An Extract of Al-Mizan, An Exegesis of the Holy Qur’an Volume 10, Chapter 5, Verses 51-54
Sayyid Muhammad Husayn Tabataba'i
Sayyid Saeed Akhtar Rizvi
Published by: W.O.F.I.S., World Organization for Islamic Services,
P. O. Box No. 11365 - 1545,
Tehran - IRAN.
We have repeatedly hinted previously that when Qur’an puts too much emphasis on a certain topic, and imperatively asserts and goes to the utmost limit in affirming it, it gives an indication that the causes and factors that were then present would surely join forces to push man to the pitfalls of perdition and make him liable to the wrath of Allah. Look, for example, at the verses of interest and of the love of the kindred, etc.
This inference springs from the nature of speech. When a wise speaker gives a simple and easy to comply with order, and then goes to the extreme in emphasizing it; or when he addresses a respected personality in a way that such people are not talked to in that manner (for example, a divine scholar, deep-rooted in self-denial and worship is openly admonished not to commit heinous debauchery), it shows that there is some hidden reason behind it, and that there lies ahead a great dangerous situation and an imminent perdition.
The Qur’anic talks of this style were certainly followed by such events and happenings that confirmed that allusion, or let us say, prophecy; although those who heard the verse on the day of revelation probably were not aware of the hints and allusions it contained.
Look at how the Qur’an ordered people to love the Prophet's kindred, and how it emphasized it until it was counted as the wage of messengership, and then see how the Muslims inflicted calamitous oppressions and massacres on his family-members, to such an extent that if they were ordered to do such things, they could not do more.
The Qur’an forbade discord and disagreement, and emphasized this prohibition to the utmost degree; and then the ummah was dis- united and divided into so many sects that exceeded the disunity of the Jews and the Christians. The Jews had divided into seventyone sects and the Christians into seventytwo, but the Muslim went to seventy-three sects. This was only in matters of belief and theology; as for their divisions in social orders and political systems, etc., nobody can fully compute it.
The Qur’an forbids judging by what Allah has not revealed. It prohibited creating discord between various classes, and clearly told the ummah not to transgress the boundary or to follow their low desires, etc. In spite of all this emphasis there happened what we all are aware of.
This prohibition of taking the unbelievers and the People of the Book as friends did not fare any differently from other forcefully emphasized Qur’anic prohibitions. It may rather be said that no other prohibition in the circle of the branches of religion reaches near this forbiddance. Its importance was raised to such a level that Allah counted the friends of the People of the Book and the unbelievers as being one of them: and whoever amongst you takes them for a friend, then surely, he is one of them; He declared that they are not from Allah:
“And whoever does this, he shall have nothing (to do) with Allah” (3:28).
He warned them most forcefully, and said time and again:
“And Allah cautions you of Himself” (3:30).
And we have explained under the verse that it indicates that what they had been warned of, was bound to happen without any change.
If you want more clarification then think over the verses 111 and 113 of chapter 11 (Hud): Allah has before that given the stories of the peoples of Nuh, Hud, Salih and others and described the discord of the Jews in their books. Then He says:
“And your Lord will most surely pay back to all their deeds in full; surely He is aware of what they do.” (11:111).
Now, ponder on the next verse:
“And do not incline to those who are unjust, lest the Fire touch you, and you have no guardians besides Allah, then you shall not be helped”. (11:113).
The verse is unrestricted and, therefore, the fire shall touch them in this world too before the next; and He has threatened them by the clause: and Allah cautions you of Himself; this touching of the Fire is explained in the verse:
“This day have those who disbelieve despaired of your religion, so fear them not, and fear Me” (5:3).
It makes it clear that what the believers were afraid of regarding their religion, until this verse was revealed, from the disbelievers, i.e. the polytheists and the People of the Book, now they are safe from it; therefore, they should not fear them about their religion; rather they should fear their Lord. What were they afraid of regarding their relig- ion from the disbelievers? It was because they were aware that the only goal that the disbelievers had before their eyes was to extinguish the light of religion, and to snatch away this precious commodity from their hands by any means available. They were under this apprehension before today; but revelation of the chapter of "The Table" (Surah n. 5), brought a feeling of security to them, and their hearts became tranquil. Even so, they should fear their Lord, lest He takes away their light and deprives them of their religion.
It is known that Allah does not inflict any misfortune or punish- ment on any people unless they fully deserve it. He says:
“This is because Allah never change a bounty which He has conferred upon a people until they change their own condition” (8:53).
Thus, He made it clear that His changing of bounty does not take place unless the people concerned deserve it, which is then followed by change of bounty. Allah has called religion or religious guardianship a favour or bounty, as He says soon after it:
“This day have I perfected for you your religion and completed My favour on you and chosen for you Islam as religion” (5:3).
If this favour is changed it is through their own agency. It is expected that they would go out of divine protection by cutting rela- tion from Him, inclining towards the unjust people and taking the disbelievers and the People of the Book for friends. It is incumbent on them to fear Allah concerning their selves, fearing His wrath which nobody can avert; He has threatened them of it in these words:
“And whoever amongst you takes them for a friend, then surely, he is one of them; surely Allah does not guide the unjust people” (5:51).
Allah, in these words, has declared that He will not guide them to their felicity; and it is this felicity with which guidance is connected. Their felicity in the world means that they would live on religious tradition and general Islamic custom in their society.
When the structure of this system comes down, its manifest bearings are disrupted, like enjoining the good and forbidding the evil, which had preserved its real meaning; general Islamic practices give way to disbelievers' traditions; this un-Islamic behaviour gradually takes firm roots and is permanently established – and this is the situation of Muslims' society in these days.
Ponder on general Islamic behaviour arranged by the Book and the Sunnah, which they try to establish among the Muslims. Then look at this corrupt behaviour burdened over the Muslims' shoulders today. Lastly, think over the divine words:
“Then soon Allah will bring a people He shall love them and they shall love Him, lowly before the believers, mighty against the unbelievers, they shall fight in Allah's way and shall not fear the censure of any censurer” (5:54).
Then you will realize that all the evils which have today encompassed our Muslim society, and have taken deep roots – that we had borrowed from the unbelievers and then it has grown and generated – are the opposites of what Allah has mentioned as the attributes of the people whose appearance He has promised. In other words, all our bad char- acteristics are encapsuled in the fact that our people today do not love Allah, nor does He love them, they are lowly before the unbelievers, haughty against the believers; they do not fight in Allah's way and fear the censure of every censurer.
It was this degeneration that the Qur’an had read in those people's faces. You may say that it was a news of the unseen which the knowing God had given the Prophet (S): That the Islamic society will turn back from the religion; it would not be the terminological apostacy; rather it would be a degradation for which Allah says:
“And whoever amongst you takes them for a friend, then surely he is one of them; surely Allah does not guide the unjust people” (5:51).
“And had they believed in Allah and the Prophet and what was revealed to him, they would not have taken them for friends, but most of them are transgressors” (5:81).
Allah had promised to help them if they would help Him, and to weaken their enemies if the Muslim themselves did not strengthen and help them. He says:
“If you help Allah, He will help you” (47:7).
“And if the People of the Book had believed, it would have been better for them; of them (some) are believers and most of them are transgressors.” (3:110).
“They shall by no means harm you but with a slight distress; and if they fight you, they shall turn (their) backs to you, then they shall not be helped” (3:111).
“Abasement is brought down upon them wherever they are found, except under a protection from Allah and a protection from men” (3:112).
It is not far-fetched to infer from the words: except under a protection from Allah and a protection from men, that they could come out of that abasement if they established friendship with people or if Allah gave them mastery over people.
Then Allah promised the Muslim society – and we have seen its condition – that He shall bring a people that
“He shall love them and they shall love Him, lowly before the believers, mighty against the unbelievers, they shall fight in Allah's way and shall not fear the censure of any censurer”. (5:54).
These attributes, which Allah has ascribed to them, are the very characteristics that the today's Islamic society does not have. If you ponder on them, you may infer the detail of the evils, which the verse alludes, shall soon afflict the Islamic society.
Those evils are enumerated in a lot of traditions giving the news of the upheavals of the last days; they are narrated from the Prophet (S) and the Imams of Ahl al-Bayt (‘a). Despite their great numbers, on the whole they are not free from the defects of interpola- tion and alteration; yet among them are traditions whose authenticity is confirmed by subsequent events and happenings. Those traditions are recorded in the books compiled by ancient scholars a thousand years or more before our time. Their authorship is established and people have been quoting from them during all that period.
Moreover, those traditions spoke about such events and happen- ings that had not taken place at that time, nor had the people in those days ever expected such things to happen. Therefore, we have no option but to admit their authenticity and accept that they have come from the fountain-head of revelation.
For example, al-Qummi has narrated in his at-Tafsir, from his father, from Sulayman ibn Muslim al-Khashshab, from ‘Abdullah ibn Jarih al-Makki, from ‘Ata ibn Abi Riyah, from ‘Abdullah ibn ‘Abbas that he said: "We performed hajj – the Last Pilgrimage – with the Messenger of Allah (S), and then he took hold of the door of Ka‘bah, thereupon he [stood] facing us said, 'May I inform you of the Signs of the Day of Resurrection?' Salman al-Farsi (r.a.), who was the nearest of all there, replied, 'Surely, O Messenger of Allah!'
"The Holy Prophet (S), said, 'Verily, amongst the Sings of the Hour is that people will neglect the prayer [i.e., will not pray at all, or will pray without fulfilling its conditions, or will not pray in the preferred time], and will follow their own desires [desires will super- sede the commands of Allah, they will follow only those rules which will appeal to them, and will leave other rules], and will incline to- wards their own preferences, and will respect the wealthy people [forgetting the Islamic criterion of honour, i.e., piety], and will sell the religion for worldly benefits [for example, the greed of worldly riches will instigate them to go to such places where, they very well know, it would be difficult to observe religious commands]; at that time the heart and soul of the believer will melt [from grief] as salt melts in water, because he will see the unlawful things [and actions] and will not be able to change them.'
"Salman (r.a.), said, 'And is this to happen, O Messenger of Allah?' "The Holy Prophet (S), said, 'Yes, By [Allah] in Whose hand is my soul, O Salman! At that time their rulers will be tyrant, the ministers will be transgressors, the leaders unjust and the trustees embezzlers.' "Salman (r.a.), said: 'And is this to happen, O Messenger of Allah?'
"The Holy Prophet (S), said, 'Yes, By [Allah] in Whose hand is my soul, O Salman! Verily at that time evil will become virtue, and virtue will become evil; embezzlers will be trusted, and trustworthy people will be thought untrustworthy; and the liars will be authenticated, and the truthful one will be considered a liar.'
"Salman (r.a.), said, 'And is this to happen, O Messenger of Allah?' "The Holy Prophet (S), said, 'Yes, By [Allah] in Whose hand is my soul, O Salman! At that time, women will be rulers and concubines will be consulted [it may mean the governments of the women and/or the domination of women over their husbands – so much so that the husbands will not, or cannot, ask them to remain within the limits of the shari‘ah, leaving them free to go wherever they want in whatever clothes they like].
And the children will sit upon minbars (pulpits); [It may mean that children will sit upon pulpit of the Prophet even though they cannot appreciate the sanctity of the minbar. Or it may mean that such people will ascend the pulpit who will not deserve such honour. The minbar was created for delivering the commands of Allah to His servants. Its only purpose was to enjoin good and to forbid evil, and later on the narration of the tragedy of Karbala was included in it, because the fadilah [superiority] and sufferings of the Ahl al-Bayt (‘a) are important parts of religion. If someone wants to exhort others to do good, he must sincerely follow the shar ‘ah himself; and if he wants to forbid others from doing evil, he, first of all, must abstain from the sins himself. Unfortunately, nowadays anyone who can recite a few poems of Iqbal or Rumi, and who is unrestrained enough to invent fadail and masaib of the Ahl al-Bayt (‘a) on the spur of the moment, is given the titles al-‘allamah, mawlana and dhakir and is offered heavy fee to demonstrate his oratorical power, even if he shaves his beard, even if he knows nothing about Qur’an and Hadith, even if he expresses his own opinions against the sayings of the Holy Prophet and the Imams [peace be on them all], even if he uses the pulpit to mislead the masses].
And the lie will be considered as cleverness; and zakat will be [disliked] as fines; and the booty of war will be like personal property [or in present days' context, public property will be squandered as personal property]; and man will be tyrant to his parents and generous to his friend; and at that time comets will appear.'
"Salman (r.a.), said, 'And is this to happen, O Messenger of Allah?' "The Holy Prophet (S), said, 'Yes, By [Allah] in Whose hand is my soul, O Salman! At that time woman will become a partner of her husband in trade; [it means, more probably, that she will help her husband in the shop, acting as sales-girl, accountant and what not]; and the rain will be very hot; [its meaning is not clear yet. Does it mean radioactive rain?], and virtuous people will remain very sorrowful; and the poor person will be humiliated; at that time, the markets will come nearer; [it has already happened, thanks to the fantastic developments in the means of communications, like teleprinters, fax and internet. A man sitting in New York buys and sells in Tokyo]. Then this will say. "I did not sell anything" and that will say, "I did not get any profit". Thus, you will see none who is not complaining against Allah.'
"Salman (r.a.), said, 'And is this to happen, O Messenger of Allah?' "The Holy Prophet (S), said, 'Yes; By [Allah] in Whose hand is my soul, O Salman! And then it will happen that their rulers will be such people that if they talked, they would kill them and if they remained silent, they would confiscate their wealth, would put their honour under their feet and would shed their blood – and the people's hearts will fill with fear; then you will not find anyone but that he would be afraid, fearful, awed and in terror.'
"Salman (r.a.), said, 'And is this to happen, O Messenger of Allah?' "The Holy Prophet (S), said, 'Yes, By [Allah] in Whose hand is my soul, O Salman! Verily at that time some things will be brought from the East, and some things from the West, and my ummah (Muslims) will be dyed in them. [It means that un-Islamic behaviour and character will be imported from the East and the West and Muslims will imitate those things and will be dyed in un-Islamic colour.] Then woe be unto the weaker people of my ummah from them; and woe be unto those [un-Islamic agents] from Allah. They will not have mercy upon the little ones and will not respect the old ones; and will not pardon anyone who committed a mistake. Their bodies will be of human beings, and their hearts will be of Satans.'
"Salman (r.a.), said, 'And is this to happen, O Messenger of Allah?' "The Holy Prophet (S), said, 'Yes, By [Allah] in Whose hand is my soul, O Salman! And at that time males will satisfy their lust with males; and females will satisfy their lust with females; and minor boys will be mounted upon like the women; and the males will liken themselves to females [i.e., will look like females]; and females will look like males [The clean-shaved faces and long hair on one side, and pants and bell-bottoms on the other are proof of the fulfil- ment of this forecast]. And females will ride the saddles [i.e., horses, cycles, scooters and motor-cycles]. So, there will be curse of Allah upon those women of my ummah.'
"Salman (r.a.), said, 'And is this to happen, O Messenger of Allah?' "The Holy Prophet (S), said, 'Yes, By [Allah] in Whose hand is my soul, O Salman! Verily, at that time mosques will be decorated (by gold, etc.) as are synagogues and cathedrals; and the [copies of the] Qur’an will be beautified [with designs and golden colours, etc.]; and the minarets [of the mosques] will be high, and the lines of the people standing in prayers will increase but their hearts will be hating each other and their talks will be different from each other, [i.e., though the external show of religion will be on the in- crease, the spirit of religion will disappear. Even when they will pray together, the Islamic brotherhood and unity will be absent. They will hate each other; they will not speak with one voice.]'
"Salman (r.a.), said, 'And is this to happen, O Messenger of Allah?' "The Holy Prophet (S), said, 'Yes, By [Allah] in Whose hand is my soul, O Salman! At that time males will use golden orna- ments. [In many marriages, bridegroom wears golden ring. I wonder why it is thought necessary to start the married life by defying the command of Allah. Will such wilful affront to religion bring the blessings of Allah and the Fourteen Ma‘sumin (‘a), upon the newly- weds?]; and they [the males] will wear silk and [people] will use cheetah-skins.'
"Salman (r.a.), said, 'And is this to happen, O Messenger of Allah?' "The Holy Prophet (S), said, 'Yes, By [Allah] in Whose hand is my soul, O Salman! And at that time "interest" will appear (everywhere), and people will deal with [the help of] backbiting and bribe; and the Religion will be suppressed, and the world [worldly affairs] will be raised [in importance].'
"Salman (r.a.), said, 'And is this to happen, O Messenger of Allah?' "The Holy Prophet (S), said, 'Yes, By [Allah] in Whose hand is my soul, O Salman! At that time, divorce will increase. And the hudud [punishments of various crimes and sins prescribed in Islam] of Allah will not be established [i.e., the penal code given by Allah will not be followed, as is the case nowadays]. But it will not do any harm to Allah. [It will harm them only; they will suffer.]'
"Salman (r.a.), said, 'And is this to happen, O Messenger of Allah?' "The Holy Prophet (S), said, 'Yes, By [Allah] in Whose hand is my soul, O Salman! And at that time will appear female singers and musical instruments ["will appear" means "will be openly used"]; and will rule upon them most evil of my ummah [worst people will rule upon the Muslims].'
"Salman (r.a.), said, 'And is this to happen, O Messenger of Allah?' "The Holy Prophet (S), said, 'Yes, By [Allah] in Whose hand is my soul, O Salman! And at that time the rich of my ummah will go to pilgrimage for recreation, and the middle class for trade [What about foreign exchange, gold, watches and radios?], and the poor to show off. Thus, at that time, there will be people who will learn the Qur’an for other than Allah [i.e., for earning worldly benefits] and will treat the Qur’an as musical instrument [as is happening today in Islamic countries where the Qur’an is recited on the radios, not to make people follow the religious commands, but just to enter- tain the listeners]”.
"And there will be people who will study religion for other than Allah [i.e., for earning prestige or wealth, as is happening today when the main purpose of religious studies in many circles is to become a good orator, so that higher and higher fees may be demanded from the audience] and the number of illegitimate children will increase; and people will sing the Qur’an, and will fall upon one another in greed of the worldly [riches].'
"Salman (r.a.), said, 'And is this to happen, O Messenger of Allah?' "The Holy Prophet (S), said, 'Yes, By [Allah] in Whose hand is my soul, O Salman! This will happen when honours will be defiled, and sins will be committed, and the evil people will have authority upon good people, and falsehood will be prevalent, and disputes will appear [talks will be full of obstinacy], and poverty will be wide-spread and people will be proud of their clothes [fine clothes will be the criterion of greatness], and there will be rains at wrong times; and they will like chess and gambling apparatus and musical instruments; and will dislike enjoining the good and forbidding the evil; so much so that the [true] believer will, at that time have less respect than a slave-girl; and the reciters [of the Qur’an] and those who spend their time in worshipping God will blame each other. [Mudslinging amongst apparently religious people is not an uncom- mon sight nowadays]. Those are the people who will be called unclean and filthy in the kingdom of heavens.'
"Salman (r.a.), said, 'And is this to happen, O Messenger of Allah?' "The Holy Prophet (S), said, 'Yes, By [Allah] in Whose hand is my soul, O Salman! At that time the rich will not fear (any- thing) except the poor so much so that a beggar will continue begging between two Fridays and will not find anyone putting anything in his hands.'
"Salman (r.a.), said, 'And is this to happen, O Messenger of Allah?' "The Holy Prophet (S), said, 'Yes, By [Allah] in Whose hand is my soul, O Salman! At that time will talk Ruwaybidah.' "Salman asked, 'And what is Ruwaybidah? O Messenger of Allah, may my father and mother be made your ransom!'
"The Holy Prophet (S), said, 'Such persons will talk about public affairs who had not talked in such matter before. Then in a short time chaos will appear upon earth, and every nation will think that chaos was only in their land [but it will cover the whole world].
" 'They will remain in that condition so long as Allah would wish them to remain; then the earth will throw out the pieces of its heart – gold, silver and other minerals' – [Then the Holy Prophet (S), pointed towards the pillars, and said] 'like these (in size), but on that day neither gold nor silver will be of any benefit to anyone. And this is the meaning of the words of Allah: So surely did come its (i.e., qiyamah's) Signs (47:18).'" (Bihar al-Anwar, vol.3).
[al-Kulayni] narrates in ar-Rawdat ul-Kafi, from Muhammad ibn Yahya, from Ahmad ibn Muhammad, from some of his com- panions. Also ‘Ali ibn Ibrahim narrates from his father, from Ibn Abi ‘Umayr; both from Muhammad ibn Ab Hamzah, from Humran that he said: "Abu ‘Abdillah (‘a), said – when it was mentioned before him about those [in power], and the bad condition of the Shi‘ahs near them – 'I [once] went with Ab Ja‘far al-Mansur, and he was in his procession. He was on a horse, and before him and behind him were many horses [i.e. riders]; and I was at his side on a donkey. So he said to me, "O Abu ‘Abdillah! It were proper if you had been glad at the power Allah had given us and the honour He had opened to us; and you should not tell people that you and your family have more right for this affair [i.e. caliphate] than we have – thus inciting us against yourself and them."'
"He [the Imam], said, 'So I told him, "Whoever has brought it to you from me is a lier." He said to me, "Do you swear [by Allah] for what you have said?" ' He [the Imam] said, 'I said, "Surely the people are enchanters, i.e., they desire to turn your heart against me, therefore you should not listen to them, because we have more need of you than you have of us." Then he [al-Mansur] said, "Do you remember the day I asked you, 'Is there any kingdom [decreed] for us?' And you said, 'Yes. Long, wide, strong; you will continue in respite in your affair and spaciousness in your world, until you afflict us with a sacred blood in a sacred month in a sacred town?'"' He [the Imam] said, 'So I knew that he has memorized the had th, and I said, "May be Allah will suffice you, because I had not said it particularly for you, it was only a had th which I had narrated, then may be some other person from your family would do it." So he became silent.
"When I returned to my residence, one of our followers came to me and said, "May I be made your ransom! By Allah! I saw you in the procession of Abu Ja‘far; you rode a donkey and he was on a horse, and he talked to you looking down on you as you were under him. So, I thought in my mind: 'He is the Allah's proof on the creation, and the master of this authority who is followed, while this other one commits oppression, murders the children of the prophets and indulges in bloodshed in the earth which Allah does not love; and yet he is in his procession and you are on a donkey.' This created such a doubt in my heart that I was afraid about my religion and my life."
"The Imam (‘a), said, 'I said to him, "Had you seen the angels who were around me, before and behind me, and on my right and left, you would have looked at him and his splendour with disdain." Then [the follower] said, "Now I am satisfied."
"'Then he asked, "Upto how long will they continue to rule? When will release from them come?" I said, "Don't you know that there is a [fixed] term for everything?" He said, "Yes." Then I said, "Will it benefit you to know that when this thing came it would be quicker than the twinkling of an eye? If you were to know what and how was their condition before Allah, the Mighty the Great, you would most forcefully hate them; and if you and all the inhabitants of the earth were to strive to make them enter into the most serious sin they do, they would not be able to do so. So, the Satan should not unsettle you, because honour is only for Allah, and His Messenger (S), and the believers, but the hypocrites do not know. Don't you know that whoever waits for our affair [power], and remains patient on what he experiences of harm and fear, he will be tomorrow in our group?
"So, when you see:
– that truth has died and truthful people have gone;
– that oppression has encompassed towns;
– that the Qur’an has become old and such things have been inno-vated in it, which were not therein, and it is interpreted according to desires;
– that religion has retreated as water goes back in its hole;
– that people of falsity tower over people of truth;
– that evil is manifested, and not forbidden; and evil men are absolved from guilt;
– that sin is wide-spread;
– that men content themselves with men, and women with women;
– that the believer is silent, his words are not accepted;
– that the sinner speaks untruth and his falsity and lie is not rebutted;
– that the younger looks at the elder with disdain;
– that relationships are cut off;
– that the one who is praised for sin, laughs at it and does not refute it;
– that a boy offers what a woman offers;
– that women marry women;
– that praise has increased;
– that man spends wealth in other than Allah's obedience and he is not forbidden nor his hand caught;
– that an onlooker seeks protection of God from the endeavours of a believer;
– that neighbour troubles his neighbour and nobody stops him;
– that the unbeliever is glad with the condition he sees the believer in, happy on the mischief he sees in the earth;
– that intoxicants are drunk openly and gather on it those who do not fear Allah, the Mighty the Great;
– that enjoiner of good is humiliated;
– that sinner (committing) what Allah does not like, is powerful, praised;
– that people of Qur’an and Ahadith are disdained, and so is the one who loves them;
– that the path of good is closed; and the path of evil well-trodden;
– that the House of Allah is abandoned and order is given to leave it;
– that man says what he does not do;
– that man are desirous of men and women of women;
– that a man lives on the earning of his posterior, and a woman on that of her vulva;
– that women hold gatherings [of amusements] like men;
– that femininity has appeared in the Children of ‘Abbas, they use hair-dye and comb (their hair) as a woman combs [i.e. makes herself up] for her husband;
– that men are given wealth for their genitals, people vie with each other for a man, and jealousy is shown about men;
– that a wealthy person is more honoured than a believer;
– that interest is openly [taken and given], without any shame;
– that women get praised for fornication;
– that woman cajoles her husband to establish sexual relations with men;
– that most of the people – and the best household – are those who help (their) women in their sins;
– that the believer is sorrowful, humiliated and disdained;
– that innovations and fornication are wide-spread;
– that people give credence to false witnesses;
– that unlawful is made lawful, and lawful is made unlawful;
– that religion is [explained] by opinion, and the Book and its laws are suspended;
– that people do not wait for night [to commit their debaucheries] because of their boldness against Allah;
– that a believer has no power to negate (an evil) except in his heart;
– that a great many wealth is used in [things that bring] the wrath of Allah, the Sublime, the Mighty;
– that the rulers bring the disbelievers nearer to themselves and keep the good people at distance;
– that the (rulers and) judges take bribe for judgement;
– that rulership is given to whoever increases his bid;
– that women of prohibited degrees are married, and are thought sufficient;
– that man is killed on suspicion and on insinuation;
– that man shows jealousy for man and spends his soul and wealth on him;
– that man is put to shame for his going to the women;
– that man eats from his wife's earning through debauchery – he
knows it and stands for it;
– that a woman subdues her husband, and does what he does not want, and spends on her husband;
– that a man leases his wife or maid on hire, and is pleased with food and drink of inferior quality;
– that too much of false oaths are sworn in the name of Allah, the Sublime, the Mighty;
– that gambling is widespread, and intoxicant is openly sold, without any hindrance;
– that women offer themselves to the unbelievers;
– that (instruments of) amusements have spread, people pass by them but no one stops anyone, nor anyone dares to stop them;
– that a noble person is humiliated by someone whose power people are afraid of;
– that nearest person to the rulers is the one who is praised for abusing us, the Ahlu 'l-Bayt;
– that the one who loves us is accused of lying and his evidence is rejected;
– that people compete with one another in falsehood;
– that listening to the Qur’an has become a burden for the people; while listening to falsehood is (considered) refreshing;
– that a neighbour shows respect to his neighbour for fear of his tongue;
– that the divinely prescribed punishments are suspended; and deeds are (done) according to desires;
– that mosques are embellished;
– that the most truthful man in the eyes of the people is the one who is a lier, caluminater;
– that evil has gained ground as well as hastening with slander;
– that wrong has spread;
– that backbiting is enjoyed and people greet each other with it;
– that Hajj and jihad are sought for other than Allah;
– that the sultan humiliates a believer to please a disbeliever;
– that ruin is changed to structure;
– that man earns his livelihood by giving short measure and weight;
– that bloodshed is considered unimportant;
– that man seeks leadership for the sake of the world; and makes himself notorious for evil tongue in order that he is feared and en-trusted with the affairs;
– that prayer is disdained;
– that man has a lot of wealth, which he has not paid zakat of since he became its owner;
– that dead body is exhumed from its grave, is troubled and its shroud is sold;
– that disturbance has increased;
– that a man remains intoxicated in evenings and mornings, without caring for the people's condition;
– that cattles are abused sexually;
– that cattles gore one another;
– that man goes to his place of prayer and returns without any of his clothes on him;
– that people's hearts have become hard and their eyes are dry, and remembrance (of Allah) weights heavily on them;
– that unlawful earning is spread and vied for;
– that one prays to show the people;
– that a faqih learns jurisprudence for other than religion, seeking the world and leadership;
– that people attach themselves to whoever gains ascendancy;
– that one who seeks his livelihood through lawful means is criti-cized and put to shame; and one who seeks it through unlawful means is praised and respected;
– that in Mecca and Medina things are done which Allah does not like [but] no one stops them nor anyone puts obstacles between those evils and their doers;
– that instruments of amusements are openly used in Mecca and Medina;
– that if a man speaks some truth, enjoins good, and forbids evil, someone stands up to admonish him and says: 'It is no concern of yours';
– that people look at each other and follow the people of evil;
– that the path of good and its way is empty, nobody uses it;
– That a dead body is shaken and nobody feels pity for it;
– that every year innovation and evil takesplace more than it was before;
– that people and gatherings do not follow except rich ones;
– that a needy person is paid for being laughed at, and is shown mercy for other than Allah's sake;
– that nobody is afraid of the heavenly signs;
– that people cohabit together like cattles; nobody forbids a bad thing for fear of people;
– that man spends a lot in other than Allah's obedience, and refuses a small amount in Allah's obedience;
– that disobedience of parents is wide-spread and parents are dis-dained; they (live) with the child in the most wretched condition, and he is glad if they are slandered;
– that women have taken possession of the kingdom and gained ascendancy over everything, nothing is done except what they desire;
– that a son slanders his father and invokes God against his parents and becomes happy on their death;
– that if a day passes for a man in which he did not commit a great sin – debauchery, giving short weight or measure, fornication, or drinking intoxicants – he would remain depressed and melancholy, thinking that that day of his life was a loss;
– that the sultan hoards food-stuff [with intention of increasing the price];
– that the money [Allah has given to the Prophet's] kindred is distributed in wrong ways, and used in gambling and drinking intoxicants;
– that intoxicants are used for medicine, and are prescribed to pa-tients and cure is sought in them;
– that all people are equally guilty of abandoning enjoinment of good and forbiddance of evil; they do not consider it a part of religion;
– that hypocrites live in clover and the people of truth are in oblivion;
– that adhan is given on wages, and prayer is led on wages;
– that the mosque is full of people who do not fear Allah, and have gathered there for backbiting and eating the flesh of the people of truth, and describe to one another [various kinds of] intoxicants;
– that an intoxicated person leads the people in prayer without understanding anything;
– that intoxication is not disgraced, and when a man is drunk, he is accorded respect and is feared, he is left without punishment and excuse is found for his intoxication;
– that the one who eats orphans' property is praised for his goodness;
– that the judges judge contrary to what Allah has ordered;
– that the rulers have trust in embezzlers for greed;
– that the rulers have allotted the inheritance to sinners who are audacious against Allah; they take [something] from them and leave them to do whatever they like;
– that the pulpits are used to enjoin piety, but the speaker himself does not do what he enjoines;
– That prayer's times are given no importance;
– that sadaqah is (given) on recommendation, not for the sake of Allah, and is paid in pursuit of people;
– that people's only concern is their stomachs and their genitals, they do not care what they eat and with whom they cohabit;
– that the world is advancing towards them;
– that the standards of truth have become faded;
Then be on guard, and seek deliverance from Allah, the Sublime, the Mighty; and be sure that the people are under the wrath of Allah, the Sublime, the Mighty, and He is giving them respite only for something intended for them.
So, remain anticipating and strive hard that Allah should see you in a condition contrary to theirs. Then if chastisement is sent down to them and you are among them, you will hasten to the mercy of Allah; and if you are delayed, they shall be put on trial and you shall be out and away from the insolence against Allah, the Mighty, the Great, in which they are entangled. And know that:
The author says: There are numerous traditions narrated from the Prophet (S) and the Imãms of Ahl al-Bayt (‘a) of these connotations. The two ahadith we have quoted above are most com-prehensive of all. Those traditions expounding the condition of the last days give a sort of detail of what is contained in the noble verse:
“O you who believe! Whoever of you turns back from his religion, then soon Allah will bring a people He shall love them and they shall love Him, lowly before the believers, mighty against the unbelievers, they shall fight in Allãh's way and shall not fear the censure of any censurer” (5:54).
And Allah Knows better.
- 1. Note that the address is to the community.