Q: “What is the difference between the evil eye and envy and how do we protect ourselves from them?”
A: “There is no practical difference , but the origin of the evil eye is from envy, that is because the one who causes the evil eye – and we seek refuge in Allah – has in his heart envy for the servants of Allah and he does not love any good for anyone. If therefore he sees something from a person that pleases him and he is envious then this emotion eminates from him and afflicts the individual he envies, and that is why Allah said, “و من شر حاسد إذا حسد – And from the evil of the envier when he envies”.
As for protection from the evil of the envier and the evil eye:
1 – Trust and dependance in Allah, and that a person does not turn to these affairs and give them importance and concern, rather he shuns away from them.
2 – Using the beneficial supplications mentioned in the Qur’an and Sunnah for they are the best of protection for a person, just like what has been authenticated from the prophet صلى الله عليه و سلم regarding Ayat ul-Kursee and that the one who recites it at night then there will not cease to be a protector upon him and shaytaan will not approach him until he awakens in the morning.
Regarding this I say this point – The imaginations and misconceptions [whisperings] have increased in people in recent times, so they consider [if anything occurs] it must be evil eye, magic or jinn, to the extent if some of them catch a cold they will say “it is evil eye, magic or jinn”[!]. Turn and shun away from all this [such thoughts] and instead trust and depend in Allah. Do not entertain such whispers so they may depart from you, for indeed whenever a person allows a thought to enter his mind he becomes preoccupied by it, and if only he were to ignore it so it would depart from him and he would not be afflicted by harm. This is like if a person is afflicted by an injury, if he was to ignore it and preoccupy himself with other affairs he would forget the injury and not be focussed on the pain, however if he focuses on it he feels the pain.”
[Summarized from Shaikh ibn ul-Uthaymeen's