While prior to the advent of Hadrat al-Mahdi (‘atfs) states of insecurity will prevail over the world, one of the most fundamental tasks the Imam will undertake will be the restoration of security in society. With the implementation of appropriate and accurate programs in his government, within a short period of time security will be restored in society in all aspects, and the people will live in a safe environment experiencing security that mankind has not experienced so far.
Highways will become so safe that young women will travel from one place to another without an accompanying close relative, being safe from any molestation and bad intentions.
The people will live in total judicial security to the extent that no one ever has the least apprehension that his right would be trampled upon. Programs and laws will be made and implemented in such a way that the people will see themselves in total financial and social security. Stealing will be eliminated from society and financial security will prevail to the extent that if someone puts his hand in another’s pocket, there will be no probability of stealing involved, and he will honestly justify his action.
Insecurity will be eliminated from society, and security will prevail in such a manner that it will encompass even animals and living creatures; the sheep and wolf will live together while children will play with scorpions and biting creatures without being harmed.
The Messenger of Allah (S) said in this regard: “When Isa ibn Maryam (Jesus the son of Mary) (‘a) comes down on earth from heaven and kills ad-Dajjal… The shepherds will tell their sheep: ‘Go to so-and-so place for grazing and return at so-and-so time!’ A flock of sheep will go between two plantations, but they will never encroach on any of the plants or break any branch with their feet.”1
The Messenger of Allah (S) said: “…He will fill the earth with justice to such an extent that the people will return to their natural pure disposition (fitrah). No blood will unjustly be shed and no sleeping person will be woken up (unjustly).”2
Regarding the prevalence of security during the time of al-Mahdi (‘atfs), ‘Abdullah ibn ‘Abbas said: “At that time, even the wolf will not harm the sheep; the lion will not devour the cow; the snake will not bite man; the mouse will neither gnaw leather bags nor take away anything from them.”3
The Commander of the Faithful (‘a) said: “When our Qa’im rises up, the sky will send down its rain while the beasts of prey will reconcile with the other quadrupeds and harm human beings no more so much so that a woman from Iraq will go to Sham without worrying about a fierce animal or being afraid of it.”4
The same Imam (‘a) also said: “The army of al-Mahdi (‘atfs) will crush the army of the A‘war ad-Dajjal, cleansing the earth of its existence. Afterward, al-Mahdi will attain the leadership of the east and west, extending from Jabalqa to Jabarsa, including every country, and his government and rule will be stabilized.”5
Imam al-Mahdi (‘atfs) will behave justly with the people to such an extent that sheep will graze beside wolves while children will play with scorpions without being harmed by them. The wicked will be exterminated while the good will remain.
It has been stated in a hadith: “The Day of Resurrection will not come to pass unless Hadrat ‘Isa comes down… And wolves will be among flocks of sheep like shepherd dogs while lions will be among a herd of camels as if they were young small camels.”6
Hudhayfah reports that he heard the Prophet of God (S) saying: “During the advent of Hadrat al-Qa’im… Birds will lay eggs in their own nests and so will the fishes in the sea.”7
Perhaps, it means that they will feel a sence of security, and with nothing to worry about, they will lay eggs in their nests and habitats.
Abu Amamah Bahili narrates: “One day the Messenger of Allah (S) delivered a sermon to us and at the end he (S) said: “The leader of the people at that time will be a righteous man… In that time, sheep and cows will not be attacked and animosities will be removed from hearts. Bridles will be removed from the mouths of animals. Children will put their hands in the mouths of fierce animals but the latter will not harm them. Young animals will be put in front of lions and other beasts of prey and yet they will not be harmed. Lions will be among a herd of camels like shepherd dogs while the wolves will be in the midst of shepherd dogs.”8
This hadith perhaps alludes to the absolute security and emergence of the sense of confidence with one another.
The Prophet (S) also said: “When ‘Isa ibn Maryam comes down and kills ad-Dajjal, snakes and scorpions will not be hiding and will harm no one.”9
These hadiths clearly illustrate the degree of security from harm of person and property during the period of Hadrat al-Mahdi (‘atfs). The shepherd will send his herd in the fields and not worry about its being stolen by man and attacked by beasts of prey. Man will travel or live among harmful animals and be safe from their harm; it would be as if the law on respecting the rights of others had been accepted among the fierce animals and insects, and they all submitted and abided by it. Maybe some degrees of that security could be due to the fact that during the period of Hadrat al-Mahdi (‘atfs) divine favors will be abundant, and since all animals will also benefit from them and experience security, they, in turn, will not harm anyone.
Public security in the period of the Imam of the Time (‘atfs) will be so pervasive that even if one was sleeping, he would be certain that nobody would wake and disturb him.
The Messenger of Allah (S) said in this regard: “The ummah of al-Mahdi will seek refuge in him just as honeybees seek refuge in their queen. He will fill the earth with justice and equity just as it had been filled with tyranny and oppression to the extent that the people will return to their primordial nature (fitrah). A sleeping person will not be awoken while no one’s blood would ever be shed (unjustly).”10
There are numerous hadiths concerning the security of highways during the rule of Hadrat al-Mahdi (‘atfs). It will be appropriate to mention some of them:
The Messenger of Allah (S) said: “The rule of al-Mahdi (‘atfs) will be such that two women will keep on moving and traveling at night and yet they will not be afraid of injustice or oppression (against them).”11
The Prophet (S) also said: “Surely, God will draw this affair to a close (His religion) in such manner that a person on horseback would travel at night from San‘a to Hadramawt (both in Yemen) and not be afraid of any one except God.”12
Perhaps, these two places had been cited due to their formidable deserts because of which they have been sometimes referred to as Mafazah and mentioned to wish one success and safety in traversing the desert.
Imam al-Baqir (‘a) said: “By God! The supporters of al-Mahdi will fight to the extent for God to be worshipped as the Only One Creator and for Him not to be associated with any partner, and to the point where a weak old woman would set off from one point of the world to another and nobody will offend her.”13
A person asked Hadrat as-Sadiq (‘a): “Why should we wish for the advent of Hadrat al-Qa’im (‘a)? Do we have a sublime station during the period of his occultation (ghaybah)? The Imam (‘a) replied: “Glory be to Allah! Don’t you like justice to be spread in the world, security be established along the highways, and the oppressed be dealt with justly by passing a just verdict and be assisted?”14
One of the companions of Imam as-Sadiq (‘a) said: “One day, Abu Hanifah came to Imam as-Sadiq (‘a). The Imam (‘a) asked him: ‘Which place does this Qur’anic verse refer to:
﴿ سِيرُوا فِيهَا لَيَالِيَ وَأَيَّامًا آمِنِينَ ﴾
“Travel through them in safely, night and day”15?”
Abu Hanifah said: “I think it is between Mecca and Medina.”
The Imam (‘a) turned toward his companions and said: “Don’t you know that people on this route are being attacked, their properties plundered, having no security, and are being killed?”
His companions replied: “Yes, it is so,” and Abu Hanifah kept silent.
The Imam (‘a) asked him again: “Which place in the world is referred to in this verse when God says:
﴿ وَمَنْ دَخَلَهُ كَانَ آمِنًا ﴾
“And whoever enters shall be secure.”16?”
Abu Hanifah said: “It is the Ka‘bah.”
The Imam (‘a) said: “Don’t you know that Hajjaj ibn Yusuf ath-Thaqafi17 attacked the Ka‘bah with catapults in order to suppress Ibn Zubayr and killed him. Was he then in a secure place?”
Abu Hanifah kept silent and did not say anything.
As he left the assembly, Abubakr Hadrami asked the Imam (‘a): “May I be your ransom! What are the answers to these two questions?”
Imam as-Sadiq (‘a) said: “O Abubakr! The first verse refers to the assistance given to the Qa’im from among us, the Ahl al-Bayt. Also, when God said, “Whoever enters it is safe,” it means that anyone, who pays allegiance to the Imam and enters into allegiance with him and thus becomes one of his supporters and companions, is safe.”
‘Ali ibn ‘Uqbah narrated from his father: “When Hadrat al-Qa’im (‘atfs) appears, he will issue judgments justly and tyranny will be removed during his government, and on account of his presence roads and highways will become safe.”18
Qatadah said: “Hadrat al-Mahdi (‘atfs) is the best of men… During his time, the earth will become so safe that a woman along with five other women, without any male companion, will set out for Hajj and not be afraid of anything.”19
‘Adi ibn Hatam said: “Surely, a day will come when a weak woman from Hirah (near Najaf) will perform pilgrimage in the House of God alone and she will not be afraid of anyone except God.”20
One of the topics mentioned about the state of affairs after the advent of Imam al-Mahdi (‘atfs) is the punishment of individuals who make the world unsafe, leave behind millions of killed, wounded and infirm, and bring about material and non-material confusion. These are criminals who would drag the world down to a deplorable state.
After the advent of Imam al-Mahdi (‘atfs), they will definitely be pursued, detained, and tried in court. Implementation of the divine legal punishments (hudud) can be regarded as an important obligation especially at the advent of the Infallible Imam. Through Hadrat Baqiyyatullah (‘atfs) the legal punishments will be implemented on earth according to the Book of God and free of any influence of materialistic desires.
During that time, supervision of this key post will be entrusted to individuals who, apart from having total mastery of Islamic and jurisprudential principles, do not have the slightest fault and shortcoming in terms of the personal records. In the hadiths, their mastery of judicial works as well as their personal record and merits have been pointed out. Here are some examples:
Imam as-Sadiq (‘a) said: “When the Qa’im of the Progeny of Muhammad rises up, he will bring out seventeen persons from behind the Ka‘bah. They are the five persons from the community (qawm) of Musa (Prophet Moses) who judge rightfully… the seven Companions of the Cave (ashab al-kahf), Yusha‘ (Joshua) the wasiyy (executor of will) of Musa, the believer from the family of Pharaoh, Salman al-Farsi, Abu Dujanah, and Malik al-Ashtar.”21
Abu Basir asked Imam as-Sadiq (‘a): “With the exception of this group (three hundred and thirteen persons) are there any other people behind the Ka‘bah?” The Imam (‘a) answered: “Yes, there are believers, but this will be the group of jurists, experts, learned men, and judges upon whose breasts and backs of the head, the Imam (‘a) will put his hand and rub. Afterward, no judgment will be difficult for them.”22
It is thus stated in Bihar al-Anwar: “They will be the assistants of al-Mahdi and rulers on the earth.”23
The Sadiq (Truthful) of the Ahl al-Bayt (‘a) said: “When Hadrat al-Qa’im (‘atfs) rises up, he will designate a ruler for every country and say to him: ‘The program of your activity is in your hand. If in the performance of a duty a problem arises for which you do not know the ruling, look at the palm of your hand and act according to what you find therein.”24
It is possible that finding the judicial ruling on a problem from the palm of the hand alludes to the speed of communication with the central government and obtaining the pertinent information on solving them. It may also point to the amazing talent of the officials in performing their tasks that with just a single glance they could pronounce a ruling. Perhaps the hadith is talking about a miracle, which the human mind could not comprehend, by which problems could be easily solved.
Imam al-Baqir (‘a) said: “After the advent of al-Mahdi (‘atfs) no one’s right could be usurped by another without it being regained by the Imam and returned to its rightful owner.”25
Imam as-Sadiq (‘a) said: “When the Qa’im of the Progeny of Muhammad (S) rises up, he will judge and issue rulings based on the method of judgment of Prophet Dawud (David) and he will not be dependent on witnesses and evidence. God will inspire him (the divine laws) and he will behave according to his (inspired) knowledge and make judgments based upon it.”26
Ja‘far ibn Sayyar Shami said: “The magnitude of the restoration of lost rights (during the time of al-Mahdi (‘atfs)) will be to such an extent that if the right of a certain person is between the teeth of another, the Imam will regain it and restore it to its owner.”27
Of course, such actions with respect to the rights of people will be done by the courts which are convened during the rule of al-Mahdi (‘atfs) and the judges therein will be such figures as Salman, Malik al-Ashtar, the great men among the community of Musa, and others, and the top judicial post will be assumed by the Imam himself. It would be natural that there will be no more concern for the trampling of rights as the statement, “If the right of a certain person is between the teeth of another, the Imam will regain it and restore it to its owner,” bespeaks of this reality.