by Rabbi Zelig Pliskin
The Torah states: “And you shall not profane My holy name, rather shall I be sanctified among the Children of Israel; I am the Lord Who sanctifies you.” (Leviticus 22:32).
What does this mean?
The Rambam, Maimonides, writes in Hilchos Yesodei Torah 5:11: “When a pious Torah scholar does things which cause people to talk against him, even if the acts are not transgressions, he profanes G-d’s name. For example, when such a person doesn’t speak pleasantly to others and does not receive them with a pleasant facial expression, but is quarrelsome and easy to anger. The greater the man, the more careful he must be with his behavior. Such a person should go beyond the letter of the law in his dealings with others.
“If a Torah scholar will be careful about his behavior, will speak pleasantly to people, act friendly towards them, receive them with a pleasant facial expression, will refrain from retorting when he is insulted, will honor even those who treat him with disdain, will be honest in his business dealings, will constantly devote himself to Torah study, will always go beyond the letter of the law, and will avoid extremes and exaggerations, then he will be praised and beloved and others will desire to emulate him. This man has sanctified G-d. About him it is written, ‘And He said to me, “You are my servant, O Israel, in who I shall be glorified.” (Isaiah 49:3). ‘ ”
And now you know how to sanctify God’s name … and how to be a credit to your Creator!