(c) 2000 Dr Hendel; 1st appeared in Torah Forum (c) Project Genesis

Date: Tue, 10 Aug 1999 01:23:47 -0400 (EDT)
From: Russell Hendel <  rhendel@mcs.drexel.edu>
Subject: Re: War

Gina in Torah Forum Volume 4 Number 81 asks "How we feel about wars"

There are of course many Talmudic and Midrashic statements praising peace.
In fact Peace is one of the names of God (just as we call him the All
Merciful we also call him the Peaceful One or the Giver of Peace)

Most people are unaware that there is actually a minor tractate (not in the
Babylonian Talmud) called the Tractate of Peace.  It is one chapter long.

A typical section in tractate Peace is: "Great is peace for even in times
of war we start only with peace as it says 'When you come near a city to
war with it you shall (first) call out for peace. And if they answer you
with peace....' (Dt 20:11)

Furthermore even those aware of this minor tractate are surprised to find
that the Sifray (Numbers 6:26) gives the entire chapter. It is a very
beautiful tractate. I cite some passages:

'Great is peace that God allows his name to be erased (Nu 5:23) to bring
peace between husband and wife.' "So great is peace that even when
idolaters have peace, Satan has no power over them'. 'Great is peace that
our prayers end only with a request for peace' etc.

A peaceful day to all.

Russell Jay Hendel; Ph.d, ASA;
Moderator Rashi Is Simple; http://www.shamas.org/rashi