When we examine the Hadith on the End Times, we encounter a most extraordinary situation. The signs set out in detail by our Prophet (saas) hundreds of years ago are taking place just about everywhere in the world “in the age we are living in,” one after the other and in the manner described in the Hadith. The slaughter, war and conflict being experienced all over the world, the increase in corruption, unlawful things being regarded as lawful, the acceleration of moral degeneration, the open denial of God, the abandoning of the moral values of the Qur’an, the grave difficulties being experienced by Muslims, the groundless killing of sri lanka mobile number details innocent people, the spread of poverty and hunger, the emergence of false men of religion, the popularity of magic and fortune telling, the rise in fraud, corruption and adultery, the emergence of false messiahs and many other signs all show that the period through which we are living bears a greater resemblance to the End Times than any other in history. (For detailed information, see The Signs of Jesus’ (pbuh) Second Coming by Harun Yahya.)
Some of these signs of the End Times revealed in the Hadith have been seen to some extent at various times in Islamic history and in different parts of the world. However, this does not mean that any of those ages was the End Times.
Because in order for a period to qualify as the End Times, all the portents revealed by our Prophet (saas) must take place one after the other in the same period of time. This is set out in the Hadith:
Signs following one another like the pieces of a necklace falling one after the other when its string is cut. (Tirmidhi)
For example, one of the signs given in the Hadith is the solar and lunar eclipses during the month of Ramadan:
…The first one is the lunar eclipse in the first night of Ramadan, and the second is the solar eclipse in the middle of this month. (Ibn Hajar al-Haythami, Al-Qawl al-Mukhtasar fi `Alamat al-Mahdi al-Muntazar, p. 47)
Indeed, solar and lunar eclipses followed one another in the month of Ramadan in the years 1981 and 1982. It is beyond question that solar and lunar eclipses are very natural and frequent phenomena. The important thing, however, is that these should take place at 15-day intervals during the month of Ramadan, and for this to be repeated in two consecutive years. In addition, the fact that these eclipses took place at the same time as other signs stated above strengthens the likelihood that these eclipses are those being referred to in the hadith. Another extraordinary thing is the way that our Prophet (saas) informed us that a comet will appear immediately after these eclipses of the Sun and Moon:
The rise of that star will occur after the eclipse of the Sun and the Moon. (Al-Muttaqi al-Hindi, Al-Burhan fi Alamat al-Mahdi Akhir al-zaman, p. 32)
As stated in the hadith, Halley’s comet passed close by the Earth in 1986 (Hijri 1406), in other words in the early 14th century. This follows the eclipses of the Sun and Moon that happened in 1981 and 1982 (Hijri 1401-1402). Therefore, the rise of this star coming at the same time as other signs, and just as described by the Prophet (saas), indicates that these phenomena may well be the signs referred to in the Hadith.
Another important element that must be borne in mind when examining the signs of the End Times is the size of the sign in question, its force and effect. For example, our Prophet (saas) has cited the rise in earthquakes as a sign of the Last Day. There is no doubt that earthquakes of various magnitudes have taken place at all periods in history. However, in the End Times, through which we are living, there has been a huge rise in the number and intensity of earthquakes worldwide. According to US Geological Survey (USGS) reports, the number of earthquakes registering greater than 5.0 in the 400 or so years between 1556 and 1975 is only 110. According to that same body, 1685 earthquakes registering more than 6.5 have taken place in the 23 years between 1980 and 2003 alone. This information confirms the account given by our Prophet (saas) and shows that the signs of the End Times have characteristics far more extraordinary than those of any comparable events that have taken place in other periods. Our Prophet (saas) has also given news of many other signs of the Last Day as well as just these.
Islamic scholars refer to some of these as minor signs, and to others as major signs. One hadith in which our Prophet (saas) imparts the tidings of the ten major signs of the Last Day is as follows:
… It [the Last Hour] will not come until you see ten signs… landslides [with a sinking down, caving in, or displacement of the earth] in three places, one in the East, one in the West and one in Arabia… (Sahih Muslim)
In this article we shall examine these signs in the light of certain major recent developments.
(For detailed information regarding the other signs of the Last Day, see Signs of the Last Day, The Signs of Jesus’ (pbuh) Second Coming, Terrorism: The Ritual of the Devil, The End of Times and the Mahdi by Harun Yahya).
THE SINKING DOWN IN THE EAST: THE TSUNAMI DISASTER IN INDONESIA
One of the signs of the Last Day revealed by our Prophet (saas) is that of the “sinking down in the East.”
The probable significance of this sign is the disappearance of an area of land or a human community. (God knows best.) This portent bears a close similarity to the 2004 tsunami disaster in Asia. Therefore, our Prophet’s (saas) portent regarding the “sinking down in the East” may be indicating this terrible catastrophe. (Our Lord knows best, of course.)
Throughout history various disasters, earthquakes and tornadoes have struck Asia and the Far East. These wrought terrible destruction and large numbers of people lost their lives in them. However, the tsunami that took place on 26 December, 2004, in southern Asia and that resulted in the loss of more than 225,000 lives, was the worst of these disasters. During this dreadful catastrophe, the enormous energy released by 1000-kilometer breaks as a result of the movement of underground plates and shifting land masses, together with the enormous energy produced in the oceans, struck the coasts of Indonesia, Sri Lanka, India, Malaysia, Thailand, Bangladesh, Myanmar, the Maldives, the Seychelles, and even Somalia, 5,000 kilometers away.