The question I'm asking is on the basis of Ayin Hara, I'm confused a bit, since there is an halachah that a person can't give more then 20% away (debatable don't want to get into that) but there is also the part where a person should try not to create an evil eye.

What's the point of only being able to give 20% away if you can't even enjoy the rest due to any money you spend has a big chance of causing an evil eye (given many items a person may purchase will be seen by others whether it is clothes, house, car, watch, etc)

  • Related judaism.stackexchange.com/questions/14484/…
    – Chatzkel
    Jul 23, 2021 at 1:47
  • Apparently relates to the Ramban on kedoshim tiheyu, also the Ohr HaChaim criticises Jews who build big houses and attract attention.
    – pcoz
    Jul 23, 2021 at 1:51
  • All the limits on ma’aser kesafim that you are asking about pertain to a person who never sinned. See the discussion of this in the Tanya. Jul 23, 2021 at 2:24
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    Isn't the point of not giving more than 20% explicitly stated so that you can put the rest in savings and not need help later on?
    – Double AA
    Jul 23, 2021 at 11:54

3 Answers 3


Firstly, if one is extremely wealthy and has more than enough money, he is allowed to give more than 20 percent.

Secondly, the issue of ayin hora is not entirely clear that it is halacha based. The Pela Yoetz does indeed say it's related to Venishmartem Meod Linafshosechem. But, Rav Moshe Feinstein wrote (Igrot Moshe – Even Ha’Ezer 3:26) – We definitely need to be concerned with the ayin hara, but not overly particular. With these types of matters, the principle is – the one that is not bothered, it doesn’t bother him, like we find with the issue of zugot (pairs of things) in Pesachim 110a.

See this link for a more comprehensive outline


Lastly, one can give away whatever he wants to tzedaka in his will as there is no concern of becoming poor at that point.

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    "if one is extremely wealthy and has more than enough money, he is allowed to give more than 20 percent” this is debatable.
    – Double AA
    Jul 25, 2021 at 1:23

There is a well know story about a Gvir, a wealthy religious man who came to Rav Aron Yehuda Leib Steinman Zt"l (who was very concerned for Ayin Hara).

He asked whether his new fancy car in his driveway is a concern of Ayin Hara. Rav Steinman asked him: "Have you ever finished Sha"s, the whole Talmud?" He responded that he had not. "What about one or two tractates?", the Gvir responded that he had never completed a whole tractate. Rav Steinman thus said: "Then what do people have to be jealous of...?"

However Rav Steinman did mention several times that seeking attention with fancy houses and cars could be detrimental in some amount, so one shouldn't go too overboard.

  • After these responses, I think the question may need to be, what can a person spend their money on, of which the average person can't afford? (since from the responses, no big house, and no cars or anything that attracts attention, which doesn't leave a lot, just vacations, private homes in far away areas ect) Jul 23, 2021 at 16:06

The Talmud does say you must not give more than 20 percent so you don't become a charity case yourself. But I can think of two other reasons. First, enjoy your money. The Talmud also says that on judgment day you will be taken to task if it turns out you didn't enjoy life's pleasures, if they were permitted and affordable [Kiddushin Y 4:12]. Second, it takes money to make money. If you are good at investing, giving more than 20 percent means the poor will get less out of you in the long run.

  • Could you please give a source for the Talmud that says that you'll be taken to task if it turns out that you didn't enjoy life's pleasures, if they were permitted and affordable
    – larry909
    Jul 26, 2021 at 5:41
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    @larry909 -- Rav said: In the World to Come, we will have to account, before the judgment seat of God, for every pleasure we denied ourselves in this world, if it was permitted and affordable. [Kiddushin Y 4:12] Jul 26, 2021 at 14:30
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    This is not a trivial application of that Gemara judaism.stackexchange.com/a/31900/759 cc @larry it probably refers to sampling variety and saying blessings to praise God for it, not test driving every fancy car you can afford for fun.
    – Double AA
    Jul 26, 2021 at 14:49

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