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Is buying from a Rabbi or Yeshiva a form of tzedakah especially if the Rabbi or Yeshiva derives support from it.

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  • ph.yhb.org.il/07-03-08 Jul 15, 2022 at 14:40
  • Are you asking about the mitzva of tzedakah (in all its forms) or whether you may use money set aside for tzedakah (i.e. maaser money) for it? Likely yes to the former, more "depends ..." to the latter.
    – Menachem
    Jul 15, 2022 at 20:48
  • I am asking if buying from a Yeshiva counts as tzedakah Jul 16, 2022 at 1:41

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The Rambam Matnas Aniyim 10:7 says that highest form of tzedaka is providing someone with parnassa:

שְׁמוֹנֶה מַעֲלוֹת יֵשׁ בַּצְּדָקָה זוֹ לְמַעְלָה מִזּוֹ. מַעֲלָה גְּדוֹלָה שֶׁאֵין לְמַעְלָה מִמֶּנָּה זֶה הַמַּחֲזִיק בְּיַד יִשְׂרָאֵל שֶׁמָּךְ וְנוֹתֵן לוֹ מַתָּנָה אוֹ הַלְוָאָה אוֹ עוֹשֶׂה עִמּוֹ שֻׁתָּפוּת אוֹ מַמְצִיא לוֹ מְלָאכָה כְּדֵי לְחַזֵּק אֶת יָדוֹ עַד שֶׁלֹּא יִצְטָרֵךְ לַבְּרִיּוֹת לִשְׁאל. וְעַל זֶה נֶאֱמַר (ויקרא כה לה) "וְהֶחֱזַקְתָּ בּוֹ גֵּר וְתוֹשָׁב וָחַי עִמָּךְ" כְּלוֹמַר הַחֲזֵק בּוֹ עַד שֶׁלֹּא יִפּל וְיִצְטָרֵךְ:

There are eight levels of tzedakah, each one greater than the other. The greatest level, higher than all the rest, is to fortify a fellow Jew and give him a gift, a loan, form with him a partnership, or find work for him, until he is strong enough so that he does not need to ask others [for sustenance]. Of this it is said, (Lev. 25:35) [If your kinsman, being in straits, comes under your authority,] and you hold him as though a resident alien, let him live by your side. That is as if to say, "Hold him up," so that he will not fall and be in need (Sefaria)

Purchasing an item would definitely fall under "find him work" IF the item you are purchasing is not really needed or you are paying more than the market value. This is discussed in Tzedaka Umishpat from R' Yakov Blau Chapter 6 Footnote 7 where he says so explicitly.

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