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Era of Occultation - A Time of Ordeal and Examination

part 2


Similarly, if we our desirous to improve ourselves, actions and character, then we should focus and turn towards Imam-e-Zaman (a.t.f.s.) and present ourselves in his (a.s.) holy presence. We should weep and plead before him and with utmost sincerity and request him for the rectification of our selves. Allah has granted him (a.t.f.s.) such immense powers that a single "spiritual glance" from his side upon the servant is enough to cause a transformation in the individual. Just as Holy Prophet (s.a.w.a.) turned the hearts of the polytheist towards Islam and persuaded them to lead a positive and beneficial (Islamic) life. Or how Imam Husain (a.s.) brought about a change in Janabe Zohair (r.a.) and Janabe Hurr (r.a.). Certainly, Imam-e-Zaman (a.t.f.s.) is in occultation but he is not oblivious of us. He is conscious and is a witness to each and every action that we perform. In one 'tauqee' he (a.s.) says 'Now we are residing far from the dwellings of the oppressors, since Allah considers this best for us as well as our Shias till the time the tyrants rule the world.

'However, our knowledge encompasses all the news concerning you and nothing about you is concealed from us' If this is the case, then we should take ourselves in his sacred presence and beg for our rectification and improvement.

 For this, we don't have to go anywhere. What is required is that from the bottom of our hearts, we should repent for our sins and attach ourselves to him (a.t.f.s.) and call upon him (a.t.f.s.). And to make our prayers more effective, we should mention the calamities that befell upon Imam Husain (a.s.) and ask Imam-e-Zaman (a.t.f.s.) to fulfill our wishes for the sake of Imam Husain (a.s.). Neither our actions are of any value nor is our character such that we can present ourselves before Imam-e-Zaman (a.t.f.s.) without a strong mediation and hope to receive his blessings. The grief of Imam Husain (a.s.) is the best means for the fulfillment of our wishes. As Imam Mahdi (a.s.) says

'I pray for the believer who cries on the calamities that befell my grandfather Imam Husain (a.s.) and prays for my reappearance.’

(Mikyalul Makaarim, vol. 2, pg. 36)

(c) Patience:

It is one of the crucial responsibilities in these difficult and testing times. Here patience has a few aspects. But before elaborating on those facets it is necessary to first understand that patience does not mean that a person remains a passive spectator to all that is happening around him. Rather, 'patience' implies 'steadfastness' and 'resoluteness'. As the Holy Quran says,

'One hundred patient individuals are equal to two hundred individuals (who lack patience).'

It means that patience is that attribute that amplifies the might of an individual and increases it manifold.


(i) Patience on oppression:

Today, oppression is common and is as its peak. Rulers are inventing newer means for tormenting the people. In such testing times, glad tidings are for those believers who adopt patience and protect their religion. Imam Jafar Sadiq (a.s.) narrates,

'Don't you know that the one who is awaiting our affair (rule) and in the process is patient upon the difficulties and fear, then on the Day of Judgment, he shall be in our group?

(Beharul Anwaar, vol. 52, pg. 256, tradition 147)


(ii) Patience on calamities:

When the guardian of the house is away then all kinds of problems descend upon it. This is because the enemies come out of their hiding places. In this period of occultation, Imam-e-Zaman (a.t.f.s.) is not apparently present among the people. Hence, they are engulfed in various kinds of problems. Abu Saleh Kanani once met Imam Sadiq (a.s.) and said, 'O Abu Abdillah! I complain to you of the anguish caused to me by my children and brothers. (These are words of Abu Saleh, yet today everyone has a similar complain). Imam Sadiq (a.s.) replied,

'O Aba Saleh! Surely truth has a government and falsehood too has its government. In both these reigns, people of the opposite group are humiliated. The least of the troubles that a believer shall receive in the reign of the false government is oppression from his children and humiliation from his brothers. If a believer gets any comfort during the dishonest government then in return he will certainly face some kind of difficulty or calamity. Either in matters relating to his body or children or wealth. Till such time that Allah does not purify him from all the filth that has accumulated on him due those worldly comforts. So that when the true government is established he should get his complete reward. So be patient and remain contented.'

(Usul al-Kafi, vol. 2, pg. 447, tradition 12)

This tradition gives us an idea that in the days of major occultation, troubles and difficulties will not be only from the polytheists and oppressors i.e from outsiders, but even from our near and dear ones. We have mentioned earlier that to remain steadfast on the true religion, act upon the teachings of Ahle Bait (a.s.), to perform our religious obligations for the sake of Allah, not to act against the tenets of the religion inspite of the accusations and criticism of the people, is the highest level of patience. In these circumstances, the best example for us is Hazrat Hujjat b. Hasan Askari (a.t.f.s.). His right (of caliphate) was usurped, he had to go into occultation, the objections raised against him, the oppressions that engulfed his Shias, living far away from the people, living a prolonged life in occultation - these are calamities and difficulties which he (a.t.f.s.) has been enduring for over 1,000 years. These tribulations are beyond human understanding and perception.

We should sincerely beseech and beg in front of Imam-e-Zaman (a.t.f.s.) by the means of Imam Husain (a.s.) that he grant us the twin noble traits of being patient and steadfast on religion. Undoubtedly, this is the only door that can grant us security from the destruction of the present era.

O Allah! Hasten the reappearance of our master Imam-e-Zaman (a.t.f.s.).

Source: imamalmahdi.com

Other Links:

Responding to Some Points Raised By Ibn Khaldun (Part 2)  

The Existence of the Mahdi is certain  

Other Opinions from Ibn Khaldun  

People Awaited the Appearance of the Mahdi  

The Jurists of Medina and the Mahdi Traditions  

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