The Shiite Muslim View Of The Modern World

   At the center of the Shi'ite Mulsim religion is the belief in the "Guided One" ... also called the "Hidden Imam". According to the religious "faithful" there were 12 Imams. The lives of the first 11 Imams were mundane and historically recorded. However, the 12th (and last) Imam was thought to be spiritual and mystical. In the year 874 (following the death of the 11th Imam) ... a 7-year-old boy proclaimed himself to be the 12th and then promptly went into hiding. The Shi'ites say he lived in a cave located below a mosque that was locked behind a "Gate of Occulation". This is a sacred site for the followers of Shi'a Islam and is visited by those who pray for the return of the 12th Imam.

   The Shi'a doctrine that deals with this is called, "The Doctrine of Occulation" ... a belief that the Creator protected the 12th Imam and hid him from the eyes of man to save his life. Ultimately, the Creator will reveal the 12th Imam so he can guide humanity in a period of time prior to the end of the world.

   The Occultation has two parts ... the Lesser Occulation was a time past. A time when the 12th Imam communicated with mankind through reprasentatives ... similar to the Catholic Church's pope. In the current stage (the Greater Occulation) - the 12th Imam is still a guiding light for the world but he no longer communicates with us. The Shiite view of the world is therefore tragic because mankind no longer has access to spiritual light that the Creator gave to us as a gift.

Shortly before the day of judgement the 12th Imam will return to the Earth and the religious faithful will return to the world where spiritual truth and human perfection plays a major role in the affairs of man. The Shiites believe the 12th Imam will lead a victorious force that will do battle with evil. Following this apocalypse the world will be ruled by a perfect government that will change mankind from a materialistic being to a spiritual one. After the Imam has reigned for several years, Jesus Christ will return as will others.

It is imperative to understanding the Shiite religious belief to understand that the end of the world will be preceded by a time of perfect justice and spirituality. The present day world is a place of immorality and corruption and these are the "signs" that indicate the coming of the 12th Imam.

Iranian history must be studied in relationship to the 12 Imam and the prophecies associated with it. For example, during the Iranian Revolution, the Ayatullah Khumayni (and others) believed they were bringing about the reign of justice upon the Earth.

2006, Joseph Jakubal

For information contact: Joseph Patrick Jakubal