Besides for the minhag that one should not wear jewelry on Yom HaKipurim because of the "fear of the judgment" there is also the minhag to not wear gold (even as a decoration on a tallis or kittel) because "the accuser cannot be the defender". Would this also apply to white gold? Would this also apply to fake gold?

i.e. Is this an issue of the reality of the sin of the golden calf (and the reality is that white gold is gold) or is this an issue of what it brings to your mind (by the way it even just looks like gold)?

  • Gold plate or even fake gold-painted objects would be good differentiators from the other side. When you look at white gold, do you not think gold?
    – Isaac Moses
    Commented Sep 1, 2010 at 3:52
  • Looks like silver to a layman such as myself.
    – Yahu
    Commented Sep 1, 2010 at 3:59
  • 1
    I would say the nature of the issue- "recalling the sin", speaks toward using real gold. Using white gold is the same. I am decorating myself for Hashem with the metal I used for a sin. The fact that a minority of another metal was mixed in doesn't obviate the problem. Source: YDK's boich
    – YDK
    Commented Sep 1, 2010 at 4:15
  • YDK, you should really post your sevara as an answer, not a comment. After all you are the only one who even attempted to answer the question.
    – Yahu
    Commented Sep 2, 2010 at 4:49

2 Answers 2


The golden calf is the reason the Ben Ish Hai gives in one of his responsum, unfortunately I know longer remember where. In addition to the Kabbalistic aspect of Gold being related to Din(which the Zohar(Parashat Ki Tisa) brings as the reason that Aaron HaKohen made the Eigel out of Gold so that the sitra achra would be restrained).

White gold is an interesting option, and Sephardi women(even the wives of Mekubalim and big Rabbis) will often wear it on Yom HaKippurim because it represents Din sweetened with mercy(which is what we are going for).

Fake gold would be a problem al pi sod, but al pi pshat it should be fine.

  • Great, but you did not address my question!
    – Yahu
    Commented Sep 2, 2010 at 0:00

One should not wear any metal on yom kippur nor any leather as our rabbis tought us. a day of which one is begging for his life by gd's compassion and mercy we show our selves as an oni, one who is as a poor man in order to invoke the 13 attributes of mercy of hashem, how may one present himself as an oni with jewels or leather wear or any that may seem to be showing a sense of pride. we present our sins in order that we be forgiven for them by addressing change in our negative character traits our detachment to materialism which is hard if one is so attached to his or her jewelry.

  • Correct, but the question is disregarding that.
    – YDK
    Commented Sep 1, 2010 at 17:34
  • Koachya, even an atara on a talis or on a kittle as brought down by the elef lamateh as an old custom?
    – Yahu
    Commented Sep 1, 2010 at 23:59
  • If your davening in a minion on yom kippur and majority do not wear it then it wouldn't be proper for you to wear it in the first place, but on shabbat its more proper because we consider shabbat as a kalla and even on a romantic meal, one is with his wife he would wear his most attracting of clothes (as on shabbat),but picture yourself going before a king of judgement that knows all that is in your heart, all sins (intentional or unintentional) the last thing that would be on ones mind is jewelry because it is a life and death situation(one should really try to dress as pious as he can)
    – Koachyah
    Commented Sep 2, 2010 at 3:42
  • 1
    Koachya, What in the world is your source for this?!
    – Yahu
    Commented Sep 2, 2010 at 4:48

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .