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In the Name of God بسم الله

The Statements Surrounding the Occultation

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As it pertains to the ghayba, I often see certain unusual statements being circulated around such as, “When the Mahdi appears before us, we will feel as if we have seen him somewhere in our past” and “He [the Imam] is walking around in the markets and visits us, but we do not recognize him.” Do these statements hold any truth and were they part of early Twelver Shi’ism? If not, why are they being transmitted nonstop? And what do they really mean? Are they simply just undertones to a bigger reality?

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I'm not sure about the first quotation, but here is the full version of the second quotation:

علي بن إبراهيم، عن محمد بن الحسين، عن ابن أبي نجران، عن فضالة بن أيوب، عن سدير الصيرفي قال: سمعت أبا عبدالله (عليه السلام) يقول: إن في صاحب هذا الامر شبها من يوسف (عليه السلام)، قال قلت له: كأنك تذكره حياته أو غيبته؟ قال: فقال لي: وما تنكر من ذلك، هذه الامة أشباه الخنازير، إن إخوة يوسف (عليه السلام) كانوا أسباطا أولاد الانبياء تاجروا يوسف، وبايعوه وخاطبوه، وهم إخوته، وهو أخوهم، فلم يعرفوه حتى قال: أنا يوسف وهذا أخي، فما تنكر هذه الامة المعلونة أن يفعل الله عزوجل بحجته في وقت من الاوقات كما فعل بيوسف، إن يوسف (عليه السلام) كان إليه ملك مصر وكان بينه وبين والده مسيرة ثمانية عشر يوما، فلو أراد ان يعلمه لقدر على ذلك، لقد سار يعقوب (عليه السلام) وولده عند البشارة تسعة أيام من بدوهم إلى مصر، فما تنكر هذه الامة أن يفعل الله عزوجل بحجته كما فعل بيوسف، أن يمشي في أسواقهم ويطأ بسطهم حتى يأذن الله في ذلك له كما أذن ليوسف، قالوا: " أئنك لانت يوسف؟ قال: أنا يوسف ". 


`Ali b. Ibrahim from Muhammad b. al-Husayn from ibn Abi Najran from Fadala b. Ayyub from Sadeer al-Sayrafi who said: 

I heard `Abu Abdillah عليه السلام say: Verily, there is in the Patron of this Affair a resemblance to Yusuf عليه السلام. He said: I said to him: Are you referring to his life or his occultation? He said: So he said to me: Do not be surprised by this [nation]; this Umma has the resemblance of pigs. The brothers of Yusuf عليه السلام were from the tribes of the descendants of the prophets, and yet they made business with Yusuf – they sold him; and had [later] spoken to him. They were his brothers and he was their brother, and yet they did not recognize him until he said: I am Yusuf and this is my brother. So, do not be surprised by this cursed Umma when Allah عزوجل stipulates His Proof (hujja) in a time from the timings, as they would do the same as that which was done to Yusuf. Surely Yusuf عليه السلام had ruled Egypt when there was between him and his father the walking [distance] of eighty days. If he wanted to inform him, he could have done it. Verily, when Ya`qub عليه السلام heard the news, he marched with his son for nine days, from their starting location to Egypt. So, do not be surprised by this Umma, as Allah عزوجل will do with His Proof (hujja) as He did with Yusuf, and he will be walking in their market and treading between them until Allah permits him, just as He allowed Yusuf – they said: You surely are Yusuf? He said: I am Yusuf. (al-Kafi)

(hasan) (حسن)

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3 hours ago, Qa'im said:

I'm not sure about the first quotation

I think the first quotation is referring to a hadith quoted by Sheikh Tusi:

الشيخ الطوسي في الغيبة عن السفير الثاني الشيخ محمّد عن عثمان العمري أنّه قال: والله إنّ صاحب هذا الأمر ليحضر الموسم كلّ سنة، يرى الناس ويعرفهم ويرونه ولا يعرفونه

http://shiaonlinelibrary.com/الكتب/1483_بحار-الأنوار-العلامة-المجلسي-ج-٥٢/الصفحة_154

11 hours ago, khizarr said:

"When the Mahdi appears before us, we will feel as if we have seen him somewhere in our past”

 

Edited by Cool
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Thank you @Qa'im & @Cool for sharing these sources. What meanings do you think we can derive from these narrations? I can't seem to wrap my head around some of them and see how they play out in the real world. For the one @Qa'im mentioned, I have always liked the comparison with Yusuf (a), but Yusuf did ultimately exist in the physical realm just like his family members and he aged and ate and slept like everyone else. How are we supposed to extract meaning from that narration - when the Mahdi (a) isn't believed to be inside the material realm in the ways Yusuf (a) was?

Edited by khizarr
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2 hours ago, khizarr said:

when the Mahdi (a) isn't believed to be inside the material realm 

Please provide any evidence of such belief. The above two ahadith are mentioning his existence within the physical world. 

2 hours ago, khizarr said:

Yusuf did ultimately exist in the physical realm just like his family members

Yes, you are saying this because you are aware of the story. But for his brothers, they were totally unaware of his fate. Unaware of whether someone has rescued him or whether he be consumed by any beast. 

2 hours ago, khizarr said:

and he aged and ate and slept like everyone else.

Well, is there any human being who can sleep for years? And his not eating & drinking during his years long sleep, never effect his body? 

How long an average human can survive without food & water? Any scientific guess? 3 days, 8 days or 21 days? 

Ashaab al-kahaf slept for years. And neither age nor starvation and nor the dehydration effected them. 

I am not comparing Imam Mehdi (عليه السلام) with Ashaab al-Kahaf, rather I am pointing towards the fact that whoever God wills to save, remains save irrespective of our scientific understanding of survival. 

Wassalam!

Edited by Cool
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