August 30, 2017 2:07 pm at 2:07 pm #1351242
The issue with smartphones isnt that theyre necessarily bad, it is that they are new.
Technically, if you dont trust yourself with a smartphone, you shouldnt trust yourself with having chicken and cheese in your fridge together, shoudnt trust yourself with having electricity in your house during shabbos etc. There is nothing wrong with having a smartphone as long as you know how to use.
And thats the only issue. We need to be trained how to use it. not banned.August 30, 2017 2:17 pm at 2:17 pm #1351411
The yetzer hora involved in having a smartphone, whether it be to view inappropriate content, or allowing it to distract from important things, is very different from having chicken and cheese in the same fridge
You can argue that some people’s need for it supercedes the dangers, but don’t pretend that the dangers don’t exist.August 30, 2017 2:28 pm at 2:28 pm #1351427
DY- dangers also exist with knives and cars. we need education how to use phones not a ban.August 30, 2017 2:30 pm at 2:30 pm #1351437
^ Not getting itAugust 30, 2017 2:44 pm at 2:44 pm #1351442
Is the yetzer hora involved with holding a knife any less strong?August 30, 2017 2:56 pm at 2:56 pm #1351450HarotzehbilumshmoParticipant
Chabadgal;: You may know, there is no issur yichud on milk and meatAugust 30, 2017 3:23 pm at 3:23 pm #1351459The little I knowParticipant
Too much noise.
The smartphone isn’t the problem. It is the user. (Guns don’t kill, people kill.) The ease of getting the wrong place on the internet renders it a significant risk. And that risk needs to be addressed. The level at which it needs to be approached may not be universal.
I strongly suggest that the discussion leave alone the incredible technology that the smartphone offers. It can be harnessed and directed to perform much useful, safe, and kosher service. The real matter at hand is the internet access. That, if unfettered and unfiltered, exposes the user to great risk. The otherwise frum, thoroughly observant person can have a normal moment of weakness, and venture to where he/she doesn’t belong. The yetzer horah is content to wait for this, much as a hungry lion waits for the right moment to attack.
The phone with other capabilities is not bad, dangerous, or risky. Banning it is a lame effort at trying to control others, and only serves to limit the kosher use of technology. Meanwhile, filtering technology has progressed greatly, and a smartphone with many valuable uses can have its browser blocked, and all its activity filtered. It is foolish to ban such a phone any better than to ban walking down the street because someone immodestly dressed might walk that same block.August 30, 2017 3:28 pm at 3:28 pm #1351472
Is the yetzer hora involved with holding a knife any less strong?
YesAugust 30, 2017 3:28 pm at 3:28 pm #1351471
DY- dangers also exist with knives and cars. we need education how to use phones not a ban.
Yes, but it’s not the same yetzer hora.August 30, 2017 3:29 pm at 3:29 pm #1351468Avram in MDParticipant
The issue with smartphones isnt that theyre necessarily bad, it is that they are new.
Technically, if you dont trust yourself with a smartphone, you shouldnt trust yourself with having chicken and cheese in your fridge together, shoudnt trust yourself with having electricity in your house during shabbos etc.
Smartphones are very different from chicken and cheese. Smartphones have only been around since 2007, but they have already caused massive cultural changes; affecting the way people interact with others, how they ingest and consume information, and how they raise children. There are undeniably some benefits to the technology: it’s a lot harder to get lost while traveling, there’s a lot of information to learn right at your fingertips, etc. But undeniably the devices have a tremendous psychological impact, even before we get to the yetzer hara issues DaasYochid mentioned. And we don’t even know the impact.
Cars have many benefits, but would you trust a driver who takes it for a spin but can barely see out the windshield?August 30, 2017 3:32 pm at 3:32 pm #1351477
they have already caused massive cultural changes; affecting the way people interact with others, how they ingest and consume information, and how they raise children.
Yes, and TLIK seems to neglect the point that filtering inappropriate content doesn’t really address that.August 30, 2017 3:46 pm at 3:46 pm #1351480akupermaParticipant
A smartphone combines a mobile/portable phone with a computer. Obviously if you object to computers, you would also object to a smartphone. But even if one doesn’t object to a computer, the extreme portability of a smartphone (phone plus computer in one device) means that it tends to take over your life and distract you from anything and everything such as the shiur you are supposed to be attending, or the car that took an unexpected turn and is running you over, or davening (so tempting to check the stock prices while waiting for the shliach tzibur to reach kedusah), or the broken pavement you are about to trip over. Its no coincidence that the stereotype of the “millenials” is someone walking around with a small device in front of their face and oblivious to the rest of the the world. While the content of the internet is an issue with halachic dimensions, the “Smartphone” raises additional issues that aren’t uniquely Jewish or halachic. Among the goyim, one frequently finds them banned in situations where one wants people to pay attention to what they are supposed to be doing.August 30, 2017 5:48 pm at 5:48 pm #1351521
But that’s what makes smartphones great. It’s a portable shelter from the world of human affairs.August 30, 2017 5:48 pm at 5:48 pm #1351530
“Is the yetzer hora involved with holding a knife any less strong?”
For you – no.
For most other people – yes.August 30, 2017 5:54 pm at 5:54 pm #1351548
I just can’t help my desire to carve people’s initials into the trunk of my neighbor’s tree.August 30, 2017 6:21 pm at 6:21 pm #1351554
I think there is an important point that many people who argue against being against smartphones are missing.
It is something that they may not be able to understand, and there is a good reason why it may be hard for them to understand.
The issue is that they think that the only problem with smartphones is that someone may log onto a very inappropriate site. What they don’t realize is that there are many other problems with smartphones besides that.
Some of these have been already been mentioned above, but I would like to mention another one:
As Torah Jews, we should strive to live lives that are “kulo Torah and Kedusha”. When someone in online, they are exposing themselves to something other than Torah and Kedusha. I am not talking about “really inappropriate sites”. I am talking about just about any or maybe evem any site.
No matter what you are doing on the internet, there is a very good chance that you will see an ad or aheadline or something that contains something untznius or non-Torahdik. I don’t know if I have ever logged onto my computer without seeing something that was in someway non-Torahdik.
Regarding the argument about not walking on the street for the same reason – guess what? I do try very hard to avoid walking down streets on which I may encounter something non-Torahdik, and I do try to avoid public transportation or stores that may involve the same.
The people who argue against being against smartphones are probably people who are not trying to live a life that is “kulo Torah” and probably do not try to avoid such things in general (in terms of streets, stores, and transportation,etc), so that is why they have trouble understanding this.
Everyone is on a different level when it comes to these things, but as Torah Jews, our goal should be as much as possible to strive to live a life that is “kulo Torah” in every aspect. Just as we try to avoid streets and stores that may involve inappropriate sights and sounds, so too we should try to avoid smartphone and internet.
And even if one is not holding by it, they should understand that it is the goal, and appreciate and respect those who are holding by living such a lifestyle.August 30, 2017 6:42 pm at 6:42 pm #1351595
I just can’t help my desire to carve people’s initials into the trunk of my neighbor’s tree.
Then you’re weird, and shouldn’t hold a knife.August 30, 2017 6:57 pm at 6:57 pm #1351623ehrlichParticipant
If there would be 10’s of companies spending BILLIONS of dollars on ads design etc. to get YOU addicted to eat meat and cheese then yes maybe we would need to think again and see if we are allowed to have it in the same fridgeAugust 30, 2017 6:57 pm at 6:57 pm #1351599
Why shouldn’t weird people have knives, you bigot?August 30, 2017 8:16 pm at 8:16 pm #1351733The little I knowParticipant
LU & DY:
You imply that I neglect the addictive features of a fully filtered smartphone and its impact on our lives. Not at all. I do not believe that there is a successful way of legislating that, and that doing so will result in any improvement. The bans absolutely accomplish nothing with regards to making our lives more Torahdik. Nothing.
Serious lacking from this discussion, as well as many other discussions in the CR is that we have failed to maintain the passion and התלהבות that is the energy of continuity for Yiddishkeit. Without it, there is no experience of סיפוק הנפש, and the human being will predictably gravitate towards the easiest direction to experience הנאת הגוף. There are a myriad of possibilities, and the yetzer horah is continually honing his skills to do his job better. He uses all the tools that are available, and technology is one of them. HKB”H allowed these advances in science to give us a boost in our Avodas Hashem. These forms of technology are not evil. But the yetzer horah does quite well, making us use them for lashon horah, and making us addicted to the instant communications that were never needed before these inventions. Just 20 years ago, we shopped without cell phones, and we somehow survived the experience of additional items being needed, or showing pictures of something to everyone we know. We all survived eating suppers without broadcasting to the world the menus. And if we found meaning in our lives, these “advances” would all be experienced as just specimens of stupidity that reduce our functioning to that of a monkey in the zoo.
No, I am not oblivious to these aspects of technology. They exist pretty much on flip phones. The bells and whistles do not trigger the yetzer horah. But they can be used as tools, just as going to shul on Shabbos can be a place where to socialize, sometimes with דבורי חול, sometimes with לשון הרע, sometimes talking during davening. It is a foolish to say that someone who does that should never go to shul.
We have seen the viral clips of people busy with their phones, walking into pools, glass doors, etc. I would love to see one of these hapless souls try to sue the manufacturer of the phone because he/she was distracted and did such completely inane things. Would it be the fault of the phone? yes, technology has advanced, and that is continuing. Our grandchildren may one day remark about how we need to hold cell phones or dial on them. All the asifos in the world won’t reverse that. Learn to live with it.August 30, 2017 8:56 pm at 8:56 pm #1351738
“Why shouldn’t weird people have knives, you bigot?”
For the same reason that normal people shouldn’t have smartphones. The weird people can have the smartphones instead, since they won’t pose a problem for them.August 31, 2017 2:04 pm at 2:04 pm #1352204
yes, but when any new thing comes out, it needs to be learned how to use properly.August 31, 2017 6:06 pm at 6:06 pm #1352582Shopping613 🌠Participant
It’s not just the ease of getting somewhere bad, and being oiyver on the issur “so sitain michshol” (to yourself, if you don’t have all the nessesary filters). You can get inapropriate things sent by whatsapp now, sent around to frum people. I myself have gotten many things- the most recent a man singing along with some of the dirtiest songs, and then showing how he thinks he’e singing, verus what how he sounds to everyone else. Cute, but I did not want to hear thosae songs, nor did I know they would be in the clip.
Many people are against instant messaging as it is addictive, and ruins relationships. Do you suggest we all have smartphones that don’t have any instant messaging? Social media is horrible too. So is youtube. Email is distracting on the go. Games are addictive.
It’s like setting yourself up for failing, There’s too many ways to fall. Why put yourself in that position?
Myabe you need a chainsaw, but do you need a chainsaw, knife, gun, and army tank all in 1? and in the same place?August 31, 2017 6:07 pm at 6:07 pm #1352583
I have read many of the posts. Do I think smartphones are dangerous? Yes. I have seen Rabbi Bender hold up his smartphone and say that it is more dangerous for your child to have this in his than a gun. Which is part of the problem. If he feels that one shouldn’t have a smartphone why does he have one?
15 – 20 years ago as the internet was gaining a foothold on society the torah world tried to ban it. Don’t use it. What happened? The more they yelled ban the more people ran after it. When they realized they had to embrace it, it was too late. The same thing will happen with the smartphone. The more they try to ban it, the more it will be used.
What id the answer? I really don’t know. If Roshei Yeshiva and Menahallim continue to use these phones it will be impossible to tell “hamon am” not to use them.August 31, 2017 9:13 pm at 9:13 pm #1352642yytzParticipant
A flip-phone is just a phone. You can text with it, but it’s cumbersome, and there’s not much else to do with it.
A smartphone is much more than that — the entire Internet is there for you to explore, for good or (usually) for bad.
Most people with smartphones waste hours of their day on social media, texting and Internet browsing, which they could be using for important things they’re neglecting, like Torah, davening, tehillim, mitzvos, chesed, sleep, exercise, getting your work done, paying attention to your children, etc. The same goes with people with constant access to the internet due to laptops, etc.
LU, about the untznius images everywhere on the internet, fortunately there is a partial solution for those of us who need the internet for work — you can find browser ad-ons (like Wizimage for Chrome) that automatically block all images.August 31, 2017 9:22 pm at 9:22 pm #1352652
Good points, but for the record, flip phones often do have internet access.August 31, 2017 10:09 pm at 10:09 pm #1352659oyyoyyoyParticipant
If he feels that one shouldn’t have a smartphone why does he have one?
i dont know his position on smartphones but children are different than married adults
The more they yelled ban the more people ran after it
Doesnt mean causation. I believe it was in spite of them banning.August 31, 2017 11:50 pm at 11:50 pm #1352701
TLIK & Iacisrmma – most people I know do not use smartphones or Internet. Amongst the people I know, the more it’s been banned, the more careful people are.
Personally, I think that it helps me to be more careful. I do not touch Smartphones, even on the rare occasions when someone’s phone was ringing and they wanted me to pick it up because I was closer to it. I wouldn’t have known that Smartphones were something to stay away from if not for the bans. And all the warnings about Internet help me to remember to be much more careful with my Internet use and to use it less than I might have otherwise, as well as to be careful how I use it and to make sure that no children have any access.
I am sorry that you know people whose reaction to the words of the Gedolim is to davka go against them. Boruch Hashem, the people I know are not like that. If there really are people like that, then all we can do is daven for them. The Gedolim should certainly not let themselves be affected by such people.
As Rashi (B’reishis 1/26) says: …אף על פי שלא סייעוהו ביצירתו ויש מקום למינים לרדות לא נמנע הכתוב מללמד דרך ארץAugust 31, 2017 11:59 pm at 11:59 pm #1352710
Flip phone Internet access doesn’t count because it’s so difficult to use, even the yetzer hara can’t make it user friendly.September 1, 2017 12:02 am at 12:02 am #1352715
LU: It’s not they go against the rabbonim. Once you have to use internet for your work/business, trying to ban it from households was almost impossible. Almost every yeshiva now deal with parents via e-mail which forces one to have the internet.
Do people need smartphones? Probably not. My office has basically upgraded all their cellphones to smartphones. Very soon non-smartphones will disappear from the market.September 1, 2017 6:41 am at 6:41 am #1352800Shopping613 🌠Participant
I think though, where the majority still have kosher phones with no text even, in Israel- they will keep coming up with solutions. Here they have kosher smart phones, etc, but I think they will survive a good while without smartphones of any sort. Although the other people who live here aren’t too happy at having to change things and work with people who don’t have smartphones, they make it possible to do things and the goverment is quite aware of this large group who doesn’t have smartphones. So they make more machines, up phone hotlines, and do things that will work without a smartphone.September 1, 2017 12:40 pm at 12:40 pm #1352913
A flip Phone is almost impossible to browse the web, it takes so long to get the letters , its not worth the effortSeptember 3, 2017 2:07 am at 2:07 am #1353309
Interestingly enough, just this past Shabbos, my friend mentioned that her husband won’t allow sharp knives in the house because he thinks they are dangerous.
(and no, I’m not joking)September 3, 2017 3:27 am at 3:27 am #1353326
Dull knives are worse.September 3, 2017 7:24 am at 7:24 am #1353334tapioszeleParticipant
Di erste zah is, the phone in question is a avi avojsz tüme, the main kli tüme of the szitre ahre r’l! Zvaite mal, it is take destroying jiddise nsumesz, whole mispohesz, the emune ködajse. No matter what you say. Psítesz I do not understand my gite amerikánise brider. Burn and dispose that abomination from your mispohe and from your life. Iszur hódos, midojrajsze. Everything what is new, is bad. Like that phone in question, or the small ladies wrist watches, (quartz ones) worn by haszidem. Although some of the litvise also tend to have it. Wear pocket watches with mechanical movement, etc. We use the good old dial cellphones. We make our own bread, wine, milk. We live in the countyside. Just like in the alte hajm. In Hungary we make all the things lkathile as it was. Burih HaSajm it works. So in this case, daasz jóhid is take daasz horabim. A gite gibencsdike jur far jede jiddise brider in di gance welt. Fin Ungarn.September 3, 2017 9:10 am at 9:10 am #1353370
Shopping – maskim. Most people that I know, in both Israel and the US own neither smartphones nor Internet and see no need for either.September 5, 2017 12:37 am at 12:37 am #1354641uknowwhatimsayinParticipant
I’m pretty sure the yetzer harah toward Arayos is a tad worse than the yetzer harah of having chicken parm.
On your other point, my opinion is that smartphones should not be looked upon as an evil device. As we know, technology has also allowed the Jews today to learn more than ever before. (Online shiurim, Hebrew books.com, etc)
On the flip side, a smartphone user can easily commit many averos if he does not have a filter.
My suggestion is that if one has a phone, s/he should filter it.
Even if ones is sure s/he is a tzadik/es and will “never do such a horrible thing”, it is still a great idea to filter his or her device(s).September 5, 2017 1:19 am at 1:19 am #1354657
LU: Dull knives on Shabbos? No internet or smartphone and on this issue of knives goes against the RAMAH and the Mishna Berurah: 250:1 SK 5September 5, 2017 9:02 am at 9:02 am #1354704
LU- dull knives can be more dangerousSeptember 5, 2017 9:20 am at 9:20 am #1354710
What’s wrong with a quartz wrist watch? They’re more accurate than most mechanical pocket watches.September 5, 2017 9:56 am at 9:56 am #1354789
Serious question for those who dont have a smartphone.
What do you do for waze, Yeah I know you can use a map, but waze is alot simpler and over the weekend a couple of circumstances where I was out town and had misjudged my location , With waze it pointed me to the correct location . Dont get me wrong I still use maps, more than most people, but when driving , waze is alot simplier and while I rarely get lost, it does happend occasionally when I am in a place I dont know. Also sometimes on a map its a bit hard to figure out what direction you are going in and not every street is on it
It really is a safety to have waze. I have heard a few cases where bochrim got lost and were actually fairly close to the correct spot, and a simple waze would have saved their lifeSeptember 5, 2017 9:59 am at 9:59 am #1354797
They make standalone GPS navigation units. They were actually quite common a few years ago, and they still sell them. They are also useful in places where you have no phone service.September 5, 2017 10:50 am at 10:50 am #1354849
I used to have a stand alone unit until it was stolen. I tend to walk alot so I dont like carrying things. It was the car that I had lost that the waze found me. (I was only 1 block out of the way at one point, but I had no way to know that)
Also waze helps with traffic, It finds you alternate routes to avoid traffic, this was one of the rare times I used it for walkingSeptember 5, 2017 10:51 am at 10:51 am #1354867
I pride myself on being a Human GPS and rarely get lost and Ill do things most people wont do , but while I wont get lost 99% of the time, there is still that 1% that only a local or GPS could find (Try to find the only kosher restaurant in a big city, especially when its camaflouged)September 5, 2017 3:47 pm at 3:47 pm #1355425GAONParticipant
As far as comparing. Allow me to just quote the Talmud and should answer all:
אין אפוטרופוס לעריותSeptember 5, 2017 4:09 pm at 4:09 pm #1355432WinnieThePoohParticipant
Waze is useful, and every time we get lost or end up stuck in a construction zone, I wish we had it.
yet Waze is not fool -proof, and relying on it blindly has gotten people into trouble- like leading you into non-safe neighborhoods (like Arab rock-throwing areas in Israel), or unlit, winding back-roads that might shave a few minutes off of the travel time, but are not as safe as the main roads at night. It’s a bad idea to lose those map-reading skills. Just as it is a bad idea to lose the ability to communicate with others in person with full sentences.September 5, 2017 4:45 pm at 4:45 pm #1355562
Another really good App Ive been using has helped me lose weight. Its like a diary App that you put in your foods and give you the approximate caloric amount and it marks down how much exercise you have done (like a fitbit).
Ive lost 15 pounds in the last 5 months with this app as I am now able to track my calories better (I was not Obese and didnt need to lose as much weight as others might) . I actually use this app alot more than Waze, which I only use if I am in an unfamiliar area or stuck in a traffic jam and I am trying to figure out how long the jam is.September 6, 2017 8:05 pm at 8:05 pm #1357243Neville ChaimBerlinParticipant
Waze is only a few years old, so yeah. We do the same thing you did a few year ago, I assume. Use a GPS. There isn’t a lot of yetzer hara involved with using a Garmin. Albeit, it might be a little worse than a dull knife, but not everything can be perfect.September 6, 2017 8:09 pm at 8:09 pm #1357247September 7, 2017 1:32 am at 1:32 am #1357394
Iacisrmma & Chabadgal –
1. he was actually referring to a very sharp knife. Yeah, I know I didn’t make that clear – I was trying to make some kind of point.
2. I think the rule that dull knives are more dangerous is only for adults.
3. Why is there a chiyuv to use knives on Shabbos? Can’t you just rip the Challah with your hands (as long as your wife doesn’t object)?
- You must be logged in to reply to this topic.