This state of affairs will continue for some years, until the death of Jesus. The Ulama differ concerning the order in which the other greater signs of the Hour will come about. They are:
· The destruction of the Ka'bah and the recovery of its treasure.
· The rising of the sun from the west.
· The emergence of the Beast from the earth.
· The smoke.
· A wind will take the souls of the believers.
· The Qur'ān will be taken up into heaven.
· A fire will drive the people to their last gathering place.
· The Trumpet will be sounded: at the first sound everyone will feel terror; at the second sound all will be struck down; at the last sound all will be resurrected.
THE Mahdi will come at the end of time; he is one of the Rightly-Guided Caliphs and Imāms. He is not the Mahdi who is expected by the Shiah, who they claim will appear from a tunnel in Samarra. This claim of theirs has no basis in reality nor in any reliable source. They allege that his name is Muhammad ibn al-Hasan ibn al-Askari, and that he went into the tunnel when he was five years old. The matter we intend to discuss has been proven by Ahadīth narrated from the Prophet - sallallāhu alayhi wa sallam -: that the Mahdi will appear at the end of time. I believe that he will appear before Jesus the son of Mary comes down, as the Ahadīth indicate.
Hajjaj said that he heard 'Alī say, The Prophet said, "Even if there were only one day left for the world, Allāh would send a man from among us to fill the world with justice, just as it had been filled with oppression and justice." (Ahmad).
'Alī said, The Prophet said, "The Mahdi is one of us, from among the people of my household. In one night Allāh will inspire him and prepare him to carry out his task successfully." (Ahmad and Ibn Majah.)
'Alī said, whilst looking at his son al-Hasan, This son of mine is a Sayyid (master), as the Prophet named him. Among his descendants there will be man named after your Prophet. He will resemble him in behaviour but not in looks. Then he told them the report which mentions that the earth will be filled with justice. (Abū Dāwūd)
Abū Dāwūd devoted a chapter of his Sunan to the subject of the Mahdi. At the beginning of this chapter he quoted the Hadīth of Jabir ibn Samrah, in which the Prophet said, "This religion will remain steadfast until twelve caliphs have ruled over you." (According to another report he said, "This religion will remain strong until twelve caliphs have ruled over you.")
Jabir said, The people cheered and shouted Allāhu akbar! Then the Prophet whispered something. I asked my father What did he say? My father said, He said, All of them will be from Quraysh. Another report says that when the Prophet returned to his house, Quraysh came to him and asked, What will happen after that? He said, Then there will be tribulation and killing.
Abū Dāwūd reported a Hadīth from 'Abdullāh ibn Masud: The Prophet said, "If there were only one day left for the world, that day would be lengthened until a man from among my descendants or from among the people of my household, was sent; his name will be the same as my name, and his fathers name will be the same as my fathers name. He will fill the earth with justice and fairness, just as it will have been filled with injustice and oppression. The world will not end until a man of my household, whose name is the same as mine, holds away."
'Abdullāh said, The Prophet said, "A man from my household, whose name is like mine, will take power." (at-Tirmidhī.) In another report, from Abū Hurayrah, the Prophet said, "If there were only one day left for this world, Allāh would lengthen it until he took power." Abū Said said, The Prophet said, "The Mahdi will be one of my descendants; he will have a high forehead and a hooked nose. He will fill the earth with justice and fairness just as it was filled with injustice and oppression, and he will rule for seven years. (Abū Dāwūd)
Umm Salamah reported that the Prophet said, "People will begin to differ after the death of a Khalifah. A man from the people of Madīnah will flee to Makkah. Some of the people of Makkah will come to him and drag him out against his will; they will swear allegiance to him between al-Rukn and al-Maqam. An army will be sent against him from Syria; it will be swallowed up in the desert between Makkah and Madīnah. When the people see this, groups of people from Syria and Iraq will come and swear allegiance to him. Then a man from Quraysh whose mother is from Kalb will appear and send an army against them, and will defeat them; this will be known as the Battle of Kalb. Whoever does not witness the spoils of this battle will miss much! The Mahdi will distribute the wealth, and will rule the people according to the Sunnah of the Prophet. Then he will die, and the Muslims will pray for him." (Abū Dāwūd)
'Alī said, The Prophet said, "A man named al-Harith ibn Hirath will come from Transoxania. His army will be led by a man named Mansur. He will pave the way for and establish the government of the family of Muhammad, just as Quraysh established the government of the Messenger of Allāh. Every believer will be obliged to support him." (Abū Dāwūd)
'Abdullāh ibn al-Harith ibn Juz al-Zubaydi said, The Prophet said, A people will come out of the East who will pave the way for the Mahdi. (Ibn Majah.)
'Abdullāh said, Whilst we were with the Prophet, some young men from Banu Hashim approached us. When the Prophet saw them, his eyes filled with tears and the colour of his face changed. I said, We can see something has changed in your face, and it upsets us. The Prophet said, "We are the people of a Household for whom Allāh has chosen the Hereafter rather than this world. The people of my Household (Ahl al-Bayt) will suffer a great deal after my death, and will be persecuted until a people carrying black banners will come out of the east. They will instruct the people to do good, but the people will refuse; they will fight until they are victorious, and the people do as they asked, but they will not accept it from them until they hand over power to a man from my household. Then the earth will be filled with fairness, just as it had been filled with injustice. If any of you live to see this, you should go to him even if you have to crawl across ice."
This text refers to the rule of the Abbasids, as we have mentioned above in the text referring to the beginning of their rule in 132 AH. It also indicates that the Mahdi will appear after the Abbasids, and that he will be one of the Ahl al-Bayt, a descendant of Fatimah, the daughter of the Prophet, through Hasan, not Husayn, as mentioned in the Hadīth from 'Alī ibn Abi Talib; and Allāh knows best.
Thwaban said, The Prophet said, "Three men will be killed at the place where your treasure is. Each of them will be the son of a Khalifah, and none of them will get hold of the treasure. Then the black banners will come out of the East, and they will slaughter you in a way which has never been seen before. Then he said something which I do not remember; then, If you see him, go and give him your allegiance, even if you have to crawl over ice, because he is the Khalifah of Allāh, the Mahdi." (Ibn Majah.)
The treasure referred to in this text is the treasure of the Ka'bah. Towards the end of time, three of the sons of the Khalifahs will fight to get hold of it, until the Mahdi appears. He will appear from the East, not from the tunnel of Samarra, as the Shiah claim; they believe that he is in this tunnel now, and they are waiting for him to emerge at the end of time. There is no evidence for it in any book or Saheeh tradition, and there is no benefit in believing this.
The truth of the matter is that the Mahdi whose coming is promised at the end of time will appear from the East, and people will swear allegiance to him at the Ka'bah, as some Ahadīth indicate. At the time of the Mahdi, there will be peace and prosperity, with Abūndant crops and wealth, strong rulers, and Islām will be well-established.
Abū Said said, By Allāh every ruler we have had has been worse than the previous one, and every year has been worse than the year before, but I heard the Prophet say, Among your rulers will be one who will give out wealth freely, without counting it. A man will come and ask him for money, and he will say take; the man will spread his cloak out and the ruler will pour money into it. The Prophet spread out a thick cloak he had been wearing, to demonstrate the mans actions; then he gathered it up by its corners and said, Then the man will take it and leave. (Ahmad)
Trials and Tribulations
Zaynab bint Jahsh said, The Prophet (sallallāhu alayhi wa sallam) got up from his sleep; his face was flushed and he said, "There is no god but Allāh. Woe to the Arabs, for a great evil which is nearly approaching them. Today a gap has been made in the wall of Gog and Magog like this (Sufyan illustrated this by forming the number of 90 or 100 with his fingers)." Someone asked, "Shall we be destroyed even though there are righteous people among us?" The Prophet said, "Yes, if evil increases." (al-Bukhārī).
Umm Salamah, the wife of the Prophet said, One night the Prophet got up and said, "Subhan Allāh! How many tribulations have come down tonight, and how many treasures have been disclosed! Go and wake the dwellers of these apartments (i e his wives) for prayer. A well-dressed soul in this world may be naked in the Hereafter." (al-Bukhārī)
Usamah ibn Zayd said, Once the Prophet stood over one of the battlements of al-Madīnah and asked the people, "Do you see what I see?" They said, "No." He said, "I see afflictions falling upon your houses as raindrops fall." (al-Bukhārī, Muslim.)
Abū Hurayrah (radiAllāhu anhu) said, The Prophet said, "Time will pass rapidly, knowledge will decrease, miserliness will become widespread in peoples hearts, afflictions will appear, and there will be much Harj." The people asked, "O Messenger of Allāh, what is Harj?" He said, "Killing, killing!" (al-Bukhārī)
Al-Zubayr ibn Adi narrated, We went to Anas ibn Malik and complained about the wrong we were suffering at the hands of al-Hajjaj. Anas ibn Malik said, "Be patient, For no time will come but that the time following it will be worse, until you meet your Lord. I heard the Prophet say that." (al-Bukhārī)
Abū Hurayrah said, The Prophet said, "There will come a time of afflictions when one who sits will be better than one who stands; one who stands will be better than one who walks; and one who walks will be better than one who runs. Whoever exposes himself to these afflictions, they will destroy him. So whoever can find a place of protection or refuge from them, should take shelter in it." (al-Bukhārī and Muslim.)
Hudhayfah said, "The Prophet told us two Hadīth, one of which I have seen fulfilled, and I am waiting for the fulfilment of the other. The Prophet told us that honesty came down into mens hearts (from Allāh); then they learnt it from the Qur'ān, and then from the Sunnah. The Prophet told us that honesty would be taken away. He said, Man will be overtaken by sleep, during which honesty will be taken away from his heart, and only its trace will remain, like traces of a dark spot. Then man will be overtaken by slumber again, during which honesty will decrease still further, until its trace will resemble a blister such as is caused when an ember is dropped onto ones foot: it swells, but there is nothing inside. People will be carrying on with their trade, but there will hardly be any trustworthy persons. People will say, There is an honest man in such-and-such a tribe. Later they will say about some man, What a wise, polite and strong man he is! - although he will not have faith even the size of a mustard-seed in his heart. Indeed, there came a time when I did not mind dealing with any one of you, for if he were a Muslim his Islām would compel him to pay whatever he owed me, and if he were a Christian, the Muslim official would compel him to pay it. But now I do not deal with anyone except so-and-so and so-and-so." (al-Bukhārī)
Ibn Umar said, The Prophet stood beside the pulpit, facing the east, and said, "Afflictions will verily emerge from here, where the top of Satans head will appear." (al-Bukhārī)
Abū Hurayrah said that he had heard the Prophet say, "The Hour will not come until a man passes by someone's grave and says, Would that I were in his place!" (al-Bukhārī)
Abū Hurayrah said, I heard the Prophet say, "The Hour will not come until the buttocks of the women of Daws* move whist going around Dhu l-Khalasah." Dhu l-Khalasah was an idol worshipped by the tribe of Daws during the Jahiliyyah. (Hadīth from al-Bukhārī)
Abū Hurayrah also said, The Prophet said, "The Euphrates will disclose a golden treasure. Whoever is present at that time should not take anything of it." Abū Hurayrah said, The Prophet said, "The Hour will not come before the Euphrates uncovers a mountain of gold, for which people will fight. Ninety-nine out of every hundred will die, but every one among them will say that perhaps he will be the one who will survive (and thus possess the gold)." (Muslim.)
Abū Hurayrah said, The Prophet said, "The Hour will not come until the following events have come to pass: two large groups will fight the another, and there will be many casualties; they will both be following the same religious teaching. Nearly thirty Dajjals will appear, each of them falsely claiming to be a Messenger from Allāh. Knowledge will disappear, earthquakes will increase, time will pass quickly, afflictions will appear, and Harj (ie killing) will increase. Wealth will increase, so that a wealthy man will worry lest no-one accept his Zakat, and when he offers it to anyone, that person will say, I am not in need of it. People will compete in constructing high buildings. When a man passes by someones grave, he will say, Would that I were in his place! The sun will rise from the west; when it rises and the people see it, they will believe, but, "No good will it do to a soul to believe in them then, if it believed not before nor earned righteousness through its faith..." (Al-Anam 6:158) The Hour will come suddenly: when a man has milked his she-camel and taken away the milk, but he will not have time to drink it; before a man repairing a tank for his livestock will be able to put water in it for his animals; and before a man who has raised a morsel of food to his mouth will be able to eat it." (al-Bukhārī)
Hudhayfah ibn al-Yaman said, "Of all the people, I know most about every tribulation which is going to happen between now and the Hour. This is not because the Prophet told me something in confidence which he did not tell anyone else; it is because I was present among a group of people to whom he spoke about the tribulations (al-Fitan). The Prophet mentioned three tribulations which would hardly spare anybody, and some which would be like storms in summer; some would be great and some would be small. Everyone who was present at that gathering has passed away, except me." (Muslim.)
Abū Hurayrah said, I heard the Prophet say, "If you live for a while, you will see people go out under the wrath of Allāh and come back under His curse, and they will have in their hands whips like the tail of an ox." (Ahmad, Muslim.)
Abū Hurayrah said, The Prophet said, "There are two types among the people of Hell whom I have not yet seen. The first are people who have whips like the tails of oxen, with which they beat people, and the second are women who are naked in spite of being dressed; they will be led astray and will lead others astray, and their heads will look like camels humps. These women will not enter Paradise; they will not even experience the faintest scent of it, even though the fragrance of Paradise can be perceived from such a great distance."
Anas ibn Malik said, The Prophet was asked, "O Messenger of Allāh, (what will happen) when we stop enjoining good and forbidding evil?" He said, "When what happened to the Israelites happens among you: when fornication becomes widespread among your leaders, knowledge is in the hands of the lowest of you, and power passes into the hands of the least of you." (Ibn Majah.)
Abū Hurayrah said, The Prophet said, "Woe to the Arabs from the great evil which is nearly approaching them: it will be like patches of dark night. A man will wake up as a believer, and be a kafir (unbeliever) by nightfall. People will sell their religion for a small amount of worldly goods. The one who clings to his religion on that day will be as one who is grasping an ember - or thorns." (Ahmad)
Abū Hurayrah said, I heard the Prophet saying to Thawban, "O Thawban, what will you do when the nations call one another to invade you as people call one another to come and eat from one bowl?" Thawban said, May my father and my mother be sacrificed for you. O Messenger of Allāh! Is it because we are so few The Prophet said, "No, on that day you (Muslims) will be many, but Allāh will put weakness (wahn) in your hearts." The people asked, What is that weakness, O Messenger of Allāh? He said, "It is love for this world and dislike of fighting." (Ahmad)
The Prophet said, "There will be a tribulation in which one who is sleeping will be better than one who is lying down, one who is lying will be better than one who is sitting, one who is sitting will be better than on who is standing, one who is standing will be better than one who is walking, one who is walking will be better than one who is riding, and one who is riding will be better than one who is running; all of their dead will be in Hell." The Companion of the Prophet who narrated this Hadīth said, O Messenger of Allāh, when will that be? He said, "That will be the days of Harj." He asked, When will the days of Harj be? The Prophet said, "When a man will not trust the person to whom he is speaking." The Companion asked, What do you advise me to do if I live to see that? He said, "Restrain yourself, and go back to your place of residence." The Companion then asked, O Messenger of Allāh, what should I do if someone enters my neighbourhood to attack me? He said, "Go into your house." The Companion asked, What if he enters my house? He said, "Go into the place where you pray and do this - and he folded his arms, - and say My Lord is Allāh, until you die."