Rabbis at the leading Israeli center for Jewish law and technology have given a kosher stamp of approval for kids to use popular hand-held spinner toys on the Sabbath.
The Scientific Institute of Technology in Jerusalem, which both reviews and creates technology in accordance with Jewish legal codes, issued a ruling on the use of spinners after rabbis there noticed kids playing with the toy. Several Orthodox individuals had also written to the center with queries about the spinner, according to Israeli news site Ynet.
The rabbis put the spinner through a “comprehensive technological and halachic examination” and determined that it is permissible to use it on the Sabbath. The only caveat is if the spinner has lights. Because the spinner’s movement is what turns on the light, the person doing the spinning would technically be doing work, a no-go on the Jewish day of rest.
Children should not bring the spinner into synagogue, the rabbis noted in their assessment, “in order not to harm the sanctity of the place.”
The inventor of the toy says she created it an alternative activity for Palestinian youth instead of throwing rocks at Israeli soldiers.