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Why do scholarly discussions of Jewish law hinge so strongly on precedent when the prescient can be rooted in the cultural/scientific practices of the time that precedent was set?

My underlying assumptions in this question may be incorrect. I’m thinking, for example, of the rationale for not using electric switches on the sabbath. If work isn’t allowed and making a fire is work and a spark is a fire and flipping a switch causes a spark then flipping a switch is work. But of course flipping a switch isn’t actually laborious. So why base future opinions on past opinions that don’t seem to be pertinent either now or when the original law was written?

I’m not Jewish. I’m not asking this for any reason other than genuine curiosity.

Thanks for your time

submitted by /u/MarsMonkey88
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Source: Reditt