With the swift pace of time and the rapid change of conditions, many people try to apply and fit the prophecies of Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) regarding the major signs of Qiyaamah to present day occurrences.
In many narrations the appearance of the Mahdi has been described in some detail. However, the actual time of his appearance is not mentioned. Likewise, many authentic ahaadeeth describe the appearance of Dajjaal. Some people claimed that Mahdi (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) was going to appear in 2004 or 2012. Others believe that Dajjaal refers to a system, and that his first day which will be equal to a year (as mentioned in the hadeeth) represents his rule in England starting in 900 of the Christian era. The second day which will be equal to a month (as mentioned in the hadeeth) represents his rule in America starting in 1917, and that the third day which will be equal to a week (as mentioned in the hadeeth) represents his rule in Palestine, starting in 2001. And yet another group promotes that Ya’jooj and Ma’jooj are not physical people. Instead it refers to “The Modern Secular Western Civilization.”
All this is done based on their own imagination and unsubstantiated understanding. They misinterpret the words of Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) and choose to promote a superficial, metaphorical meaning. In doing so, the doors of re-interpreting deen will be opened, thus giving the leeway to adopt superficial meanings based on our imagination for whatever we wish.
The question is: “How can we give Dajjaal and Ya’jooj and Ma’jooj some superficial interpretation, whereas it is clearly mentioned in authentic narrations that ‘Isaa (‘alaihis salaam) will kill Dajjaal and that ‘Isaa (‘alaihis salaam) will be with the Believers during the emergence and destruction of Ya’jooj and Ma’jooj?”
At this rate, soon the physical descension of ‘Isaa (‘alaihis salaam) will also be given a metaphorical interpretation, Allah Ta‘ala forbid.
The above approach is a direct result of neglecting the golden principle of “Leave ambiguous that which Allah Ta‘ala has kept ambiguous”. If Allah Ta‘ala and His Rasul (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) did not find the need to explain the exact details of these occurrences, why do we need to delve into them? Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) has said: “Allah Ta‘ala has remained silent regarding certain issues, out of mercy for you and not due to forgetting (to explain them), therefore do not investigate these issues (i.e. do not try to delve into the details).” (Sunan Daaraqutni #4814)
If a person has to read the ahaadeeth describing the emergence of Dajjaal and Ya’jooj Ma’jooj with a clear mind, then without any mental effort and analysis he will get a specific clear meaning and understanding of the words of Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam). This clear meaning is what is intended, and not any other metaphorical one.
Man by nature is very emotional and impulsive. The moment he sees something happening against the norm, he tends to view it as something supernatural and he then tries to reconcile it with the signs of the last hour. However he has forgotten that the history of Islam is replete with more serious happenings and trials, where at times it seemed that the Ummah would have been wiped out from the surface of the earth, but it was the unseen help of Allah Ta‘ala that had granted them salvation and safety.
The greatest disservice we can do to the Ummah is to predict as to when the major signs of Qiyaamah will take place. Our Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam), despite being a Nabi upon who revelation would descend, remained silent on this issue. Thus we as the followers should not even attempt to venture into such discussions. The danger of such a venture is that the pure words of Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) will eventually take the form of some science experiment in a laboratory. Each time a prediction does not unfold as explained by those giving their own interpretations, the Ummah’s confidence in the noble words of Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) will drop and they may even begin to reject the prophecies of Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam).
Path of Salvation
May Allah Ta‘ala guide us to hold onto our pious and learned ‘Ulama and save us from distorting the clear meanings of the ahaadeeth, thereby providing audiences with excitement and entertainment.