Consequences for Immodesty

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Consequences for one who is not modest in his dress: [1]

The Sages stated that “With the revealing of the hands the house will drip”. This means to say that through the laziness of a person not being careful in properly covering the body “the house will drip”, which means that his body will grow skin ailments. From here we learn that a person has to cover his entire body.



One may never reveal any area of the normally covered parts of the body. This applies even at night, in the privacy of one’s room. It applies when one is getting dressed and undressed, and hence one is to only do so under the covers. It likewise applies in a bathroom, and thus one may only uncover the necessary parts


Are the above modestly laws of dress a requirement from the letter of the law or a mere act of piety?

According to Admur[2] the above modesty laws are an absolute Halachic requirement and not a mere matter of piety, and so rule other Poskim[3]. Nevertheless there are Poskim[4] that learn the above law is a mere act of piety.


A Maaseh Shehaya:[5]

Rav Yisrael Nagra, a student of the Arizal, would receive a visitation of supernal angels upon singing hymns at his table. Such a lofty and special experience it was that even the angels came down to receive the Divine glory that shined during the occasion. One time it occurred that he rolled up his sleeves at the table due to the heat in the room and a heavenly voice declared “Flee from this man who diminishes the honor of heaven”, and the angels all disappeared. The Arizal, who was in his house at the time, had a vision of this entire occurrence and revealed it to his student Rav Yisrael Nagra. From that day on he was careful to always properly cover himself and the angels then returned to hear his sweet melody.


[1] Kama 2/9.

[2] Basra 2/1; 2/6; unlike Kama 2/1 which implies it is not an obligation.


In Basra 2/1 Admur rules that the “Sages commanded to be modest” and therefore a person “needs to act in modesty” and “therefore one may not reveal his flesh”. Likewise in Basra 2/6 Admur rules it is “forbidden to walk or even sit with uncovered head because of modesty”.

Ruling of Kama: In Kama 2/1Admur writes that it is merely proper to beware [“Tov Lizaher”] to dress under the covers. 

[3] Mishneh Halachos 6/2

[4] Kama 2/1; Igros Moshe Yoreh Deah 3/68-4 and 47: “The laws of modesty by man, to cover the body, is not a complete prohibition but is rather an act of extra piety”; Az Nidbaru 6/40-41; This law is completely omitted from the Rambam; See Piskeiy Teshuvos 2/1 footnote 1

Ruling of M”B: The M”B 2/1 2 writes that one needs to always beware to cover his body.

[5] Brought in Pela Hayoetz “Achila”

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