The Book of Zohar. Chapter “The Ninth Commandment” (abridged)
233. The ninth Commandment (law of nature) is to show mercy to the poor (those who cannot correct themselves on their own) and supply them with food (the Light of correction and fulfillment), as it is written: “LET US MAKE (out of the desire to receive) MAN (ADAM from the word ADAME – similar to the Creator) IN OUR IMAGE, AFTER OUR LIKENESS,” and this man will consist of two parts, male and female. IN OUR IMAGE refers to the rich (the Light of Hochma); AFTER OUR LIKENESS refers to the poor (the Light of Hassadim).
234. From the male side, they are rich, but from the female side, they are poor. And as they are united together, merciful to each other, and help each other, so below should the rich and the poor be united as one, and should share with each other, and show mercy to one another (so that the Light of Hochma could clothe the Light of Hassadim).
235. We see this in the book of King Shlomo (Solomon): he who shows mercy to the poor with all his heart, his image never differs from that of Adam, the first man. And since he was created in the image of Adam, he therefore governs all the creatures on earth by his image, as it is written: “And the fear of you and the dread of you shall be upon every beast of the earth,” all fear (desire to become like) that image, existing in him. For this Commandment, to show mercy to the poor, is the most important of all the Commandments for elevating man to the image of Adam.
236. How do we know this? From Nebuchadnezzar. Even though he dreamt a dream, as long as he had mercy upon the poor, that dream did not come true. However, as soon as he started looking badly upon the poor (as a result of egoism’s growth), his image changed at once (he lost the appearance of a human being), and he distanced from people. Hence, it is written, “LET US MAKE MAN.” It is said in the form as it was said of charity in another verse. Therefore, “MAKE” – is the same as charity.
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