I originally wrote the following:
I have three minutes where I am. I do not blog on TOI on Shabbat because yesh li kavod l’shomrim Shabbat. L’Shabbat Shalom u’Mevorakh l’kulam b’Eretz Yisra’el v’lanu mi b’Galut.
Then I was told, “This is not an appropriate use of a TOI blog. Posts are required to convey full ideas through any combination of text and media.”
On Shabbat…? So, then I Googled…blogging on Shabbat is, I guess, okay, after all. While there may be snide attitudes about it (and, e.g., saying, “We actively defend your right to fly to Vegas and buy a bacon breakfast – on Shabbat….” is pretty snide. By the way, when did flying to anywhere become work? Also, walking is just walking—nowhere does Tanakh read, “Thou shalt not walk on Shabbat, for walk is considered working one’s feet and legs.” Walking as work is a view of the Talmud.).
The prohibition against carrying includes house keys, prayer books, canes or walkers, and even children who cannot walk on their own. Recognizing the difficulties this rule imposes, the sages of the Talmud devised a way to allow for carrying in public without breaking the rule. Through this means, called an eruv, communities are able to turn a large area into one that is considered, for Jewish law purposes, a large private domain, in which items may be carried.
[With link added by the blogger]
In other words, Tanakh suffices and stands well enough on its own without rabbincal parshanuyot (which, by the way, added to Tanakh and also took away therefrom; as ‘Eruvin 21b implicitly admits.). By the way, playing musical instruments violates Shabbat? Since when?
My main point, then, is this: if it’s not actually melakhah according to Tanakh, then it’s not melakhah. Besides, piku’ach nefesh and tikkun ha’olam (which are appropriate on tzomot) are, thus, appropriate on Shabbat:
5 Is such the fast that I have chosen? the day for a man to afflict his soul? Is it to bow down his head as a bulrush, and to spread sackcloth and ashes under him? Wilt thou call this a fast, and an acceptable day to the LORD? 6 Is not this the fast that I have chosen? to loose the fetters of wickedness, to undo the bands of the yoke, and to let the oppressed go free, and that ye break every yoke? 7 Is it not to deal thy bread to the hungry, and that thou bring the poor that are cast out to thy house? when thou seest the naked, that thou cover him, and that thou hide not thyself from thine own flesh? 8 Then shall thy light break forth as the morning, and thy healing shall spring forth speedily; and thy righteousness shall go before thee, the glory of the LORD shall be thy rearward. 9 Then shalt thou call, and the LORD will answer; thou shalt cry, and He will say: ‘Here I am.’ If thou take away from the midst of thee the yoke, the putting forth of the finger, and speaking wickedness; 10 And if thou draw out thy soul to the hungry, and satisfy the afflicted soul; then shall thy light rise in darkness, and thy gloom be as the noon-day; 11 And the LORD will guide thee continually, and satisfy thy soul in drought, and make strong thy bones; and thou shalt be like a watered garden, and like a spring of water, whose waters fail not. 12 And they that shall be of thee shall build the old waste places, thou shalt raise up the foundations of many generations; and thou shalt be called the repairer of the breach, the restorer of paths to dwell in.
Many people blog for the sake of tikkun ha’olam and piku’ach nefesh. The issue is being selfish on Shabbat:
13 If thou turn away thy foot because of the sabbath, from pursuing thy business on My holy day; and call the sabbath a delight, and the holy of the LORD honourable; and shalt honour it, not doing thy wonted ways, nor pursuing thy business, nor speaking thereof; 14Then shalt thou delight thyself in the LORD, and I will make thee to ride upon the high places of the earth, and I will feed thee with the heritage of Jacob thy father; for the mouth of the LORD hath spoken it.
Refusing, for example, to be a shomer or shomeret is selfish. As the blogger with the snide observation demonstrates:
Not because we believe in a traditional sense that it’s against halacha.
But because in a postmodern sense, we still see the Jewish people as being against paganism; and the paganism of this generation isn’t Wiccans and witches, it’s the world of 24/7. It’s bad for the world, and it’s bad for people – and as Jews, we’re the people who introduced into human history the idea of shabbat, and the related ideas of shmitta and yovel. Resting reminds us that we inherit this earth, we don’t own it. Resting is good for us, good for our families, good for our communities.
The world has always been 24/7 in many respects. Especially evil people do not discriminate between Shabbat and the regular days. B’nei Yissachar understood that, thus why they led Yisra’el at times of war:
Also, blogging can actually be fun. Is bilui a chillul Shabbat? If bilui that is tikkun ha’olam and/or piku’ach nefesh a chillul Shabbat, please let me know. Toda raba, v’L’Shabbat Shalom l’kulam.