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Beit Midrash Family and Society Additional Lessons
What's the Ideal Life Style, Working for a Living or Just Learning?
One of the most basic questions is how should we strive to live? The differing approaches to this issue is seen to this day, whether just to learn Torah (as claimed by the Haredim) or to also merge work as an ideal, as proclaimed by the modern-orthodox or religious-Zionists. If one is a millionaire, and doesn't need to work for a living, perhaps nevertheless, he should work, if it's an ideal. This machloket is found already among chazal, but even in the time of R. Shimon Bar Yochai, who had claimed that just Torah is the ideal, he surprisingly & apparently changed his mind, and joined Torah vaAvodah! The Chatam Sofer also differentiates between those living in Israel, where work is a mitzva and holy, as opposed to work in the diaspora.