Is the following statement a hadith: “If a person eats seven ajwa dates, poison and magic will not affect him”?

The Details of the Question

- A philosopher denies a hadith that he says exists in Kutub as-Sitta. What is the interpretation of this hadith?
"If a person eats seven ajwa dates in the morning, poison and magic will not affect him until the night."
- He accuses the hadith of being illogical. What is the explanation of the hadith?

The Answer

Dear Brother / Sister,

There are many types of dates. The most valuable of them is the one that grows in Aliya region in the direction of Najd in Madinah and that is mentioned a lot in hadiths is “ajwa”. The Prophet (pbuh) says ajwa, which he describes as fruit of Paradise, is a remedy for poisoning (Tirmidhi, Tibb 22), and in another narration, seven ajwa dates eaten on an empty stomach in the morning is a remedy for poisoning and magic that day. (Bukhari, At’ima 43, Tibb 52, 56; Muslim, Ashriba 155)

According to some scholars, the property of ajwa mentioned above originates from the fact that the Messenger of Allah planted it himself with his own hands or said a prayer of blessing for it.

As a matter of fact, Khattabi explains those hadiths as follows:

"The reason why the date called ajwa protects against poison and magic is the blessing of the prayer the Prophet said for Madinah dates. It is not due to the property of that date." (see Ayni, Umdatul Qari, 17/182; Ahmed Davudoğlu, Sahih-i Müslim Türcüme ve Şerhi, 9/371-372)

The following narration supports that view:

When Sa’d Ibn Abi Waqqas became ill, the Messenger of Allah (pbuh) went to visit him. Sa’d said,

“He put his blessed hands between my nipples and I felt its coolness at my heart. Then, he said,

'You are suffering from heart sickness. Go to al-Harith Ibn Kaladah, brother of Thaqif, for treatment. He is a man who gives medical treatment. He should take seven ajwa dates of Madinah, grind them with their kernels, add milk and oil, and then you should eat them.'(Abu Dawud, Tibb 12)

Sa’d took his advice and got over that illness.  

Nawawi states the following about ajwa dates and the number seven:

"Allah and His Messenger know the wisdom behind that date and the number seven; we cannot know it. However, we should believe that there is a wisdom behind it like the number of the rak’ahs of prayers and the amount of zakah." (Nawawi, Sharhu Müslim, the hadith in question)

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