408. Dayan Ha’Emes

59:2 One must bless Hashem for bad news the same way he does for good news. Deuteronomy 6:5 tells us to love Hashem “with all your heart, with all your soul and with all your might.” “All your might” means no matter what measure he may mete out to us, be it kindness or hardships. On bad news one recites “Dayan ha’emes,” that G-d is the true judge. If one receives multiple forms of news at once, whether good news or bad, he only recites the appropriate bracha once. “Dayan ha’emes” must be recited as sincerely and wholeheartedly as “haTov vehaMeitiv” on good news, as per Psalms 101:1, “kindness and justice, I will sing to You, I will praise G-d.” That is to say, we sing praises to G-d whether he metes out kindness or justice. Those who serve Hashem accept with love whatever He decrees upon them since the hardships atone for their misdeeds. Accepting the bad things is part of serving G-d wholeheartedly.

59:3 If good news will later have a negative repercussions – such as if one finds a lost object that will later be confiscated by the authorities – nevertheless he recites haTov vehaMeitiv on the here and now. Similarly, if bad news will later have a positive outcome – such as if a flood ruined his crop, though it will later prove beneficial for his field – he recites Dayan ha’emes on the current situation. This is because one only says a bracha on what is in the present, not on what will be in the future.

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