Written by: Sayyid Murtadha Mujtahidi Sistani
Translated by: Naimah Iman
All Praise is due to Allah and May He send down His choicest blessings on Muhammad and his Holy Progeny.
The present book is a translation of a chapter by the name of Anticipation from the valuable two-volume book called Secrets of Success by Hujjatul Islam wal Muslimin Sayyid Murtadha Mujtahidi Sistani (May Allah Protect him).
The author of the book in addition to the mentioned book has authored many other valuable books in the service of Islam and the Ahlul Bayt (as) which have, thus, guided many of those on the path to Truth and towards they being able to drink from the clear spring of the Islamic Sciences. This is such that his works have become a foundation and base for those in search of excellence and knowledge.
The chapter on Anticipation of the reappearance of the Imam of the Age (as) has been translated and printed into many languages namely Urdu, Arabic etc. But the people of the West, whose main language is English, have been deprived of the benefit of this work.
It is for this reason that we requested that Mrs. Naimah Iman translate this section of this valuable work into English so that all the oppressed people under the leadership of tyrants, who have been deprived of the benefit of Islamic knowledge can be enlightened so that the despots of the world can recognize that the exploited people are not alone and never will be alone.
It is hoped that by grasping onto the delightful rope of the Qur’an and the Ahlul Bayt (as) that they can create the fragrant atmosphere of hope and anticipation so that the Islamic world can also exude this aromatic fragrance and all can benefit from the cool breeze of divine beneficence and can intelligently follow and understand the divine laws:
وَلَقَدْ كَتَبْنَا فِي الزَّبُورِ مِنْ بَعْدِ الذِّكْرِ أَنَّ الْأَرْضَ يَرِثُهَا عِبَادِيَ الصَّالِحُونَ
Before this We wrote in the Psalms, after the Message (given to Moses): My servants the righteous, shall inherit the earth." (Holy Qur’an, 21:105)
In anticipation of that fragrant day, InshAllah.
Muhammad Hussain Haidry
Hazrat Ali (as) has said:
آفْضَلُ ءِبَادَهٴِ الْمُوٴْ مِنِ اِنْتِظَارُ فَرَجِ اللهِ
The best worship of the believer is to have Anticipation for the reappearance of the Mahdi (as) from Allah.
Anticipation is one of the excellent characteristics of people on the road to success.
Because as states in the precious words by the “Household of Revelation” concerning the characteristics of the great men during the period of occultation, "The upright ones in anticipation are the best of people of all times."
In this way, some of the people-with a complete understanding of the issue of anticipation-consider it the most important factor today, and they believe that man can find all comprehensive and complete factors within true anticipation, because of which man can take off in flight in the spiritual heavens and can save themselves from social difficulties and mental entanglements.
Anticipation, in its true and complete sense is a difficult state, which is said to be surrounded by secret halos and only a few righteous men can attain it completely and not fall into the traps of the enemy1.
Anticipation, at its highest and final level - which exists within the special companions of the Imam of the Age (as) - means readiness and using extraordinary powers for implementing the heavenly organization and service in the of the heavenly government of the Holy Imam (as).
Anticipation at any stage that it may occur is a type of inner help from the unseen world, a way closer to God and if it continues and becomes complete, with the passage of time, it destroys the darkness which exists within the depths and the interiors of man and in his unconscious self (nafs). It also serves to illuminate the shutters of light and brightness of man's inner self and in this way, opens the way for perfection to him.
Therefore, Anticipation is a state of readiness in all the necessary dimensions and attracts man's inner attention to the world of purity, sincerity and light; the world where all satanic and evil potentials are destroyed, and divine light shines within the souls of all people all over the universe.
Considering this fact, we can say that the person who holds extraordinary powers is one who has taken steps towards the elevated stages on the path of anticipation. Because as we know the government of the Imam of the Age (as) is a heavenly and extraordinary one, the understanding of which is beyond human perception, and the companions of the Imam (as) must assemble around him and make themselves present in the front line to assist and be men of action and have the necessary extraordinary powers required to submit to the great Imam's (as) divine orders2.
The traditions concerning the characteristics and qualities of the 313 persons who make up the elite helpers of the Imam of the Age (as) introduce them as having extraordinary spiritual powers in the period of occultation.
We must endeavor to understand the true meaning of Anticipation and investigate this state within others and ourselves.
There are many in which we can gain awareness of the issue of Anticipation and in learning and expressing its greatness to others, by whose utilization we can bring about the state of Anticipation within the society and create the seed for the belief in Anticipation within its members. We will mention some of the most important ways by which the society can become drawn to the issue of Anticipation.
1. Familiarity with the esteemed position of Wilayat (guardianship) and awareness of the greatness of the Imam of the Age (as).
2. Familiarity with the amazing effects of Anticipation in its complete meaning and sublime states.
3. Familiarity with the characteristics and qualities of the companions of the Imam of the Age (as) who reached the highest stage of Anticipation and benefited from great spiritual powers and followed the orders of the Imam of the Age (as).
4. Familiarity with the world, man's future, the significant changes and happenings in the lives of the people at the time' of the reappearance3.
Knowledge of the status of the Imam of the Age (as), knowing the elite companions of the Imam (as), perfect intellects, scientific perfection, connection to the unseen world, familiarity with unknown creatures, journeys to the skies and faraway places and other such issues are things which call mankind towards the issue of the reappearance of the Imam of the Age (as), and create the state of Anticipation and readiness in them for the magnificent and amazing government of the Imam (as).
Knowledge and awareness about such realities, brings about excitement and happiness within the hearts and souls of all pure-hearted people and makes them fascinated by the prospect of those days. Within the society, it also creates a state of Anticipation and expectation for the reappearance, which is an obvious responsibility of every man. We will now embark on an explanation of the mentioned topics.
Familiarity with the characteristics and qualities of the Imam of the Age (as) and paying attention to the greatness of this personality are important factors and motives in creation the state of Anticipation.
Noting that all over the universe, in the entire created world, there is no one worthy of leading and reforming the world except him, attracts man to the Imam (as). This great personality is the last divine store and the only remainder of the leaders (Amirs) of the world, about whom Amir al Mu'minin Ali (as) has said:
عِلْمُ الاَنْبِيَاء فِي عِلْمِهِمْ وَ سِيرُّ الاَ وْ صِييَاءِ فِي سِيرِّ هِمْ وَ عِزُّ الاَ وْلِيَاءِ فِي عِزِّ هِمْ, كَالْقَطْرَهٴْ فِي الْ بَحْرِ وَ الذَّهِٴ فِي الْقَفَرِ.
The knowledge of the Prophets in comparison to his knowledge, and the secrets of the (Walis) guardians in comparison to his secrets, and the honor of the saints in comparison to his honor are like drops in the ocean and grains in the desert4.
Now that we are in the period of the last of the great personalities, considering his excellence and by following his guidance, we can save ourselves from darkness and ignorance and while anticipating the coming of his government, count down the days (i.e.) wait anxiously until that flag of guidance and justice will be flown in the world.
If someone becomes familiar with this great personality, in these times and becomes aware of the help of the Imam of the Asr (as) in the period of occultation and the changes which will take place around the world and within man himself at the time of his reappearance, he will always remember him, and in the same way that it has been ordered5 will always bask in the sunrise of Anticipation of Wilayat.
The knowledge of such a person removes the rust of ignorance from his heart and replaces it with purity and light. Consider the interesting tradition, which shows the unseen help of the Imam (as) in the period of occultation. Jabir Jau'fi from Jabir ibn Abdullah Ansari relates from the Holy Prophet (S) that he said:
ذَاكَ الَّدِي يَفْتَيحُ اللهُ تَعَالي ذِ كْرُهُ عَلَي يَدَ يْهِ مَشَارِقَ الاَرْضِ وَ مَغَارِ بَهَيا ذَاكَ الَّدِي يَغْيْبُ عَنْ شِييْعَتِهِ وَ اَ وْلِيَيايٴِهِ غَيْبَيهٴً لا يَيثْبُتُ فِيْهَا عَلَي الْقَوْلِ بِاِ مَاَ مَتِهِ اِلاَّ مِنْ اِمْتَحَنَ اللهُ قَلْبَهُ بِالاِ يْمَانِ قَالَ: فَقَالَ جَابِرُ: يَا رَسُولَ اللهِ فَهَلْ يَبْتَفِعُ الشِّيْعَهٴُ بِهِ فِي غَيْبَتِهِ؟ فَقَالَ (ص): اَيْ وَالَّدِي بَعَثَبِي بِالُّنبُوَّهِٴ اَبَّهُم لَيَنْتَفِعُوْنَ بِهِ وَ يَسْتَضِيْيٴُوْ بِنُوْرِ وِلاَ يَتِهِ فِي غَيْبَتِهِ كَا نْتِفَاعِ النَّاسِ بِالشَّمْسِ وَ اٟنْ جَلَّلَهَيا السَّحَيابُ, بَيا جَيابِرُ, هَيذَا مَكْنُوْنُ سِيرِّاللهِ وَمَخْزُوْنَ عِلْمِهِ فَيا كْتُمْهُ اِلاَّيعَنْ اَهْلِهِ.
He (Hazrat Mahdi [AS]) it is by whose hands Allah expands the lands of the East and West. He it is who will become hidden from his early Shi'as such that there will be no real base for belief in the Imamate, other than for someone whose heart Allah has tested for faith.
Jabir Jau'fi says that Jabir ibn Abdullah Ansari said to the Prophet (S), O Prophet of Allah, would the Shi'as benefit from him in the period of occultation? The Prophet (S) answered, Yes, I swear by Allah has commissioned me with the message, they will benefit from him in the period of occultation and will be enlightened by the light of his Wilayat in the same way that people benefit from the sun even though it is covered by clouds. O Jabir, this is of the divine secrets and of His storehouse of knowledge. Therefore, hide it from all but those are not part of it6.
By swearing, the Holy Prophet (S) in this tradition emphasizes that the Shi'a will receive light from the Imam (as) at the time of his occultation. At the time of the occultation, even though the Imam (as) is absent, the veil of absence is in our hearts. Rather Imam (as) is a shining light and this is clear to anyone whose heart can see, even if he is apparently blind.
Considering this fact, man can be guided to the position of Wilayat and to the power of this great personality and the love Age (as) can intoxicate hearts and create the manifestation of the world government within man's heart.
in societies where religion plays no role and people are expectant of no greater future, despair in life, murder, bloodshed and suicide are frequently witnessed. This is because people see such negative factors as factors as poverty, oppression, tyranny, infringement and breaking of laws and distrust in man -made laws and they fail to find solutions and means of escape from such darkness.
Because of this they become entangled in the difficulties of destructive despair and hopelessness, this being because they have no hope in God and the future and they view suicide as the way out of these problems. And by committing these crimes, they not only draw their present life and the hereafter into ruin but also the future of their spouse, children and relatives also.
But the person who has created the feeling of Anticipation within himself and at every moment is hopeful for the luminosity of the shining light of Wilayat to engulf the universe, is never willing to create such crimes and lo is never willing to destroy the lives of many. Therefore, this issue of Anticipation of the reappearance is a relief for him, and prepares a base for escape from despair and ruin. The following tradition is a witness to this truth.
Hassan Ibn Jahm says:
عَنْ الْحَسَنِ بْنِ الْجَهَمِ قَالَ: سَاٴَ لْتُ اَبَاَالْحَسَنِ (ع) عَنْ شِيْءٍ مِينَ الْفَرَجِ, فَقَيالَ (ع): اَوَلَسْيتَتَعْلَمُ اَنَّ اَنْتِظَيارَ الْفَرَجِ مِنَ الْفَرَجِ؟ قُلْتُ: لاَياَدْرِي اِلاَّياَنْ تُعَلِّمَنِ. فَقَيالَ (ع): نَعَمْ, اِنْتِظَيارُ الفَرَجِ مِنَ الْفَرَجِ.
“I asked a question of Imam Musa ibn Ja'far (as) about the reappearance.” The Imam (as) replied: “Do you not know that Anticipation of the reappearance is part of the reappearance?” I said: “I would not have known had you not taught me.” The Imam said: “Yes Anticipation of the reappearance is part of the reappearance.”7
Man, by establishing complete Anticipation, can create some of the states of the people of the time of the reappearance within himself, namely purity of heart, and with hope and anticipation save himself from despair and ruin. Imam Sadiq (as) narrates from his ancestor Amir al Mu'minin (as) who is quoted as saying:
اَفْضَلُ عِبَادَهِٔ الْمُؤْمِنِ اِنْتِظَارُ فَرَجِ اللهِ.
"The best worship of the believer is to have Anticipation for the reappearance of the Mahdi (as) from Allah8."
Therefore, because of the state of Anticipation man can create within himself, some of the effects of perfection of the time of the reappearance. For further explanation of this matter consider Imam Sajjad's (as) orders to Abi Khalid. Abi Khalid narrates from Ali ibn Hussain (as) where the Imam (as) has said:
عَنْ اَبِي خَالِيدِ الْكَابُلِي عَنْ عَلِيِّ بْنِ الْحُسَييْنِ (ع): تَمْتَدُّ الْغَيْبَهٴُ بِوَلِيِّ اللهِ الثَّانِي عَشَيرَ مِنْ اَوْ صِيَاءِ رَسُولِ اللهِ (ص) وَ الاَيمَهِٴ بَعْدِهِ, يَا ابَا خَالِدَ, اَنَّ اَهُلَ زِمَانِ غَيْبَتِهِ, اَلْقَايِلُوْنَ بِاِ مَا مَتِهِ الْمُنْتَظِرُوْنَ لِظُهُوْرِهِ اَفَضَلُ اَهْلِ كُلِّ زَمَانٍ, لاَنَّ اللهَ تَعَالَي ذِكْرُهُ اَعَطاهُمْ مِنَ الْعُقُوْلِ وَالاَفْهَامِ وَالْمَعْرِ فَيهِٴ مَا صَارَتْ بِهِ الْغَيْبَيهٴُ عِنْيدَ هُمْ بِمَنْزِلَهِٴ الْمُشَاهِدَهِٴ, وٰ جَعَلَهُمْ فِي ذَالِكَ الزَمَانِ بِمَنْزِلَهٴِ الْمُجَاهِدِ يْنَ بَيْنَ يَدَيْ رَسْولِاللهِ (ص) بِالسَّيْفِ, اُوْليِكَ الْمُخْلَصُوْنَ حَقّاً, وَ شِييْعَتُنَا صِدْقاً, وَ الدُّعَاهٴُ اِلَي دِيْنِ اللهِ سِيرّاً وَجَهْراً, وَ قَيالَ (ع): اِنْتِظَيارُ الْفَرَجِ مِنْ اَعْظَمِ الْفَرَجِ
“The occultation will be extended by a guardian (Wali) appointed by Allah who is the 12th of the guardians and Imams belonging to the family of the Holy Prophet (S) after him.”
“O Abi Khalid, the people who will be present at the time of his occultation and believe in his Imamate and await his reappearance, are better than people of any other period. Thus Allah (SWT) bestows them with so much intelligence, understanding and knowledge that absence to them is like witnessing and at that time they will be given the position equal to those who struggled (Mujahideen) and fought with swords in the presence of the Holy Prophet (S). They are truly of the sincere and are of our true Shi'as who calls people to the religion of God, both openly and privately.” Then Imam Sajjad (as) said: “Anticipation of the reappearance is part of the greatness of the reappearance9."
The righteous ones in Anticipation, who have attained perfection on the path because of their readiness for the government of Allah's unseen powers all over the universe, at the time of occultation, attain some of the personal qualities of the time of reappearance e.g. purity of heart, such that the dark period of occultation appears to them as a time of presence and witnessing.
If it did not affect them in such a way, then how can anticipation of the reappearance be a great part of the reappearance?
With the state of Anticipation, they bring together the period of reappearance and the period of occultation and they attain many of the states of that period during the period of occultation10.
At this point, so that light can be shed on hearts, we will mention some of the events of the life of a great personality in the Shi'a world, who by having unseen powers both openly and privately, has embarked on assisting God's religion. One of the students of the late Sheikh Ansari, concerning the relationship of the late Sheikh with the Imam of Age (as) and his honorable visits to the house of that Hazrat has said:
“I had entered Karbala to perform one of the pilgrimages of Hazrat Aba Abdullah Hussain (as). I came out of my house a little after midnight to go to the bath and because the lanes were muddy, I took along a lamp with me. From afar I saw someone resembling Sheikh. Upon drawing near I confirmed that it was the Sheikh.
I wondered where he was going at that time he also had weak eyesight. So, that God forbid someone should ambush him, I followed him quietly until he arrived at the door of an old house, where he read the Ziyarat Jami’a with attention and then entered the house.
I saw nothing after that but I heard the Sheikh's voice and it seemed that he was speaking to someone. I went to the bath, to the holy shrine and saw the Sheikh there. After the journey to Najaf I visited the Sheikh and related the incident of that night to him.
First the Sheikh denied it, but after much insistence he said, sometimes to pay a visit to the Imam of the Age (as) I seek permission and go to the back door of the house which you will never find again, read Ziyarat Jami’a and if permission is given (at that place), I visit the esteemed Imam Mahdi (as) and ask the necessary questions of the master. The Sheikh said; Until the time that I am alive keep this secret and reveal it to no one11.”
Such great personalities are ready and prepared for the reappearance of the Imam (as) and not those who at the time of the reappearance will go to war with the Imam (as) by interpreting and explaining verses of the Holy Qur'an.
It is possible that one can ask: How is it that the late Sheikh Ansari, whenever he was given permission, could go to the Imam of the Age's (as) house, read the Ziyarat Jami’a and again with permission enter that house and speak to his beloved Imam?
How did he attain such a status but his student who also saw the Imam's (as) house did not have such a privilege and the late Sheikh said to him; You will not find that house again.
This is an important question requiring a convincing answer. Unfortunately, some have ready and quick answers for such questions, and in the face of such questions they quickly answer, Allah wanted it to be so, or Allah (God forbid) has a special relationship with some people and this has no relation to the action or desires of the person involved.
Such answers, which are frequently given to remove the burden of responsibility, are incorrect. Because they are neither convincing nor do they guide anyone to the path. Considering the sayings of the household of revelation, we will seek to answer this question.
Allah, the compassionate, calls all people towards spiritual and mental perfection and in His general invitation, rewards all who take steps towards this path. In the same way that the host invites the guests and if they accept the invitation and participate in the gathering, he is hospitable to them, Allah also creates the foundation for man's advancement and perfection within all of mankind and invites them to that path. In the Qur’an, it is clearly stated in Surah Ankabut Verse 69.
وَالَّذِينَ جَاهَدُوا فِينَا لَنَهْدِيَنَّهُمْ سُبُلَنَا ۚ وَإِنَّ اللَّهَ لَمَعَ الْمُحْسِنِينَ
“And those who strive in Our Course We will certainly guide them to Our path...12”
It is the responsibility of the guests to answer Allah's call and move forward in the path of spiritual perfection.
Therefore, within mankind there exists the base for advancement and perfection and they benefit from such blessings but they store it away and do not utilize it. Like the shortsighted wealthy who are at their happiest when they store away as much of their money as possible in the banks and never find the good grace to use such wealth. To be successful, one must use all existent grounds and capabilities and make up for one's deficiencies so that one can attain one's desired goals.
Many people benefit from many natural capabilities and the ability to attain spiritual perfection but since they show no interest in such matters they make no use of such capabilities, leave this world and thus their capabilities are also buried deep in the earth. This is like the wealthy of yesteryear where they saved their money by hiding it deep in the earth, where neither these nor their families could benefit from it.
To make clear how some people have greater mental capacities and better understanding and how they attained them, we will mention some words from the Sheikh Hur Amili, one of the great Shi'a scholars.
He says, "It is clear that seeing and hearing and the like, are not independent of the eye the ear, etc., but rather, they are just means for the spirit by which it sees and hears etc. and because man's spirit is not strong, his seeing and hearing are limited to these types of physical apparatus.”
Therefore, he only sees the material and is incapable of grasping the spiritual. But if man's spirit is strengthened and by means of worship, performance of the obligatory acts and abandoning the prohibited, draws close to Allah, his spirit will become strong. When the spirit becomes strong, his power of utilizing the material and what is natural will become stronger.
Therefore, with his eyes he sees things and with his ears he hears things that others do not have the power to. This authority and power exists in various people at various degrees. Whoever draws near to Allah by means of worship and struggle, strengthens his spiritual state, he gets greater power in perceiving the things, which others by using their eyes and ears do not have the power to do13."
By this, it is clear why persons such as the late Sheikh Ansari can receive that great blessing but others do not have this power and capacity and those looking on are incapable of seeing matters as they do.
The state of Anticipation in its complete sense brings you the gift of understanding of such matters. Those who are on the path of Anticipation and have developed themselves, with release from their carnal desires and with flight and elevation of spirit, are released from the domination of their (Nafs) selves and the attraction of the self loses its power, and they are drawn to Allah. In the same way that spacecraft’s which leave the earth's orbit are no longer drawn by the earth's gravity, with the passage of time, you also can release yourself from the pull of carnal desires, the attraction of the self and satanic temptations will no longer affect you.
The companions of the Ahlul Bayt (as) e.g. Salman were like this. They had been released from the orbit of the self and from the limitations of materialism and thus formed a relationship with the unseen world. Wilayat and the power that Salman benefited from were because he had moved outside of the orbit of the self and destroyed his desires. He placed the desires and will of Amir al Mu'minin (as) above those of his own and consequently benefited from and used unseen powers.
Anticipation of the reappearance strengthens the power of Wilayat of the Imam of the Age (as) in the heart and souls of those in wait and stabilizes and strengthens them concerning this concept that one day next to the house of God (Kabaa) God's power will be revealed by means of that Imam (as) and the Satanic powers of the world, who are just leeches sucking on the blood of the weak, will receive punishment for their disgraceful actions.
And with the rigidity and great power of Wilayat it will be proven and made clear that the person who holds the position of Imamate and Wilayat can reveal Allah's power. This is the idea and belief of a person in waiting.
Therefore, the Anticipation of the reappearance accompanies belief, trust and basic knowledge of religion, because Anticipation plants the seeds of knowledge and awareness of the beliefs within the minds of those in waiting and makes them understand that eventually the entire universe will become organized under the domination of the power of Wilayat and the great and unknown power of Wilayat will bring all the oppressive powers to their knees.
The materialistic culture of the world will not stand in the face of the boundless power of divine Wilayat and the universe will come under the control of the amazing powers of the world reformer (as).
Many various persons have risen with claims of the Mahdiat and introduced themselves as leaders and reformers and with such deceit have trampled on the blood, souls and wealth of the people and have even misguided some. But those who are truly in Anticipation and have illuminated themselves with the shining light of Wilayat, are not fooled by these imposters and do not fall into the traps of these hunters.
Their awareness and knowledge of these imposters and thieves lurking on the path is because of their familiarity with the sublime position of the Imamate. Such that they do not sell life water for a mirage and do not choose the usurpers of the Caliphate over the Imamate.
Familiarity with the position of those in Anticipation or the great companions of the Imam of the Age (as)
One of the other reasons for people being attracted to the path of Anticipation is familiarity with the position of those in Anticipation and with the great companions of the Imam of the Age (as). One of the amazing results which Anticipation bestows on those perfect ones is that not only as far as belief and trust is concerned are they learned around the Wilayat of the Ahlul Bayt (as) but they are also themselves openings for the radiant sun of Wilayat.
Meaning that because of their perfection relating to the Anticipation of the Imam (as) as far as they are able, they have acquired special powers from the household of revelation and by using them, perform the responsibilities given to them. Such persons are the companions of the Imam of the Age (as) and are in the forefront of the path of Wilayat. Consider the words of Allah in the Holy Qur'an.
وَلِكُلٍّ وِجْهَةٌ هُوَ مُوَلِّيهَا ۖ فَاسْتَبِقُوا الْخَيْرَاتِ ۚ أَيْنَ مَا تَكُونُوا يَأْتِ بِكُمُ اللَّهُ جَمِيعًا ۚ إِنَّ اللَّهَ عَلَىٰ كُلِّ شَيْءٍ قَدِيرٌ
“Then strive together (as in a race) towards all that is good. Whosesoever ye are Allah will bring ye together14.”
This verse concerns the 313 persons among the companions of the Imam (as) who will be assembled by Allah the Exalted, on the day of his reappearance, next to His house in the presence of the holder of Wilayat so that they can rush to the Imam's (as) aid and bring an end to the life of the dark-hearted of the time.
Sometimes an important question arises in the minds of some: what is the reason for they being ahead in righteousness? What virtues do the 313 persons among the leading companions of Hazrat Mahdi (as) possess which sets them ahead of others and allows them to enjoy such a high position?
We will turn to the school of thought of revelation and seek the answer. Hazrat Imam Baqir (as) in the exegesis of the verse, which has been mentioned, said the following:
الْجَيْرَاتُ: اَلْوِ لاَ يَيهُٔ لَنَيا اَهْيل البَيْتِ
"The meaning of the righteousness mentioned in the verse is the: Wilayat which is of us the Ahlul Bayt15."
The more man struggles in the acceptance of Wilayat, the more he strengthens his spirit and his extraordinary powers increase accordingly, to such an extent that because of his spiritual powers he can govern over the physical and even non-physical beings. We will now mention an interesting episode from the late Allamah Bahr al-Ulum.
The late Allamah Sayyid Bahr al-Ulum suffered from palpitations of the heart and with such a disease left Najaf for Karbala on a warm summer day, to perform one of the special pilgrimages of Abi Abdullah Hussein (as).
People were surprised as to how he set off on a journey with such a disease in such warm weather!! Among his traveling companions was the late Sheikh Hussein Najafi who was one of the famous scholars of Sayyid's time. Upon alighting their animals, they set off. Clouds appeared and provided them with shade. A cool breeze was also blowing and the weather became so cool that it was as though they were in a cool place.
The clouds continued to shade them until they arrived at Khanshur. There an associate of that great scholar Sheikh Hussein Najafi appeared and he was separated from Sheikh Bahr al-Ulum and began to converse with his friend. That cloud spread shade on Sayyid's head until he entered the inn. Since the heat of the sun's rays shone down upon Sheikh Hussein Najafi, his health wavered and he fell from his animal unto the ground. And due to his old or ill health he fell unconscious.
They took him to the late Sheikh Sayyid Bahrululum in the inn. When he regained consciousness, he said to Sayyid: “Why did not this mercy spread to me?” Sayyid replied, “Why did you violate this mercy?16” This answer contains a sensitive veil.
The power of control of the special companions of the Imam of the Age (as) is such that. Some of the 313 special companions of the Imam (as) use secret clouds and at the beginning of the reappearance by this means take themselves to the Imam's (as) presence.
قَالَ اَبٌوْ عَبْدِاللهِ (ع): ادَا اُذِنَ الاِ مَامُ دَعَااللهَ بِاِ سْيمِهِ الْعَبْرَانِيّ فَاُ تِيْحَتْ لَهُ صَيحَا بَتُه الثَّلاثَهٔ عَشَرَقَزَعِ كَقَزَعِ الْخَرِيْفِ وَهُمْ اَصْيحَابُ الاَلَوِيَّهٔ, مِنْهُمْ مَنْ يَفْقُيدْ عَنْ فِرَ اشِهِ لَيِلًا فَيُصْيبِحُ بِمَكّيهٔ, وَ مِنْهُمْ مَنْ يَرَييَسِييْرُ فِي السَّحابِ نَهَاَراً يُعْرَفُ بِاِ سِيمِهِ وَ اِسْمِ اَبِيْهِ وَ حِلْيَتِهِ وَ نَسَيبِهِ, قُلْتُ: جُعِلْتُ فِدَاكَ اَيُّهُمْ اَعْظَمُ اِيْمَاناً؟ قَالَ: الَّذِي يَسِييْرُ فِي السَّحَابِ نَهَارَاً وَ هُمْ الْمَفْقُوْ دُوْنَ وَ فِيْهِمْ نُزِلَتْ هَدِهِ الآ يَهٔ (اَيْنَمَا تَكُوْ نُوْا يَيأتِ بِكُمُ اللهُ حَمِيْعَاً).
Imam Sadiq (as) says, "Whenever the Imam (as) is given permission, he calls Allah by His Hebrew name and that is when his companions who are 313 are prepared. They are clouds like autumn clouds, which joined together, and assemble in one place and they are flag bearers (of the Mahdi (as)).
Some of them disappear from their sleeping places at night and (appear) in the morning in Makkah, others can be seen traveling on clouds by day and are known by their name, that of their fathers, qualities and families. I said, "Which of these two are greater in faith?" Imam Sadiq (as) said, "Those who travel by clouds by day, and they are those who disappear from their places and this verse has been revealed about them. Wherever ye are, Allah will bring ye together17.
Familiarity with the world situation at the time of the reappearance and the great changes which will occur at that time calls man to the matter of Anticipation. The amazing changes, which will occur all over the world and within man himself, will change the world and man.
Consider a brief explanation of the changes, which will occur deep within man's existence.
One of the matters of belief is the discussion of nature and how the pure and impure natures have mixed together. The meaning of this disposition (teenat), why they have become mixed and how they can again become purified are matters discussed in the traditions.
A detailed explanation of this matter is not appropriate for our limited discussion; therefore, we will only mention the following points. One particularity of, the time of reappearance is the purification of man's nature, his nafs and unconscious of its impurities that exist deep within him. Why do we say that at the time of the reappearance the Imam (as) will purify people of their impurities?
Before answering this question, we will mention an episode to shed some light on this issue. Shaybat Ibn Uthman was one of the Holy Prophet's (S) arch enemies and nurtured the hope of the Holy Prophet's (S) murder in his mind.
He participated in the Hunayn war so that he could martyr the Holy Prophet (S). Just when the people had separated from the Holy Prophet (S) and he was left alone, Shaybat approached him from the back but a light shone on him so brightly that he could not bear it and so could not attain his goal. The Holy Prophet (S) turned to him and said, Shaybat come closer. Then the Holy Prophet (S) put his hand on his chest, the effect of which was such that the love of the Prophet (S) spread through his heart and the Holy Prophet (S) became the dearest person to him.
After which, in the presence of the Holy Prophet (S) he fought against the opposes such that if he had come face to face with his own father he would have killed him for the sake of the Holy Prophet (S)18.
Consider how in one moment the Prophet's (S) blessed hands cleansed the impure nature and unclean nafs of one of the Prophet's (S) worst enemies and separated him from the line of the disbelievers and placed him among the army of the Holy Prophet (S). The Holy Prophet (S) by placing his blessed hand on the man's chest perfected his intellect and because of the changes which occurred within him saved him from misguidance and deviation. With the citing of this introduction we will embark on the explanation of the period of reappearance. Imam Baqir (as) has said:
عَلَي رُؤُوْسِ الْعِبَيادِ, فَجُمِيعَ بِهِ عُقُيوْ لُهُمْ وَاَكْمَيلَ بِهِ اَخْلاَيقُهُمْ.
“When our Qa'im (as) (the living one) begins his uprising, he will place his hand on the heads of Allah's servants”.
By this act, he will bring their intellects together (because of which they will become perfect) and perfect their morals19. The Imam of the Age (as) by such actions perfects the inner dimensions of man and saves all of Allah's servants from impurities.
Here we will explain two interesting points of the tradition:
1. Not only does the Baqiatullah (as) pace his hand on the heads of his companions and helpers but also on the heads of all Allah's servants.
Meaning that all of those who accept Allah's servitude on that day, even though in war they may not be among the Imam's (as) companions, namely the aged and children, they will still benefit from that great blessing.
2. The intellects of all people will be saved and all will have complete concentration and perception, which will become the sources of exceptional knowledge and understanding.
Perfection of their intellectual powers means that they will be able to use all their mental capabilities. Yes, on the day that the divine hand will be placed on the heads of the people of the world and caresses the people who suffered during the period of occultation, because of perfect intellects, hidden and sacred powers become manifest within the minds of man and he will attain the highest levels of practical and scientific excellence.
So, that we can become more familiar with the spiritual power and the amazing effect of perfect intellects we will discuss the great capacities of the brain. Every person, be he genius or the average person, does not utilize more than one millionth of his brain capacity throughout his life.
If only one millionth of the brain's capacity and ability is used, the difference between a genius and an average person is not quantitative but rather qualitative20.
Meaning that even geniuses that have amazing powers of perception can only use one millionth of their brain and no more. But the way that they utilize that one millionth of millionth of their brain is better than others.
Years before one of the contemporary mathematicians created a ruckus and presented people with some interesting information. He hypothesized that the human brain can store 10 units of information. If we express this number in simple words it will mean that every one of us can memorize all the information of the millions of books at the world’s largest library in Moscow. The above words, at first glance, are as amazing as the calculations used to prove it21.
Consider this, when the power of man's brain reaches its peak because of the rays of shining light of the World Reformer [Imam Mahdi (as)] and man uses all his brain power, not only one millionth of it and knowledge encompasses the world and a new civilization is developed, how will the world be?
When man, because of perfect intellect, discovers ways of using his hidden spiritual powers and benefits from them, he can make his physical body obey his spirit and attain tarawuh power. Meaning that he can change his body into energy and waves and can control his physical and mental state. Man, then becomes capable of many extraordinary acts which at the time would appear normal.
During the time of the occultation a very few who would have the power of traversing the earth' will use this method and by controlling both their mental and physical states, change their state into energy and waves and at any moment can appear at any part of the world. With the power that they are endowed with they can guide themselves anywhere that they chose and appear there in bodily form.
During the period of reappearance there will be great changes in the world, as the Holy Qur'an says:
يَوْمَ تُبَدَّلُ الْأَرْضُ غَيْرَ الْأَرْضِ وَالسَّمَاوَاتُ ۖ وَبَرَزُوا لِلَّهِ الْوَاحِدِ الْقَهَّارِ
"One day the earth will be changed to another earth22."
The earth will be changed and its conditions and situations will become new, not only the earth rather time will also find new meaning23.
Today all the scholars agree that matter vibrates. Vibrations can be transmitted to the farthest points by cables or sound waves e.g. in pictures and sounds. Therefore, the human organism, which is made of matter, can be changed to vibrations and by electronic means, be sent to any part of the universe. In my opinion, in the, not too distant future, even before trips to outer space, methods will be discovered whereby the human body can be converted into vibrations and sent to outer space where its small particles can be reassembled.
Now you dear readers can be the judges, man is made of a spirit and his physical body is nothing but concentrated particles of matter, which can be shaped into desired forms by slowing down or lowering its vibrations24.
One day we will witness, with our own eyes, that man will change his own body into electronic waves so that after this it can be transferred to a far-off place and there the constituent atoms of the body can be reassembled25.
According with the universal excellence of intellectual powers, which has been explained in the traditions, the spirit will dominate over the material and people will govern over their physical bodies and will be able to use this condition to its fullest. During those unknown magnificent days, people's lives and needs for the material will be different.
In the light of the magnificence of Wilayat of the Ahlul Bayt (as), man's knowledge will reach the highest excellence possible and he will be able to easily benefit from all levels of knowledge and the secrets that the saints of Allah were not able to reveal to the people because of their unprepared ness until that time, will be revealed and man will become aware of the intriguing world both within himself and in the outside world. The path towards training and final perfection will be opened to them.
It may be difficult for us to accept such matters and such scientific advancements but at the same time we know that the freeing of the human brain from ignorance and Satan's prison means that he will be complete in all dimensions such that there will be no secrets left in the world and all the complicated scientific matters will be divulged.
Hazrat Amir al Mu'minin (as) has said, "The usurpers of the Caliphate have prevented millions of people from reaching the highest position of knowledge and excellence, the shining light of Wilayat." He adds the following:
يَا كُمَيْلُ, مَا مِنْ عِلْمٍ اِلاَيو اَنَاْ اَفْتَحُهُ وَ مَا مِنْ سِيرٍّ اِلاّ وَ الْقَا ئمُ يَخْتِمُهُ.
"O Kumayl, there is no knowledge which I do not reveal and no secret which the Qa'im does not bring to one end26.
Yes, when the luminous light of the blessed hands of the great Baqiatullah (as) perfects the minds of the oppressed and suffering of the world, and creates the ability for man to use his extraordinary powers, man can accept the secrets of the life-endowing school of thought of the Household of Revelation with all his intellectual and perceptive powers and not just with one millionth of it. Thus, allowing man to reach the highest level of knowledge and perfection.
During those splendid days, hidden secrets will be disclosed and there will be no signs of the darkness and gloom of this period. Does not the Anticipation of such a day please your heart?
Anticipation is the state of hope and salvation, which seeks out those in wait, in the dark period of the occultation from the whirlpool of perplexity and takes them to the valley of light and purity.
Anticipation provides the melancholy with new life and new energy, also provides hope to the depressed hearts, and nurtures the idea of a world full of happiness and light in the minds of mankind.
Anticipation seeks out the righteous ones and makes them blessed and exudes a beautiful luminous light. Anticipation removes hindrances and the veil of darkness and creates an incandescent light within the human beings who have achieved perfection. It brings into fruition the seed of knowledge and understanding of original Shi'ism within the hearts of those in wait, and presents the most perfect spiritual state to the most virtuous people.
If you want to establish the state of Anticipation within yourself, draw near to the glorious Wilayat and become aware of the remarkable effects of Anticipation and by investigating the condition of those in this state gain knowledge of their virtues and qualities.
Also, you can discover the greatness of the period of the reappearance of Baqiatullah (as) so that unconsciously the feeling of the Anticipation of that marvelous day will engulf your entire being.
- 1. By entreating the Imam of the Age May Allah hasten his reappearance) and in remembering him, many people hold ceremonies in Anticipation of his reappearance and Praise be to Allah such ceremonies are on the increase and are becoming more widespread. Our intention is not to deny such ceremonies or such people or to deny they’re of Anticipation because their state has many varied levels and those who have attained the highest level, even though they may be few, have arisen from among the ranks of these very people and did not remain stagnant on the path they chose, rather they struggled and endeavoured and tolerated difficulties and hardships.
- 2. In many traditions the use of extraordinary powers by the Imam of the Age (as) during his reign has been clarified.
- 3. Many other ways also exists which invite man towards Anticipation and we have mentioned some of them in this book, e.g. the issue of sincerity, knowledge, compassion of the Ahlul Bayt (as) self-development etc.
- 4. Bihar ul Anwar vol.25, p.173
- 5. Refer to Bihar ul-Anwar vol.25, p.250
- 6. Kamal uddin p.146 & 147, Bihar ul Anwar vol.36, p.250.
- 7. Bihar ul Anwar vol. 52, p.130
- 8. Bihar ul Anwar vol. 52, p.131
- 9. Bihar ul Anwar vol.52, p.121
- 10. In the same way that has been mentioned, it is only rarely that people like late Sayyid Bahr al-Ulum and the late Sheikh Murtadha Ansari can attain such a state.
- 11. The Life and Personality of Sheikh Ansari, p.106.
- 12. Ankabut, 29:69
- 13. Refer to Fawa'id al-Tusieh, the late Sheikh Hur Amili, p.82.
- 14. Surah Baqarah. 2:148.
- 15. Ghaybat from the Nu'mani, pg 314.
- 16. Abghar il-Hissan, 69.2
- 17. Bihar ul Anwar, vol.52, p.368, Ghaybat from the Nu'maani, p.168, Ayasi translation, vol.1, p.67.
- 18. Safeenatul Bahar, vol.1, p.202, about love.
- 19. Bihar ul Anwar vol.52, p.336).
- 20. Know Your Own Capability, p.247.
- 21. Know Your Own Capability, p.44.
- 22. Surah Ibrahim. 14:48
- 23. Refers to the tradition in Bihar ul Anwar vol.47, p.354)
- 24. The Spirit Remains Alive, p.158
- 25. The Spirit Remains Alive, p.188
- 26. Bihar ul Anwar vol.77, p.269