Monday, June 05, 2006

Waiting To Make Aliyah

(Hat tip: Mordy S.)

This is an awesome post about making Aliyah written by Menachem. Excerpt:
In fact, I think that any person considering aliya, looking at his or her present situation, will always find evidence for pushing off aliya by another year or two (or ten). I don’t think there’s any stage in life where it wouldn’t be beneficial to wait. If you’re just out of high school, then it’s definitely advantageous to get a degree first. Making aliya with a degree is a whole new world over making one without, and roughing it in an Israeli university. If you already have a degree, why not wait until you have an MA, or an MBA? Israeli companies salivate over the prospect of an American MBA, and there’s always the option of telecommuting for an American company, an option much more feasible with a US degree. If you have an MA or an MBA, why not wait a couple of years to build up a nest egg? You can make more in a year in America than you can save in five in Israel.
Though I don't agree with the whole post, which is a subject worthy of its own post, it is a must-read for anyone who has ever or will ever consider moving to Israel - or even not.


  1. What don't you agree with? He put it absolutely perfectly. Either, you're going to do it, or you're not. Either, making Aliyah is something coursing through your veigns, or it's a nice thought if and when all the pieces line up perfectly. I have a reality check for all those waiting or putting that "5 year plan" into action, there is no "perfect time" to make Aliyah. There will always be an excuse or "reason" to wait another year or two. There will be optimal times to make Aliyah, but there will never be a perfect time. If you Aliyah is what you really want to do, the 6 figure salary, the BMW, nice house, and community wont stop you, because Israel is calling you home. If that's not the case... well, then, Aliyah is just that nice pipe dream that you have every Pesach or every time you leave Israel after that 2 week vacation. That nice pipe dream that turns into a wistful fantasy that sits in the back of your head and only comes out to play when you're spacing out at your desk some Friday at work, thinking that if you were living in Israel you'd have the day off instead of worrying whether you're going to make it home in time to shower before Shabbat starts.

  2. If that were true, nobody would make aliyah after any stage. They would keep pushing it off.

    Everyone has their own threshold - as I've mentioned many times in the past, my cousins and family friends ALL advised me to come back to the States and then make aliyah after saving up for a number of years. In retrospect, I think that was a wise suggestion, and I intend on doing just that.

    It's insulting somewhat to suggest that people who live in the States and are actually planning on making aliyah "don't really want to". There are some who are quite hypocritical about it, but most are not. My sister-in-law made aliyah this year (after they 'tried it' for a year) with her husband and four kids. They were about 30-32. Does that mean for the past 15 years they didn't "want" to!? That's idiocy. Everyone has to do it when it makes the most sense for them. For most reasonable people, that will be a few years down the road. The percentage of those who make aliyah when they're younger and then are forced to move back to the States is VERY high. The percentage of those moving back when they're a little older is far lower.

    When I go, I want to know that I'm going to be staying there.

  3. Keep in mind, Ezzie, the high cost of schooling in America. Once you start paying tuition, it is very hard to save any money. We made aliyah when our oldest was two, even though we didn't have the X number of thousands of dollars saved up that the "experts" told us we would need to make it in Israel. (This number always gets bigger of course, and you never seem to reach it...) It is also that much more difficult to bring children who find it hard to go to a school where the language is their second. By staying in America for too long, some people just trade financial problems (which everyone has in Israel no matter what!) for other ones.

  4. Ezzie-
    You always pick the best stuff!

  5. WBM - Granted. I'm not saying anything is a slam dunk - I just think that everyone has their own cheshbonos, and to say that anyone in the US doesn't "really" want to make aliyah isn't fair.

    Kasamba - Aww, thanks...!

  6. hey ezzie, thanks for the link!

    glad you enjoyed what i wrote, even if you do disagree with me. i disagree with what you wrote here too, but since this post is a few days old and buried under 5 others already, i guess we'll just leave it at that.

  7. I should note that I agree with most of the post, and that there are certainly people who do what you said in the post. I just object to the notion that everyone is doing that, especially knowing a) myself b) my wife c) every single family we know who made aliyah, which is in the dozens.

  8. you're married, you have a job, and you have a kid. you're telling me that all that makes it easier to make aliya?

    it's not impossible. but you missed your window of opportunity. you could have made aliya right after high school, and avoided all those complications. now there are a million little reasons that might suddenly come up and keep you here.

    even if you do eventually come, you'll be handicapped. you're too old to learn hebrew perfectly, and even if you do, you'll always have an accent; you'll always be branded an oleh. you 'll never have done the army, your wife will never have done sherut leumi. these things aren't neccesary for making aliya, but they help immensely. and they help prevent yerida. i'm going to be doing miluim until i'm 40, and it's an incredible hardship, yes, but it's an anchor to israel that you'll never have, because you waited.

    (obviously, i'm making alot of assumptions here. i don't know if you went to the army, or if you're wife did sherut leumi, or what the deal with your bro-in-law is, if he did all that either. maybe i'm way off. if i am, please let me know. but i'm not really talking to you, i'm talking to your stereotype. if you did all the above, then kol hakavod! but you'd be an exception to the rule, and not the rule)

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