the biggest problem in this whole debate is the misunderstanding of 'contagion'. we will in sha'Allah elaborate in my paper, but here is one of the key premises: contagion WITHOUT any cause (or agent) - is `adwaa. this was the belief of jahiliyyah. contagion BECAUSE of a cause (agent or sabab) is commonly observed and does not contradict the concept of "there is no `adwaa". for example, one can get sick because of poisoning. one can get sick because of a snake bite. one can get sick because of n-number of "CAUSES". if a man sits next to a person who has perfume on his hands, and upon his touch a person sitting next to him was smeared with some perfume and hence smells good - do we say that 'fragrance flew from person A to person B'? certainly not. if person-A has deadly poison on his hands, and shakes the hand person-B; and B passes his own (now poison-smeared hand) upon his face or lips and gets sick or dies - do we say that "disease, venom or death jumped from A to B"? of course, there will be people who will try to counter this with 'we have never heard of poison killing or causing sickness by a little smear'. one could counter them with: 'what about radioactive poisoning like litvinenko? or polonium as poison? (this abstract from lancet is enough for our argument). i am sure, they will respond with radioactive poisoning being a 'medical belief' and not being an 'islamic belief'. ---- when there is a cause and effect, the concept of adwa (as in mysteriously being transferred from A to B) does not apply. notice, the common wording (ignoring varying additions and omissions) of the hadith is: there is no contagion (should be qualified in translation: "without a cause") there is nothing such as a bad omen there is no evil in an owl there is no harm in the month of safar. ---- if we qualify 'contagion' on account of a physical and observable cause - as a 'virus' in the present case - there is no contradiction in the hadith per se. and also resolves the predicament that hadith-masters had to face in reconciling the report with commonly observed phenomena. microbiology and the concept of pathogens causing disease is a relatively recent discovery. even though microbes were discovered in the 16th century, what actually happened was not understood until the late 1800s; pasteur and koch being the pioneers. source: https://www.britannica.com/science/microbiology ---- it is unfair to blame islamic scholars prior to the 1940s - who were trying to reconcile hadith text with what was known by experience; HOWEVER, no one knew WHY. many islamic scholars rejected the idea that disease 'jumps' from A to B - citing the literal meaning of the hadith. some hadith masters, however said that the hadith CAN be explained in a way that could reconcile with experience and 'medical belief' at that time, that INDEED, being in close proximity of a person with CERTAIN diseases could cause those in contact to be afflicted with the same disease without a proper explanation of WHY. this also explains the generalisation - treating ALL diseases as contagious and posing the question - if X, why not Y? plus other factors such as immunity, response to infection is not the same by all individuals, presence of OTHER diseases, other health parameters etc were not at all taken into consideration. we have mentioned imam muslim's demise by eating dates. it is quite possible that imam muslim raHimahullah, was a diabetic and an intake of so much sugar led to a spike in glucose levels and contributed to his demise (wAllahu a'alam). without knowledge about diabetes, we cannot make a generic statement that 'DATES ARE HEALTHY FOOD FOR EVERY ONE'. objections by alahazrat on medical opinions are of this nature - treating disease as borne out of simple causes and not taking into consideration various factors, simply because that knowledge was not available at that time. and whatever was known was still speculative/theoretical and not empirical. (wAllahu a'alam). ---- based on the knowledge in our time, we have to reconcile the apparently contradictory statements in the hadith. Allah ta'ala knows best.