If Mahdawiyyah did not exist, it would mean that all the efforts by divine prophets, all prophetic missions, all the strenuous efforts of divine prophets were futile. Therefore, the issue of Mahdawiyyah is an essential issue. It is one of the central divine teachings. For this reason, as far as I know, in all divine religions, there are teachings which are essentially the equivalent to Mahdawiyyah. However, these teachings have been distorted and blurred over time and it is not clear what they are trying to say. The issue of Mahdawiyyah is among the undeniable Islamic realities. That is to say, Mahdawiyyah is not limited to Shia Islam. There is a consensus among all Islamic denominations on the end of the days– which includes when Imam Mahdi (may God hasten his re-appearance) establishes ultimate justice in the world. There are valid narrations [confirming that] by the Holy Prophet (s.w.a.) and Islamic luminaries from different denominations of Islam. Therefore, there is no doubt in this regard. However, Shia Islam has an advantage among other denominations; because the issue of Mahdawiyyah is not an ambiguous issue in Shia Islam. The issue of Mahdawiyyah is not a convoluted issue; it is not complicating –> READ MORE
The issue of waiting [for the re-appearance of Imam Mahdi (a.s.)] is an inseparable component of Mahdawiyyah. It is one of the key concepts for understanding religion and the general movement of the Islamic Ummah towards the lofty goals of Islam. Awaiting means expecting an event that will definitely happen. This is the meaning of awaiting. Awaiting means that this future is definite. This is especially true if we are awaiting a living and primed entity. This is a very important issue. We are not awaiting someone who has not been born yet. No, we are awaiting someone who exists and is present among us. There are certain narrations according to which people can see him, but they do not recognize him. In certain narrations, he has been likened to Prophet Joseph whose brothers used to see him. He was present among his brothers and he used to sit beside them, but they could not recognize him. It is such a clear and motivating truth. This facilitates awaiting. Humanity needs this awaiting and the Islamic Ummah needs it even more. This waiting puts responsibilities on the shoulders of human beings.
Awaiting requires that we prepare ourselves. We should know that a great event will take place and we should always expect it to happen. We can never say that the event will not happen in a few years nor can we say that the event will happen in the near future. We should always wait for it. Those who are waiting should develop characteristics and manners that are expected in the awaited era. This is the requirement for awaiting. If there is supposed to be justice, truth, monotheism, purity and submission to God in the awaited era, then as the people who are waiting, we should get closer to these qualities. We should become familiar with justice. We should prepare ourselves for justice. We should prepare ourselves for accepting the truth. These are the consequences of awaiting.
Belief in the Imam of the Time (a.j.) is a component of religions’ worldviews. That is, just as divine religions hold viewpoints within their general worldviews about the universe, mankind, origin and the end of human life’s trajectory—about genesis and resurrection—they also hold viewpoints in their worldviews about the final destination of the caravan of humans. A worldview is a great system which lays the foundation for all the thoughts, obligations and rules of religions. It addresses the issues of the afterlife and the hereafter. Another issue is where the mankind is heading to. If we liken the human community throughout history to a caravan which is taking a specific path, then we are faced with this question: Where is this caravan going? What is the destination of this caravan? What is the end of this path? This is a serious question and every worldview should answer it. Religions have answered this question… all of them believe that this caravan will reach a favorable, sweet and pleasant destination in the end. The main characteristic of this destination is justice. Justice has been humanity’s general request from the first day until today and it will remain mankind’s main request until the –> READ MORE
We should wait. The outlook of religions towards the final destination of the caravan of mankind is a very promising outlook. The spirit of waiting and establishing a close relationship with the Imam of the Time (may our souls be sacrificed for his sake) and anticipating the day when he reappears is really one of the greatest gates of salvation [faraj] for the Islamic community. We are waiting for salvation. This anticipation itself is salvation. This anticipating is the gate to salvation. It is promising and revitalizing. It prevents us from feeling desperate, ruined, hopeless and confused about the future. It gives us hope and it provides guidance. This is the point about the Imam of the Time (God’s greetings be upon him).
The greatest characteristic of this belief among Shias is that it engenders hope. The Shia community is not reliant only on its prominent historical events in the past. It also looks forward to the future. A person who believes in the issue of Mahdawiyyah on the basis of Shia ideology does not empty his heart of hope even in the most difficult circumstances. There is always a ray of hope in the heart of such a person. They know that this dark era and this era of oppression and illegitimate domination will definitely come to an end. This is one of the most important results and achievements of this belief. Of course, Shia belief in the issue of Mahdawiyyah is not confined to this point: “People all over the world feed from his blessings and the heavens and the earth gain strength thanks to his existence” [Commentary on Usul al-Kafi, Vol. 1, p. 4]. Such is the belief in Mahdawiyyah. This bright flame and this shining light has existed in Shia societies in the course of past centuries and it will continue to exist. By Allah’s favor, the era of anticipation will come to an end.
All Abrahamic religions believe in an end-times savior. All Abrahamic religions believe that someone will emerge who will save the world from the morass of oppression and cruelty. In Islam, the name of this savior has been mentioned. All Islamic denominations refer to this divine person and this great and extraordinary individual as Mahdi. Perhaps, there is no Islamic denomination that does not believe Mahdi (a.s.) will emerge. He is a descendent of the Holy Prophet (s.w.a.). Islamic denominations have even specified the name and epithet of that noble man. The feature of Shia ideology is that it thoroughly and clearly introduces this personality. It considers him as the son of the eleventh Imam – Imam Hassan al-Askari (a.s.). From the viewpoint of Shia historians and writers, his birth date is completely clear. Most of other Islamic denominations have not specified his birth date or they have not accepted it, but the Shia prove the existence and birth date of that great personality with strong and cogent reasons. Some people have dismissed the possibility of the existence and survival of a person over this long time. This is the only question that opponents have raised regarding Imam Mahdi (a.s.). However, –> READ MORE
As for the Imam of the Time (may God hasten his reappearance and God’s greetings b upon him), the first point is that the great personality is the inviter to God. Looking at that great Imam (a.s.) is a way of expressing one’s love for and obedience to Allah the Exalted: “greetings be upon you who invite to God and who are conversant with His signs” [Ihtijaj, Vol.2, page 493]. All matters, all prophets, all saints, all sanctities and all pure souls who cast light on our lives, on our world and on the entire universe are the signs and reflections of God. This is a point that should receive attention. We pay attention to the Imam of the Time (a.s.), and we appeal and show humbleness before that great Imam (a.s.) so that this humbleness reaches the Essence of the Only One and so that we show our obedience to Allah the Exalted.
Based on Islamic narrations, it is a fact that Allahhas promised to protect Imam al-Mahdi from everythingthat would jeopardize his mission. Therefore,he has to remain alive and healthy till he fulfills hismission. Here a question is raised that why are werecommended to pray for his wellness while he willremain safe by the will of Allah and what is the benefitof praying for his health?Answering the mentioned question we can pointto the following reasons:First, our Infallible Imams used to do the same:In some Islamic reliable sources it has been indicatedthat supplicating for Imam al-Mahdi refers to themanners of the Infallible Imams who used to allocatethe best times of their life, e.g. in their prayer, to prayfor Imam al-Mahdi’s health, and they have taughtus to do the same. For example: Imam al-Redā (TheShiite eighth Imam) recommended us to pray continuouslyfor Imam al-Mahdi by this supplication: “O Allah distance the whole difficulties from Your successor (on the earth) and protect him from the evil of all of Your creation and preserve him from his right, left, from above and beneath (his feet) with Your protection that if You protect someone he would not face destruction.”Also Imam al-Hassan al-‘Askarī (the Shiite eleventh Imam) used –> READ MORE