|Excerpt from Tafsir-ul-Qur'an Noor-e-Imaan by Maulana Hzt. Syed Miranji Abid Khundmiri Sahab Qibla.|
Translator: Syed Yousuf Tajammul Khundmiri
Efforts have generally been made to spread this wrong faith that IsaAS would descend during the time of The Promised MahdiAS. IsaAS would descend at a time when MahdiAS would be preparing for the prayers, and when IsaAS would descend, MahdiAS on seeing IsaAS would say, "Come, lead us in the prayers". And then IsaAS would follow MahdiAS in one prayer and MahdiAS will follow IsaAS in another prayer.|
Based on this wrong faith, Mahdavia is questioned, that according to your faith when MahdiAS has come, it was mandatory that IsaAS should have come too. But since IsaAS has not come yet, how can this be said that the MahdiAS you have accepted is truly the Promised MahdiAS. We reply to the above question as follows:
Apparently, it can be said with complete evidence, absolute confidence, responsibility and honesty that there is no tradition at all regarding the gathering of MahdiAS & IsaAS at one time. When there is no such tradition in Muslim, Bukhari or other books of traditions then the faith of the gathering of MahdiAS & IsaAS is a contrived one. The right faith is that which is extracted from the Book (Qur'an) and the Practice (of the ProphetSAS).
Let us now look at the traditions in this regard so that the truth can be uncovered.
|1.||Abu HurairahRZ narrates, RasoolAllahSAS said, "What would be your condition, when IsaAS son of Marry will descend among you, although your leader (Imam) is from among yourselves".
| ||In this tradition, the word "your leader from among yourselves"
() has come & not "Mahdi". Leader (Imam) is absolute
( ) & is of common nature. If it is said that this absolute (imam)
can be confined with Mahdi and the common can be made special, than the answer to that is, it is unnecessary
because, in the tradition itself "Imam" is absolute & specific. i.e., when ()
has come with then due to "common" addition it has become specific.
|2.||In this regard, the second tradition is the one Ibn Majah narrated from Abu Imamah. that
RasoolAllahSAS gave a long sermon wherein he described the circumstances & events surrounding anti-Christ (Dajjal).
Um Shareek asked, "Where would the Arabs be at that time? He said, "They would be just a few at Jerusalem
(Bait-ul-Muqaddas). Their leader (Imam) would be a pious man". The important text of the tradition is as follows...
| ||Translation: Said, "They would just be a few at that time,
most of them residing at Jerusalem (Bait-ul-Muqaddas) and their leader would be a pious man. In the
meantime their leader would proceed to lead them in the morning prayers suddenly, Jesus, son of Mary
would descend in the morning. In this tradition too the word "Imamuhum"
has come twice. At the first instance it is clarified that their leader (Imam) would be a pious person.
And the second time where the word "Imamahum" has come, it is
clarified that he would have proceeded to lead in the prayer. The word "Mahdi" is not mentioned in it.
||The third tradition which has come in this regard is from Muslim Shareef:
||Translation :It is narrated from Jaber bin AbdullahRZ that RasoolAllahSAS said, "A group
of my followers will continue to fight in defense of truth till the day of Judgment and they would continue to
dominate", said, "then IsaAS, son of Merry, would descend. The leader of group will ask IsaAS, you come
and lead us in the prayer. Then IsaAS would say, No! Undoubtedly some among you are leader for other. Due to
the supremacy that Allah has given to this ummah. The word "Ameeruhum"
has come in this tradition and not "Al Mahdi"
| ||With (the help of) this tradition, another misconception is rebutted that
during Mahdi'sAS period the whole world would be filled with justice & equity. Because this tradition is saying
aloud that the ProphetSAS said , "A group among my followers would fight in defense of truth till the day of
Judgment & will dominate".|
Fighting in defense of truth can be possible only when the unjust forces are engaged in fighting against truth
all the time with all their strength. What could be a greater tyranny & injustice then fighting against the
truth? ProphetSAS said that this situation would prevail till the day of judgment.
| ||Though, in all the three above mentioned traditions the words
"Imamukum" () or "Ameeruhum" ()
have come but the word "AlMahdi" () is not mentioned any
where. It proves that besides "Sahah" () (famous collections
of traditions), if the word "Al Mahdi" () has come after
or in any
non-sahah (other than six famous collection of traditions) tradition then that would be considered
unauthentic & annexed. Or else the narrator has expressed his own opinion (Not the intent of
RasoolAllahSAS) or expressed his doubt. Therefore Anwar Shah Kashmiri writes under this tradition in
Faizul-Baari, commentary of Bukhari, |
(Faizul-Baari, vol:4 pg:34).
| ||Translation: "The meaning that is obtained from this is Imam Mahdi" then writes at another place |
| ||Therefore this is how the commentators have tried on their
own to interpret the word "Ameeruhum" . Otherwise there
is no clarification of "Al Mahdi" in the original tradition.
It would be said that, the leader would be someone else whom IsaAS would join. But it is definite
that IsaAS would not descend with MahdiAS or during his tenure.
| ||One narration has come with a variation of a few words in
Masnad-Abdul-Razzaq too. In which there is not even a mention of the word "Ameer"
. Look at this narration:|
(Musannifa-Abdul-Razzaq pg 400).
| ||Translation: "IsaAS would descend in such a state that he
would be covered with two red clothes, between Azaan & Iqamat (at that time) people would tell him,
come, lead us in the prayer. He would say, "No! but your leader would lead in the prayer. Some among
yourselves are the leaders for others". In this narration, There isn't even a mention of the word
"leader" instead the request from people (Musallis) to IsaAS for leading in the prayer is
mentioned. No mention of the word "Ameer", "Imam" or "Mahdi".|
Another narration of almost similar meaning has come in Musannafa Abdul Razzaque.
Translation: How would be your state when IsaAS would descend as a command and would lead you or said that your leader would be from among you?
| ||Habib-ur-Rahman Aazmi, commentator of Musannafa Abdul Razzaque writes as under|
| ||Besides this, Allama Saaduddin Taftazani has explained with clarity the belief that ahle-sunnat keep about the gathering of MahdiAS & IsaAS as follows:|
(Sharahe-Maqasid Vol2 Pg308)
| ||Translation: No tradition has come about the presence of IsaAS
with the leader of the time (MahdiAS) except this tradition, which is narrated in these words
. And this which is said, that IsaAS will follow Imam MahdiAS
in the prayer or Imam MahdiAS will follow IsaAS in the prayer is baseless which should not be trusted.
The following points are understood from the above-mentioned reference:
At this moment if it is questioned as to what would be the periods of these two personalities i.e. MahdiAS & IsaAS.
- There is no specific mention of the name of MahdiAS with IsaAS in any tradition from Sahah (Six famous collections of traditions).
- Only the words Imamukum or Ameeruhum have come.
- People from subsequent periods interpreted that as Al Mahdi .
- Some commentators on their part added the word Al Mahdi in the translation.
- It is proven from the book of faiths also that the gathering of MahdiAS and IsaAS, them following each other in prayers is baseless, unreliable and inconsiderable.
The answer is that ProphetSAS himself has clarified in clear words about the periods of Mahdi-e-MaoudAS and IsaAS. Look at the words of the tradition.
Translation: "How would that (my) Ummah perish when I'm at its beginning, MahdiAS in the middle and IsaAS is at its end. But in the middle of that would be an awry group which is not from me and I'm not from them".|
The following points are proven with this tradition:
From this magnificent tradition, not only the time periods of the appearance and advent of MahdiAS and IsaAS is determined but also the exalted and lofty status of MahdiAS is highlighted. The ProphetSAS has presented MahdiAS as the "Protector of Ummat-e-Muhammadia from perishing" alongside himselfSAS and Isa SAS.
- This Ummah (Ummat-e-Muhammadia) cannot perish. Because three resolute personalities are its defenders from extinction.
- The first personality among them who is at the beginning of the Ummah is the ProphetSAS himself.
- The second personality among them who is in the middle of this Ummah is MahdiAS.
- The third personality among them who would come at the end of this Ummah is IsaAS.
- In the middle of them (MahdiAS & IsaAS) would be an awry group, about whom the ProphetSAS says that "Neither they are from me and nor I'm from them." Meaning their behavior would be against my practice.
It should not be thought that if the mention of MahdiAS has come in between two ProphetsPBUT then is the personality mentioned in between a Prophet too?
God forbid! MahdiAS is not a Prophet, neither the ProphetSAS presented him as a Prophet, nor MahdiAS himself claimed Prophethood, nor we Mahdavis accept him as a Prophet. The Prophethood is sealed on MuhammadSAS & by "no Prophet after me" the door of the Prophethoot is closed for ever. Now the thing that remained was "Imamat" & "Qilafat", the ProphetSAS also mentioned the same & MahdiAS also claimed this. But the mention of MahdiAS by ProphetSAS in the middle of two resolute Prophets for a big, marvelous task is surely highlighting this fact too that though MahdiAS is not a Prophet but he definitely is "adjoined with Prophets" which is clarified by Ibn-ArabiRH in Futuhaat-e-Makkiyah.
It should be remembered here that without being "adjoined with prophets" or "sahib-e-bayyinah" the status of the promised Mahdi is not achieved.
Look from a different perspective too the gathering of MahdiAS and IsaAS is impossible. The details of that is MahdiAS & IsaAS are both caliphs of Allah, when they would come, surely the covenant would be taken from both of them, because to repose faith in them is mandatory. Now the question is, is it correct to take covenant on the hands of two caliphs? Will AllahSWT send two caliphs at a time to kill one Antichrist (Dajjal)? Is one caliph of Allah insufficient to kill one enemy of Allah, that another one comes to help him? And if Antichrist (Dajjal) would be present during the time of MahdiAS up until IsaAS would kill him, then the presence of MahdiAS at that time would be supplementary, because Antichrist is destined to be killed by IsaAS.
How can two permanent caliphs be present at one time when the ProphetSAS strictly ordered,|
Translation: When covenant is taken by two caliphs then kill the later of the two. This tradition is narrated by Abu Saeed in Muslim.
The most Important point is that subsequent to (in light of) the tradition of the ProphetSAS "When covenant is taken by two caliphs then kill the later of the two", the possibility of the gathering of the two caliphs also vanished.
Now, it is not even a point to think as to what should Muslims do in such a situation, because the ProphetSAS has issued the order, whether MahdiAS comes first or IsaAS. Is it permissible to kill anyone of them? And If you don't kill, then order given by the ProphetSAS is violated. God forbid! If you kill, then you would be the culprit of killing a caliph of AllahSWT.
ProphetSAS says that these two personalities are protectors from extinction in their own periods. And it would become a responsibility of those who believe (that both would be present at the same time) to get rid of a protector. Although to accept both of them in their own periods, to repose faith and to make covenant with them is mandatory. This can happen only when MahdiAS comes in the middle of the Ummah and IsaAS at its end.
In short, this was about the divine caliphate. Even for the caliphate of the MessengerSAS of Allah, when after his death, differences appeared between Ansaar (Medinite companions) and Muhaajireen (holy migrants) and the group of holy migrants started saying that the caliph will be from us. And the group of Medinite companions (Ansaar) said that, No! The caliph will be from us. At last this slogan was raised that one leader (Ameer) will be from us and one from you. Was that permitted? No! Instead the covenant was taken on the hands of Abu Baker SiddiqueRZ and he was selected the caliph as Suyuti wrote, Tthe complete incidence is narrated. For details see Tareeq-ul-Qulafa Chapter Fi-Mubaiah Pg 5.
If the philosophy of two leaders is incorrect and inapplicable for the caliphate of the ProphetSAS then how can it be allowed for the divine caliphate? Thus gathering of MahdiAS and IsaAS in this world is impossible, and is against the tradition and intellect.
Furthermore, the attention is not given at all to the clause that is of utmost importance in the tradition under discussion. i.e. When IsaAS would be asked to lead in the prayer, he would say (some among you are leaders for others), after that he says these words too (due to the supremacy that Allah has given this Ummah). The dignity & nobility of Ummat-e-Muhammadia is being mentioned here. Although IsaAS was a resolute ProphetSAS of his time with a revealed book & symbol, but when he would descend again then he would be counted among Ummat-e-Muhammadia. Now if IsaAS, after descending from the sky, follows MahdiAS in the prayer (according to the belief of common Muslims), keep the respect found in it for the Ummah on one side of the scale. And according to our & ahle-sunnat's faith, the group that would be ready at that time and its leader who would be a common person of the Ummat-e-Muhammadia (Who has been called a pious person in the tradition). That person would respectfully ask IsaAS to lead, But IsaAS would say "No! You lead" and IsaAS would follow that leader (Imaam) in the prayer. Keep this respect and grace of Ummah on the second side of the scale. A person with an average intelligence would also be able to decide that the second side of the scale is heavier. i.e. when IsaAS would follow a common person of Ummat-e-Muhammadia in the prayer then the grace & respect of the Ummah is more in that, in comparison with IsaAS following MahdiAS in the prayer because in this situation both IsaAS and MahdiAS are caliphs of Allah. Thus if one caliph of Allah follows the other caliph of Allah in the prayer then what is the grace & respect in it?
Yes! It is true to the extent that MahdiAS too is included in Ummat-e-Muhammadia but he is an absolute (Complete) follower, his footsteps set on Prophet Mustafa'sSAS footsteps, and in this sense he is adjoined to the Prophets. He is a caliph of Allah in the same manner as IsaAS is a caliph of Allah. This way it is no honor if one caliph of Allah follows the other in the prayers.
The summary is that when IsaAS follows a common person of the Ummah, who is not a caliph of Allah, then that is an honor of this Ummah. And that's what would happen, that leader (Imaam) would not be MahdiAS whom IsaAS would follow in the prayer. Besides that it is known from another tradition that IsaAS and MahdiAS wont' be present at the same time. Hence, Hakim has written this tradition in Al-Mutadarrik,
Translation: AnasRZ narrates that RasoolAllahSAS said, "Anyone of you, who finds (gets to see) IsaAS then convey him my salaam".
Another tradition of this subject is narrated by Abu HurrairahRZ in Masnad-Ahmad-bin-Hambal and this narration too is there in Masnad-Ahmad that Abu Hurariah used to tell people if you people find IsaAS then convey him RasoolAllah'sSAS salaam.
It is understood from this tradition that when the ProphetSAS mentioned about IsaAS then also said if anyone of you finds IsaAS convey him my salaam.
It is a point here worth deliberation that if MahdiAS would be with IsaAS (as common Muslims believe) then can this be expected from the lofty manners of the Prophet SAS that two caliphs of Allah are present at a time and one among them is of the status that he is a protector of Ummat-e-Muhammadia from perishing, is at the state of "will follow my footsteps and will not err", and (according to the belief of common Muslims) IsaAS himself would regard him by declining to lead in the prayer in his presence. But the ProphetSAS urged to convey salaam on his behalf to IsaAS alone, ignoring MahdiAS. If indeed MahdiAS would be present with IsaAS then essentially, the ProphetSAS would have said, if any of you finds both of them then convey them my salaam. But since the time-periods are different the ProphetSAS mentioned about IsaAS alone.
Similarly these words are narrated in another tradition of Sahih-Muslim
Translation: The ProphetSAS said, "What would be your condition when Son-of-MaryAS would descend among you, he would lead you". We have mentioned earlier a similar tradition from Musannafa Abdul Razzaque. It is clear from this tradition that Son-of-MaryAS only will lead and there would be no other leader (Imaam).
Shaiq Abdul Haq Muhaddis Dahalvi wrote as under:
Transalation: The meaning of leader (Imaam) is IsaAS. The meaning of him being from you, is that he would give orders according to the rules of your shariat (Islamic law) and not in accordance with the rules of bible. has come in another tradition. Thus, he would abide in accordance with the book of your God and the practice of the ProphetSAS. Thus, it would mean that IsaAS would lead you as such that he would be from your religion and faith. He would give orders from your book (book you follow-Qur'an) and the practice (of ProphetSAS). Similarly in Imaam Bukhari's narration the words have come. It is evident that even near Imaam BukhariRH MahdiAS was not intended by . If MahdiAS was intended, he would have created a separate chapter called (Bab-al-Mahdi) and included this tradition in that chapter, as is his practice.
Conclusion of the discussion is that the gathering of MahdiAS & IsaAS in the world at a time is not proven by any tradition of Sahah (six famous collections of traditions), and is intellectually impossible.
Besides that another important reason for non-gathering of MahdiAS & IsaAS is that there are two types of signs & indications of the day of resurrection, which are called smaller-signs & bigger-signs .
The ProphetSAS mentioned ten signs under bigger-signs as is evident from the narration of Huzaifa RZ
Translation: HuzaifaRZ says, "We were talking among ourselves, just then the ProphetSAS appeared and asked, 'what are you talking about'. We said we were discussing about the day of resurrection. HeSAS said, 'the day of resurrection will not come until you see ten signs before that'. HeSAS then mentioned about smoke, Antichrist, splitting of earth, sunrise from west, descend of IsaAS Son-of-Mary, Exit of cog & magog , sinking of earth at three place east, west and Arab Island, and mention of fire coming out of Yemen which would finally drive people towards the day-of-resurrection. The ProphetSAS has mentioned about 10 (ten) signs in this tradition but there is no mention of the advent of the MahdiAS in them. If the issue of the gathering of MahdiAS & IsaAS was conclusive and true then the ProphetSAS would surely have mentioned about MahdiAS along with IsaAS in bigger-signs . It is clearly evident from this that the advent of MahdiAS is not among bigger-signs , instead it is among the smaller-signs . Bigger-signs mean those signs which would appear adjoining/close to the day-of-resurrection. And Smaller-signs mean those signs which would appear before/prior to the day-of-resurrection. Smaller-signs will appear before the bigger-signs . Then there would be a gap. And the bigger-signs will appear adjoining to the day-of-resurrection. However when some Scholars of later years quoted these traditions, they added "Al Mahdi" on their part. Hence, Jalaaluddin Suyuti in Al-Urf-Al-Wardi made the addition of "Al Mahdi" after in the tradition of Sahih-Muslim which starts with , and made the addition of "Al Mahdi" after in the tradition of Ibn-e-Maajah. Similarly by adding after in the tradition of Abu-Naeem Asfahani wrote . These words definitely are added and annexed, which is not acceptable at all.
Hence, Allama Shaiq Abu Abdullah Muhammad bin AbdulHaq bin AbdurRahman writes in Majmu-e-Bainus-Sahiheen criticizing .
Translation: The unauthentic word mentioned in this tradition is his opinion by which leadership (Imaamat) is proven for MahdiAS in Jesus'AS prayers. The falsehood of this word is evident against Sahiheen (Bukhari & Muslim) and is published too because that word "Mahdi" is not mentioned in both of them i.e. Bukhari & Muslim and neither in their selections, like Mashaariq, Masaabih & Mishkwat.
It is proven by this that the words "Imaam" & "Ameer" with IsaAS is common, and the word "Al Mahdi" which is written with it, is mischief of the later people, which is wrong.
Thus the belief of the gathering of the MahdiAS and IsaAS is wrong.