The portents of the end times, foretold in the hadiths of our Prophet (saas) and that have been taking place one after the other as of 1400 hijri, and statements by great Islamic scholars on the subject, are a rebuttal of those who falsely say that ''Hazrat Mahdi (as) will not be coming in this century.''
The imams of all the schools and great Islamic scholars are all in agreement that Hazrat Mahdi (as) will come in this century, as foretold by our Prophet (saas), the True Reporter. Our Prophet (saas) reported in the hadiths that the portents of the coming of Hazrat Mahdi (as) would take place one after another, “like the beads on a necklace,” and that this would herald his appearance:
The Messenger of Allah (saas) said: “… let them expect portents taking place one after the other like the beads of a necklace whose string has snapped.” (Abu Hurairah (ra), Tirmidhi)
Just about all the events known as ‘Portents of the End Times‘ in the hadiths of our Prophet (saas) and foretelling the coming of Hazrat Mahdi (as) in the present century began taking place as of Hijri 1400, or 1979 AD, one after the other “like the beads on a necklace,” just as our Prophet (saas) told.
THOSE WHO MISINTERPRET THE WORDS OF IMAM RABBANI AND CLAIM THAT HAZRAT MAHDI (AS) WILL NOT APPEAR IN HIJRI 1400 ARE GRAVELY MISTAKEN.
But this birth is not that which will appear at the coming of the Mahdi (as). THAT IS BECAUSE HIS APPEARANCE WILL BE AT THE BEGINNING OF THE CENTURY. Eighteen years have currently gone by since the beginning of the century. (Imam Rabbani, Letters of Rabbani, Letter no 381, p. 1184)
Those who misinterpret this passage from Imam Rabbani, saying that 30 years have passed since the beginning of the Hijri century we are in, since we are now in Hijri 1430, and thus maintain that the coming of Hazrat Mahdi (as) must take place in some other century are gravely mistaken.
In this extract from the Letters, Imam Rabbani said that Hazrat Mahdi (as) had not appeared in his own day, even though 18 years had gone by since the start of the century, and that it was now impossible for him to appear in that century. He offered two important pieces of evidence for this.
The importance of the signs of the appearance of Hazrat Mahdi (as) our Prophet (saas) revealed in the hadiths taking place one after the other is emphasized. For that reason, Imam Rabbani says that although 18 years have passed since the beginning of his Hijri century, since none of the portents showing the coming of Hazrat Mahdi (as) had taken place, Hazrat Mahdi (as) will not be coming in his century.
THE FACT THESE PORTENTS HAVE COME ABOUT IS ONE OF THE CLEAREST SIGNS THAT THE MAHDI (AS) WOULD NOT APPEAR IN IMAM RABBANI’S DAY.
THESE PROTENTS NEVER TOOK PLACE ONE AFTER THE OTHER IN ANY CENTURY since our prophet’s time until Hijri 1400.
With the beginning of Hijri 1400, these portents began taking place one after the other, like the beads on a breaking necklace scattering in all directions. However, those who make such illogical inferences as saying,
“We are now in the Hijri 1430s, but Hazrat Mahdi (as) has not yet appeared. That means that the coming of Hazrat Mahdi (as) is postponed until some other century...” are trying to cover up and gloss over the coming of Hazrat Mahdi (as). But this statement by al-Barzanji, a most important and trustworthy Sunni scholar, refutes this foolish claim:
FOUR, FIVE OR EVEN TEN YEARS ARE REGARDED AS THE FIRST YEARS OF THE CENTURY. ACCORDINGLY, THAT HAZRAT MAHDI (AS) WILL APPEAR SEVEN, NINE OR THIRTY YEARS BEFORE THE HUNDREDTH YEAR IS NO OBSTACLE TO HIS COMING AT THE BEGINNING OF THE CENTURY... THE SAME APPLIES IF HIS APPEARANCE IS AFTER THAT PERIOD. (Al-Barzanji, Al-Isha'ah li-ashrat al-sa'ah, p. 301)
That HAZRAT MAHDI (AS) WILL BE RECOGNIZED 7, 9 OR EVEN 30 YEARS BEFORE OR AFTER THE HIJRI YEAR 1400 is no obstacle to his coming in the year 1400.