Q. Is the current chaos in the Middle East perhaps signs of Imaam Mahdi’s imminent appearance? Please comment.
A. We do not know if Imaam Mahdi’s appearance is imminent or not. Only Allah Ta’ala knows when Imaam Mahdi will appear. While total anarchy and chaos will reign and herald his arrival, no one can say if the current Middle Eastern scenario is the stage for his appearance. We venture to say that Imaam Mahdi’s appearance will be heralded by total chaos and anarchy in Saudi Arabia. The writing is already on the wall for the Saudi regime. America will usher in the demise of the Saudi regime, and in its wake will ensue the worst anarchy.
For Imaam Mahdi to appear there appears to be the need for total chaos in Saudi Arabia. Imaam Mahdi (Alayhis
salaam) will make his appearance in Makkah Muazzamah. He will be recognized and appointed the Ameer by the Abdaal who will locate him making Tawaaf of Baitullah Shareef.
We can theorize that when he makes an appearance, there will be no government in Saudi Arabia. It will be chaos and anarchy. Thus, there will be no need for him to fight an established government in Saudi Arabia. On his appointment he will raise his army in Hijaaz, subdue the country and move rapidly to Damascus, conquering all the land he traverses. And, Allah knows best.
Q. Is it true that Imam Mahdi has been born?
A. According to the Hadith, Imaam Mahdi (alayhis salaam) will make his appearance at the age of 40 years. We have been hearing for decades that Imaam Mahdi has already been born. In terms of this theory or conjecture, Imaam Mahdi should now be well over 40 years, yet he has not made his appearance.
Since the early 90’s the theory of Imaam Mahdi’s imminent appearance was being propagated by some learned men. The obsession with his imminent appearance constrained some Ulama to even fix the year of his appearance. This theory became a somewhat grounded belief.
Hence some Ulama claimed that Imaam Mahdi (alayhis salaam) would appear during the Hajj of the year 1424 A.H. (2003). The certitude which they had developed induced them to advise the Hujjaaj not to proceed to Mina during the Hajj of 1424 as there would prevail great strife and bloodshed which will be triggered by Imaam Mahdi’s appearance in that year.
But, the event never materialized. Muslims had been told repeatedly by some Ulama that Imaam Mahdi would appear in the year 2001. When he did not appear in 2001, the date was extended to 2002, then 2003. After all these predictions and postponements have failed, we now ‘hear’ nothing but silence from the quarters of prediction.
One aged shaikh of tasawwuf who incidentally is a professor and an author of several Deeni books had exceeded all limits of propriety in this matter, informed us as recently as a few months ago that he had been in telephonic communication with Imaam Mahdi (alayhis salaam), and that the announcement of his appearance is imminent. While we cannot accuse the eminent shaikh of fabricating a lie, we shall not be rendering him an injustice by concluding that he has become the victim of hallucination.
Those who make predictions of ‘certitude’ regarding the appearance of Imaam Mahdi (alayhis salaam) exceed the prescribed limits of the Shariah. It is incorrect and impermissible to attempt to supersede the Shariah. While Imaam Mahdi’s appearance is a fact of the Shariah, the precise occasion of his appearance has been withheld from our knowledge. It is improper to seek to give clarity to issues which the Shariah has left ambiguous.
The Shariah has not revealed the exact time or year of Imaam Mahdi’s appearance. It is therefore improper and ignorant to attempt to unravel the mystery surrounding the date of his appearance. Those who exceed the limits of the Shariah always succeed in making themselves appear ludicrous.
Imaam Mahdi (alayhis salaam) will appear at the decreed time of his appearance. Awareness of the precise time is of no significance. Of significance is our preparation for the journey beyond the Qabr—the journey which commences with Maut.
Q. I have come across a website which appears to be authentic. They have found mathematical and numerical trends within the Qur’aan and Hadith relating to the End Times. The date of Imaam Mahdi’s arrival can be calculated. What is your view?
A. What the Shariah has left ambiguous should be left ambiguous and not probed. Whatever dates for Imaam Mahdi’s appearance or for other events have been calculated are plain conjecture which is untenable and unreliable in the Shariah.
ADDENDUM: THE BLACK FLAGS
The Hadith narrations about the “Black Flags” are being used by some groups to portray themselves as the righteous army mentioned in the Hadith. Over the past centuries there were imposters who had also claimed to be Imaam Mahdi (alayhis salaam) as predicted in the Ahaadith.
The same stunt is now used regarding the Black Flags to gain support by deception. This stunt is generally employed by Salafi groups. Any group sporting black flags should not be blindly accepted merely on the basis of the black flags they flutter. The criterion is always the Shariah. Any activity and any group in conflict with the Shariah will be imposters.
The righteous army with Black Flags will emerge from the east in Khurasan. Imaam Mahdi (alayhis salaam) will be in that army unknown to the Mujahideen constituting the army. This army will initiate its operations before the appearance in public of Imaam Mahdi (alayhis salaam).
Furthermore, there is no certitude regarding this army. Who will be the Mujaahideen? From which nation will they be? When exactly will this army appear, etc.? It is best to leave ambiguous what the Shariah has left ambiguous. Theories and opinions are all conjecture.
Q. Who will come first: Imaam Mahdi or Nabi Isaa (alayhis salaam)?
A. Both will be in the same age. However, Imaam Mahdi (alayhis salaam) will appear first. Shortly thereafter Nabi Isaa (alayhis salaam) will descend from the heaven. He will appear in Damascus.
Q. Where will Imaam Mahdi (alayhis salaam) appear?
A. Imaam Mahdi (alayhis salaam) will be discovered by some Ulama and Abdaal whilst he will be making Tawaaf of Baitullah. They will make the announcement and take the oath of allegiance on his hands. Should Imaam Mahdi (alayhis salaam) appear while the current rulers are at the helm in Arabia, we are sure that the establishment Ulama-e-Soo’ will be the first to declare him as a ‘terrorist’, and appeal to the U.S. for protection. The Saudis, if they happen to be in power at that time, will most certainly try to apprehend him. But Allah’s aid will be with Imaam Mahdi (alayhis salaam). He will quickly eliminate the oppressors and with his army, he will swiftly eliminate all the evil rulers in the Muslim lands where he will be passing through. He will establish Islam in the way the Sahaabah had achieved.
A COMMENT ON THE DREAMS OF IMAM MAHDI SEEN BY THE SHAYKHS AND BUZURGHS OF THIS AGE
The Dreams, the Fitnah and the Signs of the Approaching Hour
Ignorance, intellectual calcification and moral bankruptcy have diverted the Muslim mind and heart from the Qur’aan and the Sunnah. Dreams appear to have a greater hold on the minds of Muslims of this era than the Warnings and Admonition of the Qur’aan and Ahaadith.
But the superficial concern which Muslims are displaying for the dreams about Dajjaal, etc. seen by some persons, evaporates within a few minutes of hearing about the dreams. These dreams being circulated widely are temporary features of topical importance. Beyond some interest and conversation, the dreams prove ineffectual for achieving moral reformation which is the asset lost to the Ummah of this age.
If the current spiral of fitan (plural of Fitnah – mischief, evil, anarchy) engulfing the nations of the world in general, and the Ummah in particular, cannot arouse Muslims from their villainous slumber and jolt them out of their indulgence in immorality and transgression, no amount of dreams of the Buzrugs will avail.
Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) warning the Ummah, said that when Amr Bil Ma’roof Nahyi Anil Munkar (Commanding virtue and prohibiting vice) is abandoned, then Allah Ta’ala will appoint over us such brutal tyrants who will show no mercy to our little ones and no respect to our elders.
The brutality and humiliation – the direct consequences of our misdeeds and rebellion – will hem in, disfigure and mutilate all members of the Ummah, be they infants, children, adults, men, women, the pious and the impious. No one will be spared when the Divine Axe falls on the Ummah. In this regard, the Qur’aan Majeed states:
“Beware of such a Fitnah (Divine Punishment) which will not only overtake the transgressors among you.”
At such a time of universal Athaab, Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) said that your Buzrugs will supplicate (make Dua), but their Duas will go unheeded.
It should be well understood that when the Athaab of Allah Ta’ala overtakes a community, then Duas and Thikr, whilst drowning will not avail. Duas at that time will not avert the Athaab. The Divine Chastisement will run its ordained course. Even the pious Buzrugs and the Ulama will be overtaken by the disastrous punishment of Allah Ta’ala, which assumes a variety of forms such as earthquakes, floods, hurricanes, fire, pestilence, volcano eruptions, drought, famine, internecine warefare (Muslims killing Muslims), and the imposition of kuffaar to unleash brutality and genocide.
All of these effects are being observed daily in our times. But no one heeds these palpable Signs of Qiyaamah and their immediate consequences which are being enacted in real life and which we observe and experience whilst we are fully awake. The Buzrugs are silent on the issues of the state of awakefulness. Their focus is more on dreams.
When the Warnings of the Qur’aan and Ahaadith which are materializing daily around us are inadequate to shake us and make us alert, what will the dreams achieve?
The Qur’aan and the Ahaadith tell us considerably more than the vague illusions of dreams. When the Fitan mentioned in the Ahaadith and which are unfolding in rapid succession are unable to arouse us from our slumber and unable to create in us the necessary fear, awareness and concern for our moral reformation and for submission to Allah’s Command and for the adoption of the Sunnah, what hope is there for dreams to create in the Muslim Ummah a stirring which could revolutionize the thinking, Imaan, and morality of Muslims?
The horrendous atrocities in Syria, Iraq, Afghanistan, Egypt, Palestine, Kashmir, and elsewhere, the earthquakes and floods occurring with increasing frequency, the collapse of buildings killing hundreds, and other disasters have not succeeded in opening the eyes of this Ummah. What hope is there for dreams to achieve the objective which the numerous other disasters fail to achieve?
The Muslim Ummah is not suffering merely from spiritual lethargy. On the contrary, Muslims are spiritually dead and morally rotten to the core. These are the issues which the Buzrugs are supposed to tackle. These are the issues to emphasize, not the dreams. If the dreams are true, the Buzrugs who are disseminating it should wake up and execute the Command of Amr Bil Ma’roof Nahyi Anil Munkar. Minus this vital requisite, it is meaningless to advise people to recite litanies of athkaar and dua, etc.
The Ummah is rotten. It stinks of sin and immorality. The application of perfume to a filthy stinking body is ignorance. The body should first be thoroughly washed and purified. Thereafter will follow new garments and perfume.
If the Buzrugs and Ulama are genuine in their concern for the safety of the Ummah and for Allah’s Athaab to be diverted, they should highlight to their respective communities the fisq, fujoor, bid’ah and shirk in which Muslims are wallowing.
Reciting duas without attending to the disease of flagrant transgression against Allah Ta’ala, will serve no benefit. Casting a veil of silence over the flagrant haraam perpetrations of the Ummah and advising Muslims to make dua, is ludicrous and ineffective. Muslims should be educated and informed of their wrongs and sins. Many Muslims indulge in sin because of the misguidance of the Ulama-e-Soo’.
The Buzrugs and Ulama are more concerned with their little entrenched empires – their superficial ‘khaanqas’ and their madaaris which have become moral and spiritual skeletons. The satanic diplomacy of silence of the Buzrugs and Ulama in the face of flagrant fisq and fujoor of not only the lay people, but of the Ulama and Buzrugs as well, has ruined the Ummah. Dreams will not extricate the Ummah from the morally rotten and degenerate abyss in which the Ummah is sliding.
The Buzrugs who are so diligently disseminating the dreams should, in their bayaans, tell the people of the evil of the pornography with which they are destroying their eyes, heart and Imaan viewing the filth on their computer and cell phone screens. Tell them of the filth of their haraam televisions. Tell them of their total abandonment of Hijaab. Tell them of the haraam media such as facebook, etc. Tell them of their indulgence in riba, gambling and liquor. Tell them of the malice and enmity they harbour for brother Muslims. Tell then of the haraam and mushtabah they are devouring. Tell them of the music they so much relish. Even the Musaajid are contaminated with cell phone music.
But the Buzrugs believe that silence is the right diplomacy. They believe that the circumstances dictate abandonment of Amr Bil Ma’roof Nahy Anil Munkar. These are all shaitaani deceptions. Shaitaan has succeeded in making the buzrugs and the ulama his camp followers. Draw the attention of Muslims to their flagrant acts of fisq, fujoor and bid’ah, and with the Ahaadith of Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) and the threats of Athaab in the Qur’aan warn them of the impending disasters which are overhanging us like intensely dark clouds.
There is no need for dreams to understand that the terrible storm of Divine Chastisement has already commenced. The Knock-out blow is not in the too distant future. All of this in mentioned in the Ahaadith. Tidings in dreams – if these are true and not fabrications – benefit only the Muttaqeen. It does not serve as a warning to the flagrant fussaaq, fujjaar and to the Ulama-e-Soo’ and the impostor buzrugs who do not have the haziest idea of the meaning of Tasawwuf, hence they attempt to survive with their rituals of bid’ah.
Warnings are heeded by only those who are genuinely pious. They are not in need of dreams to jolt them, for they are always awake and alert. They are always in the state of Inaabat ilal laah. They turn to Allah Ta’ala with repentance, greater reformation of the nafs and A’maal-e-Saalihah. Of what benefit are duas for people who refuse to abandon their evil televisions, evil computer and cell phone pornography? Such people have no idea of the meaning of Taubah and Istighfaar.
Reciting some Istighfaar formulae whilst continuing the indulgence in fisq and fujoor, television and cell phone, carrion and riba, zina and gambling, bid’ah and kufr, etc., will not avail.
Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) himself has informed us that the Dua of even the Buzrugs will not be heeded by Allah Ta’ala when the ultimate decree of Allah’s Athaab arrives. The Qur’aan Majeed says:
“For every Ummah there is a term (an appointed time). When their appointed time arrives, it will not be not be advanced nor delayed by a moment.”
This absolutely rebellious and treacherous Ummah of today comes within the scope of the Qur’aanic aayat:
“When We (i.e. Allah Ta’ala) intend to destroy (the people) of a city, We command its affluent ones (i.e. they are given respite and free run). Then they perpetrate their fisq (flagrant acts of immorality) in the city. Then the Decree (of Punishment) becomes confirmed for (the people) of the city. Then We utterly destroy and deracinate it.” (i.e. the entire community is utterly uprooted and destroyed).
If the Buzrugs who are disseminating the dreams about Dajjaal, have genuine concern and affection for the Ummah, they should set in motion programs of genuine Amr Bil Ma’roof Nahyi Anil Munkar, and not confine themselves to ‘big night’ talks of the virtues of these auspicious nights. If the people are made aware of the Signs of Qiyaamah as explained by Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam), they will not be unduly concerned with ineffectual dreams which may be true or fabricated.
Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) has explained in detail the dangers of Dajjaal and the signs which will be a prelude to his appearance. If Rasulullah’s predictions, warnings and the Signs of Qiyaamah he has indicated and which are currently transpiring do not arouse us from the inertia of corruption in which we are fossilized, there is no hope that the dreams of some Buzrugs will benefit us in any way.
We have been frequently hearing since the past few decades of ‘revelations’ of Imaam Mahdi (alayhis salaam) having already been born, and attributed to Buzruigs of the time. Then, not so long ago, some Ulama declared with the greatest conviction that Imaam Mahdi would be appearing in 2001, then 2003. The honourable Ulama have fallen silent since their predictions based on dreams and conjecture did not not materialize.
Whatever the Shariah has left ambiguous and hidden should be retained as such. It is contumacious to over reach and to dabble in issues on which the Qur’aan and Ahaadith are silent. Bid’ah generates when Deeni issues are wrongly manipulated.
Consider the advice of one Buzrug who said on the basis of the recent Dajjaal-dreams that people should recite Surah Kahf daily. This advice is overstepping the limits of the Shariah because Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) had advised that this Surah be recited every Friday, not daily.
Whoever wishes to recite this Surah or two or ten Surahs daily, is free to do so. But, when a Buzrug propagates an act under guise of it being ibaadat for public consumption, he sows the seeds of Bid’ah.
Instead of innovating a practice, the Buzrug should draw attention to the vice the community flagrantly practises, and warn them of the dire consequences of their misdeeds. Of what benefit is it for a man who flagrantly indulges in fisq and fujoor, television and cell phone pornography, zina of the eyes, heart and body, etc. to recite Surah Kahf daily? The Buzrug should rather remind people of the evil they flagrantly perpetrate, and explain to them the importance of the Sunnah.
Among the Signs of the Approaching Hour which will be the prelude to the appearance if Dajjaal, Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) said that:
- Amaanat (trust) in all fields will be abused and misappropriated
- The husband will obey his wife (in fulfilling all her haraam desires)
- Knowledge of the Deen will be pursued for worldly objectives
- Children will be insolently disobedient to their mother
- A man will draw his friend close to himself and distance himself from his father
- Voices will become loud in the Musaajid
- The Musaajid will be beautifully adorned structures, but devoid of Deeni guidance
- Nothing will remain of the Qur’aan, but its written text
- A nation will appoint as its leader the one who is most corrupt
- Bid’ah will be regarded to be Sunnah
- Music will be excessively prevalent (Today we hear music even in the Musjid when cell phones ring)
- The genuine people of piety will disappear and only ‘rubbish’ will remain
- The worst of the people will be their Ulama
- Knowledge of the Deen will disappear and jahl (ignorance) will take its place. Juhala will seek ‘fatwas’ from Juhala (Morons). They will be astray and lead others astray.
- Paying Zakaat will seem like paying a fine.
When these vices transpire, Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) said:
“Then be prepared for red winds (this could mean hurricanes, tornadoes, cyclones, etc.), earthquakes, people being swallowed by the earth, disfigurement of people, and showers of stones from the heaven.”
All of these vices are transpiring right in front of our eyes, and the incidence of earthquakes, floods, etc., is incremental. Yet, no one takes notice – and so will it remain until the universal Athaab overtakes those who dwell in ghaflat.
These are the issues which the Buzrugs and Ulama should disseminate and emphasize. Dreams are by the way and serve as reminders for only those of strong Imaan.
[Answers by Hazrat Maulana Ahmad Sadeq Desai]