- Category: Mahdism
- Written by Ayatullah al-Uzma Nasir Makarim Shirazi
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Logic of Oppositions of Ahadith of Mahdi
In the previous discussion, we understood that only few Sunnis didn’t have accepted ahadith of Mahdi that Ibn Khaldun, famous historian, and Ahmad Amin, Egyptian scholar is among them, although certain majority of Islamic scholars has denied their opinion.
But, it is necessary to listen to their logic about this matter.
It is possible to summarize the objections of this group into five categories:
1) Documents of news about Mahdi are not reliable!
2) The foresaid news is not acceptable by wisdom!
3) This news has been abused by those who claim for Mahdaviat!
4) This news causes the society to become inactive!
5) This news is in benefit of Shiites and their beliefs!
Weakness of the Logic of Oppositions
It is understood from these objections that opposing against ahadith of Mahdi has an appearance which is weakness of documents of narratives which have been quoted about this matter or weakness of their implication, and it has a real feature behind that appearance and its motive is sectarian fanaticism and some of reasonless policies and anyway, the logic of the oppositions is weak in any part, because:
Firstly, as it has been mentioned before, ahadith of Mahdi have been also quoted by a group of famous Sunni hadith tellers in book which are considered as their most famous and reliable books adding to Shiites and many scholars has confirm their Tawatur (reaching the source); therefore, there is no place for beginning a discussion about the document of each hadith because their famousness and Tawatur make us needless of studying the documents; which means these ahadith are completely correct according to the criterions of hadith evaluation.
Furthermore, there are authentic and reliable ahadith among them that Sunni hadith tellers have also confirm their reliability.
It is interesting that Ibn Khaldun himself confesses to this truth; because after dedicating some pages of his book to mentioning ahadith of Mahdi and doubting in their documents, he says:
These are the entire ahadith of Mahdi, which have been quoted by the leaders of hadith about him and his rise in End of Days, and as you saw they were not safe from criticism but some!)
And in this way, he confesses that very few of them are correct and cannot be criticized.
Moreover, ahadith are not restricted to these ahadith which Ibn Khaldun has mentioned in his book; and therefore, some of Sunni scholars have written some books for answering Ibn Khaldun and proving the Tawatur of ahadith of Mahdi and showing that ahadith are not restricted to those which have been mentioned by him in his book, that have been expressed before.
Therefore, denying ahadith in this way, which is weakening the document, is completely baseless.
Secondly, nothing can be seen in the foresaid ahadith against wisdom that causes them to be ignored, and if their contents seem to be extraordinary they are not beyond the miracles of the past prophets, and exclusion cannot prevent them to be accepted.
Moreover, ahadith of Mahdi is not an integrated unit that to be accepted or denied together; in other words, the certain matter of the foresaid ahadith, which is the rise of a person from the dynasty of Prophet (S) and from the sons of Fatima (sa) and establishment of a universal reformist revolution, and filling the earth with justice, is not a matter that can be objected by wisdom, but we previously proved that this issue is according to a series rational reasons; but, if a part of ahadith about the signs of the advent and like them seem not to be able to be accepted, and are not reliable and clear about the document then we can deny that, but unacceptance of them has no relation with the other ones!
Briefly, we don’t know that why some people have ignored the method of studying and criticism of each of ahadith one by one and have made such mistakes!
These ahadith say that material civilization doesn’t correct the human; 25 years of war in Vietnam was a wonderful examination furnace; all thinkers are examining their opinions in this furnace; but I, as a religious scholar, say that it is a reason for incapability of materialistic schools, and that all material tools are the tools for making the conditions more critical, as we can see that in other parts of the world.
Thirdly, if these ahadith is in benefit of Shi’a then is it the fault of Shiites or the fault of ahadith?!
What is the problem of clearing a truth in this way?! Moreover, although the foresaid ahadith confirms the opinion of Shi’a but meanwhile, they don’t necessitate accepting Shi’a by accepting them. There are lots of people who have accepted the rise of Mahdi but they are not Shiite because of any reason. And anyhow, bias shouldn’t prevent the truth to be understood; it is exactly like that a person says that a physician was my enemy and gave me a healing medicine but I don’t use that, because if I use that and become healthy then it is in benefit of that physician and people that he is a good physician!
Fourthly, it is true that these ahadith have been abused but which truth didn’t have been abused in the world?!
Were the false claimants of prophecy or divinity or other spiritual dignities few in the world?! Are factitious and false religions few in the world?!
Should we deny all these truths because of abuses of aberrant ones?!
And absolutely deny god and prophecy of the messenger of god?!
Haven’t material powers of the world been abused many times?!
Should we remove them all! What logic is this!
In the nineteenth century, about ten persons of “liar messiahs” appeared - and made many people to follow them - this matter had caused war and riot and many people had become the victims of the swords.13 Are these the causes of ignoring the messiah completely, because his name has been abused!
Fifthly, as it was explained completely in the discussion of waiting, believing the rise of Mahdi for those who understand its truth is not the cause of inaction and idleness, but it is the cause of hope and courage against hard problems and accidents of the life; as believing God and his eternal power gives the person strength against the problem, and builds a safe and secure shelter against the factors of disappointment, believing the advent of Mahdi has also such effect and essentially, waiting for the rise of Mahdi is a powerful motive for correction and movement of society.
Now, some people didn’t have understand the meaning of this rise and have gone toward idleness and escaping from responsibilities; it is their own fault for not understanding the matter as in the issue of believing in God and the influence of his eternal power in the universe of existence, some uninformed people have also made the same mistake.
Briefly, it is not possible to leave a certain truth because of these weak excuses.
Imam al-Mahdi in Sunni Hadith Resources Part 1
Imam al-Mahdi in Sunni Hadith Resources Part 2