Recently, I have read a few articles and viewed some videos that mentioned Imam Mahdi. This peaked my curiosity and I did a little bit of research. I
thought that perhaps others might find this topic interesting and decided to share it here.
First, who is Imam Mahdi and where did this concept originate:
Mahdi is a prophet that will bring justice to the earth, restore the true religion, and usher in a new age before the end of the world. He is
supposed to rule for 7 years, but some translations say longer.
It is important to note that Mahdi is not mentioned in the Qur'an. He is found in the Hadith. Specifically the Partial Sunan Abu Dawud.
Book 36, number 4271: The Prophet (peace be upon him) said: The Mahdi will be of my family, of the descendants of Fatimah. Abdullah ibn Ja'far
said: I heard AbulMalih praising Ali ibn Nufayl and describing his good qualities
Book 36, number 4272: The Prophet (peace be upon him) said: The Mahdi will be of my stock, and will have a broad forehead a prominent nose. He will
fill the earth will equity and justice as it was filled with oppression and tyranny, and he will rule for seven years.
What is Hadith?
a: A report of the sayings or actions of Muhammad or his companions, together with the tradition of its chain of transmission.
b: The collective body of these traditions
From my understanding on the Hadith, it is the oral passage of the life and teachings of Muhammad. From what I have gathered, it was around the 8th
century when these teachings were recorded in written form.
There are different opinions on Hadith. Some Muslims follow them and some reject them. I think the biggest reason those that reject it do so is that
the Qur'an is believed to be the uncorrupted word of Allah or God while the Hadith have been orally passed through generations by men. This leaves
room for Hadith to be embelished or perhaps even reworded in a way that it is open to a different interpretation than was originally stated.
Mahdi has been linked to the bible as well. In the book Al-Mahdiand the End of Time" Revelation 19:11-21 is interpreted to be talking about Mahdi.
These versus speak of one of the four horseman. A white horse ridden by a man that commands great armies and goes through the world conquering. This
does coincide with what Mahdi is supposed to do, but it is my belief that this is a very liberal association.
On the flip side of this, Mahdi is also linked to being the anti-christ. When you take the time to research what is said about Mahdi the person,
there are some similarities to what is taught in the Christian faith about the anti-christ. He will be charismatic, he will rule for 7 years which
coincidentally is the duration of the time of tribulation, and that the leaders of the world will follow him.
This is a brief summary of the my findings. I am not trying to persuade anyone one way or the other on this topic, I am just presenting some
information that I hope will ingnite some good conversation on the topic.
[edit on 23-8-2009 by Aaron_Justin]