The word for ‘doubt’ in Hebrew is safek (240), which is the same gematria (numerical value) of Amalek, the notion that the Torah commands us to eliminate from the world. So, our deeper task is to be grateful for all that we are given, which strengthens our faith and eliminates the forces that make us fall.
In times of doubt, perspective often goes out the window. Amalek, which is synonymous with the Evil Inclination (or negative thoughts), enters as a powerful and convincing force. We have to learn to rid ourselves of doubt, leaning on Divine trust – a deep concept, encompassing optimism and confidence based not on past personal experience or reason, but on Divine faith.
Rebbe Noson of Breslov emphasizes how powerful the force of Negative Thoughts are – that its sole purpose is to distance each person from Divine truth, especially for those who begin to get closer. R’ Noson stresses that even though the Negative Forces put all sorts of barriers and frustrations in each person’s path at these times, one can fight back and overcome with even the smallest effort to come closer to Divine truth.1
Focusing on the positive, even the smallest good point or sliver of good, is the key to fighting safek (doubt). This is seen in the ritual of The Sanctification of the New Moon. When you see a sliver of the moon, and sanctify it, declaring the New Moon cycle. Seeing just the potential of rebirth and all that that cycle brings is holiness.
R’ Noson of Breslov explains that sanctifying even just a tiny bit of the moon’s light elevates it. It’s said that when the moon was created, it was created with a blemish. But our ritual of Sanctifying The New Moon spiritually rectifies and restores it to its original intended glory. When we rejoice over just a mere speck of that light — that good point that we merit to find, despite it being infinitesimally small and concealed in darkness – we ourselves are rectified and genuinely become deserving of the Divine seeing and revealing light in us.2
Gratitude and humility go hand in hand, and they invoke Divine compassion. We see this daily– when someone thanks you, you want to do more for them, you feel seen and appreciated, but when someone ignores or even denies a favor you may have done for them, it destroys any desire you may have for doing it again. The Talmud teaches that a person is led down the path that he chooses to follow.3 If he believes everything is for the good, then reality becomes good for him, but if that person only sees “bad”, then he is treated accordingly with this lack of faith and “bad” manifests more and more.
By believing that everything is good and being thankful for everything, a person binds himself to the Creator– he fulfills the ultimate goal of the universe having been created. Divine mercy will always prevail over such a person and constantly increase. It’s as The Sage, the Tzemach Tzedek would say, “Tracht gut, vet zein gut” which translates as “Think good and it will be good.” That must be each person’s motto, in realizing that full faith brings ultimate good and redemption.
Peace is the vessel that contains every blessing. True peace is one of the hardest things to achieve. It’s a culmination of perfecting so many aspects within oneself, especially faith and positive perspective.
As The Lubavitcher Rebbe says about all the moments when someone lacks faith in the saving power of the Divine: “we have only, by faith, to compensate for those moments of faithlessness.” I’ve always seen time as a figment of a fractured world, a perspective limited by finitude. Our limited selves are trapped in a constant struggle: Amalek/Negative Force is the manifestation of safek/doubt, the expansion of narrow physicality, while the constant practice of eliminating safek/doubt is the expansion of ever-broadening spiritual reality. It’s only by that expansion and unification with the Divine consciousness that each person can tap into the light of the Infinite, our Divine soul, unbound by time.