Occultation — an era of Imam’s (a.s.) helplessness

Occultation — an era of Imam’s (a.s.) helplessness

One of the verses of Holy Quran which with regards to Imam-e-Asr (a.t.f.s.) is proverbial among all and famous, which the Imam (a.s.) had himself recited in front of his noble father (a.s.) at the time of his birth and seven days after his birth, is the the fifth verse of Surah Qasas:

وَنُرِ‌يدُ أَن نَّمُنَّ عَلَى الَّذِينَ اسْتُضْعِفُوا فِي الْأَرْ‌ضِ وَنَجْعَلَهُمْ أَئِمَّةً وَنَجْعَلَهُمُ الْوَارِ‌ثِي

And We desired to bestow a favor upon those who were deemed weak in the land, and to make them the Imams, and to make them the heirs.

Ameerul Momeneen (a.s.) explains the above verse in the following way:

The word ‘weak’ (مستضعفين) means Aale Muhammad (a.s.). Allah will make Mahdi reappear after a hard and rigorous period, who will give him honour and reverence and will humiliate, disgrace and despise them.[1]

It is narrated from Imam Jafar Sadeq (a.s.)

Holy Prophet (s.a.w.a.) looked at Imam Ali (a.s.) and his two sons Imam Hasan (a.s.) and Imam Husain (a.s.) and then he said crying: The two of you will be rendered helpless (مستضعفين).

Mufazzal narrates from Imam Jafar Sadiq (a.s.): I asked Imam (a.s.) what is the meaning of his sentence?

He (a.s.) said: Means that the two of you will be such an Imam who will be victims of tyranny. The Almighty Allah says: And We desired to bestow a favor — the example of this verse will found in our family till the Day of Judgment.[2]

The meaning of Mustazafeen is different from ‘to be weak.’ To be weak means one is feeble. But Mustazafeen is said to be that person who has been compelled or forced to become weak. The Ahle Bayt (a.s.) are and were in no way feeble.

But the pages of history bear testimony that they were forced to become weak by individuals who were worshippers of Taghoot (centers of disobedience) and thus they were deprived of their rights.

Anyway, those who mollify the weak and helpless and play a helping hand in the matters of the weaker ones and acknowledge Imam Mahdi (a.s.) as a hope for the weaker ones then they should not ignore the point that the chief or the foremost of all the weak ones is the holy being of Imam (a.s.) himself. And if Imam’s (a.s.) luminous being is made apparent then all the weak ones will find the way to salvation.

[1] Al Ghaybat Shaykh Toosi : 113

[2] Maani al-Akhbaar : 79