In Mexico, it’s called timbiriche. The dots and boxes game came to mind when reading this page of Talmud (Shabbat 85a). For this post, I’ve gathered are some disconnected ideas from recent daf yomi. Each idea is three tefach (handbreadths) apart and I doubt I'll have time to turn any into coherent blog posts. Guest bloggers welcome. Imagined themes: how rabbinic culture sheds light on our challenges with technology, science, industry and regulation. Maybe you can fill some in or connect the dots?
- Categories of Sabbath work focus on production operations. Also factor in products, raw materials (liquid and solid forms, 80b), equipment/techniques, processing stages (79a tanning) etc. Basis for a hermercurial critique of product-based SIC codes (etcetera) in EPA and OSHA regulations? (Shab Ch. 7)
- Technology of funnel and sieve, etc. (cp. Pirqe Avot) (Shab 74a)
- Compare selecting food waste (borer) and modern waste management? (74a)
- Rabbis strive to harmonize different Talmudic category schemes – comparable to the need to harmonize regulatory classifications and permissible toxic exposure limits (PELs) between EPA and OSHA? (Ch. 7)
- When pressed, the amoraim can defend distinction between primary categories and subcategories (avot, toldot) based on a seemingly arbitrary limit of 39 primaries. (74a)
- Astronomy is approved, even required. (75a) Science & Torah debate?
- Relative scope of the Sabbath work categories. “Striking with a hammer” as an example of a broad, overarching category for finishing operations. (75b)
- Storage as key indicator of threshold significance. Cp. RCRA hazardous materials and solid waste storage regulation? (75b-76a ff.)
- Only like units of measurement can be combined (mishnah 76a), scientific method.
- Contextual aspect of product vs. wastes (atiqi bean shells) (76b)
- Industrial use of material keyed to its significance. Cp. industrial ecology? (76b) Also, relation of viscosity, volume and significance. 77a
- Non-hazardous wastewater de minimus rules; recycling. (Clean Water Act) 78a
- Ought we to set regulatory levels for the common or exceptional case? 78a
- Dual use of khol as both cosmetic and medicinal. Cp. FDA jurisdiction! (78b)
- Gold refiners as regulated trade. Even today, poorly-regulated gold refining pollutes air and workers with mercury (i.e., Quicksilver). (78b)
- Raw commodities include: pitch, sulfur, adhesives, oil, lime (see: harmful dose) , sulfur, wax (78b mishnah), and dyes (79a), and “fertilizer” (80b)
- Idolatrous proto-nanotechnology and the ethics of nanotechnology (83b)