The Definition of Waiting

“Waiting” and “providence” is the state of a person who is not satisfied with current conditions and tries to make the conditions better.

For instance, an ill person who is waiting for betterment, or a father who is waiting for his son to return from the journey, they are uncomfortable because of illness and separation from the son and try to make the conditions better.

Also, a businessman who is not satisfied with the disordered conditions of the market and is waiting for economical crisis to end, this one has two conditions:

“Unfamiliarity with present conditions” and “Trying for better conditions”.

Therefore, the issue of waiting for the government of truth and justice of “Mahdi” and the rise of universal peacemaker is in fact composed of two elements; the element of “denial” and the element of “fixation”.

The element of denial is the same unfamiliarity with present conditions and the element of fixation is demanding better conditions.

Waiting in the Depths of Human Nature

Contrary to those who think that failures and disharmonies throw the seed of waiting for the advent of a great peacemaker in minds, love of this matter is related to the depths of human nature; sometimes strong and sometimes weak.

In other words, human will finally face this matter in two ways, the way of affection and the way of wisdom and hears the promise of this advent in two tongues of “nature and wisdom”.

And in a clearer way, belief of the advent of universal peacemaker is a part of “love of awareness”, “love of beauty” and “love of goodness” (three of four dimensions of human soul) that without such advent these loves will end in failure.

Maybe this expression needs more explanation and that is we know “love of perfection” is an immortal flame that has conquered the entire human soul; he wants to know more, he wants to see more of beauties, he wants to have more benefits from the goodness and totally provide more of whatever he considers as the mean of development and superiority.

Never, appearance of these motives can be related to social and mental factors. Although these factors have a big share in weakening or strengthening them, but their main existence is a part of human mind and a part of main dimensions of his soul; because no society and nation have ever been empty of these motives.

Briefly, affection of human to development and perfection, to wisdom and beauty, to goodness and justice is a genuine affection, forever and immortal; and waiting for the advent of a great universal peacemaker is the ultimate of this affection. (Attention!)

How it is possible that love of multilateral perfection is available inside the human soul but doesn’t wait for such matter! If is it possible to achieve the perfection of human society without that!

Therefore, those who had no failure and crisis in their lives have such feeling inside their souls … in one side.

On the other side, as limbs and parts of human body helps his perfection and development and we cannot find a limb in body which has no role in this developing movement, mental characteristics of human are also like this; which means any of them has an effective role in development of his genuine goals.

For example, “fear of dangerous factors” which is available in any human is for saving him from the danger.

“Anger”, when the person finds his benefits in danger, is a mean of increasing the defensive power and mobilization of all reserved physical and spiritual powers for saving his benefits from the danger. Therefore, love of perfection, love of peace and justice are also the means of reaching this great goal and is like a powerful engine, which moves the wheels of human soul forever in this way, and helps him for achieving a world full of peace and justice.

On the other side, feelings and mechanisms, which are available in the body and the soul, cannot be in disharmony with the universe of existence; because the entire universe of existence is an integrated unit and our existence cannot be separated from the rest of the universe.

We can conclude well from this integration that any genuine love and affection, which is available in our soul, is the reason for having its “loved one” and “goal” out there in the universe and this love is a mean for moving us toward that.

It means that if we become thirsty and have the affection of water then it is the reason for the existence of water that the universe of creation has placed its affection inside us.

If we have the affection of opposite sex then it is reason for the existence of opposite sex out of us; and if we have the affection of beauty and wisdom then it is the reason for the existence of beauties and wisdoms in the universe of existence.

And we easily conclude from that point that if humans are waiting for a great peacemaker, who fills the world with peace and justice and goodness, then it is the reason that such ultimate in perfection of human society is possible and it is practical that its love and affection is inside our souls.

Generality of this belief in all religions is also another sign of its genuineness and reality, because a thing, which is the result of exclusive and limited conditions, cannot be this much general. It is only innate matters that have such generality; and all of these are the sign for this matter that this promise has been announced in the soul of humanity, from the tongue of affection and nature, that finally a great peacemaker will rule the world under the flag of peace and justice.

The Philosophy of Waiting

Maybe this question also appears in your mind that:

What is the result of talking about the future of the world of humanity in today’s world?

Today, we have lots of problems and we should think of overcoming these problem, what do we have to with the future?

Finally the future will come, whether good or bad, those who are alive until that day will have its benefits and those who have died, may rest in peace!

Anyhow, this issue is currently “credit” and has no positive and constructive in our today’s life!

But, these are the expressions of those who look at events superficially, and assume that today is apart from yesterday and tomorrow; and consider that the world consists of separated and distinct units.

But by considering that the sources of “today’s events” are in the past and we should build the future from today, and the fact that noticing to a “dark” or “bright” future has an immediate reflection in today’s life and our positioning against events, it is clear that we should precisely study the past and the future for the sake of today and soon we will see that how much constructive is this great waiting.

But surprisingly, some of the writer not only denied the positive aspect of this matter, but they have affirmed that waiting for such future has negative effects in performance of today’s social powers and reduces their speed!

And more surprisingly, some believe that belief of a bright future is a reflection of deprivations of the loser class, which usually appears in religious form.

But, it is undeniable that some narrow-minded have misused the issue of waiting and by expressing that we are waiting for such advent, has disclaimed all responsibilities and has placed the issue of waiting, and limited to the expression, instead of them!

For removing any kind of misunderstanding from both sides, I think it is necessary to mention a part of the article, which I wrote some while ago about this issue:

Impulsive Judgments

However a group of orientalists insist on showing the belief of the existence of a great universal peacemaker as a “reflection” of disordered conditions of Muslims during dark ages of history;

However a group of eastern and Islamic scholars, who are influenced by western thoughts, expand this thinking way; and even they insist on considering the belief of existence of “Mahdi” and universal peacemaker as an imported thought which is derived from the beliefs of the Jews and the Christians;

And however some of materialist sociologists try to make a reason from the issue of waiting for the advent of Mahdi for their belief that “this belief has an economical root and has been made up for stupefying the minds of exploited people”;

By all these discussions, it should be considered that believing such advent has an innate root in all souls, which has penetrated inside the depths of human affections and feelings, and a genuine Islamic root that can be seen in important Islamic resources.

But, maybe limited researches of these researchers on the one hand, and being interested in finding “material justification” for any religious thought and belief on the other hand, has made these types of thoughts.

It is interesting that some western researchers like “Margoliouth” began denying Islamic Ahadith about Mahdi(as) and says:

Anyway that these Ahadith are interpreted, there is no convincing evidence that we assume that the prophet of Islam (S) has considered the advent of one Mahdi necessary and certain for reviving, completion and strengthening of Islam; but civil war among a united generation after the demise of Prophet (S) and chaos of the world of Islam that happened because of their disagreements and conflicts, caused the thought of the advent of “savior” to be adopted from the Jews or the Christians, who are waiting for the advent and the return of “messiah”.

I don’t know that which books of Islamic resources “Margoliouth” has seen about this matter and how he didn’t find anything convincing in their interpretations, while there are affirmed Ahadith in important resources of Shiites and Sunnis about this advent, and sequence of these ahadith approximately reaches the source.

How all Islamic scholars and researcher, approximately without any exception (except some few persons like Ibn Khaldun, who has doubted in Ahadith of Mahdi in the preface of his history), have no discussion about the issuance of these Ahadith by Prophet (S) and the discussions are all about the branches and side matters, but only “Margoliouth” haven’t convinced?

This is the question, which he himself should answer.

Meanwhile, others say that:

We don’t consider the act and motives of this general waiting; we observe its results, which cause to bear the pains and patience against disharmonies and surrendering to oppressions, and escaping from responsibilities.

We observe that, this waiting moves suffered people to a dreamy world and distracts them from what is going on around them and encourages them to idleness and escaping from social obligations.

And in other word, individually, it is a factor of inaction and socially, a tool for stopping anti-imperialism movements and anyway its negative effects are obvious.

But in our opinion, an aware researcher, who doesn’t want to judge from a far point and oblige himself/herself to observe all the issues related to “motives and results” closely, cannot suffice to these impulsive judgments.

Now, let us study the motives and results and effects of waiting one by one impartially and find out that whether the reason of its appearance is failures or series of innate and wise realities, and are the effects of that constructive and positive or negative and unfavorable?

Constructive Effects of Waiting

Does believing in such waiting moves the person into dreams in the way that he/she becomes unaware of what is going on around him/her and surrender him/her to any condition?

Or, indeed, this belief is a kind of invitation to rise and individual and social construction?

Does it produce movement or inaction?

Does it make responsibilities or the cause of escaping from responsibilities?

And finally, is it stupefying or awakener?

Before explaining and studying these questions, noticing to a point is very necessary and that is, whenever the most constructive orders and the most excellent concepts are utilized by inexperienced, incompetent or exploiter persons then they may transform them in the way that they have results completely against the main goal and move in opposite direction; and this matter has many of examples and as we will see the issue of “waiting” is like them.

Anyhow, for getting rid of any mistake in calculation in these discussions, water should be taken from the headspring in order not to have the contaminations of streams and canals in the way.

Accordingly, in the discussion of waiting, we refer to main Islamic texts and study different tones of narratives, which affirm the issue of “waiting” in order to find the main goal.

Now, pay careful attention to some narrative!

Someone asked Imam Sadiq (as) that what do you say about a person who has the guardianship of the Imams and is waiting for the appearance of the government of truth and dies in this state?

Imam(as) answered:

هو بمنزلة من کان مع القائم فی فسطاطه - ثمّ سکت هنیئه - ثمّ قال هو کمن مع رسول الله) ص (

(He is like the person who has been with the leader of this revolution in his tent (headquarters) - then stayed silent for a while - and said he is like the one who has been with prophet of Islam (in his battles)).

This meaning has been quoted in many narratives with different expressions:

In some narratives

بمنزلة الضّارب بسیفه فی سبیل الله

Like a swordsman in the way of God.

And in some other narratives

کمن قارع بسیفه مع رسول الله

Like the one who strikes the head of the enemy with sword beside prophet.

In some others

بمنزلة من کان قاعداً تحت لواء القائم

Like the one who has been under the flag of He Who Arises.

And in some other narratives

بمنزلة المجاهد بین یدی رسول الله) ص(

Like the person who performs jihad before the Prophet (S).

And in some others

بمنزلة من استشهد مع رسول الله

Like a person who becomes martyr with the Prophet (S).

These metaphors which have been mentioned in these narratives about the advent of his holiness Mahdi (as) are very meaningful and clear the fact that there is a kind of relation between the issues of “waiting” and “jihad” and fighting against the enemy, in its latest form. (Attention!)

Also, in several narratives, waiting for such government has been introduced as the best form of worship.

This meaning has been quoted in some Ahadith from the Prophet (S) and in some other Ahadith from Imam Ali (as); we read in a Hadith from the Prophet (S) that he said:

"افضل اعمال امّتی انتظار الفرج من الله عزّ و جلّ"

The best act of my nation is waiting for an opening from the side of God.

And we read in another Hadith from the Prophet (S) that:

"افضل العبادة انتظار الفرج"

(The best act of worship is the waiting of the opening)

This Hadith clears the importance of waiting about our discussion, whether we consider the meaning of opening as in general meaning or its exclusive meaning which is the advent of universal peacemaker.

These expressions say that waiting for such revolution is always accompanied by an expanded and continued jihad.

And if belief and waiting of universal government of the Mahdi penetrates to the roots then will be the source of two series of continued acts (because the effects of superficial beliefs may not go further than expressions and dialog but deep beliefs always have expanded practical effects); these two series of acts are:

Renouncing any kind of cooperation and harmony with the factors of oppression and corruption and even fighting and conflict with them, on the one hand; and self-improvement, self-help and attracting physical, mental, material and spiritual preparations for that universal united government to be formed, on the other hand.

And if carefully notice then we will see that both sides of that are completely constructive and the cause of motivation, awareness and awakening.

By considering the main definition of “waiting”, the meaning of narratives about the reward and the result of the act of those who are waiting will be understood well.

Now, we understand that why those who are really waiting have been considered as those who are in the tent or under the flag of his holiness the Mahdi(as), or the one who is fighting with sword in the way of god or is inside his blood or has become martyr.

Aren’t these different levels and stages of jihad in the way of truth and justice, which is appropriate with the amount of readiness and level waiting of individuals!

It means that as the amount of self-sacrifice of Mujahids in the way of God and their role are different, waiting, self-improvement and preparation have also completely different levels that each of them is similar to one of those about “preliminaries” and “results”; both of them are jihad and both of them need preparation and self-improvement. A person who is in the tent of the leader of such government means that is standing in the headquarters of a universal government; such person cannot be a negligent, uninformed and ignorant person; that place is not a pace for everyone; there is the place of those who are truthfully competent for such important situation.

Also, a person, who has weapon in his hands and fights beside the leader of this revolution against the oppositions of his government of peace and justice, should have enough spiritual, mental and martial readiness.

Waiting Means Complete Awareness

If I am a tyrant or an oppressor then how can I wait for the one whose sword is looking for the blood of oppressors!

If I am polluted and impure then how can I wait for a revolution that its first flame captures polluted people!

An army, which is waiting for a great jihad, increases martial readiness of its soldiers and blows the revolutionary soul of into their bodies and corrects any kind of weakness.

The condition of “waiting” is always proper for the goal, which is waiting for:

Waiting for a normal traveler to come from the journey

Waiting for the return of a dear friend

Waiting for fruit collecting and harvesting season

Waiting for school season…

Each of these waiting is mixed with a kind of readiness.

In one of them the house should be prepared and greetings means should be provided, in the other one needed equipments and sickle and combine … and for the other one, books, notebooks, pen, school uniform and like them.

Now think that those who are waiting for the rise of a great universal peacemaker, in fact, they are waiting for a change and revolution which is the most expanded and essential revolution of human revolution during the entire history.

A revolution, which, contrary to previous corrective revolutions, is not regional and is not exclusive to one aspect of the aspect of life, but it, includes all aspects of human life adding to being general and sweeping; it is a political, cultural, economical and moral revolution.

Currently, we don’t discuss about the matter that what is our reason for such revolution to happen.

We postpone this to another discussion, because in this discussion, our goal is only the results and the effects of such belief and waiting that is really stupefying as some of materialists have assumed or is it motion-maker and corrective.

We said before that, “waiting” always consists of two elements of “denial” and “fixation”; dissatisfaction of present conditions and love and affection for better conditions.

The first aspect of the resolution, which is the aspect of “denial”, is removing the factors of disorder, corruption, destruction and washing the plate of society from the opposite sketches.

After this stage, it is the time for the aspect of fixation, which is placing the factors of correction and construction.

The combination of two concepts of “waiting” and “universal revolution” clears what we said before; it means that, those who are waiting for such revolution, if they are truly claiming (not like the false imaginary ones) then certainly the following effects will appear in them:

1) Personal Self-Improvement

The universal government of Mahdi needs ready and human-valued individuals, before anything else, who can bear the heavy weight of such expanded corrections; and firstly, it needs the increment of intellectual, awareness and spiritual and mental readiness level for cooperation in execution of this great program. Envy, narrow-mindedness, mistrust, childish and unwise conflicts, and totally any kind of concision and separation are not proper for the position of those who are really waiting.

The important point is that the one who is really waiting for such important program cannot be the spectator, and should stand in the row of real reformists.

Believing in the results and the effects of such change never lets him/her to stand in the row of oppositions and standing in the row of accordant ones also needs to have pure acts and purer souls, to have enough courage and awareness.

If I am impure and polluted then how can I wait for a change and revolution, which its flame captures me first!

An if I am corrupted and incorrect then how can I count the days for the system in which corrupted and incorrect persons have no place, even they are outcaste and hated!

Isn’t this waiting enough for purification of my spirit and thoughts and washing my body and soul from pollutions and impurities!

An army which is waiting for the jihad of freedom, surely goes to the state of complete alert; gains the weapon which is proper for such battlefield; corrects the available weapons; builds the necessary forts; increases martial readiness of its soldiers; encourages its soldiers; and keeps the flame of affection and desire for such fight alive in the hearts of each its soldiers; an army which doesn’t have such readiness is not in the state of waiting at all and if claims then it is lying; waiting for a universal peacemaker means complete mental, moral, material and spiritual readiness for correcting the entire world.

Imagine that how much such readiness can be constructive! Correcting the entire earth and finishing all oppressions and disharmonies is not a joke! It cannot be a simple act! Readiness for such great goal should be proper to that; which means should have its width and depth.

For achieving such revolution very great and serious, very powerful and undefeatable, extraordinary, pure and honorable men are needed who are completely ready and have deep knowledge and vision; and self-improvement for such goal needs the deepest moral, intellectual and social programs to be utilized; this is the meaning of real waiting! Is there anybody who can say such waiting is not constructive!

2) Social Self-Helps

Those who are really waiting have also the duty to try to correct others adding to correcting themselves; because the great and heavy program which they expect is not an individual program; it is program in which all the elements of change should participate; they should work as a team; efforts should be in harmony and the depth and width of this harmony should be as great as that universal revolutionary program which they expect.

In a vast battlefield nobody can ignore others, and has the duty to correct any weakness which he sees in any place, and amends any vulnerable position, and strengthens any weak part; because execution of such program is not possible without active and coordinated participation of all those who fight.

Therefore, those who are really waiting, besides trying to correct themselves, also consider it as their duty to correct others.

This is another constructive effect of waiting for the rise of a universal peacemaker! And this is the philosophy of many glories and superiorities, which have been mentioned for those who are really waiting.

3) Not being solved in Corruption of the Environment

When corruption dominates, and corrupts most of the people, sometimes pure people is entrapped in a hard mental dead-end, a dead-end which is the result of disappointment from reforms.

Sometimes, they think that no time remained and there is no more hope for corrections, and it is a waste of time to try to remain pure; this disappointment may gradually attract them to corruption and consolidation with the environment and cannot keep the self as righteous minority against unrighteous majority, and considers disharmony with congregation as a mean of disgrace (referring to a Persian proverb).

The only thing which can blow the soul of hope into them and encourage them to resistance and continence and don’t let them to be solved in corruption of the environment is the hope of final correction; only in this case they don’t give up trying for keeping their purity and even correcting others.

And if we see that in Islamic orders, disappointment from being forgiven is considered as one of the greatest sins and maybe unknown people is surprised that why disappointment from the mercy of God is this much important - more important from many other sins - its philosophy is that the sinner, who is disappointed from mercy, sees no reason for compensation and at least stopping the sins, and his/her logic is that:

“I am drowned, whether one meter or hundred meters; I’ve been disgrace in the entire world, why should I be sorry; there is no color darker than black, at last it is hell, and now I have purchased it for myself, what should I fear from!”

But when the light of hope shines on him/her, hope of forgiveness of god and hope of changing the present conditions, a turning point appears in his/her life and maybe encourages him/her to stop performing sins and to return to purity and correction.

Accordingly, hope can be considered as an effective corrective factor in correction of corrupted people, also, righteous people, who are living in corrupted environments, cannot free themselves without hope.

Therefore, waiting for the advent of a peacemaker whose appearance is more excepts as the world becomes more corrupted, has mental strengthening effects on believers and insure them against powerful waves of corruption. They won’t be disappointed by the expansion of corruption of the environment; even they see the goal in front of them and try more eagerly to fight against the corruption and for continence.

We conclude from previous discussions that, waiting has stupefying effect only if its meaning is distorted and transformed, as some of its oppositions have distorted that; and some of its accordant ones have transformed, but it is executed in its real meaning in society and for individuals then it will be an important factor of correction, self-improvement, motivation and hope.

One of clear evidences which confirms this matter is that it is quoted from great leaders of Islam beneath the verse:

وَعَدَ اللَّهُ الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا مِنْكُمْ وَعَمِلُوا الصَّالِحَاتِ لَيَسْتَخْلِفَنَّهُمْ فِي الْأَرْضِ

Allah has promised, to those among you who believe and work righteous deeds, that He will, of a surety, grant them in the land, (Surah Nur24:55)

That the purpose of this verse is “هوالقائم و اصحابه” (Mahdi and his companions). And we read: in another hadith: “نزلت فی المهدی” (the verse has been descended about Mahdi) while in this verse Mahdi and his companion are introduced as “الّذین آمنو منکم و عملو الصّالحات”. (Those who believe and perform righteous acts).

Therefore, realization of this universal revolution is not possible without a fortified belief that dispels any kind of weakness, humiliation and incapability and without righteous acts which open the way for correction of the world; and those who are waiting for such program should both increase their level of awareness and knowledge and try to correct themselves and their acts.

Only such people can promise themselves living in his government, not those who are in coordination with oppression and injustice!

And not those who are stranger with belief and righteous acts!

Not cowards and despised persons who fear from anything even their own shadow because of weakness of belief!

And not inactive and lazy and useless persons, who is sitting inactive against the corruptions of their living environment and society and stayed silent and don’t even try to fight against corruption.

Yes the real waiting is this!