Question for Working Men
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- This topic has 42 replies, 24 voices, and was last updated 4 years, 2 months ago by anon1m0us.
February 7, 2019 9:35 am at 9:35 am #1675812
Do you feel you accomplish your life’s mission, at your job or business. What if you spent that time finishing shas?February 7, 2019 10:49 am at 10:49 am #16758502scentsParticipant
..Or by starting threads in the coffee room?February 7, 2019 10:49 am at 10:49 am #1675858funnyboneParticipant
My life mission at this point is to raise and support a family.February 7, 2019 10:50 am at 10:50 am #1675863Yserbius123Participant
Professor Quirrel may have something to say to the Great Hall about something in the dungeon.
What a pretentious and offensive question. Don’t you feel like your life would be better off supporting a family and sacrificing your precious spare time for some Mussar or Limud instead of being all smug and self-righteous on the Internet?February 7, 2019 11:05 am at 11:05 am #1675885Avram in MDParticipant
“Do you feel you accomplish your life’s mission, at your job or business.”
I am blessed to have a job that I like to do, but no, it is not my life’s mission. It is part of my responsibilities to accomplish my life’s mission.
What if you spent that time finishing shas?”
My wife and kids would get pretty hungry, and the bank, power, and water companies wouldn’t be pleased either.February 7, 2019 11:05 am at 11:05 am #1675883
What a pretentious and offensive question.
Hmm… I wouldn’t be surprised if the OP is working but having some self doubts.February 7, 2019 11:05 am at 11:05 am #1675881
Do you feel you accomplish your life’s mission, at your job or business. What if you spent that time finishing shas?
Why is this davka a question for working men? Doesn’t everyone spend some time they perhaps could have spent learning Shas?
I like funnybone’s answer. Everyone needs to constantly assess and reassess their priorities and how they spend their time, but certainly supporting one’s family is one of the main priorities.February 7, 2019 11:06 am at 11:06 am #1675878artachshastaParticipant
Do you feel accomplished at your life mission by eating and sleeping? It’s a means to the end. We got a klala that we have to work, so I work. Might as well do something meaningful to put food on the table and a roof over my head.
And I finished Shas BEFORE I started working.February 7, 2019 12:26 pm at 12:26 pm #1675896Yserbius123Participant
@DaasYochid I agree. @1 is probably trolling, but I’ve heard people express similar sentiments in real life. Every one of those was just hiding their self-doubts behind mockery and derision. Pretty sure the RAMCHAL talks about that somewhere.February 7, 2019 12:26 pm at 12:26 pm #1675919
Does anybody actually know their “life’s mission”? Aside from those with Ruach Hakodesh, knowing anyone’s mission is a virtual impossibility. Since we are not supplied with that knowledge, we are stuck with the need to assess our liabilities and assets, and make sound, educated decisions based on this. It is tragic that the universal message given to our young people is that they need to remain in full time learning. There are certainly those who should, and they form an important backbone for Klal Yisroel. There are many others who cannot handle this, and should not. Our chinuch system should be educating our youth to know their strengths and to build on them. The notion of כל תורה שאין עמה מלאכה סופה בטילה is a critical rule in our ability to live a Torah life.
The truly crucial piece to educate our youth honestly and properly is that לימוד התורה is one of the greatest things we can do. It needs to become a mainstay in our lives, whether we choose other careers or not. And the learning that is done that way by the working man is a s precious to HKB”H as the full time learning of the kollel yungerman. I predict some backlash for this statement, and I will respond only to those who provide references and citations that differ from what I stated.February 7, 2019 12:26 pm at 12:26 pm #1675921GadolhadorahParticipant
Presumably, most of us share the objective of living a life of avodas hashem that would be zocheh a chelek in oalm haboh where we might look forward to participating in the O”HB version of the CR where every poster would be tzadik and thus no need for Mods….February 7, 2019 1:29 pm at 1:29 pm #1675937
Yes but you don’t have to stay at your current job. There are a lot of jobs out there that pay similar salaries. If you have a business, that’s an accomplishment. I don’t think we were put here for a 9-5 job and to commute.February 7, 2019 2:16 pm at 2:16 pm #1675974
A couple of thoughts re: the op
1) Even the perushim in the time of the GR”A were involved in parnassa matters 2 hours per day (per other versions 3-4 hours per day).
2) Teaching limudei Kodesh and Rabbinical posts don’t leave one with a lot of time to learn.February 7, 2019 2:28 pm at 2:28 pm #1675988
ת”ר הוא ללמוד ובנו ללמוד הוא קודם לבנו ר’ יהודה אומר אם בנו זריז וממולח ותלמודו מתקיים בידו בנו קודמו כי הא דרב יעקב בריה דרב אחא בר יעקב שדריה אבוה לקמיה דאביי כי אתא חזייה דלא הוה מיחדדין שמעתיה א”ל אנא עדיפא מינך תוב את דאיזיל אנאFebruary 7, 2019 2:41 pm at 2:41 pm #1675998DISCOVERHASHEMParticipant
Alright so here is my experience:
When I got married and had to leave yeshiva/kollel very soon after (since no one was supporting us) I soon fell into a deep depression. I felt that all my lifes goals were ruined. And that depression probably lasted over a year and did serious damage to my marriage/yidishkeit/life in general. Now I don’t feel saddened and worthless because im not learning full time. I used to though. I think it was because I used to think a life of full time learning was the only way to be a good jew. I thought i was a failure for working. Now I know that isn’t true thank G-d.February 7, 2019 2:47 pm at 2:47 pm #1675996Neville ChaimBerlinParticipant
“What if you spent that time finishing shas?”
And didn’t work? Then I’d have no money and starve to death.
Next false dichotomy please.February 7, 2019 3:10 pm at 3:10 pm #1676012besalelParticipant
Why can’t you have a full time job and also finish shas?February 7, 2019 3:42 pm at 3:42 pm #1676028Avram in MDParticipant
“I don’t think we were put here for a 9-5 job and to commute.”
We have so much to be thankful for to live in this generation, where technology has eased so many dangers and burdens in our lives. However, I agree with you that the model of a far from home daily job that has prevailed since the Industrial Revolution is far from optimal for family life. Family farmers and shopkeepers with a downstairs storefront had way more access to their wives and children than people do today, where full time workers leave when their children are waking up, and come home close to their bedtime. I hate it, but that’s the way the world is currently set up, and we have to do the best we can with what we have.February 7, 2019 4:00 pm at 4:00 pm #1676042
Nice try. You are ignoring a reality, and looking to attribute that to the gemora. Here’s the news (not good, not bad, just reality.) Not everyone is cut out for full time learning. Some are not granted the means to do that. Many more are simply not able to learn at that pace. It thus becomes a recipe for failure. What right does someone who is not able to learn full time have to demand that kind of support from others? It’s actually dishonest.
Next – there is a Torah obligation to provide for one’s family. No, it is not the Torah way to be dependent on others. The kollel lifestyle was declared by Rav Aharon Kotler as a הוראת שעה, not a deviation from countless divrei Chazal and psukim that guide a Yid to work and provide for his family. Here’s a knee jerk list of such citations:
בזיעת אפך תאכל לחם
יגיע כפיך כי תאכל
הרבה עשו ברשב”י ולא עלתה בידם, הרבה עשו כר’ ישמעאל ועלתה בידם
גדולה מלאכה שמכבדת את בעליה
מר להן כך מקובלני מבית אבי אבא לעולם ישכיר אדם עצמו לע”ז ואל יצטרך לבריות והוא סבר לע”ז ממש ולא היא אלא ע”ז עבודה שזרה לו כדאמר ליה רב לרב כהנא נטוש נבילתא בשוקא ושקול אגרא ולא תימא גברא רבא אנא וזילא בי מילתא
There are many, many more. Chazal frowned significantly on dependency, and on the hiding behind the gemora. It is not a bizayon to work and earn an honest day’s pay. And giving the message to our bochurim and girls that only full time kollel learning is the true Torah derech is virtually lying. We do need our kollelim and full time learners, and they represent us in that מלאכת הקודש. The rest of us, need to be קובע עתים in a serious way, and to implement the many halachos that we and they learn. After 120, no one will arrive at בית דין של מעלה to face a multiple choice exam on Shas and Shulchan Aruch. We will be asked about honesty, קביעת עתים, etc.
I am familiar with quite a few people who are working full time (some already retired) who are מחברי ספרים, whose learning is on par with quite a number of recognized Roshei Yeshivos.February 7, 2019 5:12 pm at 5:12 pm #1676081Little FroggieParticipant
Wrong thread… this is for the working class only… Otta hereFebruary 7, 2019 5:37 pm at 5:37 pm #1676115GadolhadorahParticipant
Perhaps if people had a balanced life and had several parallel sources of “meaning” and “satisfaction” in their lives, there wouldn’t be this debate. Limud torah as much as time/resources allow, professional acomplishment at work, family and espeically children and grandchildren, and personal achievesments unrelated to work or study (aka physical fitness challenges, learnig to play an instrument, etc) …ALL of these will contribute to a sense of acomplishment .February 7, 2019 7:22 pm at 7:22 pm #1676165
and personal achievesments unrelated to work or study (aka physical fitness challenges, learnig to play an instrument, etc) …
All of these may be necessary, but they’re not our mission on this world. At best, they’re means to accomplish our mission.February 7, 2019 8:12 pm at 8:12 pm #1676184
Actually learning to play an instrument is a life’s mission for some.February 7, 2019 10:07 pm at 10:07 pm #1676234
TLIK, you asked for a source, I provided it. Your response was a rant unrelated to your question and my response, except for one point:
I am familiar with quite a few people who are working full time (some already retired) who are מחברי ספרים, whose learning is on par with quite a number of recognized Roshei Yeshivos.
That’s wonderful, but a very small minority. In general, the learning of one immersed in it יומם ולילה is of a higher quality than one who isn’t, and the gemara clearly places a priority on higher quality learning, your politically correct stance notwithstanding.February 7, 2019 11:45 pm at 11:45 pm #1676255
Let’s be clear, learning Torah is not some side gig that contributes to your “overall sense of accomplishment”. Every Jewish man has an obligation to learn to the fullest extent of his G-D given abilities and resources. And then some. Small business, skilled trades, and professional services coupled with a frugal lifestyle are often means of maximizing the time one can commit to learning.February 8, 2019 12:12 am at 12:12 am #1676277
Excellent responses, as usual.February 8, 2019 4:04 am at 4:04 am #1676284YTABParticipant
if you think your purpose in life is to study Gemara, then it can be frustrating to have to work 9 hours a day. if you see your purpose as serving Hashem, part of which includes learning Gemara, then work can feel like it has its own purpose, other than getting money.February 8, 2019 4:07 am at 4:07 am #1676279
Thank you, NP.February 8, 2019 9:51 am at 9:51 am #1676363Neville ChaimBerlinParticipant
Your “quality learners” wouldn’t be able to learn 3 words without a balhabas somewhere subsidizing his existence.February 8, 2019 10:46 am at 10:46 am #1676382ubiquitinParticipant
“Do you feel you accomplish your life’s mission, at your job or business. What if you spent that time finishing shas?”
Asking and evaluating life’s decisions is always appropriate.
Look to chazal for guidance, TLIK provided some excellent sources .
hopefully those not working are doing the same.
As R’ Avrhom Yehosua is quoted as having said: when you look at some seforim published today, after meah veesrim they will be asked “where are all the shoes you could have made”)
Sure I am sure those who are not working spoke to their Rosh Hayeshiva and got a heter to take the easy way out, after all not everybody is cut out for working and there are probably heteirim to not work .
But Reevaluating is always healthyFebruary 8, 2019 12:03 pm at 12:03 pm #1676403
You wrote: “That’s wonderful, but a very small minority. In general, the learning of one immersed in it יומם ולילה is of a higher quality than one who isn’t, and the gemara clearly places a priority on higher quality learning, your politically correct stance notwithstanding.”
You gotta know that this is pure baloney. I don’t know numbers for the מחברי ספרים that I mentioned, but that is not the point either. It’s about people using the abilities they were Divinely gifted. The יומם ולילה issue is the mitzvah (not in Chumash but in the beginning of ספר יהושע), and this includes implementation as well as the actual limud. I refer you back to the quote from the gemora in ברכות דף לו where it notes that הרבה עשו כרשב”י ולא עלתה בידם, as they were outside of their true mission. review that with the meforshim, and we can discuss this further. You cannot address the “quality” of one’s learning by talking quantity. They are not the same.
I have zero regard for the PC approach. I am practical. Someone gifted with drawing skills should utilize them for Kiddush Hashem. How? Perhaps safrus, perhaps art work that advances Kiddush Shem Shomayim, maybe something else. No one is minimizing learning. All I am saying is that the universal full-time learning is a myth. It is great for some, and an exercise of failure for others. And quantity doesn’t equal quality.February 8, 2019 12:12 pm at 12:12 pm #1676409
All I am saying is that the universal full-time learning is a myth. It is great for some, and an exercise of failure for others. And quantity doesn’t equal quality.
I wasn’t addressing universal full time learning, I’m not sure why you keep arguing that point with me.
I’m addressing your statement implying that all learning is equal, I quoted a gemara saying that’s not true, and the gemara of הרבה עשו isn’t very relevant to that point.February 8, 2019 12:33 pm at 12:33 pm #1676416JewbaccaParticipant
I’ve lurked here for a long time and registered just to answer the question. “Do you feel you accomplish your life’s mission, at your job or business. What if you spent that time finishing shas?”
I received a lot of family pressure because I went to secular college and obtained degrees in botany and biology, followed by a doctorate in veterinary sciences. By trade, I am a large animal vet. I work with ranchers, dairy farmers, and even a zoo (the later largely for fun and education; it doesn’t pay the bills). I get to spend a lot of time outdoors and am responsible for making sure animals are healthy and happy — and suitable for for your table. There is a lot of joy and service to my fellow Jewish people (and really everyone) in doing this job.
I’ve also contributed a lot to hard sciences on feed for animals — resulting in a healthier milk, in particular, but also meats with far superior cholesterol and fatty acid contents. Indirectly, this saves lives.
And I still study plenty, but I know that was not the highest and best purpose for me. I am intensively passionate about G-d’s creatures, very much a science geek, and while I would have made a fine Rabbi, I would not have been a great one. I am, however, a great vet.
There is a silly child’s story I remember about various parts of a body arguing about how important they are — brain saying this, heart saying that, kidneys saying something else. Then the person stepped on a thorn that infected the little toe. The entire person became ill, and upon recovery, the fighting organs realized that they were a team and all essential in their own way.
You job is to figure out how to best contribute to the whole, and do that (while not neglecting the other parts), with all the passion that you have. You may be a little toe or a brain, it does not matter.February 8, 2019 12:50 pm at 12:50 pm #1676418MindfulParticipant
Amazing paradox. This OP thinks learning Shas is meaningful, but actually keeping the holocho that is clear through Shasand all Tora and kabalah sources, throughout every part of Jewish history is not meaningful. Torah from lashon horaah. It’s not just reading material, and it clearly tells us the roles of men and women. Chazal attepted in so many ways to prevent the current situation and give protection to women and children, they went as far as putting it into the ketubah. And today we see that the harsh words of the gemorah regarding men who do not work for a living have come true.February 8, 2019 1:32 pm at 1:32 pm #1676430DovidBTParticipant
Rabban Gamliel the son of Rabbi Judah HaNassi would say: Beautiful is the study of Torah with the way of the world, for the toil of them both causes sin to be forgotten. Ultimately, all Torah study that is not accompanied with work is destined to cease and to cause sin. …
Pirkei Avos 2:2February 8, 2019 2:41 pm at 2:41 pm #1676443
Mindful how did you arrive at that judgement? If you don’t learn shas, then you don’t know the basis of halacha.February 10, 2019 11:07 pm at 11:07 pm #1677114Takes2-2tangoParticipant
Last i checked there is a מצות עשה of ששת ימים תעבוד ועשישה כל מלכתך.February 11, 2019 11:56 am at 11:56 am #1677416Takes2-2tangoParticipant
*ועשיתהFebruary 11, 2019 12:04 pm at 12:04 pm #1677418March 4, 2019 7:10 am at 7:10 am #1688806☢️ Rand0m3x 🎲Participant
Mishpacha‘s last issue had a lot to say about this topic (and other aspects of leaving full-time learning, which most of the issue was devoted to).March 7, 2019 12:04 pm at 12:04 pm #1690970
You wrote: “I’m addressing your statement implying that all learning is equal, I quoted a gemara saying that’s not true, and the gemara of הרבה עשו isn’t very relevant to that point.”
The OP was inquiring about leaving his parnosoh job to finish shas. In reality, that is an individual question, pertains only to him, and should be brought to someone equipped with the knowledge of his situation to answer. When that question is posted here, it gets the response that addresses the issues as general subjects, not a psak halacho for the OP. So it becomes a discussion of whether one should forgo or leave gainful employment to “finish shas”. I pointed out that employment and finishing shas are not mutually exclusive. Others point out that the pursuit of parnosoh is also a Torah requirement. I am saying that the individual who pursues what he is capable of achieving is performing what HKB”H gifted him to do. That might be full time learning, it might be business, chinuch, professions, etc.
Upon arrival in BD Shel Maaloh, no one, including Gedolei Yisroel, will be given a farher on Bava Basra. From countless stories from the greats of Tanaaim and Amoraaim, and from the many generations that followed, we see that the Olam Habah is not predicated on the “full time learning”, but rather on the fulfillment of mitzvos as per the potential the individual had. The question asked of the neshomoh at the BD Shel Maaloh is קבעת עתים לתורה, not “Did you learn in kollel”, or “Did you send your wife to work”. The הרבה עשו is directly relevant to the OP question. Obviously, someone who knows him needs to guide him whether he among the הרבה עשו that flunked, or is among the minority who needs to be busy learning. Unless you see behind the screen name and know the OP, you can’t answer the shailoh with a psak, and neither can I. All I claim is that full time learning is great, but the person not mesugal to succeed at it, should be among the many of us that have jobs, provide for our families, and value learning to do it when we can, be קובע עתים, and support Torah. Ultimately, the significance of the learning is judged by HKB”H, and includes far more than a time ticker or a data assessment of how many blatt have been covered.March 7, 2019 12:05 pm at 12:05 pm #1690957lowerourtuition11210Participant
Impossible to answer as a human does not really know what his “Life mission” is until the very end.March 8, 2019 11:39 am at 11:39 am #1691551anon1m0usParticipant
Nope…..finishing Shas is not on my bucket list. Buying a Dodge Charger is though. Getting Semicha was too, and accomplished. Still working on my Dodge Charger.
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