Mitzvah goreret mitzvah

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The Hebrew phrase mitzvah goreret mitzvah, averah goreret averah (Hebrew:מצווה גוררת מצווה; עברה גוררת עברה.) "one good deed will bring another good deed, one transgression will bring another transgression," (Sayings of the Fathers 4:2) expresses the belief in Judaism that following one commandment leads to another.[1][2] The saying is found in the mishnah[3] in Pirkei Avot 4:2.[4]

There are several ways in which such an effect can take place. One can be as a result of inspiration, in which the act of a mitzvah is witnessed by others, who in turn, follow in their footsteps.[5] Another is by habit, in which a person becomes accustomed to performing a mitzvah regularly.[6]

The contrast to this belief is called aveira goreret aveira in which the commission of an aveira (sin) leads to another sin.

The phrase has often been used in songs for children to encourage the performance of good works.

Examples[edit]

  • A person places money in a pushka (tzedaka collection box). This is seen by others, who in turn are inspired to place money in the box.
  • A person helps someone in need, and feels good about themself and therefore continues to do help others.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Raising a mensch - Shelley Kapnek Rosenberg - Google Books". Books.google.com. 2003-06-30. Retrieved 2011-09-20. 
  2. ^ "Teaching Jewish Virtues: Sacred ... - Google Books". Books.google.com. Retrieved 2011-09-20. 
  3. ^ Greenberg, Zushe. "The Tefillin That Helped Cope With Life and With Death - Stories". Chabad.org. Retrieved 2011-09-20. 
  4. ^ "Striving toward virtue: a ... - Google Books". Books.google.com. Retrieved 2011-09-20. 
  5. ^ "Succeeding at Jewish education: how ... - Google Books". Books.google.com. Retrieved 2011-09-20. 
  6. ^ Living courageously By Samuel Chiel, page 168