Is it considered Melacha to use the internet on Shabbat?

This is a repost, because I think the last time I asked this question, it got deleted. I think my wife is the culprit! (Just kidding) Anyways, is it considered a violation of Shabbat to use the internet on the Sabbath? Please provide references and documentation for your answers. Thank you.

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  • 1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    Using Electricity IS a melachah d'oraiso What melacha is involved here? there are multiple possible caetgories:

    1) Lighting a fire- when the switch is thrown on a circuit there is a spark. this is the same as striking a match as the spark created is as a direct result from your action- and it is a DESIRED result.

    2) Adding fuel to a fire- lets take the case of a standby switch; the elctricy is present but in a different channel (for those who require the technical details- generally the changing from standby to active involves a relay switching changing the flow of the current). The opening of the relay for the new channel is the same as throwing wood or other fuel onto a fire

    3) Makeh b'patish (the final hammer blow)- here the issue is that the curcuit is prepare dbefore Shabbos- by activating the circuit, you effectively perform the final task in order to make the circuit active; the same as putting the finishing touches to an article to make it useable.

    4) boneh (building)- you 'build the circuit and thereby make it active- many don't like using this category as the av melachah here involves being built into the ground and many rule the item being built should be attached to the ground, making this category questioneable (at least with battery operated devices- with ones working off mains, it becames an issue of if the earthing cables of the power supply which ultimately attach into the ground would make this something attached to the ground)

    After that you have various other issues- every time you hit a key you have the completion of a circuit temporarily. It is also ruled that computer usage is ovdei hachol and should not be done (though of course, unlike some of the other issues raised, this one is d'Rabbanan).

    In short- whether or not you decide that the comparisons above are d'Rabbanan or d'oraiso, it doesn't matter. In the case of a safek (doubt) on an issur d'oraiso (forbidden action from the Torah) we also rule strictly- especially with offenses which carry the penalty of death or kares (spiritual excission). In this case, with so many possible ciolations, we rule strictly and it is forbidden to use the internet on Shabbos

    Source(s): Orthodox Jew; acting Rabbi, see Hilchos Shabbas K'hilchata by Rabbi Nieuwirth; The notes from the Hilchos Shabbos course taught by Rabbi Dovid Ostroff at pirkei shoshanim and the audio lecture series "The 39 melachos" by Rabbi David Berkowitz (downloadable at Aish HaTorah)
  • 1 decade ago

    Technically, NO. However, it is still forbidden.

    Melacha means that it is *Biblically* prohibited. There are 39 categories of Melachot, based on the actions used to construct the Tabernacle. The details are extremely complicated.

    Using electricity is actually not a Melacha. It's *Rabbinically* prohibited, b\c it can lead one to do an actual Biblically-prohibited Melacha. Nevertheless, the prohibition is just as stringent and severe as a regular Melacha, and should not be taken lightly.

    Summary: Yes, it is prohibited and is a violation of Shabbat, but it is technically *not* a Melacha.

    Source(s): Orthodox Jew
  • paula
    Lv 4
    4 years ago

    The 39 categories of melachah are ploughing earth, sowing, reaping, binding sheaves, threshing, winnowing, choosing, grinding, sifting, kneading, baking, shearing wool, washing wool, beating wool, dyeing wool, spinning, weaving, making 2 loops, weaving 2 threads, isolating 2 threads, tying, untying, stitching stitches, tearing, trapping, slaughtering, flaying, tanning, scraping cover, marking hides, reducing cover to shape, writing 2 or greater letters, erasing 2 or greater letters, development, demolishing, extinguishing a fireplace, kindling a fireplace, putting the crowning glory on an merchandise and transporting an merchandise between the deepest area and the wide-unfold public area, or for a distance of four cubits interior the wide-unfold public area.

  • Vi
    Lv 5
    1 decade ago

    Yes. Shabbat is a day of rest, and any form of energy, whether it is running heated water, tearing paper, tying knots, organizing, lighting a candle, or using any electronic device, is forbidden. Most Jews make exceptions for necessary electronics on Shabbat, such as ventilators or phones in case of an emergency.

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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    How can it be? The rules were written so long ago, many thousands of years, how can they be relevant now?

    This is the kind of question that is asked by this new religion islam, learning to live in a new world.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    Yes. You are not supposed to do anything physical on sabbath. That's why I gave up the stupid religion.

    Source(s): ex-jew
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