If a Shabbos elevator is permissible [by some learned rabbis] what is the problem with riding a subway when the passenger does not have to pay to enter and is not making or breaking any electrical circuit?
I was recently at a Chabad Shabbat dinner and someone accidentally backed into a light switch, causing one of the young boys to go out onto the street in Brooklyn in search of a non-Jew to turn on the light since doing so himself would break the Sabbath. Many synagogues similarly employ non-Jewish custodians to turn on lights and prepare the sanctuary on Shabbat. These people are often colloquially referred to as the "Shabbos goy." Isn't this disingenuous? Taken to an extreme example, in the case of a murder for hire, the law imputes criminal liability on the person who did the hiring even though they didn't pull the trigger. If a person is restricted from doing a certain act by Talmudic law, how can he legally get around the prohibition by simply getting a nonobservant person to do the thing he is not allowed to do in his place?
Why do Jews observe Shabbat from Friday evening to Saturday evening and Christians observe the Sabbath on Sunday? If Christians incorporate Genesis into their Bible as first book of the Old Testament, why is there a discrepancy?
What is the significance in Judaism of the colors blue and white? Many talit are white with blue stripes. The Israeli flag is white with blue stripes and a star of David. It seems like a common color theme. Is there any significance? Or did it evolve in popular culture over time like red and green for Christmas?
When I visited the Western Wall on my Birthright trip, I noticed men and women prayed separately and there was a third area for egalitarian prayer. Why do men and women, at least Orthodox men and women, pray separately?
There is a special hand greeting done in the Star Trek series by Mr. Spock to "live long and prosper". I was told it’s a Hebrew blessing and I have also seen it on plaques and souvenirs in Israel. Would you please help me learn more about it? Thanks.