Questions tagged [electricity]

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30
votes
5answers
1k views

When blogging/emailing/etc., do I use “God” or “G-d”?

Is there a religious problem with typing out the name: "G-o-d"?
27
votes
3answers
4k views

Why can't electricity be manipulated on Shabbat?

Why can't we use and change electricity on Shabbat and YomTov? By this I mean why can't we turn lights on and off? I've heard Rabbis say that its because you can't complete a circuit on Shabbat, ...
16
votes
2answers
343 views

Netilas Yadayim with automatic sinks

It seems there is precedent to allow for netilas yadayim when you don't have a cup, by turning the sink on and off for each rivi'is per hand. By employing this method you satisfy the requirement of ...
15
votes
2answers
1k views

Are you allowed to benefit from an electrical appliance turned on during shabbos?

If a jewish person were to accidentally turn on the light in their bedroom, or if the television were accidentally turned on (for these purposes, let's assume that the person in question woke up, ...
13
votes
1answer
245 views

Did any classic rabbinic sources discuss static electricity?

Not much more to add here, I've just always wondered if static electricity was discussed in any Chazzal or Rishonim. Someone from those times must've gotten a good zap and I'm wondering what they had ...
13
votes
1answer
145 views

Can a “brain controlled” prosthetic be used on Shabbat?

New prosthetics are controlled by brain waves which seem to make the prosthetic an extension of the body in an "organic" way, in that we control all of our own limbs through the same brain waves and ...
12
votes
2answers
2k views

Smart thermostat on Shabbos - what should one do?

I read an article recently regarding a person who went to a hotel and realized after Shabbos began that all the rooms were controlled by smart thermostats. A smart thermostat detects when one is in ...
11
votes
1answer
1k views

Can one run a surveillance Camera on Shabbos?

Is there any prohibition in having surveillance cameras operating on Shabbos? If not, why is is any different to filming a Bar-Mitzva, etc?
11
votes
2answers
452 views

Blackout restoration on Shabbath - and your food

If you suffer from a blackout on Shabbath, but the power returns on Shabbath, and you have certain food elements cooking, is there a problem of either Nolad or some other issue relating to food that ...
11
votes
2answers
356 views

Which types of light bulbs are 'only' an issur d'rabbanan to activate on Shabbat

I'd be very interested to know if anyone has definitive advice on which types of light bulbs are considered an issur d'rabbanan (Rabbinic prohibition) vs an issur d'oraita (Torah prohibition) to turn ...
10
votes
1answer
476 views

Tweeting on Shabbat: d'oraita or d'rabbanan violation?

There was a dangerous situation in my community on Shabbat and I knew (from the amount my house phone was ringing and my cell phone was buzzing) that people I knew across the world would be concerned ...
8
votes
1answer
439 views

Unplugging a Phone Charger on Shabbat?

If a phone charger (or any electric adapter that is not connected to a device, for that matter) is plugged into an outlet, does unplugging it constitute any forbidden form of work, or is simply a '...
8
votes
3answers
2k views

Can you use electricity on Yom Tov

Yom Tov is slightly different than Shabbat. For example, on Shabbat one cannot cook, but one can cook on Yom Tov provided that it is from an existing flame. My question is this... Let's say I have ...
7
votes
3answers
417 views

Is this app really safe to use on Shabbat?

http://www.shabbosapp.com/ It is an interesting approach - trying to satisfy the major halachic issues, while skirting the stringencies. Halachically, what would be the status of using this phone on ...
7
votes
1answer
530 views

Is one allowed to use electricity on Shabbos in Israel?

I have heard that some don't use electricity made by the Israeli Electric company on Shabbos and only use generators. However, I have seen people who do use public electricity on Shabbos. What are ...
7
votes
0answers
53 views

Difference between Halperin and Tzomet switches?

I am reading about the various so-called Grama and other Shabbat switches developed in Israel for use in hospitals and security situations. It seems that there was one solution created by Rabbi ...
6
votes
4answers
1k views

May one say a blessing on light bulbs for shabbat

If one doesn't have candles for shabbat, may one say a blessing on light bulbs? Since the point is to have light for שלום בית (household serenity), it would seem that electric lights would have the ...
6
votes
2answers
944 views

Flashlight on Shabbat

Background: Among the things one may not move on Shabbat (Muktzah) is a utensil which is primarily used for a forbidden activity on Shabbat (a classic example is a hammer). This is called a "Keli ...
6
votes
1answer
346 views

Davening from an electronic device?

I have been davening from my ipad using a pdf copy of a siddur I downloaded. However, I wanted to know if this is a suitable alternative for those times when the use of electronic devices is ...
6
votes
1answer
381 views

Use of an automatic toilet on Shabbos?

Can one use on Shabbos an automatic toilet with an electric sensor that triggers the flushing mechanism when you are done? For example in a hotel lobby, or a public building. Assume there is no other ...
6
votes
2answers
522 views

Kosher switch and Grama according to R. Belsky's letter

Yeshiva World News published a letter from Rabbi Belsky saying that the Kosher Switch accomplishes nothing and is simply a regular melacha. My question is basically the same as this commentor. Is ...
6
votes
1answer
134 views

On Shabbos, may someone turn off a switch of an electric-eye controlled light while the light is off?

If a room or an area has an electric eye which causes a light to turn on when someone passes by, and the light is off, may someone turn off the light-switch on Shabbos so that people can walk by ...
6
votes
1answer
822 views

Electronic card readers to enter buildings on Shabbat?

As a student, I've noticed that practically all of the dormitories in my university require residents to tap their student cards to a sensor before they are allowed to enter their building. (Moreover, ...
6
votes
0answers
54 views

Why is turning on a faucet not considered molid or boneh?

As has been discussed in many questions on this site, halachic authorities generally agree that the use of electricity is prohibited on Shabbat, but some differ in their analysis of why. (There is ...
6
votes
2answers
124 views

Using a flickering bulb on Shabas

Mishna B'rura 264:1 says: The reason for the invalidity of [certain] wicks and oils [for the Shabas lights] is that they do not shine well and we're afraid he may tilt the lamp so the oil within it ...
5
votes
1answer
220 views

Reason for a Chanukah Minhag

Are there any authorities who suggest that the reason for the Minhag for women to avoid Melacha (creative work) while the Chanukah candles are lit is because we are worried they may come to use the ...
5
votes
2answers
2k views

Opening a fridge on Shabbat

There are many problems with using electricity on Shabbat, and many ways to understand those problems. The issue of using a fridge is especially problematic (as explained in depth by Rav Nissan Kaplan ...
5
votes
1answer
249 views

using static guard on Shabbos

Would there be any reason why one would not be able to apply static guard to clothing on Shabbos? Would it make any difference if the clothing is currently being worn or not? Two points: 1- I ...
5
votes
0answers
54 views

Shabbat: Electric Apartment Door in Doorman Building

Let us say a person lives in an apartment building where the apartment doors (door to the apartment itself) are fitted with electronic locks. The building has a 24-hour "concierge" doorman (non-...
4
votes
1answer
1k views

Apple Watch on Shabbat

Tech experts: Is there any way in which the Apple Watch could be used by shomrei Shabbat with limited functionality? Note: this question does not seek to ascertain whether the full gamut of features ...
4
votes
1answer
748 views

Adjusting timers on Shabbat

Can one adjust a socket timer (picture below) on Shabbat to keep one's hotplate or lamp on for longer, etc?
4
votes
1answer
202 views

Using modern electronic devices (refrigerators, air conditioners, digital water meters) on Shabbat

The Mishmereth Hashabbath institute in Israel has published a booklet which claims that using many modern electronic devices (refrigerators, air conditioners, digital water meters) are highly ...
4
votes
2answers
125 views

Who is worried about affecting a refrigerator's thermostat on shabbat?

When one opens a refrigerator door, there are two classes of effects: Immediate result - e.g. light going on, or in newer models a fan might start. This class of effects can normally be fairly ...
4
votes
1answer
466 views

What was Reb Moshe Feinstein's view on electricity use on Shabbos?

Did Rabbi Moshe Feinstein hold that the ban on electricity use on Shabbos (where no other issur results) is a biblical prohibition, a rabbinic prohibition, or just a minhag?
4
votes
1answer
509 views

Going to lectures with overhead projector on shabbat

Is attending public lectures (and looking at the screen) permissible on the Sabbat? Information from a computer is projected onto a movie screen and the lecturer may be using a microphone. The ...
4
votes
1answer
102 views

Shutting lights off during Chol Ha'moed, to save electricity

Preface During Shabbat, Orthodox Jewish practice is to avoid turning lights on or off. Perhaps turning lights on or off is a form of melacha. On Chol Ha'moed, melacha is sometimes, but not always, ...
4
votes
1answer
104 views

Adjusting Potentiometer on Yom Tov (eg. oven temperature)

Can someone point me in the direction of some Halachic sources to research the subject of potentiometers on Yom Tov? In the case of an oven, I had the understanding that as long as the fire was on ...
4
votes
2answers
353 views

Is one allowed to use a pedometer on Shabbat?

If the pedometer is reset and already on before Shabbat starts, am I allowed to attach it to my person and walk with it on Shabbat, within an eruv? It is electric, and it appears to count steps with a ...
4
votes
0answers
159 views

Crossing at a sensor-controlled traffic light on Shabbat

May one cross at a sensor-controlled traffic light on Shabbat / Yom Tov. I.e. - the light turns green only when it senses there is a pedestrian? Would it matter if it would be dangerous to cross ...
4
votes
1answer
383 views

Why isn't walking through a metal detector allowed on Shabbat because of pikuach nefesh?

I saw a few weeks ago that there are no security checks at the Kotel for religiously dressed Jews on Shabbat. This is to avoid having to walk through a metal detector, apparently. My question is, why ...
3
votes
1answer
146 views

Not using Electricity as a Minhag

This answer asserts that R' Auerbach held that not using electricity on Shabbat is a minhag. However, assuming that this ruling dates to the 1930s (which is what I have heard in the past), everyday ...
3
votes
2answers
207 views

Audio Recording on Shabbat/Yom Tov

Would there be a problem with leaving a recorder on from before Shabbat or Yom Tov, and thereby recording a lecture given on Shabbat itself? There is a wealth of literature on the subject of Melacha ...
3
votes
1answer
122 views

power went off Bishul Akum

If a Jew turned on a portable burner for a non Jew to cook pancakes and the switch for power went off,but the actual metal is hot enough to cook on without any power,if the non Jew turns it back on is ...
3
votes
1answer
353 views

Unplugging cooking utensil from timer on Yom Tov?

Suppose that someone has an electronic cooking utensil such as a Crock Pot or a rice cooker that they use on Yom Tov. Perhaps they set a timer before Y"T in order that it should start cooking during ...
3
votes
0answers
77 views

Light switch on Shabbat - no bulb, unplugging an extension cord

Muktza aside - Is it permissible on Shabbat to turn off a light switch if the light bulb burned out; Is there any issue in removing the current from the circuit 10, 15, 20 ft back? The same I would ...
3
votes
0answers
160 views

Is a Digital Clock muktzeh on Shabbos?

This question occurred to me over Shabbos, when my clock fell over. What Muktzeh category does a digital alarm clock fall into? If it has a backup battery, does that change anything? Additionally, if ...
3
votes
3answers
2k views

Can I use a SodaStream with an indicator light on Shabbos?

I saw that I can use a SodaStream on Shabbos, but I have a specific question: Can I use a Sodastream on Shabbos if it has an LED indicator? If not, is there something I can do to it to make it usable ...
2
votes
1answer
766 views

Use induction on Yom Tov

May one use an induction stovetop on yom tov? I assume there's a fundamental difference if the pot is already on the stove before yom tov, and food is just poured inside; this should be permitted. ...
2
votes
2answers
69 views

Conductivity of living things and Shabbat

If electricity is banned on shabbat, how does a person deal with the problem of the body being a conductor? When I hold a person's hands, it creates a circuit. If I let go of their hands then I have ...
2
votes
1answer
91 views

Snake lamps on Shabbos? [closed]

I have a pet snake that has two types of lamps. One lamp is turned on in the mornings (day lamp) and then the other is turned on at night (night lamp). They both are needed to produce light and heat ...