Say thou (O Muhammad) "This is my way, I do invite unto Allah on an insight clear as the seeing with one's eyes, I and the one who followeth me. Glory be to Allah! and I am not of the polytheists!" Al-Quran 12/108

AL-ARZ  [In the tradition of Prophet Muhammad (S.A.S)]

By: Haz. Syed Ali Bartar Esq. 
Recently (in 2000 A.D.) a book has been published in Urdu by name Zahoor-e-Imam-e-Mahdi. The author is "Maulana Mohammad Muneer Khamer". In this book the learned author has collected some traditions of the Prophet and also opinions of very many scholars about the advent of Imam-e-Mahdi. He has tried to prove that according to various traditions and opinions and arguments of various Muslim Scholars the advents of Imam-e-Mahdi is a must and those who do not believe in it will be sinful. The author being one from Ahl-e-Sunnah wal Jamaat, believes that Mahdi will appear near the day of Judgment and will help Hazrat Isa Maseeh (A.H.S) in killing the Dajjal.

Many scholars, mentioned in the book, are of opinion that unless the authentic signs of Mahdi as reported by Prophet Muhammad (S.A.S) are not found in a person he can not be accepted as the Promised Mahdi. The most important signs mentioned by some of these scholars are two (1) that Mahdi will bear the name of Prophet Muhammad (S.A.S) and his father's name will be that of the name of Prophet (S.A.S)'s father (2) Mahdi will fill all the earth (ARZ) with justice (Adl) as it will be, in his times, filled with atrocities (injustice).

The 2nd sign mentioned above has been based on a tradition reported by Hazrat Ibn-e-Masud Rz., a companion of Prophet Muhammad (S.A.S). We shall first discuss on this tradition at some length to set its real meaning. This is important because earlier also some non-Mahdavi scholars have quoted this to deny the Mahdiyat of our Imam Hazrat Syed Muhammad Juanpuri (Mahdi A.H.S).

The non-Mahdavia scholars consider the word "Al Arz" in the tradition to mean the whole world. They say that Mahdi will establish justice in the whole of the world. The Mahdavi scholars have emphatically answered against this notion. They prove that Al-Arz can never mean the whole world. It means a part of the world and in proof they quote the Ayats of the Quran and the traditions of the Prophet Muhammad. Some of the arguments of the Mahdavia Scholars have been briefly mentioned below.

1. Common sense point of view:- The word "Al-Arz" cannot mean the whole world firstly because the period of Daawat of Hazrat Mahdi in various traditions of the Prophet (S.A.S) has been only 9 years or 7 years or 5 years. This is a very short period and in this period a person can not establish his sway over the whole world and establish justice in the whole world. There is no mention in the tradition for the spread of Islam and justice by quick means (i.e. showing how the Mahdi will come over the great distance of the whole world and spread justice with his Daawah). So we say ordinarily such a thing will not be possible.
 2. Secondly the idea of Mahdi's spreading justice throughout the world is not as per the Ayats of the Quran. The Quran mentions the following points:


We have put in them till the Day of Judgment enmity and hatred.


                  (Al-Maida . V. 14)

 We have put in them till the Day of Judgment enmity and hatred .(AlMaida. V. 64)

The first Ayat mentioned above is for the Christians and the 2nd one is for the Jews.
Now think if two religions have enmity and hatred till the day of Judgment there would not be any period till the Judgment Day when they are free from enmity and hatred. Thus they will not see the light of justice and equity in the times of Mahdi. So to say that during the times of Mahdi justice and equity would spread through out the world would be untrue.

3. To say that the whole world would come to justice and would become one millat (Millat-e-Wahida) is also against the Ayats of Quran. Quran says:


If Allah wanted He would have made all men into one umma; and they will always differ  (Hud. V .118)

This means that Allah did not want to make them one millat


If We (Allah) desired We would have given correct guidance and righteousness to every one but it is settled that I would fill the hell with jinns and men (Sajada. V 13)

This means that all men do not accept correct guidance and many will be put in hell.

b) If your Allah wanted, all people on earth would have accepted Eiman. (Yunus.V 99).
This means that all people would not accept Eiman
[the translation rather substance of Ayats has been given by the writer of this essay]

From the above Qur’anic verses, it has been clear that the idea of one Ummah, that is all people agreeing with one another is not a possible thing.

The Prophet (S.A.S) has said: "After me there will be very many traditions as my sayings. If a tradition agrees to the text and order of Quran, accept it, otherwise not. The tradition in question is no doubt true (as we shall see later) but the meanings derived from it by the people are not true.

Various commentaries of Quran such as kashshaf Kabir etc. explained the above Ayats and concluded that Allah did not want that all the people be one millat (Millat-e-Wahida) and His will was that they should have differences.

Some traditions of Prophet Muhammad (S.A.S) also point out that the idea of Millat-e-Wahida is not possible and there will be differences among the people till the Judgment Day.

Kindly note these:
1. A narration from Soban Rz., Prophet's Sahabi quoted the Prophet (S.A.S) as saying "When in my ummah the sword will commence its work, it will not stop till the Day of Judgment".

2. In another tradition the Prophet (S.A.S) has said that a group of my Ummah which will be on Haq (Truth) will make Jihad on their enemies and this will continue till the assassination of Dajjal."

These two traditions speak clearly of the differences the people will have and these differences will continue till the Judgment Day.


Al-Arz- If we take the meanings of Al-Arz as the whole world, all the difficulties and impossibilities as shown above will occur and the Quran and traditions of the Prophet (S.A.S) will not approve such meanings. Al-Arz in reality means a part of the earth and in Quran there are various verses, which give the meanings of Al-Arz as a part of the earth. Look to the following:

1. Musa said seek help from Allah and be patient. The earth is the property of Allah. He will give it (Waris banayega) to those (apne un bandaun ko) whom he will desire (Al- A’raf. V. 128) :

In this verse the earth means Egypt and not the whole world.

2. (Musa) said it is in a short time that Allah will destroy your enemy and make you
His heir on the earth (Al- A’raf. V. 129) :

Here too Arz (earth) means the land of Egypt and not the whole world.

3. We sent their brother Shoab, towards Ahl-e-Madyan. He said to them, O' my people (Qaum) pray to Allah only. No one is your God except Him. Clear proof (Bayyana) has come to you from Allah. Weigh and measure rightly. Things that you buy from men should not be made less. After the earth being corrected and reformed don't create disturbance, trouble and disorder in it. If you are true believers this is better for you.  (Al-A’raf. V. 85).

In this verse,  Al-Arz (earth) does not mean the whole earth (world) It refers to only the land of Madyan where Hazrat Shoab (A.H.S) was sent as Prophet. Moreover it was not the whole Madyan, only a part of it because only a few people of Madyan believed in the Prophethood of Hazrat Shoab (A.H.S) But the verse signifies the Daawat-e-Shoab as reform of the earth and the Prophethood of Shoab (A.H.S) at Bayyana (clear proof from Allah).

[The Translation rather the substence of the three verses above has been given by the writer of this essay]

This last verse mentioned also points out to an important thing. In commentaries of Quran, the explanation under this verse has been given in this way that the advent of a Prophet is his command for justice and the reform of his "Qaum"(Ummah). This means that for spreading of justice there is no need for establishment of a Government or Kingship. The verse shows that although Hazrat Shoab (A.H.S) had no Kingship and no Government yet his sending to Madyan meant the propagation of justice in the area and the reform of the land.

Our Prophet Hazrat Muhammad (S.A.S) did not have any Kingship so to speak but he spread the light of Eiman on the earth, Prophet Muhammad said "I am Muhammad, I am Ahmed and I am Mahi meaning that he is the remover of Kufr. This was true because he proclaimed his prophethood and presented his Daawat of Islam. If any body feels that our Prophet spread Islam throughout the world, it will not be correct. During the days of our Prophet only the whole or many parts of Arabia embraced Islam and the remaining world was drowned in Kufr. Even today there are more non-Muslims in the world than Muslims. Hence to think in that way is not correct. On the other hand to say that he spread his teachings and this tantamounted to spread of justice and Islam on the earth will be true. Similarly when our Mahdi (A.H.S) propagated his teachings through his Daawat of Mahdiyat and Islam he spread justice on the earth. This is the real meaning of the tradition under discussion and we say the tradition is true. Hazrat Mahdi (A.H.S) spread justice on earth by his Daawat of Mahdiyat and Islam and there was no need for him of a kingship and Government to do so.

This can also be explained by another example. Our beloved Prophet (S.A.S) has been called Rahmat-e-Alam. The Holy Quran also mentions him as Rahmatul Lil Alamin. This is true inspite of the fact that even today there are more non-Muslims in the world than Muslims. The Rahmat of our Prophet is just like a river with clean fresh and life giving water. A section of the people came to it, drinks the water and is benefited with the Rahmat of our Prophet. Those who do not come to this river and do not drink the water are unfortunate people because they do not get any benefit from the river. But please note the clean and fresh water of the river has the same quality of life giving for those unfortunate people too. Hence the Rahmat of our Prophet (S.A.S) is unlimited and is meant for all. Similarly the river of justice of Imam-e-Mahdi is flowing and only those are benefited who come to it and drink the water. But the quality of giving justice is unlimited and is for all the people. Thus the advent of Mahdi is a blessing for all people and his Daawat spreads justice to one and all on earth. Those who do not get this are losers and are themselves responsible for their loses.

Main Reference:

 Haz. Syed Nusrath Rh., Kohlul Jawahar Book 2.


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