The Letter Alif (as)
It is preferable for us to pray for the believers because they are having the same faith and belief and this matter is proved through logic and religious law. Therefore it is necessary for us to pray for those exalted personalities who are the leaders of believers.
It is mentioned in Kafi through His Eminence, Abu Abdillah Sadiq (as) that he said:
“The Messenger of Allah (S) said: No one prays for the benefit of believing men and women except that Allah Almighty gives him the same thing for which he had prayed from each of the believers that have come into being since the beginning of the world or those who shall come till Qiyamat. And on the day of Qiyamat a believer shall be condemned to Hell and shall be forcibly taken towards Hell. Then the believing men and women will say: O our Lord, it is the same person who had prayed for us, so please accept our intercession for him. Allah Almighty will accept it and give him salvation.”
In the same book a narration is mentioned on the authority of Isa bin Mansoor that he said:
“I, Ibne Ya’fur and Abdullah bin Talha were present in the gathering of Abu Abdillah and His Eminence himself initiated the conversation saying: O Ibne Abi Ya’fur the Messenger of Allah (S) has said: There are six qualities such that if they are present in a person, he shall have the best position with Allah Almighty.
Ibne Abi Ya’fur asked: May I be sacrificed on you, what are those traits? The Imam said: A believer should like for his believer brother only that which he likes for the nearest of his kin and he should dislike for the believers the same which he dislikes for his closest relatives and he should express pure love.
Hearing this Ibne Abi Ya’fur began to weep and asked: How is that? He replied: If these three traits are present in you he shall reveal his secret and shall be pleased and shall be pleased with the happiness of one that is happy. And he shall be sorrowful with the grief of one who is sorrowful. If he does not have anything to make him happy with, he shall pray to God for him.
Then His Eminence said: These three traits are for you people and another three are for us. The first is that you must recognize our excellence, secondly you must follow our footsteps, thirdly you must await for our rule (kingdom) which shall be at the end of the world. The one in whom these three traits are present shall be proximate to the realm of the Almighty.
Those who belong to ranks lower than him shall obtain light from effulgence of those who are in the position of proximity with the Almighty. When those in the lower ranks see him they shall not like their present comfort and pleasure in comparison to those who are above them in ranks.
Ibne Abi Ya’fur asked: Why would it not be possible to see the group of people who are having divine proximity? Imam replied: They shall be covered with divine effulgence. Have you not heard that tradition of the Messenger of Allah (S) that there is a creation of Almighty Allah to the right of the Arsh whose faces shall be whiter than snow and more brilliant than the sun. An inquirer will ask: Who are they? He will be told: Having regard for the majesty of Allah they used to have regard for each other.”
We shall discuss this under the topic of forbidding evil, Insha Allah.
You must know that among all the great bounties of Allah Almighty upon us is that He has permitted us to call Him and pray to Him. And that we may express our needs to Him. And the Almighty Allah by His kindness and Mercy, fulfills our prayers. And since it is proved that all the divine bounties reach us through the Barakat of the existence of Imam az-Zaman (as) it is also very much clear that the fulfillment of prayers is among the best of bounties; rather it is the most important bounty. Since through this bounty we receive other bounties.
The importance of the rights of our Master, Imam az-Zaman upon us, become clear because the existence of His Eminence is the medium of the realization of this bounty and great bestowals from the Almighty Allah. It is incumbent on us to compensate this favor by praying or by other deeds.
Among the evidences that especially prove the fact that the existence of Imam (as) is the medium and cause of the prayers of the people is a traditional report that Saffar has quoted in his book, Basairud Darajaat through his chains of reporters from Imam Abu Ja’far Baqir (as) that he said:
The Messenger of Allah (S) said to Amirul Momineen (as): “Write down whatever I dictate.” Ali (as) asked, “O Allah’s Messenger, do you fear that I will forget?” He replied, “I don’t worry about your forgetfulness. I have prayed to Allah to protect you and not to forget you. But write it down for your partners.” Ali (as) asked: “Who are my partners?” He replied, “Imams from your progeny due to whom the Almighty Allah sends down rain on my Ummah, for the sake of whom He fulfills their prayers, and due to whom He removes calamities from them and due to whom mercy descends from the heavens. He is the first of them – indicating towards Imam Hasan – then he pointed towards Imam Husain (as) and said: The Imam’s shall be from your progeny.”
I say: This tradition, with attention to all its points clearly proves what we have stated.
The favor of Imam az-Zaman (aj) upon us is having various aspects some of which we will mention in the following pages, if Allah wills…among them are the praying of His Eminence in our favor, the repulsion of the evil of the enemies and removal of hardships…etc. The Almighty Allah says:
هَلْ جَزَاءُ الْإِحْسَانِ إِلَّا الْإِحْسَانُ
“Is the reward of goodness aught but goodness?” (Qur’an, Surah Rahman 55:60)
Certainly, favor, according to the dictates of reason, religious law and human nature is the stimulant for praying. Such that: “Do favor to the people and you will enslave their hearts. And it is often that favors enslave the people.”
There is a lengthy tradition in Kafi narrated through Masma from Imam Sadiq (as) in which he is reported to have said:
“O Abu Yasar, indeed, the whole earth is for us and whatever that the Almighty Allah has brought out from it, is for us.” – Abu Yasar says that he asked His Eminence, “So, shall I bring all the property for you?” The Imam said, “O Abu Yasar, indeed we have made it lawful for you and made it permissible so keep your property with you. And whatever from the world is in the possession of our Shias, is lawful for them till the time our Qaim will arise and take the possession of its wealth from them and leave the earth in their possession. However whatever is in the possession of non-Shias, every benefit that accrues from it, is unlawful for them and when our Qaim arises, he will take away the earth from them and he shall expel them from it in a humiliating way.”1
Relevant discussion regarding the above shall come under the letters (ظ) z’ and (ك) Kaaf in the topic of the similarity of His Eminence with his great grandfather Abu Abdillah al-Husain (as) and the letter (ن) Noon, in the topic of the call of His Eminence, if Allah wills.
In the Epistle that His Eminence has written to Shaykh Mufeed it is mentioned:
“We are not neglectful of your affairs and we do not forsake your remembrance, otherwise your enemies would have destroyed you.”2
We have now reached the point in our discussion where I would like to narrate to you a story that the great scholar, Mirza Husain Noori has mentioned in Jannatul Maawa, may Allah exalt his ranks and increase his effulgence. The anecdotes mentioned in this book concern those who have had the honor of meeting His Eminence, the Hujjat or those who had the good fortune of witnessing his miracles. Mirza Husain Noori says:
Shaykh Ali Rashti was a great intellectual and honorable scholar, possessing all the goodly attributes and the best of excellences. He was a righteous scholar, a pious man and a deeply religious person. He was among the students of the true Sayyid, the great teacher, Hujjatul Islam Mirza Buzurg Shirazi. Since the people of the Fars province had continuously complained that they did not have any scholar or spiritual personality among them, Mirza Shirazi sent him towards them. He lived with them continuously with perfect honor till the time he passed away. I had remained in his company during journey as well as at home. I have seen very few people who could equal him in morals, manners and excellence of character.
He relates: “In one of the journeys I was returning to Najaf Ashraf from the Ziarat of His Eminence, Abi Abdullah (as) through the route of River Euphrates. I had boarded a small boat that ran between Kerbala and Tuwairij. At Tuwairij the route diverged to Hilla and Najaf. The passengers, all of whom were the people of Hilla were busy in games, joking and shameful behavior, except for one person who though he also belonged to their group but they occasionally ridiculed his religion and criticized him. I was very astonished at this till we reached a place where the water was too less and the boatman was compelled to make us disembark. As we walked along the banks, by chance I happened to be walking with the same person. I asked him why he remained aloof from his fellow travelers and what was the reason they criticized his religion.
He said that they were from Ahle Sunnat and relatives of his. “My father was also from them but my mother was from the people of faith (Shia). I was also initially in their faith, but through the favor of Hazrat Hujjat (aj) became a Shia.”
I asked him the motive of converting to Shiaism and how that had occurred. He said:
“My name is Yaqut and my profession is selling oil besides the Hilla bridge. One year I went out of Hilla to purchase oil from the dwellers of the desert (Bedouins) in the surrounding areas. I traveled some distance and purchased the oil and on the return journey got the company of some people of Hilla. We halted at one place at night and I went to sleep. But when I awoke in the morning I saw that they had all gone away leaving me alone without any water or any other rations in a desert that was infested with wild animals.
The nearest habitation was at least a few farsakhs (one farsakh = 6.24 kms). I got up and began my lonely journey, but after sometime I lost the way and was completely confused. In addition to this, I was extremely thirsty and the fear of wild beasts overwhelmed me. I remained there and in that condition prayed to the caliphs and Mashayakhs, imploring them to help me and through their intercession begged Allah to save me. But there was no response. Then I remembered my mother saying that we have a living Imam whose patronymic (Kunniyat) is Aba Salih who responds to the call of those who have lost their way and who helps those who help the oppressed and the weak. I made a vow to Allah that if he saved me I shall adopt the faith of my mother.
Then I called out to him and sought his refuge. I saw a man wearing a green turban like grass by the riverside, and he began to walk with me. He ordered me to adopt the religion of my mother and then he said the words (that the writer of the book forgot). And he said: Very soon you will reach a habitation where all the inhabitants are Shias. I said: My master, will you not come to that place with me?
He said: No, as a thousand people around the country are calling me for help, I want to go and help them. After that he disappeared from the view. After traveling for sometime I reached that village. Such was a distance to that place that my previous fellow travelers reached that station only the next day. I returned to Hilla from there and went to meet the chief jurisprudent, Sayyid Mahdi Qazwini (May Allah illuminate his resting place). I narrated my story to him, learnt the rules and regulations of religion from him and asked what I should do in order to see His Eminence again.
He said: Go for the Ziarat of Imam Husain (as) for forty Friday eves. I began to go for the Ziarat of the Chief of the martyrs every Friday eve. Once it so happened that only one Friday eve remained from forty. I set out from Hilla on Thursday for Kerbala, but when I reached the gates of the city I saw that the tyrannical officials were asking for the permit, and they were very strict about it. Neither did I have the permit not the money to purchase it.
A few times I tried to smuggle myself by mingling in a group of people, but I did not succeed. At that time I saw His Eminence, the Master of the Affair (aj) that he entered wearing a dress of Iranian students and white turban on the head. Outside the city I sought his refuge and pleaded for his help. He came out and took me with himself into the city. But I did not see him again and remained regretful and sad at his separation.”3
It is mentioned in Bihar quoting from Irshad al-Qulub of Dailami that Abu Abdillah Sadiq (as) is reported to have said:
“When the Qaim (aj) will reappear, he will rule with justice. And during his time tyranny and oppression will be destroyed and through His Eminence, security will be maintained at the roads and the earth will be full of his blessings.”4
In another tradition it has come from His Eminence regarding the reappearance of His Eminence, Qaim (aj) that he said:
“An old weak lady will travel (alone) from the east to the west but she will not face any problem.”
And in another report regarding the verse:
سِيرُوا فِيهَا لَيَالِيَ وَأَيَّامًا آمِنِينَ
“Travel through them nights and days, secure.” (Qur’an, Surah Saba 34:18)
It is mentioned “…with the Qaim of us (Ahle Bayt).”
We read in Dua Nudbah:
“Where is the reviver of the teachings and proofs of religion and its people?”
In the Hadith Qudsi quoted in the previous section, it is mentioned:
“And I shall enforce My religion through him and I shall make all the programs successful.”
Also in the Tafseer of the Ayat:
لِيُظْهِرَهُ عَلَى الدِّينِ كُلِّهِ
“…that He may make it prevail over all the religions…” (Qur’an, Surah Fath 48:28)
It is mentioned that this shall be fulfilled after the reappearance of Hazrat Qaim (aj). And in Bihar in a lengthy tradition it is narrated from the Holy Prophet (S) that he said:
“The ninth of them is the Qaim of my family and the Mahdi of this nation. And in looks and speech most resembling me among all the people. Indeed, he shall reappear after a prolonged occultation and reveal the religion of God. And he shall get the support of Allah and His help, and he will be backed with divine angels. Then he would fill up the earth with equity and justice as it would have been fraught with injustice and tyranny.”5
Also in the same book of Bihar it has come in a detailed saying of His Eminence, Abu Ja’far Baqir (as) that he stated:
“After that he shall return to Kufa. At that time he will send three hundred of his companions to various areas of the world and he will pass his hand over their shoulders and chests. So they shall never have any difficulty in deciding any matter. Then in every nook and corner of the world will be this testimonial statement: There is no god except Allah. The One without partner and Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah (S).6
There are many traditions regarding this but we have just provided a few examples.
Among the titles of Imam az-Zaman (aj) is Al-Muntaqim (the Revenger).
In the book, Ikmaluddin there is a tradition of Imam Sadiq (as) and he has quoted his respected great grandfather, Amirul Momineen (as) to have said:
The Messenger of Allah (S) said: “When I was taken to the heavens during the ascension (Me’raaj) my Lord revealed to me: O Muhammad, I glanced at the earth and selected you from it, and made you the prophet and named you after My name as I am Mahmood and you are Muhammad. Again I glanced at the earth and chose Ali from it and made him your successor and caliph and the husband of your daughter. I named him also after My name. Thus I am the Ali Aala and he is Ali. And I created Fatima, Hasan and Husain from your Noor (light/effulgence). At that time I presented their Wilayat (Mastership) to the angels so that whoever may accept it, will gain proximity to My court. O Muhammad, if a servant of Mine worships so much that he becomes tired and his body becomes as brittle as musk but he is a denier in their Wilayat, and he comes to Me, I will not accommodate him in My Paradise and not shade him under My Arsh. O Muhammad, would you like to see them? I said: ‘Yes, my Lord!’
The Almighty Allah said: ‘Raise your head.’ So I raised my head and saw the lights of Ali, Fatima, Hasan, Husain, Ali bin al-Husain, Muhammad bin Ali, Ja’far bin Muhammad, Moosa bin Ja’far, Ali bin Moosa, Muhammad bin Ali, Ali bin Muhammad, Hasan bin Ali and Muhammad bin al-Hasan al-Qaim. And among them one shone like a brilliant star.
I asked: ‘O Lord, who is that?’ He replied, ‘They are the Imams, and he is the Qaim, who will make My lawful, lawful and My unlawful, unlawful. And through him I shall take revenge from My enemies. And he is the source of comfort for My friends. He is the one who will bestow your Shias and followers, respite from the infidels. And he will bring out Lat and Uzza fresh and burn them up. Indeed the trial and test of the people by him will be much more difficult than the mischief of the Calf and Samari.’”7
In the same way it is narrated in Bihar quoting from Ilalush Sharai through his own chain of reporters, from Abdur Rahim Qaisari from His Eminence, Abu Ja’far Imam Baqir (as) that he said:
“When the Qaim rises, Humaira will be brought to him (after being raised from the dead), so that he may punish her with lashes to avenge for Fatima, the daughter of Muhammad (S).” I asked why he would punish her with lashes?
He replied, “Due to the false allegation she made against Ibrahim’s mother.” I asked: How is it that the Almighty Allah postponed this matter of (punishment by lashing) till the time of Hazrat Qaim? He said: The Almighty Allah, blessed be He, sent Muhammad (S) as a mercy, but He has created Qaim (aj) for punishing and taking revenge.”8
In the same book of Biharul Anwar it is quoted from Mazaar Kabeer from the author’s own chain of reporters from His Eminence, Abu Abdillah (as) that he said:
“When our Qaim arises, he will take revenge for Allah, His Messenger and all of us, the family of the Prophet.”9
Again in the same book it is copied from the Irshad al-Qulub of Dailami that Imam Sadiq (as) said:
“He will cut off the hand of Bani Shaiba and hang it on the Kaaba and he will write on it: They are the thieves of the Kaaba.”10
And in Ihtijaaj it is mentioned that the Holy Prophet (S) said in his sermon of Ghadeer as follows:
“Know that: The seal of the Imams from us will be Mahdi (may Allah bless him). Know that, he is the one who will be victorious over all religions, he is the one to take revenge from the tyrants, he is the victor and the destroyer of castles, he is the one who will exterminate all the tribes of the polytheists, he is the one that will avenge the blood of all the saints of truth, he is the one who will drink from the deep sea, he is the one who will designate everyone on the basis of merit and superiority he is the selected one and the chosen one of God, he is the inheritor and encompasser over all sciences, he is the one who will give news of the Lord, the Mighty and the Sublime, and the realities of the faith are for him.
He will inform, he is the one who will be the owner of guidance and prevention in theory and practice. The affairs of religion are delegated to him and left to his discretion, the prophets preceding him and the Imams prior to him have been given the glad tidings about him. He is the remaining proof and after him there is no Divine Proof. There is no truth except with him and there is no light except near him. None shall be victorious and helped over him. He is the Wali of God on the earth and the Divine ruler upon the creatures and the trustee of the Lord over the apparent and hidden.”
In another part of the same sermon it says:
“O people! The special effulgence of Allah, the Mighty and the Sublime, is present in my being. After that it shone in the being of Ali and after that in his progeny till Qaim-e-Mahdi who will take over the right of Almighty Allah and all the rights that are for us.”11
In Tafseer Qummi regarding the verse:
فَمَهِّلِ الْكَافِرِينَ أَمْهِلْهُمْ رُوَيْدًا
“So grant the unbelievers a respite: let them alone for a while.” (Qur’an, Surah Tariq 86:17)
It is mentioned that: It is regarding the time of the uprising of the Qaim. Thus he will take revenge for us from the tyrants and oppressors from Quraish and Bani Umayyah and all the other people.”12
In a Dua related from Amari from His Eminence himself it is related as follows:
“And through him will be established the Divine penalties and religious laws that have been neglected.”
In the book, Ikmaluddin it is narrated from Imam Sadiq (as) under the explanation about the period of reappearance of His Eminence that he said:
“During that time the penalties promulgated by Divine Law shall be established.”
Another tradition on the same topic says:
“Indeed the establishment of one penalty from the divine penalties is purer that rain falling for forty days and nights.”13
As narrated from His Eminence, Abu Ja’far Baqir (as) and in the discussion ‘Enlivening of Earth’ (Revival of the earth through his blessings) we shall present matter appropriate to the topic, if Allah, the Almighty wills.
In Bihar it is narrated from Imam Sadiq (as) that he said:
“Two capital punishments are lawful in Islam. But so far no one has issued a verdict according to this rule. However when our Qaim reappears, he will establish the Divine Law and will not ask for evidence from anyone in these two matters. One is regarding the married adulterer and the Imam will order him to be stoned to death. Secondly he will order the beheading of the one who refuses to pay Zakat.”14
I say: The penalty for adultery (by married man or woman), subject to conditions mentioned in Islamic law, is stoning. This penalty is especially associated to the Imam of the time due to the factual knowledge of His Eminence. And unlike in the case of the tenure of other Imams no one would be able to escape punishment under doubt.
It is mentioned in Dua Nudbah that:
“Where is that distressed one, that when he supplicates, his supplication is answered?”
In Tafseer of Ali bin Ibrahim Qummi regarding the holy verse:
أَمَّنْ يُجِيبُ الْمُضْطَرَّ إِذَا دَعَاهُ وَيَكْشِفُ السُّوءَ وَيَجْعَلُكُمْ خُلَفَاءَ الْأَرْضِ
“Or, Who answers the distressed one when he calls upon Him and removes the evil, and He will make you successors in the earth.” (Qur’an, Surah Naml 27:62)
It is mentioned from Husain bin Ali bin Fuzzal from Salih bin Uqbah from Imam Sadiq (as) that he said:
“This verse is revealed for Qaim of the Progeny of Muhammad (as). He is that distressed one who whenever he performs two units of prayer at the place (of Ibrahim) and calls Allah and supplicates to Him, the Almighty Allah answers his supplication and appoints him the caliph on the earth.”15
- 1. Usool Kafi; Muhammad bin Yaqoob Kulaini; Vol. 1/407
- 2. Al-Ihtijaaj; Shaykh Tabarsi; Vol. 2/323
- 3. Jannatul Maawa; Muhaddith Noori; Pg. 292
- 4. Biharul Anwar; Allamah Muhammad Taqi Majlisi; Vol. 52/338
- 5. Biharul Anwar; Allamah Muhammad Taqi Majlisi; Vol. 52/379
- 6. Biharul Anwar; Allamah Muhammad Taqi Majlisi; Vol. 52/345
- 7. Kamaluddin; Shaykh Sadooq; Vol. 1/252
- 8. Biharul Anwar; Allamah Muhammad Taqi Majlisi; Vol. 52/314, Ilalush Sharai; Shaykh Sadooq; Vol. 2/267
- 9. Biharul Anwar; Allamah Muhammad Taqi Majlisi; Vol. 52/376
- 10. Biharul Anwar; Allamah Muhammad Taqi Majlisi; Vol. 52/338
- 11. Al-Ihtijaaj; Shaykh Tabarsi; Vol. 1/80
- 12. Tafseer al-Qummi, Pg. 721
- 13. Furu Kafi, Vol. 7/174
- 14. Biharul Anwar; Allamah Muhammad Taqi Majlisi; Vol. 52/325
- 15. Tafseer al-Qummi, Pg. 497