The Prophet (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) informed us that all this would occur. With regards the tribulation of doubts, he(sallallahu alaihi wasallam ) told us, as reported via a number of routes, that his nation would split into more than seventy sects, the narrations differ as to precisely how many sects, and that all of these sects would be in the Fire save one: that which would be upon what he|(sallallahu alaihi wasallam) and his Companions were upon.
With regards the tribulation of desires:
- Muslim records the hadith of ‘Abdullah ibn Amr (radiyAllahu anhu) that the Prophet(sallallahu alaihi wasallam) said, “How will you be when the treasures of the Persians and Romans are opened to you? What sort of people will you become?” ‘Abdu’l-Rahman ibn ‘Awf (radiyAllahu anhu)said, “We would say as Allah ordered us.’ He said, “Or something else: you would compete with each other, then be envious of each other, then turn your backs on each other, then hate each other.”
- Bukhari records on the authority of Amr ibn Awf (radiyAllahu anhu) that the Prophet|(sallallahu alaihi wasallam ) said, “By Allah! I do not fear poverty for you but I fear that the world be proffered to you as it was proffered to those before you such that you vie for it as they vied and it destroy you as it destroyed them.”
- A hadith carrying the same meaning as this one has been recorded by Bukhari and Muslim on the authority of Uqbah ibn Amir(radiyAllahu anhu).
When the treasures of Chosroes were conquered at the hands of Umar (radiyAllahu anhu), he wept and said, ‘This has never come into the hands of a people except that it caused discord and splitting to occur amongst them/ or words to that effect.1
The Prophet(sallallahu alaihi wasallam) would fear these two tribulations,
- Imam Ahmad records on the authority of Abu Barzah (radiyAllahu anhu) that the Prophet|(sallallahu alaihi wasallam ) said, “I only fear for you the desires of misguidance brought about by your stomachs and private parts and the misguiding tribulations,” and in another narration, “…misguiding desires.”
Most people succumbed to one or both of these tribulations as a result of which they ended up splitting and hating each other after having been brothers, loving each other. The tribulation of desires has afflicted the majority of creation and they have fallen victim to the allurement of this world and its luxuries; it has become their goal and they covet it, only when they attain it are they satisfied. For its sake do they come to anger, for its sake do they make allegiance, and for its sake do they declare enmity.They sever the ties of kinship, spill blood, and disobey Allah all for the gain of some worldly lot.
1 <Abdu’l-Razzaq #20034 and ibn al-Mubarak #768 with a sahlh isnad.
With regards doubts and misguiding desires, it is on account of these that the People of the Qiblah split into many sects and factions, each hating the other and some charging others with disbelief, this after they used to be brothers, their hearts united as if in one body. Of all these sects, only one will be victorious and it is mentioned in his (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) saying,
- ‘There will always be a group of this nation manifest upon the truth, they will not be harmed by those who forsake them or oppose them until the Command of Allah comes, and they will still be in that state/’
In the last days, they will be the strangers mentioned in these ahadith: those who rectify the affairs when the people become corrupt, those who correct what the people have corrupted of the Sunnah, those who flee from trials and tribulations in order to safeguard their religion, and those who have departed from the tribes; this is because they are few – only one or two will be found in some tribes and none at all in others, just as the first Muslims were. It is in this way that the Imams have explained this hadith.
TAKEN FROM : THE JOURNEY OF THE STRANGERS BY IBN RAJAB AL-HANBALI AND IMAM AL-AJURRI PAGES 72-74