeking to win points in a contest.

A mastery of the three qualities of truth, justice and peace will spell future happiness.

Reprinted from The Chabad Times with permission from www.mikvah.org.
 


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Life Cycle » Marriage » Married Life

Chabad
Chabad, an acronym for Wisdom, Knowledge, and Understanding, is the name of a Chassidic Group founded in the 1770s. Two of the most fundamental teachings of Chabad are the intellectual pursuit of understanding the divine and the willingness to help every Jew who has a spiritual or material need.