The aim of writing this book was also to discuss this matter and it is appropriate that before we talk about the aim we discuss some points:
1. The aim is to explain all the merits and benefits present in the matter of hastening of reappearance of Maula Sahib uz-Zaman (aj), whether that benefit is confined to this noble deed or it is under some other action specified by the Holy Imam (as). And the implication is that not all benefits and effects we mentioned are directly related to this action (praying).
And it also cannot be said that the benefits are what we have stated. Rather it is possible that someone does research into traditions and traditional reports and brings out many other points in addition to what we have presented, as what I don’t know is more than what I know and what I have written is from the blessings of the lord and master, the Master of the Time (aj).
He is the standard of guidance through the spread of his effulgence.
Even though unseen by our eyes, he is able to guide as if he is present.
Have you not seen that the Sun spreads its rays everywhere
Even though it may be behind the clouds?
I have composed these two couplets being inspired by the matter of the blessed epistle of His Eminence that was mentioned in the previous section.
2. It is possible that some may doubt that since the Imam of the Time is the medium of the bounties reaching to the creatures, he is needless and self-sufficient of the people, on the basis of this what is the need of people to pray for him?
We shall reply to this doubt in the following points:
1. Our prayers for His Eminence is like a humble gift of a lowly person to a man of a great stature. There is no doubt that it indicates that this poor man is in need of the bestowals of that great man and it would be in keeping with the manners of slaves in relation to the masters. How aptly it is said:
On the day of Eid an ant gave a present to Sulaiman
A leg of a locust that it held in its mouth.
In its beautiful voice it said:
The gift is according to the status of the giver.
2. From the traditional reports that have reached us, it is clear that the reappearance of the Imam of the Time is from the affairs that are subject to change(Bidaya) – that is it may be advanced or postponed – as we have indicated in the chapter of the Letter ‘Ain’. – on the basis of this it is possible that its occurrence earlier could depend on the sincerity and efforts of believers in praying for the hastening of the reappearance of His Eminence.
That which proves this, is a tradition quoted by Allamah Majlisi in Biharul Anwar from Tafseer Ayyashi reported by Fazl bin Abi Qurra from Imam Ja’far Sadiq (as) that he said:
I heard His Eminence, Abu Abdillah Sadiq (as) saying: “The Almighty Allah sent revelation to Ibrahim that a son would be born to him. He (Ibrahim) conveyed this to Lady Sarah. Sarah said: Would I give birth to a child, while I have become an old woman? Then the Almighty Allah revealed to Ibrahim that: She (Sarah) would give birth to a child and her children would be subject to divine punishment due to her doubt in My statement.”
Imam Sadiq (as) said: “When chastisement and calamities increased on Bani Israel, they lamented and supplicated in the court of the Almighty for forty days, then the Almighty Allah sent revelation to Moosa and Haroon to deliver Bani Israel and He advanced this by 170 years.”
His Eminence, Sadiq (as) added: “You case is also such that if you do this, the Almighty Allah would deliver you through us; but if not, the matter will reach its destined end.”1
3. There is no doubt that the Holy Imams (as) – due to the demands of their humanness – are subject to fall ill, become aggrieved and sorrowful, for dispelling which there are means and some of those means are created by the people of faith. And the most important way to dispel trouble and hardships is taking initiative and making effort in supplicating Allah, as is obvious from the traditions, some of which are as follows:
In Usool Kafi through an authentic chain of narrators it is reported by Hammad bin Uthman that he said: I heard His Eminence say:
“Indeed, supplication postpones destiny and solves its complications just as a twisted thread is untwisted even if it had been twisted very strongly.”2
And also in another correct report from Zurarah it is mentioned that he said: His Eminence, Abu Ja’far Baqir (as) said:
“Should I not guide you to a thing in which the Messenger of Allah (S) did not make an exception?” I asked: “What is it?” He replied: “Supplication, as it repels the severe complication of death” – and he interlocked his fingers.3
Also other traditions quoted at suitable places mention the same point. On the basis of this, whenever the believer considers the possible hardships in which his master – who is dearer to him than his own life – may be involved, he makes effort and struggle through Dua so that they are removed from the Imam, just as through Dua he protects him.
4. When an important aim is restrained by something, it is incumbent on us to try our best to remove those impediments. And since the delay in reappearance of our Master of the Time (as) is due to impediments from our own side, it is necessary for us to pray to the Almighty to remove them. Thus praying for the hastening of reappearance of Imam of the Age (as) is in fact a prayer for ourselves and is beneficial for our circumstances.4
His Eminence has himself indicated this in his epistle quoted in Kamaluddin, Biharul Anwar and Ihtijaaj etc. that says:
“Then pray for an early reappearance, as in it lies your deliverance.”
This is also an indication that His Eminence is needless of us.
5. There is no limit to divine grace, mercy, kindness and favor; in the same way in the being of Imam (as) there is no defect and shortcoming that could be an impediment for receiving divine grace. On the basis of this, there is nothing that can prevent the supplications of the believers to be effective in favor of their lord and master.
As it is said: Since the Holy Imams (as) are mediums and channels for favors reaching the people, how can they become eligible for positions through the people? It is very unlikely and surprising. And in no way is it inconsistent with the view that the Imams (as) are the final cause and aim of creation of the creatures, and the divine grace reaches the creatures through them, along with this they are having human needs and qualities and for their apparent life they are needful of all the requirements of worldly life – just as all other people are.
From what we have said, it is also known that the consequence and fruits of reciting Salawaat on the Prophet and the progeny of the Prophet (S) reaches to those it is recited for and also benefits those who recite the Salawaat, not from the view that they were in need of Salawaat and Durood recited by believers, so that the above mentioned doubts arise, rather it is from the view that the Prophet and the Imams are deserving and eligible as the Almighty Allah has given them such benefits that there are no limits to them, because the continuity and permanence of these graces is among the demands of absolute power and eternality of the Almighty Allah.
3. It is possible that one may have the feeling that there is some contradiction in the traditions that emphasize praying for early reappearance and deliverance of the Master of the Time and those traditions that prohibit asking for an early reappearance. We shall, if Allah wills, would present these traditions in Part Eight – this possibility will be discussed and its cause will be repeated. Because the haste that is prohibited is of three types:
1. That haste which would cause despair and hopelessness from the reappearance of Qaim (aj) because the person due to impatience and haste would say: If reappearance has to happen, it would happen now; and by its being delayed, it will instigate the person to deny the Master of the Time.
2. That urging which would be against submission to the command of Allah and being satisfied with what He has decreed and commanded. And in this manner, supplicating for an early reappearance if the reappearance is delayed, it will take the person to deny the wisdom of the Honorable Creator.
It is from this aspect that we recite in the supplication received through the respected Uthman bin Saeed Amri as follows:
“Then give us patience on this till I do not like the hastening of what You have delayed or that I be inclined to the delay of that which You want to hasten. And that I do not ask of the exposition of what You have concealed. And search for that which You have concealed. Or that I should be dissatisfied with what You have decreed. And I should not say why and how the hidden Imam is not reappearing while the world is fraught with injustice and oppression?...”5
If you say: Without any doubt, praying for an early reappearance has its source in love and eagerness and it is in contradiction to the statement of His Eminence:
“Till I do not like the hastening of what You have delayed…”
We would reply: We have previously discussed that the time of reappearance and deliverance is a matter subject to change (Bada). On the basis of this, when a person who is deeply devoted to the Imam of the Age (aj) considers that it is possible that the time of seeing the Imam and witnessing his reappearance could be advanced through supplications and prayers, he concentrates all his efforts and initiatives on this and this is in no way opposed to submission to that which has been decreed by the knowledge of Allah.
Although if supposedly that time had been pre-ordained and fixed by the Almighty and had not been subject to any change, if in that case, by knowing that exact time, there would not remain any scope in praying for it anymore and one would have had to submit to the will of Allah.
3. Haste that could lead to following deviated persons, misleading people and innovation making satans, who before the appearance of the inevitable signs that the Infallible leaders (as) have mentioned, they go out to deceive the people and they also manage to get followers among gullible people. May Allah keep us and all the believers safe from the deceptive satans.
We shall discuss this in more detail in Part Eight and present traditional reports connected to this topic. Here we shall just touch upon it in brief.
There is another method to solve these doubts: Making haste is of two types:
One is praised, the other condemned.
Condemned haste: It is that a person wants to achieve the result of something before its time arrives, which is bad according to reason as well as according to religious law.
And the praised haste: It is that a person is desirous that a particular matter should occur at the first possible opportunity.
Since the reappearance of His Eminence, the Master of the Time is a matter – that by the will of Allah is possible to be advanced, and it is also having innumerable advantages, every believer that has faith in it considers it incumbent upon himself to try his best to pray that Allah makes reappearance to occur at its earliest possible date which is in its best interest. At the same time he should observe patience and submission till that time arrives. If Allah wills, we would explain this in more detail later.
As we are about to present the effects, benefits and qualities that develop in one who is praying for the early reappearance, let us first list all the topics in brief before explaining each of them in detail:
1. Statement of His Eminence, the Master of the Age that: “And pray more for the early reappearance, for therein lies your success.”
2. This prayer causes increase in bounties.
3. It is an expression of inner love.
4. A sign of anticipation.
5. It is revival of the command of the Purified Imams (as).
6. It is source of distress for the accursed Satan.
7. It would be deliverance from the mischiefs of the last age.
8. It is partly a fulfillment of the rights of His Eminence – as it is necessary to fulfill the rights of the rightful person.
9. It is honoring the Almighty Allah and the religion of Allah.
10. His Eminence prays for the supplicant.
11. And on the Judgment Day the intercession of His Eminence would be there for this person.
12. The intercession of the Holy Prophet (S) would be available for this person.
13. And this Dua is complying to divine command and asking for His grace and blessings.
14. It is cause for acceptance of prayers.
15. It is recompensing the favor of prophethood.
16. It wards off calamities.
17. It is a cause for increase in sustenance.
18. It enables forgiveness of sins.
19. Becoming eligible to meet His Eminence in person or in sleep.
20. And return (Raja’t) to the world during the period of the reappearance of His Eminence.
21. And he (the supplicant) would be among the brothers of the Holy Prophet (S).
22. The reappearance of our Master, His Eminence, the Master of the Age would occur at the earliest.
23. It is would be following the Holy Prophet (S) and the Holy Imam (as).
24. It would be fulfillment of the covenant made to the Almighty Allah.
25. Those who pray, would gain the rewards of doing goodness to the parents.
26. The excellence of safe keeping a trust and returning it honestly, would be for that person.
27. The effulgence of His Eminence in his heart would increase.
28. It will increase the lifespan, if Allah wills.
29. It would be cooperation and helpfulness in good deeds.
30. It will bring help and assistance of the Almighty Allah and victory over the enemies, by the help of Allah.
31. And guidance by the effulgence of the Holy Qur’an.
32. He would be recognized by the people of the heights (Araaf).
33. He will become eligible for the rewards of seeking knowledge, if Allah wills.
34. He would be secure from the consequences of the Hereafter, if Allah wills.
35. He would be given glad tidings at the time of his death and he would be dealt with utmost kindness and mercy.
36. And this supplication is a response to the call of Allah and His Messenger (S).
37. He would be in the same level as that of Amirul Momineen (as) and with His Eminence.
38. He would be among the favorite persons of the Almighty Allah.
39. He would be the most likeable and respected person in view of the Holy Prophet (S).
40. And if Allah wills, he would be from the people of Paradise.
41. The prayer of the Holy Prophet (S) would be there in his favor.
42. His bad character would be replaced with a good character.
43. And the Almighty Allah would support him in his worship.
44. And if Allah wills, Divine Chastisement will be removed from the people.
45. He would get the rewards of helping the oppressed.
46. He would get the reward of honoring and respecting one who is higher in status than him.
47. He would get the reward of revenging the blood of our master, the oppressed and martyr, His Eminence, Abi Abdillah al-Husain (as).
48. Becoming eligible to receive the traditions of the Purified Imams (as).
49. His light would be brighter than that of others on Judgment Day.
50. Seventy thousand sinners would be forgiven by his intercession.
51. The prayer of Amirul Momineen (as) would there for him on Judgment Day.
52. He would enter Paradise without accounting.
53. He would be safe from the thirst of Judgment Day.
54. He would live in Paradise forever.
55. It is cause of despair and deprivation of Satan.
56. And on the Judgment Day he would get special gifts.
57. And the Almighty Allah would provide him with servants of Paradise.
58. He would get the vast shade of the Almighty Allah and His mercy shall come on him as long as he is reciting that Dua.
59. He would get the rewards of advising a believer.
60. The gathering where prayer is recited for His Eminence, Qaim (aj) is a place where angels come.
61. The reciter of prayer would be prided upon by the Almighty Allah.
62. And angels will pray for the forgiveness of his sins.
63. He would be the best of people – after the infallible Imams (as).
64. This Dua is obedience of the Ulil Amr whose obedience the Almighty Allah has made compulsory.
65. It is a cause for obtaining pleasure of the Almighty Allah.
66. It is a cause of pleasure of the Holy Prophet (S).
67. And this Dua is the action that Allah likes best.
68. He would be of those whom the Almighty Allah would give rulership in Paradise, Insha Allah.
69. His accounting would be easy.
70. And this Dua would be a considerate companion in the Barzakh and Qiyamat.
71. This is the best deed.
72. It is cause for removal of sorrow.
73. And praying during the occultation is better than praying during the time of reappearance of the Imam (as).
74. And angels pray for the supplicant.
75. And the prayer of His Eminence, the chief of those who prostrate, which carries numerous advantages and benefits, would be in his favor.
76. And this Dua is attachment to the Two Weighty Things (Thaqlayn).
77. It is holding fast to the rope of Allah.
78. It is cause of perfection of faith.
79. He will get rewards equal to that of all the people.
80. It is honoring the divine signs.
81. This Dua would earn the reward of one who is martyred with the Holy Prophet (S).
82. And the reward of one who is martyred under the banner of His Eminence, Qaim (aj).
83. And he would get the reward of one who has done a favor to our master, His Eminence, the Master of the Time (aj).
84. And this Dua has the reward of honoring the Aalim (scholar).
85. It has the reward of paying respect to a noble person.
86. He would be raised in the group of the Purified Imams (as).
87. His grades would be increased in Paradise.
88. He would safe from a bad accounting on Judgment Day.
89. He would attain the highest grades of the martyrs of Judgment Day.
90. He would be blessed with the intercession of Fatima Zahra (s.a.).
And in the end we will present a section especially devoted to the merits of fulfilling the needs of a believer which is also a consequence of this Dua.
And now let us see the above points in detail.