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Knowledge and Peace

by Yehudis Golshevsky


Rebbe Nachman of Breslov taught…

“Peace heals. When your own world is fractured, increase your knowledge of G-d. It will spawn inner peace.
When the outside world is fractured, promote the search for truth. It will spawn universal peace.”

(The Empty Chair*, p. 28)


What does this mean to me?
The word for peace, shalom, indicates that which is shalem or whole; it is the state of completion. When the different forces inside of me—whether they are physical, emotional or spiritual—are in conflict, then I suffer from the various disorders that afflict me. If it’s my body out of balance, the suffering is physical. If my inclinations and aspirations are in conflict, it is emotional or spiritual. Either way, it is a painful situation.

Knowledge of G-d’s absolute oneness bursts the illusion of division that exists in the world at large and also within myself. Increasing that awareness heals the fractures that cause so much suffering to me and to the world.

The prophet Yeshayahu described the ultimate future, the period following the redemption, as being one where, “The wolf will dwell with the lamb… They will not do evil or cause destruction on all of My holy mountain, for the earth will be filled with knowledge of G-d as water covers the bed of the sea.” That word “for” means “because;” because the knowledge of G-d will completely pervade our world, all conflict and divisiveness will be healed.


A prayer:


Dear G-d,
Master of peace,
help to increase peace among all that exist on earth.
May all hatred and jealousy, competitiveness and strife
cease among human beings.
Instill profound love and peace among all,
so that each person will recognize
the underlying love that we have for one another.
This is what will unify us into a single whole .

(Likutei Tefillos, I:27)

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