Volume 24 Number 95
                       Produced: Wed Sep 25  3:49:12 1996

Subjects Discussed In This Issue: 

         [Mordechai Gross]
Jews in Chutz La'aretz
         [Rachi Messing]
Living in Chutz L'Aretz
         [Leah Wolf]
Living in Chutz La'Aretz
         [Zvi Weiss]
Mitzvat Yeshuv Eretz Yisroel
         [Patricia Dobin]
Mitzvat Yishuv Eretz Yisrael
         [Joseph P. Wetstein]
Turning golus into Israel?
         [Sarah Shiffman]


From: <mordy_gross@...> (Mordechai Gross)
Date: Sun, 22 Sep 1996 09:08:24 EDT
Subject: Aliya

In responding to the issue raised by Nachum Chernofsky, I'll have to
bring up a semi-controversial issue, if there is a mitzvah to live in
Eretz Yisroel even though we were 'booted'. Although the Ramban [in
chumash] does say that many mitzvos can not be completed correctly while
in Golus, does this mean we should all pack our bags and go to E.Y. on
the nearest plane? Obviously, this would be unfeasable, and mostly
impossible for the approx. million Orthodox Jews living in
America. Money and jobs are the biggest problems. But I feel there is
another problem, halachically, because we were, after all, put in Golus.
 Many seforim deal with this question, namely V'Yoel Moshe, from the
Satmar Rav ZT"L. The Rishonim on the first Daf in Gitin also deal with
this. Most, if I'm not mistaken, say that it is better to live there
than here, BUT one has no obligation to pack up and leave, especially if
it will be much more difficult to live there than here.

Mordy Gross


From: <rachim@...> (Rachi Messing)
Date: Fri, 20 Sep 1996 00:50:05 PST
Subject: Re: Jews in Chutz La'aretz

After reading what Larry London wrote in Vol. 24  #94,  I have to say
that I must strongly disagree with his approach to how we can live in
Chutz La'aretz.  I agree that it is really wonderful to be able to walk
to shul on a shabbos in Baltimore and see many  fellow jews keeping the
shabbos together, even if we are in golus.  It is also very convenient
to have our own kosher stores and restaurants.  Wherever we are, we must
use whatever we can to create a torah atmosphere for ourselves and our
families.  But saying that this is the reason why it is ok to live
outside of Eretz Yisroel  is just a way of fooling ourselves into a
sense of security in that what we are doing is really correct.  To say
that we have in many neighborhoods "turned golus into Israel" is to say
that we really don't need Israel as long as we have a good thing going
for us here in golus.  Of course it is important to have close ties to
all of the jewish communities in Israel and to remain aware of what is
happening to them, but that is in no way a replacement to actually being

So, what is the heter for a jew living in golus not to pick up and go to
live in Eretz Yisroel?  I am in no way in a position to say that every
jew living in America (or elsewhere) should pick up and leave tomorrow. 
There are circumstances in every case that make it extremely difficult to
make aliya, or even impossible to do so at this time.  But, I do think
that it is important for it to be a serious goal for all of us to try
and see in what way we can try and change our situation to make it
feasible to take the major steps towards aliya.  May we all be zocheh to
a year of good circumstances and one in which many of us can take the
final step and actually escape from the golus that we are constantly
surrounded by. 

Gmar chasimah tovah


From: <ldwolf@...> (Leah Wolf)
Date: Fri, 20 Sep 96 07:59:52 PDT
Subject: Living in Chutz L'Aretz

 In response to Larry London's very pleasantly written posting from
Baltimore, a Rav here once mentioned that the danger comes from Jews
ENJOYING being in Galut rather than seeing it as a punishment. "Mipnei
Chataeynu Galeenu MeArtzenu..."

 Yes, it's wonderful that you've managed to build up such beautiful
Torah life "over the blue line." Now, it's time to bring all that love
of Torah and community chesed back Home. U'Vau..VeHishtachavu LaShem
BeHar HaKodesh BiYerushalaim...From here, Jewish history looks so much
more clear--we're living it and it's really "tsav haShaa" now to bring
all that you've developed in the "goldene medinas" to Eretz Yisrael
where indeed "Ki Mitzion Tetze Torah!" Shouldn't Mitzvat Yishuv Eretz
Yisrael be on the front burner now?

 Have you ever thought how Jewish history would have been different had
the Torah Jews of Galut responded to the Balfour declaration and come to
settle the Land of Israel that we've been davening for and yearning for
throughout our history?  Did we really have to wait until it was too
late to leave?

 May the year 5757 see a Yeshua for all of Klal Yisrael and a massive
ALIYA in every sense of the word.

 Gmar Chatima Tova!
 BeAhavat Yisrael,
 Leah Wolf
 Metar, Israel


From: Zvi Weiss <weissz@...>
Date: Fri, 20 Sep 1996 11:45:43 -0400 (EDT)
Subject: Living in Chutz La'Aretz

> From: Larry London <llondon@...>

As one equally guilty of remaining behind, I am still troubled by Mr.
London's spirited defense of remaining in Galut.  I am willing to accept
that some people have to stay in chutz L'aretz for what ever the reason.
My issue is when they are SATISFIED with the matter.  When they talk
casually of "bringing Israel to Galut" it seems that we are missing
something somewhere...

>      The recently posted appeal from one of our brothers in Israel for
> an explanation as to why religious American Jews do not make Aliya,
> requires a response.  First, it's great to feel wanted.  Roads in Israel
> are already crowded and housing costs are out-of-sight, and yet, our
> Bnai Brak poster selflessly wants more of us to come.  It's hospitality
> like that that has enabled Israel's Jewish population to swell from
> 600,000 in 1948 to over 5 million today, a figure that no one 25 years
> ago would ever have believed possible.  Thank you.

I do not understand the above.  Does the poster mean that we should not
move to Israel because we are straining the resources and there is not
enough room for everyone?  The Gemara states that the Land of Israel is
called "eretz HaTzvi" because it can "expand" to accomodate its

>      I imagine it is more true in New York, but what religious Jews here
> in Baltimore have done is to bring Israel to these Chesapeake shores.
> We live in intensely Jewish neighborhoods where Shabbos is seen and
> felt.  We shop in stores and eat in restaurants that are as intensely
> Jewish as on any street in Israel.  We have our own religious and Jewish
> political structure.  I'm not defending chutz l'aretz, I'm just trying
> to explain to our Israeli brothers how a religiou Jews can ride the
> subway while reading the Wall Street Journal.  We have turned Friday
> night into Shabbos, and in many neighborhoods have turned golus into
> Israel.

This explanation of "how a religious Jew can ride the subway reading the
Wall street Journal" simply ignores so much.  For example, the Netziv
states that there is NO land like Israel that provides Shemira against
sins.  Of course, there is the Sifrei (cited, I believe, by the RamBan)
that our observance of Mitzvot in chutz L'aretz is -- in some sense --
"practice" to be able to observe it in Chutz L'aretz... how can anyone
learn such material and be so self-satisfied with their situaition here?
And, is the "political structure" *in Baltimore* what Jews are supposed
to be aiming for?  Is THAT the "polity/society" that the Torah considers
ideal?  Is the number of Kosher restaurants the sine-qua-non for us?
And, when we talk about the Torah institutions that we have -- Do we
forget that Aveera D'Ara Machkim?  How about the statement in the Gemara
that "one over there" (in Israel) is like "two of us here" (in bavel)
but that one of us (from bavel) who *moves to Israel* becomes like *two
of them*?

>      Even in Temple times, Jewish communites resided throughout the
> world. That's just the way Jews are.  The blessing of these times is
> that we share events with our Israeli brothers as they happpen.  Some
> Jews are over the Green Line; some Jews are over the Blue Line.  But our
> destinies are linked to the Land, as never before.  We eat Israeli
> produce.  We sing Israeli tunes.  Our children study in Israel, and many
> are serving in its Armed Forces.  The world is getting smaller, but for
> Jews in Baltimore and in Tel Aviv, Jerusalem is still our Capital.
> Eventually, many of us will be joining you.

The fact that in temple Times so many Jews stayed behind is NOT
considered favorably by the Gemara... according to Reshe Lakish (I
think) the reluctance of Jews to move was -- ultimately -- a factor
leading to the Churban Habayit...  Again, I do not know where the gemara
praises one for "singing Israeli tunes" or "eating Israeli Produce".  I
*do* see where the Gemara cites the praises of living in Israel...
Again, I am as guilty of this as most but let us not be shtupped with
satisfaction at living out in Exile...  some of us are here because
there are legitimate needs that keep us here; some are here to serve the
Tzibbur; some simply do not have the necessary bitachon or are a bit
disorganized to get their act together; some really have NOT been able
to make a "go" of things in Israel... I do not judge anyone who stays
here... but let us at least realize that it is NOT a "bracha" to be in
Galut as presented by some...

>                         Gemar Tov to Klall Yisrael



From: Patricia Dobin <dobinep@...>
Date: Sun, 11 Aug 1996 17:11:07 +0300
Subject: Mitzvat Yeshuv Eretz Yisroel

I must admit that reading everyone's personal "good reasons" as why they
should not move to Eretz Yisrael was fascinating. Maybe if I was still
living in the Galute I would also find some very "good" reason too.

To the gentleman worried about lost American jews, I can genuinely ask
him to come to Israel and continue his important work of Kiruv with lost
Secular Israeli Jews.He no longer has a reason not to make Aliya.

 As to Micha in NJ , I am quite familair with his song and
dance..... How can I afford?.......  How did you afford your home in NJ?
 How did you afford  your college tuition?
 How do you afford the  Yeshiva tuition for your children?
 Things are not always easy but they  can be done.

When I made Aliya 9 years ago a secretary at the Jewish Agency in NYC
said to me I shouldn't make Aliya......because of our financial
situation..  (outstanding student loans....no nest egg.....etc)I
listened to her patiently and came on Aliya anyway.

As you can all read I am on the Internet....I own a computer. (purchased
in Israel) I own a TV, a Video, a Stereo, a Car,a Cellular Phone, an
Apartment,etc all my kitchen appliances were purchased here in
Israel... not even purchased in the States at a discount and sent by a
lift.  The saddest thing is I just made a list of physical comforts to
try to convince religious Jews to move here!  Maybe if people are only
interested in their level of physical comfort... who needs them in Eretz

I believe that Hashem always provides...Many of the people I know in my
community "could also not afford"to make Aliya,They are NOT  getting help
from their families.
But they (we) are all getting by, if not even, doing okay.
 Micha  if you move to Israel your children will not go hungry and I am sure
you and your family would have a roof over your head. 

And just think you can go to the Mall in Mivazeret Zion and order a
bucket of Kentucky Fried Chicken ( the sign says kosher le' mehadrin).
And most importantly here in Israel everyone will be able to pronounce
your name 'Micha" correctly!

If religious Jews don't want to move here, I ask you just to be honest
with yourselves, and your fellow Jews, stop with all the lame excuses.
Admit YOU ARE COMFORTABLE LIVING IN THE USA and leave it at that.

Patricia Dobin
fax: (972) 8 947-0529


From: Joseph P. Wetstein <jpw@...>
Date: Mon, 12 Aug 1996 11:50:10 -0400 (EDT)
Subject: Mitzvat Yishuv Eretz Yisrael

> From: <yossie@...> (Yossie Abramson)
> I seem to recall, that Hashem said that there should not be a mass
> exodus to Eretz Yisrael. The reason being that all the Jews should not
> be BUNCHED UP in one place before Moshiach comes, for obvious reasons.

There is also the issue of the shavous (oaths) that were made after the
destruction of Bayis Sheni, and the Jews attempting to control the land.

I make no statement as to the current status of those oaths, or their
'binding/non-binding' nature, only that they exist.



From: <sarash1@...> (Sarah Shiffman)
Date: Fri, 20 Sep 96 14:44:42 PDT
Subject: Turning golus into Israel?

A poster living in Israel recently wrote:

>I have a cousin who works for a fortune 500 company in a very good
>position.  He wears a toupee to work for obvious reasons.  While I find
>it commendable that he does not want to resort to the heter of working
>bareheaded for parnasa reasons, I often wonder if this is what Hashem
>intended for us to do with our lives.

That someone feels compelled to hide his Jewishness (or at least his
religiosity) by wearing a hairpiece as a head-covering, while at the
same time feels compelled to remain in such a situation, is sad to

But then a poster living in America wrote in response:

>I imagine it is more true in New York, but what religious Jews here in
>Baltimore have done is to bring Israel to these Chesapeake shores.  We
>live in intensely Jewish neighborhoods where Shabbos is seen and felt.
>We shop in stores and eat in restaurants that are as intensely Jewish
>as on any street in Israel.  We have our own religious and Jewish
>political structure.  I'm not defending chutz l'aretz, I'm just trying
>to explain to our Israeli brothers how a religiou Jews can ride the
>subway while reading the Wall Street Journal.  We have turned Friday
>night into Shabbos, and in many neighborhoods have turned golus into

Turned golus into Israel? How? By wearing hairpiece-kipot in order to
work at Fortune 500 companies?

All the kosher restaurants, intensely Jewish neighborhoods and Israeli
songs will not turn golus into Israel. Otherwise God wouldn't have told
us to cross the Yarden, he would have told us to cross the Atlantic, but
make sure all the restaurants are glatt.

Name: Sarah Shiffman
E-mail: <sarash1@...> (Sarah Shiffman)


End of Volume 24 Issue 95