Ask the rabbi

  • Family and Society
  • Aliya



Rabbi Yoel Lieberman

Tevet 4, 5782
Did you see this article on arutz Sheva? As you most likely know this was exactly the position of Ben gurion, Chaim Weizmann and the Zionist establishment before WWII Is this the halacha? This is not how I read the ramban.
ב"ה Shalom, I didn't see this article as a Halachic article, but neither did I see a clear reason why the writer thinks that elderly retired people should not make Aliya. As a matter of fact, I happen to know about two pulpit Rabbis from the U.S who made aliya after they had retired. Moreover, if the issue at hand is because they won't be able to make it here financially, and they will G-d forbid have to collect alms from people and live off others, then the exemption is not just for the elderly but for the young as well. (see שו"ת הרשב"ש סי' ב, שו"ת מהרי"ט חלק א, סי' קל"ד ) But then again , Rav Waldenberg zt"l, wrote that the conditions in Eretz Yisrael of today, do not bring about such a situation and therefore these exemptions would not apply. (See שו"ת ציץ-אליעזר ח"ז סי' מח) So therfore as the Ramban writes, the mitzva of aliya to Eretz Yisrael is binding in all generations. In addition, Sefer Kuzari (2:23) quotes some very severe things from the Talmud Yerushalmi Ketubot 12:3, about those who don't came to Eretz while they were alive and able to do so and only chose to be buried there after 120 years. In any case, my intention here is to clarify the Halachic issues and not to criticize the article. However, you as a reader may write the editor and send in your opinion on the matter. All the best
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