Is it wrong to take your family on a vacation?
It depends where and for what reason. If you’re taking them to a place, a frum colony, where your children will be able to learn all the time and will be able to be osek in avodas Hashem, why not?
If it’s just to stop learning, to go away, no.
I want to tell you something. The whole business of vacation is not a Jewish business. In Europe the yeshivos didn’t have any vacation in the summertime. They continued summer and winter exactly the same. That’s how it should be. You can’t take a vacation from shleimus, from perfection, from learning Torah.
All the yeshivah men, if the yeshivos close down for the summertime, they should make it their business to sit and learn all day long, to review. Otherwise whatever they learn they forget and next time they look at the mesichta, it’s like a new mesichta. It’s a pity. Spend the summertime in learning and learning and learning. That’s our lives. Ki heim chayeinu.
Of course always you should get fresh air. Every day take a walk. Even in the wintertime take a brisk walk for a half hour or so. Always. Always do things for your health.
I won’t say you can’t go to the country but only if it’s going to help your ruchniyus. If it’s only in gashmiyus but in ruchniyus it’s going to be a loss then it doesn’t pay to sacrifice so much.
Some people have achieved very much in the summertime. They sit and learn all the time. School teachers have vacation the whole summer time. They sit two months and learn. Alright, why not?
Otherwise our main criteria should be what’s the best for my neshamah? What’s the best for my children’s neshamos?
TAPE # E-237 (June 29, 2000)