The Important Responsibilities of those Awaiting the Arrival.
An article by His Eminence Grand Ayatollah Saafi Golpaygani on the subject of Mahdaviyat.
In the name of Allah, the All-beneficent, the All-merciful.
Almighty Allah (s.w.t.) said:
وَ لَقَدْ كَتَبْنا فِي الزَّبورِ مِنْ بَعْدِ الذِّكْرِ أَنَّ الْارْضَ يرِثُها عِبادِي الصّالِحُونَ
The glorious program of honoring the great Eid of 15th Shaban, the birth anniversary of the only deliverer of the world, one whose arrival was promised by the Prophets and Apostles, the Master of time and the peaceful refuge, His Eminence, the Remainder of Allah (s.w.t.) – may the souls of all the worlds be sacrificed for him – is an absolutely holy and precious opportunity for all the Shias and devotees of this divine Guardian. It is a great opportunity to attain the honor of participating in the glorious commemoration of this honorable day of birth and the sacred day of Allah, and to attend the spiritual and devotional sessions, enlightening gatherings and the joyful and merry programs, the state of spiritual connection with His Holiness and the level of accordance and agreement of etiquettes, actions, individual behavior, social, cultural, economic and political circumstances with the expectations which Allah’s chosen one has from his Shias and devotees.
Only that individual or society is prosperous which is successful in the reckoning and attainment of His Eminence’s satisfaction.
On this occasion, in order to attain the honor of participating in this ceremony associated with the Awaited Imam, His Eminence, the Master of Time (may Allah hasten his reappearance and relief), and attention towards the realities and meanings of awaiting the reappearance, I would like to present a few words before my brothers and sisters in faith.
I hope that the light of its meanings, which is luminescent through the candle of the Holy Quran and the noble narrations, increases the brightness of the hearts of the faithful men and women.
Dearest readers, you are the ones who attain the pride of participating in these joyous events every year and you depict your devotion and love for the sacred threshold of His Eminence by decorating the markets, lighting the streets, mosques, Hussaini centers, organizing programs of orations, presenting the virtues and greatness of his holiness, reciting poetries and elegies for him; and by hospitality and serving food and sharing felicitations, you increase your own spiritual and faithful energy as well as the energy of others, and feel proud of being a Shia, and weep upon the long duration of distance and separation, and shed tears, and invoke His Holiness by crying “O son of Hasan! O son of Hasan!”
Peace and blessings of Allah (s.w.t.) be upon you all! I congratulate you for the enthusiasm, the desire, the awareness, the emotions, the understanding and cognition, and this journey towards the heaven of devotion.
You must be grateful to Allah (s.w.t.) for He has filled your hearts with the cognition of the Imam of Time (may Allah hasten his reappearance) and has delivered you from the death of ignorance, and has guided you towards the final destination of truth, faith and cognition of the ultimate argument of the time and the divine word.
Always focus on the duties which are made obligatory upon every faithful man and woman who anticipates the promised reappearance and the promised day, and exert all your efforts in performing these duties.
The age of occultation, is the age of examination and assessment, the age of struggle and brevity. Those fortunate people and the believers who are steadfast in their faith, and who have reformed themselves in this reformative school of occultation, are not shaken by the various incidents, pressures and difficulties that come across them in their lives, and their faith remains intact just like a mountain that remains unmoved, established and steadfast in front of strong winds, and thus they become different from the individuals with weak belief and low will-power.
How much ever the attachment with religion and religiousness becomes difficult and mixed with a variety of apparent deprivations, their faith and commitment becomes stronger to the same extent, and the truth and rightness of the narrations regarding the incidents of the time of occultation becomes more evident for them by the spreading of sins, music, unlawful activities, by the condition of some young men and women, by the mixed gatherings of men and women, and other such incidences that have been reported in the traditions.
In those conditions when as per some narrations, the safeguarding of religion will become as difficult and tough as protecting fire in the palm, or as mentioned in other tradition:
انَّ لِصاحِبِ هذَا الْامْرِ غَيبَةً الْمُتَمَسِّكُ فيها بِدينِهِ كَالْخارِطِ لِلْقِتادِ
“For the Master of this Affair (Imam Mahdi), there will be such an occultation in which one who associates himself with his religion will be like someone who tries to protect a thorny tree with his hands”.
In this age of occultation, the steadfast believers will earn the reward of those men who fought with their swords in the company of Allah’s Messenger (peace be upon him and his progeny) and their status is so lofty that Prophet Mohammad (peace be upon him and his progeny) has regarded them as his brothers and as per narrations, he has also expressed the desire to meet them.
The believers in occultation and the Army of Allah, are the true anticipators of the reappearance and the universal government of Islam, regarding which is has arrived in the noble traditions that:
اولئِكَ هُمُ الْمُخْلَصُونَ حَقّاً وَ شيعَتُنا صِدْقاً وَ الدُّعاةُ الي دينِ اللهِ وَ جَهْراً اولئِكَ الَّذينَ يؤْمِنُونَ بِالْغَيبِ ثُمَّ اولئِكَ حِزْبُ اللهِ الا انَّ حِزْبَ اللهِ هُمُ الْمُفْلِحُونَ
“They are indeed the truly dedicated servants and our truthful Shias, the inviters towards the religion of Allah, both secretly and in open, they are the ones who believe in the unseen, and they are Allah’s confederates. Look! The confederates of Allah are indeed felicitous!”
According to the noble narration: One who awaits our affair is like someone who is covered in his blood in the path of Allah.
These are all the virtues of you Shias, men and women, the anticipators, the committed people, ones who are obligated towards the commands and loyal towards the Imam of Time (peace be upon him). Beware and safeguard all these virtues.
The human rights and the rights of every men and women are the same as ascertained by the God of mankind, by the creator of men and women; it is different from the series of misguidance, deviance, corruption, destruction and journey towards an animalistic life. Every man and woman, young and old, who does not accept any of the divine commands, or because it is against the unethical culture of the west, he does not consider it appropriate for today’s circumstances, his faith will be destroyed and indications towards this has been made in the traditions that: at the time of occultation, a believer will rise in the morning with the state of belief and by the arrival of night, he will exit from the religion”.
According to narrations, the age of occultation will stretch to such an extent that Master of the Faithful, Imam Ali (peace be upon him) said:
ما اطْوَلَ هذَا الْعِناءِ وَ ابْعَدَ هذَا الرَّجاءِ
How long is the duration of sorrow and how distant is this hope.
In the path of fundamental changes and drastic alterations, human beings experience different schools of thought and systems and find each one of them lacking the necessary conditions to insure the common success of humanity and incapable of establishing justice and fairness, and how much ever the world fills with oppression, tyranny, corruption, danger and destruction, then by the law of “when something crosses its limits, it depicts the antagonistic nature”, the human societies will become prepared for establishing that divine Islamic system and the governance of justice throughout the world and with the reappearance of His Eminence, the world will reach the point of excellence and touch the peak of ascension.
O lovers of the Master and anticipators of his reappearance! The age of occultation is an age of action, enduring responsibilities, performing duties, and an age of resistance, movement, steadfastness, forbearance and endurance in the affair of religion.
With respect to honoring the divine sacraments, raising the word of Allah, propagating Islam, with availing the causes of political, economic and cultural independence, freedom from attachment with the infidels, with the development of knowledge, industries, the progress and propagation of education and training, the command of good deeds, prohibition of bad deeds, cooperation in piety and Godwariness, helping the weak and downtrodden, fulfilling the needs of the needy, aiding the impoverished, defending the borders and geographical walls of the Islamic nation as well as the boundaries of intellect and belief, removing the heresies, confronting the men of doubts and skepticisms, fighting the bases of corruption and unlawful activities, breaching the sanctity of divine commands, in all these cases, we all are responsible and all the Muslims are committed, and it is you and all the Shias and anticipators of the reappearance who must strive and put effort to attain the goals of Islam.
You must recognize the dangers that threaten the Islamic societies and have to a great extent, pushed several societies towards the valley of weakness and lowliness, towards obedience of the infidels, and must not allow our society and our beloved new generation to be entangled by it. The age of occultation is an age of duty, an age of initiative, actions and an age of hope for the future and the victory of truth over evil. Await and act, as Allah (s.w.t.) has said:  وَ قُلِ اعْمَلُوا فَسَيری اللهُ عَمَلَكُمْ وَ رَسُولُهُ وَ الْمُؤْمِنونَ