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Friday, February 1, 2008

The Mahdi Will Oppose Terror and Violence

In his hadiths the Prophet (saas) told us that the Mahdi will be opposed to terror and violence, and that the anarchic environment and all acts of terror will come to an end in his day.

The hadiths state that in the time of the Mahdi all weapons will fall silent and wars will come to an end:

War will lay down its burden (arms and the like). (Sunan Ibn Majah, 10/334; Imam Sharani)

No Blood Will Be Shed in the Time of the Mahdi

Again according to the hadiths, the Mahdi will bring justice to the whole world, but not one single drop of blood will be shed. The Mahdi will be opposed to terror and violence. War and conflict will come to an end. Yet the Mahdi will follow a very peaceful path as he does all this. This attribute of the Mahdi is set out as follows in the hadith:

In the same way that bees gather round the queen, so people will gather round the Mahdi. He will fill the world, once filled with oppression, with justice instead. Such will be his justice that the sleeping man will not be awakened and no blood will be shed. The world will return to the Age of Happiness. (al-Qawl al-Mukhtasar, pp. 29 and 48)

The Mahdi’s Intellectual Activities and Struggle Will Make Islamic Moral Values Victorious

The hadiths tell us that, just like the Prophet (saas), the Mahdi will treat people with love and compassion, resolve problems by peaceful means, and call on people to have moral virtue and faith. The Mahdi’s struggle against atheistic ideologies (philosophies that deny Allah) will be carried out in the realm of ideas, and he will defeat those heretical ideologies using the wisest and most rational of methods.

Peace and Security Will Reign in the Time of the Mahdi

Nobody’s nose will bleed, nobody will suffer harm and nobody will be awoken from sleep in the time of the Mahdi. This is also one of the clearest proofs that the Mahdi will wage his struggle on the intellectual plane. He will neutralize atheistic movements (philosophies that deny Allah) by means of his intellectual work, and will thus ensure the supremacy of Islamic moral values. The hadiths tell us that the Mahdi’s struggle will be a peaceful one:
The Mahdi… will walk in peace. (Signs of Qiyamah, p. 173)

By means of him (the Mahdi), Allah will put an end to blind strife. Security and peace will reign in the world... (Signs of Qiyamah, p. 164)

The Mahdi will follow in the path of the Prophet, he will not awaken the sleeping man and no blood will be spilt. (Signs of Qiyamah, p. 163)

In his time, neither a man will be awoken from sleep, nor will a person’s nose bleed. (Ibn Hajar al-Haythami, Al-Qawl al-Mukhtasar, p. 44)

In a climate of violence and terror it is impossible for a sleeping person not to be awakened. But according to the sayings of the Prophet (saas), the Mahdi bring about the supremacy of Islamic moral values in such a calm, intellectual and cultural environment that it “will not even awaken the sleeping man.” Indeed, people can only attain understanding, reflect and research, in an atmosphere of peace. The Prophet (saas) received revelation when he was meditating in the very calm atmosphere of Mount Hira. The way that people withdraw to the calm of mosques and other places shows how they need peace in order to be able to think deeply.

The importance of calm is also stressed in the Qur’an. This atmosphere of calm that the Mahdi will establish in the End Times will prepare the way for people to read and think, to be able to see the truth, and to believe.

The Mahdi Will Emerge from Istanbul and Spiritually Conquer the City

In the hadiths the Prophet (saas) told that the Mahdi would emerge from Istanbul.

Narrated Umm Salamah, Ummul Mu'minin:

The Prophet (saas) said: “… a man of the people of Medina [the Mahdi] will come to Mecca. Some of the people of Mecca will come to him, bring him out against his will and swear allegiance to him between the Corner and the Maqam. … (Sunan Abu Dawud, Book 36, Number 4273)

Ahmad recorded a hadith by Allah ibn 'Amr, who said: "… The Prophet (saas) said, 'Six things will happen to this Ummah: … The sixth is the conquest of a city.' I asked, 'O Messenger of Allah, which city?' He said, 'Constantinople.'"

(*) This is the conquest of Constantinople by the Mahdi. (Signs of Qiyamah, p. 204; Ramuz al-Ahadith, 296)

The Mahdi Will Seize Istanbul with Tasbih and Takbir (by remembering Allah and telling of His truth)

We are told in the hadiths that the Mahdi’s conquest of Istanbul will be a spiritual one. The Mahdi will use no violence as he makes the Islamic morality prevail in Istanbul and the rest of the world, and will achieve this solely through the remembrance of Allah and praise of His names. The way that the Mahdi will be victorious solely with takbir and tasbih is described as follows in the hadiths:

The Hour will not come until Almighty Allah ensures the conquest of Istanbul, the center of the Roman Empire, by His believing servants with tasbih and takbir. (Ramuz al-Ahadith, p. 478)

The Hour will not come until Almighty Allah ensures the conquest of Constantinople and the Roman (lands) for believers through tasbih and takbir. (Daylami, al-Firdaws, 5/82, no: 7524; at-Tabarani, al-Mu`jam al-Kabir, 17/15,21)

They will conquer Constantinople with Tasbih and Takbir (saying "Subhan Allah" and "Allahu Akbar"), and they will obtain booty the like of which has never been seen… (Ibn Majah)

As reported from Amr ibn Awf;

Allah will better him [forgive him, or give him success and the inspiration of wisdom and guidance] in a night. He will capture the Roman city [Istanbul] with takbir… (Muhyiddin ibn al-Arabi, al-Futuhat al- Makkiya, section 366, Vol. 3, pp. 327- 328)

The Mahdi Will Move Step by Step and Nullify Atheistic Systems One by One

It is revealed in the hadiths of the Prophet (saas) that first one of the city’s towers and then another will collapse during the Mahdi’s conquest of Istanbul. It can be seen from this that the Mahdi will tear down the bastions of the unbelievers one by one and will move in stages. The term “he will capture the city without using arms and weapons,” which appears in the hadiths also shows that the Mahdi’s gradual struggle will take place in the intellectual and cultural realm, by calling on the names of Allah:

... They will only capture the Roman city, Istanbul, through the takbir. With the first takbir one-third of the ramparts will collapse, and another third at the second takbir, and the remaining walls will collapse with the third. They will capture the city without using arms and weapons. This is the truth itself, which is akin to success. (Muhyiddin ibn al-Arabi, al-Futuhat al-Makkiya, section 366, Vol. 3, pp. 327- 328)

Iqdud Durar says: "Constantinople has seven ramparts. Each is twenty-one Turkish yards long, and has a hundred gates. The last rampart around the city is 10 Turkish yards wide. It was built on the inlet that flows into the Roman sea. The sea extends to the provinces of the Romans and to Andalusia.”

The Mahdi will plant a standard by the shore when he goes to make ablution for the morning prayer, and the water will move away. He will approach people through this path that opens and cry, “Now you, too, cross. Almighty Allah has parted the waters for you, just as He did for the Children of Israel.” And they will cross. They will utter the takbir and the shocks this time will be more intense. With the third takbir, the twelve towers will collapse. From there they will enter directly into the city... (Signs of Qiyamah, p. 181)

During the conquest of Constantinople the Mahdi will plant a standard when he goes to make ablution for the morning prayer, and the water will divide in two and withdraw from him. He will cross to the other side through this path that opens and say, “O people, learn from this. The sea has parted its waters for us, just as it did for the tribe of Israel.” They will utter the takbir again and again and with twelve takbirs the twelve towers of the city will collapse. (al-Qawl al-Mukhtasar, pp. 15-75)

In The Time of the Mahdi Social Justice and Security Will Reign over All the World

We are told in the hadiths that the age of the Mahdi will be one of peace, security and justice. “The sheep will graze with the wolf” and “children will play with snakes and scorpions but will come to no harm.” Some of the hadiths describing this climate read as follows:

... Everywhere will be safe... (Al-Burhan fi Alamat al-Mahdi Akhir al-Zaman, p. 58)

... In his day the sheep will graze with the wolf, and children will play with snakes and scorpions... (Imam al-Suyuti, Signs of Qiyamah, Death and Resurrection, p. 179, 1699)

Oppression of and Cruelty towards Women Will End in the Time of the Mahdi

... He will fill the world with security and small groups of women will even be able to go on the hajj unescorted by men. (al-Qawl al-Mukhtasar, p. 47)
One woman will be able to go on the hajj unafraid with five women unescorted by any man. (Imam al-Suyuti, Signs of Qiyamah, Death and Resurrection, p. 179)

It appears from the hadiths that when the Mahdi appears the widespread oppression of and violence towards women will come to an end. Women in all sections of society will be able to behave freely in such a secure environment and, unlike in the present, will be able to go where they choose.

There Will Be Great Oppression and Cruelty before the Appearance of the Mahdi

Before his appearance a substantial part of society will utter groundless slanders against the Mahdi, just as they did against many Muslims, messengers and prophets in earlier times. The hadiths state that the unbelievers will even threaten to kill the Mahdi unless he abandons his struggle:
He will continue his struggle until people return to the truth. (al-Qawl al-Mukhtasar, Ahmad ibn Hajar Makki, p. 23)

Days and nights will not come to an end until a man from the People of my House will prevail. It will not be hard for him to put and end to strife and even death (their death threats) will not stop him. (Al-Burhan fi Alamat al-Mahdi Akhir al-Zaman, Ali ibn Husamaddin al-Muttaqi, p. 12)

As the hadiths reveal, the Mahdi will respond with a superior patience and trust in Allah. He will make no concession with regard to preaching His message. Despite all the efforts of the unbelievers the Mahdi will be absolved of all these slanders and imputations. They will have no power to harm the Mahdi, and Allah will protect and raise the glory of this blessed personage.

In one hadith our Prophet (saas) indicates that all this oppression and these attacks will merely further strengthen the Mahdi:

When the believer [the Mahdi] sees the Dajjal, he will say “O people! This is the Dajjal spoken of by the Messenger of Allah.” The Dajjal will immediately issue commands regarding him and will make him lay flat on his belly and cry, “Injure him.” But that individual’s back and belly will be broadened by the blows. Then the Dajjal will seize him by his two hands and feet and cast him away. People will imagine the Dajjal has thrown him into the fire. But he will have been cast into a garden of Paradise.(Mehdilik ve Imamiye [Mahdism and Imamism], Ibrahim Suleymanoglu, p. 40)

The metaphorical term “his back and belly will be broadened by the blows” means that the more the Mahdi is attacked the more his fame and glory will spread, and the greater impact he will have. This is how Islamic scholars have also interpreted this hadith.

The hadith also tells us that the Dajjal will cast the Mahdi into a fire. As with Prophet Ibrahim (as) they will claim to burn the Mahdi in a metaphorical flame, but Allah will cool and calm the flames and the snares of the unbelievers will come to nothing.

“The Mahdi will come from the East. Even if mountains rise up before him he will cross them and find a way over them.” (al-Qawl al-Mukhtasar, p. 39), says one hadith, indicating that the Mahdi will overcome all obstacles, no matter how great.

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