Please answer the following questions:
1 . What is the condition for the advent of Imam Mahdi?
2 . How many are his companions? Are there women among them?
3 . What are the madhhabs and sects to which they belong? How are they chosen?
Please answer the following questions:
1 . What is the condition for the advent of Imam Mahdi?
2 . How many are his companions? Are there women among them?
3 . What are the madhhabs and sects to which they belong? How are they chosen?
The answers to your questions are as follows:
1 . The condition for the advent of Imam Mahdi, peace be upon him, is his confidence in his security and his hope for his sovereignty; because the only justification for his non-advent, despite its necessity for the establishment of justice in the end time, is his fear for his life and his lack of hope for his sovereignty, and what is meant by them is the indication of cultural and social circumstances and situations that people will not know him, accept him, love him, protect him, obey him, or help him sufficiently if he comes to them, but rather they will let him down, turn against him, and cause or take part in his being killed or imprisoned without being able to reform anything, and there is no doubt that it is not permissible for him to appear in this case; because it is a mistake, violating the purpose, and committing what God Almighty has forbidden, where He has said: ﴿وَلَا تُلْقُوا بِأَيْدِيكُمْ إِلَى التَّهْلُكَةِ﴾; “And do not cast yourselves into destruction with your own hands.” Based on this, Imam Mahdi, peace be upon him, will not appear until cultural and social circumstances and situations are transformed so that it becomes clear to him that his advent will be beneficial and conducive to the purpose; as it has been said in narrations that he «لَا يَخْرُجُ حَتَّى يَرَى الَّذِي يُحِبُّ، وَلَوْ صَارَ أَنْ يَأْكُلَ الْأَغْصَانَ أَغْصَانَ الشَّجَرِ»; “will not rise until he sees what pleases him, even if his matter gets to the point where he eats from the branches of the trees,” and it is clear that the transformation of cultural and social circumstances and situations falls to people and is affected by their opinions and actions, and this means that they are responsible for the non-advent of Imam Mahdi, peace be upon him, and the great evils that result from it, and therefore, they must remedy it and change it by changing their opinions and actions, according to what God Almighty has said: ﴿إِنَّ اللَّهَ لَا يُغَيِّرُ مَا بِقَوْمٍ حَتَّى يُغَيِّرُوا مَا بِأَنْفُسِهِمْ﴾; “Indeed, God will not change anything for a people until they change what is in themselves”; as it has been said in narrations that Imam Mahdi, peace be upon him, will appear when «يَتَمَنَّاهُ النَّاسُ وَيَطْلُبُونَهُ»; “people wish for and demand him,” and «يَظْهَرُ عَلَى أَفْوَاهِ النَّاسِ، وَيُشْرَبُونَ حُبَّهُ، وَلَا يَكُونُ لَهُمْ ذِكْرٌ غَيْرُهُ»; “(his name) appears on people’s tongues, and they take him to their hearts and not mention anyone else,” and «يَتَسَارَعُ النَّاسُ إِلَيْهِ مِنْ كُلِّ وَجْهٍ»; “people rush to him from every direction,” and «يَأْتِيهِ النَّاسُ، فَيَزُفُّونَهُ كَمَا تُزَفُّ الْعَرُوسُ إِلَى زَوْجِهَا لَيْلَةَ عُرْسِهَا»; “people come to him and get close to him, as a bride gets close to his husband on her wedding night” and «يَسْتَخْرِجُهُ النَّاسُ مِنْ بَيْتِهِ وَهُوَ كَارِهٌ، فَيُبَايِعُونَهُ»; “people have him come out of his house while he is unwilling (to do so), then they pledge allegiance to him.” This is where the mission of His Excellency Mansoor, may God protect him, takes shape, which is preparing the ground for the advent of Imam Mahdi, peace be upon him, through inviting people to reform their opinions and actions that have caused him to fear for his life and despair of establishing his sovereignty over them, and motivating them to know him, accept him, love him, protect him, obey him, and help him sufficiently instead of others, and this great scholar has undertaken it excellently in the light of the Holy Quran and the mutawatir Sunnah of the Prophet, peace and blessings of God be upon him and his family, despite hypocritical rulers and sheikhs who oppose him with all their might and stop people from answering and helping him, and this is an attribute with which no one has been described in narrations except for the promised Mansoor, the owner of the black flags of Khorasan, the one who prepares the ground for the advent of Imam Mahdi, peace be upon him; as it has been narrated in describing him that he «فَتًى يَبْعَثُهُ اللَّهُ مِنَ الْمَشْرِقِ، يَدْعُو إِلَى أَهْلِ بَيْتِ النَّبِيِّ صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَآلِهِ وَسَلَّمَ»; “is a young man sent by God from the East to invite toward the Ahl al-Bayt of the Prophet, peace and blessings of God be upon him and his family,” and «يُوَطِّئُ -أَوْ يُمَكِّنُ- لِآلِ مُحَمَّدٍ، كَمَا مَكَّنَتْ قُرَيْشٌ لِرَسُولِ اللَّهِ صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَآلِهِ وَسَلَّمَ»; “makes preparations for -or empowers- the family of Muhammad, as the Quraysh empowered the Messenger of God, peace and blessings of God be upon him and his family,” and «يُؤَدِّي الطَّاعَةَ إِلَى الْمَهْدِيِّ»; “brings obedience to the Mahdi,” and «يَبْعَثُ بِالْبَيْعَةِ إِلَى الْمَهْدِيِّ»; “urges allegiance to the Mahdi,” and «مُنَادٍ صَادِقٌ يُنَادِي مِنْ شِدَّةِ الْقِتَالِ: فِيمَ الْقَتْلُ وَالْقِتَالُ؟! صَاحِبُكُمُ الْمَهْدِيُّ»; “is a truthful caller calling out because of the intensity of fights: ‘What are the killings and fights for?! Your master is the Mahdi,’” and he and his companions are from Khorasan, «يَخْرُجُونَ فِي طَلَبِ الْمَهْدِيِّ، فَيَدْعُونَ لَهُ وَيَنْصُرُونَهُ»; “they will rise to seek the Mahdi, then they will invite toward him and help him,” and they «يُوَطِّئُونَ لِلْمَهْدِيِّ سُلْطَانَهُ»; “will make preparations for the Mahdi’s rule,” and their efforts will lead to «يَتَمَنَّى النَّاسُ الْمَهْدِيَّ وَيَطْلُبُوهُ»; “people wishing for the Mahdi and demanding him,” and they «يَسْأَلُونَ الْحَقَّ فَلَا يُعْطَوْنَهُ، مَرَّتَيْنِ أَوْ ثَلَاثًا، فَيُقَاتِلُونَ فَيُنْصَرُونَ، فَيُعْطَوْنَ مَا سَأَلُوهُ، فَيَدْفَعُونَهُ إِلَى الْمَهْدِيِّ»; “ask for the truth, but it will not be given to them, two or three times, then they fight and win, so what they ask for will be given to them, then they hand it over to the Mahdi,” and these attributes have been manifested in the best possible way in His Excellency Mansoor, may God protect him, as his published written works and evident actions attest to it. Therefore, many believers hope that he is the interpretation of these narrations, although he does not claim it to ward off doubts and fitnah, and acting on what is certain, which everyone can know, is sufficient for the purpose. For this reason, every believer who desires the advent of Imam Mahdi, peace be upon him, must join the companions of this great scholar and assist him with all his might in what he has undertaken of preparing the ground for the advent of Imam Mahdi, peace be upon him, according to the words of God Almighty that has said: ﴿وَتَعَاوَنُوا عَلَى الْبِرِّ وَالتَّقْوَى﴾; “And help one another in goodness and piety”; as it has been said in the mentioned narrations: «وَجَبَ عَلَى كُلِّ مُؤْمِنٍ نَصْرُهُ»; “It is obligatory for every believer to help him,” «فَأْتُوهُ فَبَايِعُوهُ، وَلَوْ حَبْوًا عَلَى الثَّلْجِ»; “so they must rush to him and pledge allegiance to him, even though by crawling on snow.”
2 . The Companions of Imam Mahdi, peace be upon him, are of three categories: one category will join him shortly before his advent, and they will accompany him from the first day, protect and serve him, and will be his advisers and governors in his rule, and they are three hundred and thirteen men as many as the people of Badr, as we have explained in its place, and one category will join him after his advent and before his uprising with the sword, and they will obey and help him and fight in front of him, on his right, and on his left, and they are ten thousand men; as it has been narrated that «سَأَلَ رَجُلٌ مِنْ أَهْلِ الْكُوفَةِ أَبَا عَبْدِ اللَّهِ -يَعْنِي جَعْفَرَ بْنَ مُحَمَّدٍ الصَّادِقَ- عَلَيْهِ السَّلَامُ: كَمْ يَخْرُجُ مَعَ الْقَائِمِ -يَعْنِي الْمَهْدِيَّ- عَلَيْهِ السَّلَامُ؟ فَإِنَّهُمْ يَقُولُونَ: إِنَّهُ يَخْرُجُ مَعَهُ مِثْلُ عِدَّةِ أَهْلِ بَدْرٍ ثَلَاثُمِائَةٍ وَثَلَاثَةُ عَشَرَ رَجُلًا، قَالَ: وَمَا يَخْرُجُ إِلَّا فِي أُولِي قُوَّةٍ، وَمَا تَكُونُ أُولُوا الْقُوَّةِ أَقَلَّ مِنْ عَشَرَةِ آلَافٍ»; “a man from the people of Kufa asked Abu Abdullah -i.e., Ja‘far ibn Muhammad al-Sadiq- peace be upon him: ‘How many will rise with Qa’im -i.e., the Mahdi- peace be upon him? They say that He will rise with the same number as that of the people of Badr, three hundred and thirteen men.’ He said: ‘He will not rise except among the possessors of power, and the possessors of power are not less than ten thousand,’” and it has been narrated that he said: «لَا يَخْرُجُ الْقَائِمُ عَلَيْهِ السَّلَامُ حَتَّى يَكُونَ تَكْمِلَةُ الْحَلْقَةِ، قِيلَ: وَكَمْ تَكْمِلَةُ الْحَلْقَةِ؟ قَالَ: عَشَرَةُ آلَافٍ»; “Qa’im, peace be upon him, will not rise until the circle is completed. It was said: How many will complete the circle? He said: Ten thousand,” and it has been narrated that he said: «لَا يَخْرُجُ الْقَائِمُ عَلَيْهِ السَّلَامُ فِي أَقَلَّ مِنَ الْفِئَةِ، وَلَا يَكُونُ الْفِئَةُ أَقَلَّ مِنْ عَشَرَةِ آلَافٍ»; “Qa’im, peace be upon him, will not rise among less than the group, and the group will not be less than ten thousand,” and therefore, His Excellency Mansoor, may God protect him, has said in one of his sayings: “Who is he that guarantees me ten thousand men so that I guarantee him the advent of the Mahdi?!”, which means his full advent that includes his uprising with the sword, and one category will join after his uprising with the sword out of fear or greed, and they are the lowest of his companions; as God Almighty has said: ﴿لَا يَسْتَوِي مِنْكُمْ مَنْ أَنْفَقَ مِنْ قَبْلِ الْفَتْحِ وَقَاتَلَ ۚ أُولَئِكَ أَعْظَمُ دَرَجَةً مِنَ الَّذِينَ أَنْفَقُوا مِنْ بَعْدُ وَقَاتَلُوا ۚ وَكُلًّا وَعَدَ اللَّهُ الْحُسْنَى ۚ وَاللَّهُ بِمَا تَعْمَلُونَ خَبِيرٌ﴾; “Not equal are those of you who spend and fight before the victory; they are of a higher rank than those who spend and fight after it. Yet God has promised a good reward to all, and God is aware of what you do.”
As for the presence of women in the third category of his companions, it is obvious, but their presence in the second category of his companions is very probable; because with those who strived among the companions of the Messenger of God, peace and blessings of God be upon him and his family, there were women who gave water and treated the wounded; as it has been narrated that «أَنَّ نَجْدَةَ الْحَرُورِيَّ كَتَبَ إِلَى ابْنِ عَبَّاسٍ: هَلْ كَانَ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَآلِهِ وَسَلَّمَ يَغْزُو بِالنِّسَاءِ؟ وَهَلْ كَانَ يَضْرِبُ لَهُنَّ بِسَهْمٍ؟ فَقَالَ: قَدْ كَانَ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَآلِهِ وَسَلَّمَ يَغْزُو بِالنِّسَاءِ، فَيُدَاوِينَ الْجَرْحَى، وَيَسْقِينَ الْمَاءَ، وَلَمْ يَكُنْ يَضْرِبُ لَهُنَّ بِسَهْمٍ، وَلَكِنْ يُحْذَيْنَ مِنَ الْغَنِيمَةِ»; “Najdah al-Haruri wrote to ibn Abbas: ‘Would the Messenger of God, peace and blessings of God be upon him and his family, take women on campaigns? And would he allot them a portion?’ So he said: ‘The Messenger of God, peace and blessings of God be upon him and his family, would take women on campaigns to treat the wounded and give water, and he would not allot them a portion, but they would be given a share of the booty,’” and it has been narrated from the Ahl al-Bayt that they said: «إِنَّ رَسُولَ اللَّهِ صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَآلِهِ وَسَلَّمَ خَرَجَ بِالنِّسَاءِ فِي الْحَرْبِ، حَتَّى يُدَاوِينَ الْجَرْحَى، وَلَمْ يَقْسِمْ لَهُنَّ مِنَ الْفَيْءِ شَيْئًا، وَلَكِنَّهُ نَفَّلَهُنَّ»; “The Messenger of God, peace and blessings of God be upon him and his family, would take women to war to treat the wounded, and he would not give them a share of the captured properties, but he would reward them,” and it has been narrated from Abdullah ibn Mas‘ud that he said: «كُنَّ النِّسَاءُ يَوْمَ أُحُدٍ يُجْهِزْنَ عَلَى الْجَرْحَى، وَيَسْقِينَ الْمَاءَ، وَيُدَاوِينَ الْجَرْحَى»; “On the day of Uhud, the women treated the wounds, gave water, and tended to the wounded,” and it has been narrated from Umm Atiyyah al-Ansariyyah that she said: «غَزَوْتُ مَعَ رَسُولِ اللَّهِ صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَآلِهِ وَسَلَّمَ سَبْعَ غَزْوَاتٍ، أَخْلُفُهُمْ فِي رِحَالِهِمْ، وَأَصْنَعُ لَهُمُ الطَّعَامَ، وَأَجْبُرُ عَلَى الْجَرِيحِ، وَأُدَاوِي الْمَرِيضَ»; “I went on seven campaigns with the Messenger of God, peace and blessings of God be upon him and his family, to look after their goods, make food for them, treat the wounded, and tend to the sick,” and it has been narrated from Anas ibn Malik that he said: «كَانَ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَآلِهِ وَسَلَّمَ يَغْزُو بِأُمِّ سُلَيْمٍ وَنِسْوَةٍ مِنَ الْأَنْصَارِ مَعَهُ إِذَا غَزَا، فَيَسْقِينَ الْمَاءَ، وَيُدَاوِينَ الْجَرْحَى»; “The Messenger of God, peace and blessings of God be upon him and his family, would take Umm Sulaym and some women from the Ansar with him on campaigns, so they would give water and treat the wounded,” and he has narrated that «أَنَّ أُمَّ سُلَيْمٍ اتَّخَذَتْ يَوْمَ حُنَيْنٍ خِنْجَرًا، فَكَانَ مَعَهَا، فَرَآهَا أَبُو طَلْحَةَ، فَقَالَ: يَا رَسُولَ اللَّهِ، هَذِهِ أُمُّ سُلَيْمٍ مَعَهَا خِنْجَرٌ! فَقَالَ لَهَا رَسُولُ اللَّهِ صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَآلِهِ وَسَلَّمَ: مَا هَذَا الْخِنْجَرُ؟! قَالَتْ: اتَّخَذْتُهُ، إِنْ دَنَا مِنِّي أَحَدٌ مِنَ الْمُشْرِكِينَ بَقَرْتُ بِهِ بَطْنَهُ، فَجَعَلَ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَآلِهِ وَسَلَّمَ يَضْحَكُ»; “Umm Sulaym took a dagger on the day of Hunayn, and he was with her, then Abu Talha saw her, so he said: ‘O Messenger of God! This is Umm Sulaym. She is holding a dagger!’ The Messenger of God, peace and blessings of God be upon him and his family, said to her: ‘What is this dagger?!’ She said: ‘I took it so that I may tear open the belly of a polytheist who comes near me.’ So the Messenger of God, peace and blessings of God be upon him and his family, began to smile,” and what strengthens this probability is what Mufaddal ibn Umar has narrated, he said: «سَمِعْتُ أَبَا عَبْدِ اللَّهِ -يَعْنِي جَعْفَرَ بْنَ مُحَمَّدٍ الصَّادِقَ- عَلَيْهِ السَّلَامُ يَقُولُ: يَكُونُ مَعَ الْقَائِمِ عَلَيْهِ السَّلَامُ ثَلَاثُ عَشْرَةَ امْرَأَةً، قُلْتُ: وَمَا يَصْنَعُ بِهِنَّ؟ قَالَ: يُدَاوِينَ الْجَرْحَى، وَيَقُمْنَ عَلَى الْمَرْضَى، كَمَا كَانَ مَعَ رَسُولِ اللَّهِ صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَآلِهِ وَسَلَّمَ»; “I heard Abu Abdullah -i.e., Ja‘far ibn Muhammad al-Sadiq- peace be upon him, say: ‘Thirteen women will be with Qa’im, peace be upon him.’ I said: ‘What will they do?’ He said: ‘They will treat the wounded and tend to the sick, as they did so with the Messenger of God, peace and blessings of God be upon him and his family,’” but their presence in the first category of his companions is unlikely; because they will gather secretly at night, and it is not for a woman to travel secretly at night; as their work is not what women should undertake, and the wording of narrations is «ثَلَاثُمِائَةٍ وَثَلَاثَةُ عَشَرَ رَجُلًا»; “three hundred and thirteen men.” Yes, it has been narrated from Abu Ja‘far, peace be upon him, that he said: «يَجِيءُ وَاللَّهِ ثَلَاثُمِائَةٍ وَبِضْعَةُ عَشَرَ رَجُلًا، فِيهِمْ خَمْسُونَ امْرَأَةً، يَجْتَمِعُونَ بِمَكَّةَ عَلَى غَيْرِ مِيعَادٍ، قَزَعًا كَقَزَعِ الْخَرِيفِ، يَتْبَعُ بَعْضُهُمْ بَعْضًا»; “By God, over three hundred and ten men will come, among whom there will be fifty women, they will gather in Mecca without previous appointment, (they are) dispersed like dispersed cloudlets, they will follow each other,” but it is a wahid narration, and its meaning, if it is authentic, is that fifty women will come with over three hundred and ten men, not that they will be from this number, and this is because they will come with their fathers, husbands, brothers, sons, or other believing relatives to serve and help them, and God knows best.
3 . The first category of the companions of Imam Mahdi, peace be upon him, are those who believe in him when people deny him, remember him when people forget him, help him when people let him down, invite toward him when people are invited toward others, provide him with everything he needs for his advent, do their best to realize his goal, and make preparations for his rule in any way possible, with patience, seeking reward with God, and helping each other, without making false claims or doing illegitimate actions; they are not of those who associate partners with God in creation, legislation, or sovereignty, acknowledge opinions or ahad narrations, follow oppressive rulers, are fanatically devoted to madhhabs, imitate sheikhs and jurists, believe claimants and dajjals, join misguided parties and groups, oppose the one who prepares the ground for the advent of Imam Mahdi, peace be upon him, commit great sins and indecencies, and seek comfort and luxury in the life of the world, then they hope to be among the companions of Imam Mahdi, peace be upon him! The first category of his companions are not of the Rafidites who claim to be followers of the Ahl al-Bayt, nor of the Nasibis who claim to be Ahl al-Sunnah wal-Jama‘ah, but rather they are truth-seeking Muslims who adhere to the apparent meaning of the Quran, to what is proven from the Sunnah, and to what is known by the intellect, even if it conflicts with the madhhab of those or these, and they give priority to the Ahl al-Bayt over others, say nothing but good about the Sahabah, do not rely on oppressors, nor do they neglect obligations, enjoin right and forbid wrong, strive in the way of God with all their might, and do not fear the blame of those who blame; as one of our companions informed us, he said:
«قُلْتُ لِلْمَنْصُورِ: أَتَرَانِي أَكُونُ مِنْ أَصْحَابِ الْمَهْدِيِّ؟ فَقَالَ: إِنَّكَ رَجُلٌ مُؤْمِنٌ، وَلَا يَكُونُ مِنْ أَصْحَابِهِ إِلَّا مَنْ زَهِدَ فِي الدُّنْيَا وَقَدْ زُيِّنَتْ لَهُ كَمَا تُزَيَّنُ الْعَرُوسُ لَيْلَةَ الزِّفَافِ، قُلْتُ: وَمَنْ زَهِدَ فِيهَا؟ فَقَالَ: مَنْ وَقَفَ نَفْسَهُ عَلَى الْآخِرَةِ، قُلْتُ: وَمَا عَلَامَتُهُ؟ فَقَالَ: مَؤُونَتُهُ خَفِيفَةٌ، وَآمَالُهُ قَصِيرَةٌ، وَأَمْوَالُهُ مَبْذُولَةٌ فِي سَبِيلِ اللَّهِ، قُلْتُ: وَمَا؟ فَقَالَ: لَا يَطْلُبُ الرِّئَاسَةَ، وَلَا يَكْسِبُ فَوْقَ الْحَاجَةِ، بَدَنُهُ مِنْهُ فِي تَعَبٍ، وَالنَّاسُ مِنْهُ فِي رَاحَةٍ، إِنْ شَهِدَ لَمْ يُعْرَفْ، وَإِنْ غَابَ لَمْ يُفْتَقَدْ، إِذَا خَلَا بِنَفْسِهِ ذَكَرَ اللَّهَ، وَإِذَا خَالَطَ النَّاسَ ذَكَّرَهُمْ بِهِ، قَلِيلٌ ضَحْكُهُ وَطَعَامُهُ وَنَوْمُهُ، وَكَثِيرٌ بُكَاؤُهُ وَتَهَجُّدُهُ وَصَوْمُهُ، لَا يَخَافُ فِي اللَّهِ قَتْلًا وَلَا سِجْنًا وَلَا لَوْمَةَ لَائِمٍ، لَا يَعْمَلُ لِلسُّلْطَانِ وَلَا يَسْأَلُ غَيْرَ الْإِخْوَانِ وَإِنْ مَاتَ جُوعًا، لَوْ قِيلَ لَهُ: اخْرُجِ السَّاعَةَ لَخَرَجَ وَلَا يَنْظُرُ إِلَى مَا خَلْفَهُ، هَذَا مَنْ زَهِدَ فِي الدُّنْيَا، وَإِنْ عَاشَ وَاسْتَقَامَ سَيَكُونُ مِنْ أَصْحَابِ الْمَهْدِيِّ»; “I said to Mansoor: ‘Do you think that I will be one of the companions of the Mahdi?’ So he said: ‘You are a believing man, but no one will be among his companions except for one who is an ascetic in the world while it has been adorned for him, as a bride is adorned on the wedding night.’ I said: ‘Who is an ascetic in it?’ So he said: ‘One who has dedicated himself to the Hereafter.’ I said: ‘What is his sign?’ So he said: ‘His expenditure is low, his wishes are short, and his wealth is spent in the way of God.’ I said: ‘What else?’ So he said: ‘He does not seek leadership, nor does he earn more than necessary; his body is in pain from him, and people are at ease from him; if he is present, he is not known, and if he is absent, he is not looked for; when he is alone, he remembers God, and when he mixes with people, he reminds them of Him; his laughs, food, and sleep are little, and his cries, tahajjud, and fasting are much; in the way of God, he does not fear death, imprisonment, or the blame of one who blames; he does not work for the government, nor does he ask anyone other than his brothers for anything, even if he dies of hunger; if it is said to him: “Come out (of your house and life) immediately,” he will come out and not look at what is behind him. This is an ascetic in the world, and if he survives and is righteous, he will be one of the companions of the Mahdi.’”
These are the first category of the companions of Imam Mahdi, peace be upon him, and it is clear that God is the One Who chooses them for him; as He has said: ﴿وَرَبُّكَ يَخْلُقُ مَا يَشَاءُ وَيَخْتَارُ﴾; “And your Lord creates and chooses whatever He wills,” and said: ﴿أَهُمْ يَقْسِمُونَ رَحْمَتَ رَبِّكَ ۚ نَحْنُ قَسَمْنَا بَيْنَهُمْ مَعِيشَتَهُمْ فِي الْحَيَاةِ الدُّنْيَا ۚ وَرَفَعْنَا بَعْضَهُمْ فَوْقَ بَعْضٍ دَرَجَاتٍ لِيَتَّخِذَ بَعْضُهُمْ بَعْضًا سُخْرِيًّا ۗ وَرَحْمَتُ رَبِّكَ خَيْرٌ مِمَّا يَجْمَعُونَ﴾; “Do they distribute your Lord’s mercy?! We distributed among them their shares in the life of the world and raised some of them above some others in rank so that some of them take some others into service, and your Lord’s mercy is better than what they amass,” and said: ﴿وَلِيَعْلَمَ اللَّهُ الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا وَيَتَّخِذَ مِنْكُمْ شُهَدَاءَ﴾; “So that God knows those who believe, and chooses martyrs from among you,” and this is because none but He knows them; as He has said: ﴿وَمَا يَعْلَمُ جُنُودَ رَبِّكَ إِلَّا هُوَ﴾; “And no one knows the soldiers of your Lord but He”; considering that they are chosen based on the existence of these praiseworthy attributes in them, and this cannot be known only from their appearance and words; as He has said: ﴿وَمِنَ النَّاسِ مَنْ يَقُولُ آمَنَّا بِاللَّهِ فَإِذَا أُوذِيَ فِي اللَّهِ جَعَلَ فِتْنَةَ النَّاسِ كَعَذَابِ اللَّهِ وَلَئِنْ جَاءَ نَصْرٌ مِنْ رَبِّكَ لَيَقُولُنَّ إِنَّا كُنَّا مَعَكُمْ ۚ أَوَلَيْسَ اللَّهُ بِأَعْلَمَ بِمَا فِي صُدُورِ الْعَالَمِينَ﴾; “And there are some among people who say: ‘We believed in God.’ But when they are harmed in the cause of God, they consider people’s persecution as a punishment from God, and if help comes from your Lord, they will surely say: ‘We were indeed with you.’ Does God not know better as to what is in the hearts of people of the world?!” and said: ﴿اللَّهُ أَعْلَمُ بِمَا فِي أَنْفُسِهِمْ﴾; “And God knows best what is within them,” and said: ﴿إِنَّ رَبَّكَ هُوَ أَعْلَمُ بِمَنْ ضَلَّ عَنْ سَبِيلِهِ ۖ وَهُوَ أَعْلَمُ بِالْمُهْتَدِينَ﴾; “Indeed, your Lord knows best who has strayed from His path, and He knows best who is guided.” Therefore, it has been said in narrations that they are appointed men whom God has chosen with His knowledge, and the Prophet, peace and blessings of God be upon him and his family, has spoken about their names and the names of their fathers; as it has been narrated from the Prophet, peace and blessings of God be upon him and his family, that he said: «لَهُ -يَعْنِي الْمَهْدِيَّ- كُنُوزٌ لَا ذَهَبٌ وَلَا فِضَّةٌ إِلَّا رِجَالٌ مُسَوَّمَةٌ يَجْمَعُ اللَّهُ تَعَالَى لَهُ مِنْ أَقَاصِي الْبِلَادِ عَلَى عِدَّةِ أَهْلِ بَدْرٍ ثَلَاثَمِائَةٍ وَثَلَاثَةَ عَشَرَ رَجُلًا، مَعَهُ صَحِيفَةٌ مَخْتُومَةٌ فِيهَا عَدَدُ أَصْحَابِهِ بِأَسْمَائِهِمْ وَأَنْسَابِهِمْ وَبُلْدَانِهِمْ وَصَنَائِعِهِمْ وَحِلَاهُمْ وَكُنَاهُمْ»; “For him -i.e., the Mahdi, there are treasures that are not of silver or gold but of marked men whom God Almighty will gather from the far sides of lands, as many as the people of Badr, three hundred and thirteen men. There is a sealed tablet with him, in which the number of his companions, their names, their family names, their lands, their deeds, their looks, and their nicknames have been recorded,” and he has said in describing the horsemen from among them: «إِنِّي لَأَعْلَمُ أَسْمَاءَهُمْ وَأَسْمَاءَ آبَائِهِمْ وَقَبَائِلِهِمْ»; “Indeed, I know their names, the names of their fathers, and their tribes,” and the same has been narrated from Ali, peace be upon him, and it has been narrated from Ja‘far ibn Muhammad al-Sadiq, peace be upon him, that he said: «إِنَّ صَاحِبَ هَذَا الْأَمْرِ مَحْفُوظَةٌ لَهُ أَصْحَابُهُ، لَوْ ذَهَبَ النَّاسُ جَمِيعًا أَتَى اللَّهُ لَهُ بِأَصْحَابِهِ، وَهُمُ الَّذِينَ قَالَ اللَّهُ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ: ﴿فَإِنْ يَكْفُرْ بِهَا هَؤُلَاءِ فَقَدْ وَكَّلْنَا بِهَا قَوْمًا لَيْسُوا بِهَا بِكَافِرِينَ﴾، وَهُمُ الَّذِينَ قَالَ اللَّهُ فِيهِمْ: ﴿فَسَوْفَ يَأْتِي اللَّهُ بِقَوْمٍ يُحِبُّهُمْ وَيُحِبُّونَهُ أَذِلَّةٍ عَلَى الْمُؤْمِنِينَ أَعِزَّةٍ عَلَى الْكَافِرِينَ﴾»; “The companions of the owner of this matter are reserved for him. Even if all people are gone, God will bring him his companions. It is they about whom God the Exalted, the Majestic has said: ‘So if they disbelieve in it, We entrust it to another people who will not disbelieve in it,’ and it is they about whom God has said: ‘God will soon bring a people whom He loves and who love Him; they are humble toward believers and stern toward disbelievers.’”
May God make us among them with His mercy and grace; because He singles out for His mercy whomever He wills, and God is the Owner of extreme grace.