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… 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) It is revealed in the verses of the Qur'an that all animate and inanimate entities, the entire universe, will inevitably come to an end. This end, the Last Day in other words, will be the final day of the life of this world, but also the beginning of the eternal life of the Hereafter. That day, as revealed in the Qur'an, is when "mankind will stand before the Lord of all the worlds" (Qur'an, 83:6). On the Last Day, the universe and all living things will be destroyed and that destruction will take place as the result of events that have never been seen before. In Surat al-Ma'arij our Lord reveals: On the Day the sky is like molten brass and the mountains like tufts of colored wool. No good friend will ask about his friend even though they can see each other. An evildoer will wish he could ransom himself from the punishment of that Day, by means of his sons, or his wife or his brother or his family who sheltered him or everyone else on Earth, if that only meant that he could save himself. But no! It is a Raging Blaze. (Qur'an, 70:815) It is a day when all people will comprehend the great might of God and will be a day of panic, fear and suffering for unbelievers. Our Lord reveals in the Qur'an that "the Hour is coming" (Qur'an, 20:15) and that it will take place suddenly, when people are least expecting it (Qur'an, 16:77 and 7:187). In another verse, our Lord has told us that certain signs will appear before the Hour: What are they awaiting but for the Hour to come upon them suddenly? ITS SIGNS HAVE ALREADY COME. What good will their reminder be to them when it does arrive? (Qur'an, 47:18) Our Prophet Muhammad (saas) has described these portents that will take place prior to the Hour in detail in the Hadith. In addition to signs of the Last Day, he has also made statements regarding the period immediately before it. This period, when the signs of the Last Day will appear, is the "End Times." In the first period of the End Times the world is filled with material and spiritual problems; in the second period that follows, God will liberate people from degeneration, war and injustice by means of the Mahdi. In this period, known as the Golden Age, war and conflict will come to an end, the world will be filled with plenty, abundance and justice, and Islamic moral values will spread over the whole world and be widely lived by. Following the end of the Golden Age, the world will suffer a very rapid collapse, after which the Hour will come. However, it needs to be made clear that, as on all other
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. the groundless killing of innocent people. this does not mean that any of those ages was the End Times.subjects. the rise in fraud. The important thing. The slaughter. the spread of poverty and hunger. however. (For detailed information. the acceleration of moral degeneration. we encounter a most extraordinary situation. 72:25-26) The Signs of the Last Day Are Coming True One after the Other When we examine the Hadith on the End Times. (Qur'an. which will inevitably take place: Say: "I do not know whether what you are promised [the Hour] is close or whether my Lord will appoint a longer time before it. the increase in corruption.) 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. the open denial of God. unlawful things being regarded as lawful. 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. we have no other information regarding the Last Day than that taught us by our Lord. 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. (Ibn Hajar al-Haythami. 47) Indeed. and for this to be repeated in two . solar and lunar eclipses followed one another in the month of Ramadan in the years 1981 and 1982. all the portents revealed by our Prophet (saas) must take place one after the other in the same period of time. Only our Lord knows the time of the Hour. Because in order for a period to qualify as the End Times. the grave difficulties being experienced by Muslims. the emergence of false men of religion. Al-Qawl al-Mukhtasar fi `Alamat al-Mahdi al-Muntazar. is that these should take place at 15-day intervals during the month of Ramadan. and does not divulge His unseen to anyone. 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. war and conflict being experienced all over the world. the abandoning of the moral values of the Qur'an. the popularity of magic and fortune telling." He is the Knower of the unseen. see The Signs of Jesus' (pbuh) Second Coming by Harun Yahya. However. It is beyond question that solar and lunar eclipses are very natural and frequent phenomena. corruption and adultery. (Tirmidhi) For example. and the second is the solar eclipse in the middle of this month. p." one after the other and in the manner described in the Hadith.
The End of Times and the Mahdi by Harun Yahya). there has been a huge rise in the number and intensity of earthquakes worldwide. the rise of this star coming at the same time as other signs. However. and just as described by the Prophet (saas). Therefore. (For detailed information regarding the other signs of the Last Day. one in the East. our Prophet (saas) has cited the rise in earthquakes as a sign of the Last Day. Our Prophet (saas) has also given news of many other signs of the Last Day as well as just these. in other words in the early 14th century. Terrorism: The Ritual of the Devil. Al-Burhan fi Alamat al-Mahdi Akhir al-zaman.0 in the 400 or so years between 1556 and 1975 is only 110. p. 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. or displacement of the earth] in three places. 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. see Signs of the Last Day. The Signs of Jesus' (pbuh) Second Coming. indicates that these phenomena may well be the signs referred to in the Hadith. 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. in the End Times. There is no doubt that earthquakes of various magnitudes have taken place at all periods in history. the number of earthquakes registering greater than 5. 32) As stated in the hadith. According to that same body. and to others as major signs. Islamic scholars refer to some of these as minor signs. In addition. THE SINKING DOWN IN THE EAST: THE TSUNAMI DISASTER IN INDONESIA . its force and effect.consecutive years. According to US Geological Survey (USGS) reports.5 have taken place in the 23 years between 1980 and 2003 alone. through which we are living. caving in. Halley's comet passed close by the Earth in 1986 (Hijri 1406). 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. 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. For example. 1685 earthquakes registering more than 6. 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. This follows the eclipses of the Sun and Moon that happened in 1981 and 1982 (Hijri 1401-1402). (Al-Muttaqi alHindi.
and the flooding of whole cities. of course. of course. the Maldives. volcanic eruptions. causing millions of people to flee.One of the signs of the Last Day revealed by our Prophet (saas) is that of the "sinking down in the East. Bangladesh. However. Throughout history great disasters have been experienced in Europe and America. Indeed. none of these disasters have had such a terrible impact as Hurricane Katrina. . earthquakes and tornadoes have struck Asia and the Far East. Malaysia. (Our Lord knows best. (God knows best.000 kilometers away. hurricanes and terrorist attacks have cost the lives of thousands. the Katrina catastrophe may well be one of the three incidents of sinking referred to by our Prophet Muhammad (saas). (God knows best." This "sinking" which our Prophet (saas) declares will take place in the End Times must necessarily be much greater and have a much greater impact than similar ones in the past. India." The probable significance of this sign is the disappearance of an area of land or a human community. These wrought terrible destruction and large numbers of people lost their lives in them. and ensures it top place in the list of destruction in US history. tens of thousands to lose their lives. the tsunami that took place on 26 December. when the signs of the Last Day are coming true one by one. God knows best. This tsunami disaster in the End Times. and even Somalia. in southern Asia and that resulted in the loss of more than 225. immense harm to three large states. Sri Lanka. This makes Hurricane Katrina different from disasters of the past. the expression "sinking down in the East" may well be referring to this disaster in southern Asia. 5. together with the enormous energy produced in the oceans. Myanmar. However. 2004. the Seychelles. the enormous energy released by 1000-kilometer breaks as a result of the movement of underground plates and shifting land masses.) Throughout history various disasters.) This portent bears a close similarity to the 2004 tsunami disaster in Asia. Therefore. was the worst of these disasters. During this dreadful catastrophe. our Prophet's (saas) portent regarding the "sinking down in the East" may be indicating this terrible catastrophe. and led to cities being flooded by sea water and to a new map of the world. Earthquakes. affected a very wide area. For that reason. Thailand. Therefore.000 lives. struck the coasts of Indonesia. the damage inflicted by Hurricane Katrina was far worse than that inflicted by similar phenomena in the past.) THE SINKING DOWN IN THE WEST: THE "KATRINA" DISASTER IN THE USA The terrible destruction wrought by Hurricane Katrina in the US Gulf of Mexico last month brings to mind another of the signs of the Last Day mentioned by our Prophet (saas): "the sinking down in the West.
is 233. sea. the greatest air rescue operation in the US history. Material damage is expected to exceed $100 billion. and damage in excess of $100 billion. life and climate). and affected three states.The death toll could not be established with certainty in the wake of the disaster. representing the most violent category on the Saffir-Simpson hurricane scale. The true dimensions of the disaster are being hidden from people.The hurricane first affected the state of Florida.Katrina was classified as a category 5 hurricane.The Dimensions of the Katrina Disaster The Katrina disaster has been the subject of intense coverage in newspapers and on the television for around a month now. and resulted in a large region sinking under the water.Hurricane Katrina entered the American continent from the Gulf of Mexico on Monday. The wind speed rose to 260 km/h. It then headed for the state of Louisiana. Only 3 category five hurricanes have made landfall in the US since records began. causing terrible damage to the coasts of Louisiana. It is estimated that more than 10. Hotels and entertainment centers built on the shore were completely ruined. The fact is that Hurricane Katrina led to the deaths of more than 10. falling to category 4 in some places. though officials said the number could be tens of thousands. and the scale of the destruction is being underplayed. life becoming impossible in almost all of three major states (Alabama. the complete evacuation of one of the most important cities in the USA. . Louisiana and Mississippi). is expected to have long-lasting consequences for many years. 29 August. Yet none of those caused such massive damage as Katrina.000 lost their lives in these three states.The cities of Biloxi and Gulfport in Mississippi were flooded by waters rising up to 9 meters. . The damage wrought by Hurricane Katrina may be summed up as follows: .000 km2 . these reports fail to emphasize the multilateral effect of the disaster. where 13 people died and where the storm caused great material damage. millions of people losing their homes and livelihoods. Alabama and Mississippi became virtually uninhabitable. Mississippi and Alabama.the largest in the state of Louisiana . both on the USA and globally. Louisiana.000 people. Various writers have referred to the fact that such a disaster has not been experienced on US soil since the Civil War. However. 80% of the city of New Orleans . compared by some federal authorities to Hiroshima and the tsunami catastrophe in Indonesia. The area affected.an area almost as large as the United Kingdom. This estimate excludes long-term damage (effects on the soil. . .remained under water. This disaster. Buildings on the coasts in particular suffered immense damage. a national disaster zone. as described by our Prophet (saas) in the hadith. This brings to mind another sign of the Last Day reported by our Prophet (saas): . and 90% of homes in this area were completely destroyed.
and great damage has been inflicted on others. and one continues to burn.He asked: "What becomes of you when death meets people and homes become graves?" (Mukhtasar Tazkirah al-Qurtubi.The number of missing is estimated at around 35. and hundreds of thousands have been badly damaged. . it has made New Orleans uninhabitable.Electricity cuts. it may take months for electricity to be restored to the whole city. 20 platforms either sank or were dragged from their moorings. . . rubbish. The resulting sea pollution is yet another aspect of the disaster. 91% of this area's total production capacity of 1.Local newspapers and TV stations have abandoned their offices. the chemical waste products from factories in the water.000 children in the region are estimated to have been made homeless. and petrol wastes represent a severe threat to the flooded cities. It is estimated that around 1 million jobs have been lost in all sectors. Those still working have been closed down because the pipeline bringing oil to land from the Gulf of Mexico broke. The corpses that fill the streets. . The almost complete stoppage of oil production in the region has impacted on the US economy. and it is also expected to have permanent damage on the world economy. 83% of the natural gas emerging has been stopped. Nobody knows what damage has been caused to those which have been abandoned. More than 300. and the fact that telephone lines. New Orleans Has Sunk to the Ground While Katrina inflicted grave harm on many cities. . the toxic substances in the water.It is stated that it is only a matter of time until epidemics begin in flooded cities. . 392. A great many schools cannot be used.5 million barrel/day is unusable.000.America obtained 25% of its petrol needs from the Gulf of Mexico. no. p. Today. 726) . The US Army plans to begin spraying using military planes against the mosquitoes that carry the West Nile virus and that multiply rapidly in stagnant water. regarded as one of the centers of tourism and culture . 80% of New Orleans.Hundreds of thousands of homes have been rendered uninhabitable. Eight refineries have been abandoned along the shores of the Mississippi River. It has been announced that due to the terrible damage inflicted. and have been forced to continue working over the Internet. 561 of a total of around 650 maritime oil platforms were evacuated in time by helicopter. mobile phones and the Internet no longer work has brought business life to an almost complete standstill.Educational institutions in the regions have been closed. .Some 5 million people were left without electricity in the wake of Hurricane Katrina.
some parts of the city lie up to 6 meters below the sea level and are protected against possible flooding by pumps. The city has experienced a great many storms and hurricanes to date but this city. New Orleans has almost vanished by being buried under water. The shores of Lake Pontchartrain were almost entirely submerged. New Orleans is a city surrounded by Lake Pontchartrain. channels and levees. Others sought to protect themselves from the waters by climbing up to high elevations. will do serious harm to maritime life. thirst and various illnesses. the "sinking down in the West" may also indicate the disappearance of the city of New Orleans. In the same way that our Prophet's (saas) portent regarding "the sinking down in the East" may refer to the tsunami disaster in Indonesia. God knows best. this too ceased to offer any safety. which directly encounters a hurricane every 14 years. beatings and rapes. has never been subjected to such destruction. and has been regularly strengthened. Thousands of helpless people who sought shelter on the roofs and upper floors of buildings waited days for help to arrive. However. river and sea in the region. badly polluted by corpses and wastes. . into the River Mississippi and Lake Pontchartrain will have on life. regarded as one of the main ports of the US fishing industry. However. They could not withstand category 5 hurricanes such as Katrina (category 4 on some days). of course. the levees that run for some 560 kilometers around the city were designed to meet category 3 hurricanes.One million people fled New Orleans before the hurricane struck. the sea and the river flooded 80% of the city. regarded as one of the most expensive flood protection systems in the world. these levees are planned to be repaired and the water pumped out of the city. However. the River Mississippi and the Gulf of Mexico. was constructed in stages since the 1800s. This is the worst disaster since the founding of New Orleans in 1718. collapsed. Another problem is the scale of the impact that the pumping of the waters. Therefore. One major difficulty is that since the pumps responsible for cleaning up the city are submerged. When part of the roof of the Superdome. There have also been widespread reports of lootings. murders. which in some areas was more than 6 meters deep. The consequences of the New Orleans disaster may be summarized as follows: . which is expected to even worse in the years to come. Tens of thousands who remained sought shelter in the Louisiana Superdome Stadium and an exhibition hall. Following the hurricane. However.Some 9. The emptying of polluted water into the lake. Thus Hurricane Katrina destroyed two of the city's most important levees. it is difficult to find anywhere to send the many meters of water covering the city. for which reason the pumping out of the floodwater that fills the city is expected to take months. as a result of which water from the lake.000 people who were unable to evacuate the city and 550 National Guard troops . This system. Many people died from hunger. regarded as one of the safest places to shelter.in the USA. was under water. officials state that there is no alternative and that pumping will go ahead as planned. and is founded about 2 meters below the sea level. very few of the 148 pumps are actually working.
" . Indeed. New Orleans began being referred to as a "ghost town. which was devoid of electricity.000 on September 1.were installed in the Superdome. The disappearance of almost the entire city of New Orleans bears a close similarity to another sign of the End Times related by our Prophet (saas). This is revealed in these terms in the hadith: Great cities will be ruined. due to which it is reported that critically ill patients in hospitals are dying.The flood waters have lifted coffins out of graves in some cemeteries in New Orleans. As the evacuation was stepped up. suicide. and it will be as if they had not existed the day before.80% of homes in New Orleans are uninhabitable.Tens of thousands of people do not have enough to eat and drink. and the ones in the middle cannot save themselves. Television broadcasts have shown coffins floating in the waters covering the city. COULD THE "ARMY DISAPPEARING IN THE DESERT" BE THE THIRD SINKING? Attention is drawn in the hadith of our Prophet Muhammad (saas) to "a third sinking in the Arabian peninsula." in addition to those in the East and West. . This sinking that will take place in the Arabian peninsula bears a close resemblance to another hadith: An army comes to fight. one of the ongoing debates in the USA these days is the possibility of completely abandoning New Orleans and founding the city in another place in the wake of the terrible destruction.One million people are without electricity due to the powerful winds that uplifted trees and power lines. (Tirmidhi. (AlMuttaqi al-Hindi. Sunan Ibn . rape. p. Tens of thousands of people fought for their lives in the stadium. the one in the front and the back disappear. Once they enter the desert. 38) A city really has disappeared under the water and been made uninhabitable. There is no clean water or food in the city.A rapid rise in looting. robbery and drug dealing brought chaos to the city and those buildings in which large numbers of people were sheltering. . air conditioning and running water. beating. . . Following the intensification of the hurricane this number rose to around 60. Al-Burhan fi `Alamat al-Mahdi Akhir az-Zaman.
The same things happened in the wake of the Katrina disaster.) THE IMPORTANCE OF REFLECTING ON THE SIGNS OF THE LAST DAY Most people in the world are to a greater or lesser extent aware of the horror of the Last Day. We are by no means certain.000-man force known as the Republican Guard and 15. a reminder from our Lord. and people soon lost interest in this terrible destruction. They refuse to reflect on the fact that this day will inevitably arrive. People generally attempted to underplay the catastrophe. Our Lord states the following with regard to the unbelievers who harbor doubts about the Hour: When you were told. some people are unwilling to think or talk about such a vital matter. They are even unable to bear it when news of a catastrophe they read in the paper or a film depicting a disaster reminds them of the Last Day. Yet all these disasters and catastrophes are a warning.000-man force known as the Fedayeen. Indeed. they deny the Hour. listening to the voice of their conscience. the finding in the days to follow of a part of their warplanes buried under the desert sands strengthens the possibility that the reference in the hadith of the sinking of an army in the desert may concern the Iraqi Army.Majah." (Qur'an. and We have prepared a searing blaze for those who deny the Hour." you said. We have only been conjecturing. People failed to learn about the horror experienced by hundreds of thousands as they should have. "God's promise is true and so is the Hour.) When we consider this hadith together with our Prophet's (saas) reference to "sinking down in Arabia. (Qur'an. "We have no idea what the Hour is. Many newspapers and TV channels reported on the disappearance of the 60. Nonetheless. will easily realize the transitory nature of the life of this world and will turn to God. People who consider these disasters honestly. of which there is no doubt. 45:32) Some people deny the Hour in its entirety: But instead. (God knows best. They make great efforts never to bring the fear that will be experienced when the Hour comes to mind. The fact that this is indicated in the above hadith shows that one of the signs of the Last Day may have taken place. They will understand that it is not too late to live by Islamic moral values and will not be like those who ignore the reality that the Last Day will inevitably come to pass. 25:11) All these people who deceive themselves with regard to the Hour are making a terrible . the terrible disaster was not reported in an unbiased manner." it may well be that the event in question refers to this extraordinary situation that came about during the Iraq war. Sunan Abu Dawud) One of the most noticeable incidents of the 2003 Iraq War was the sudden disappearance of a large part of the Iraqi Army. (God knows best.
400 years ago the picture that would emerge our Prophet (saas) was referring to the present day and age. . of course. The Hour is certainly coming… (Qur'an. The reports of the End Times paint a most accurate picture of our own time. This. 15:85) As we have already stated. That is because in His verses God reveals that it is close at hand and that there can be no room for doubt regarding this: We did not create the heavens and Earth and everything between them.400 years ago and are coming to pass one after the other is a matter of the greatest importance. This is definitive proof so that we might understand that in describing in detail 1. the fact that the signs of the Last Day were fully described 1.mistake. is a miraculous phenomenon calling for deep reflection. except with truth.