Ruling On The Hadith Of The Fly – Shaykh ibn Uthaymeen [Video|Ar-En Subtitles]

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Prophet Muhummed (sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallaam) said: “If a housefly falls in the drink of anyone of you, he should dip it (in the drink), for one of its wings has a disease and the other has the cure for the disease.” (Al-Bukhari)

Also, Ibn Maj’ah narrated that the Messenger of Allah (sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallaam) said: “One of the fly’s wings carries poison while the other carries antidote. When it falls in the food, dip it, for the sake of Allah, for verily He (Allah) makes the poison (take effect) first and He makes the cure come last.”

This Hadith contains two areas of interest, Fiqh (Islamic Jurisprudence) and medicinal. As for the Fiqh part, the Hadith states that when a fly falls in water or fluids, it does not make it impure, according to the majority of the scholars. None among the early generations contradicted this ruling.

The Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallaam) ordered the fly that falls on the food be dipped in it, thus killing the fly, especially if the food is hot. If the fly’s death inside the food would make the food impure, the Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallaam) would have ordered us to discard the food. On the contrary, the Prophet sought to salvage the food.

As for the medicinal value contained in the Hadith, Abu ‘Ubaidah (may Allah be pleased with him) said that the purpose behind dipping the fly (in the drink) is to extract the antidote from (its other wing) just as the poison was extracted from (the wing that fell on the food).

Houseflies carry poisonous materials as evidenced by the effect of their bite, such as rash and infection, and this poison is the fly’s weapon of defense. When the fly falls into what harms it, it tries to defend itself with the available weapons.

The Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallaam) ordered that we neutralize the poisonous substances produced by the fly with the antidote that Allah has kept on its other wing. The fly should then be submerged in the water or the food so that the antidote could neutralize the effect of the poison. This is a remedy that the best medical minds would never be able to discover on their own, because it is coming from Prophetic knowledge.

The doctors who have good knowledge and comprehension submit to this Prophetic remedy and admit that he who was sent with it, is indeed the perfect human being who is supported by divine revelation that is beyond human power.

[From: The Medicine of the Prophet| By: Ibn Qayyim is an 8th century (Hijri) Islamic scholar whose writings are popular in the Islamic world even today]

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