Early Islamic and Classical Sunni and Shi‘ite Apocalyptic Movements

David Cook

in The Oxford Handbook of Millennialism

Published in print October 2011 | ISBN: 9780195301052
Published online January 2012 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Handbooks

Early Islamic and Classical Sunni and Shi‘ite Apocalyptic Movements

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Almost all Islamic apocalyptic materials are to be found in the hadith, in the form of Muhammadan preaching. They consist of categories of lesser and greater signs, which will precede the apocalypse. The former includes the entire general quarters' socio-political events and economic strife. This article includes the unquestionable fantastic signs of the end time—the arrival of “Dajjal”—an Islamic antichrist, the resurrection of Christ, and the appearance of a messiah. It draws a graphic, fantastic picture of the apocalypse with the mountains moving, the sky rolling back, the moon splitting and the stars falling off. The increasing gulf between Christianity and Islam expanded further, eventually replacing Jesus, the earliest Judeo-Islamic messiah, with the Mahdi, an earthly messiah. Although the figure first emerged among proto-Shiia traditions, it soon assumed pan-Islamic presence. Messianism assumed a local face during the era of global Islamic kingdoms and the anti-colonial struggles.

Keywords: Islamic apocalyptic materials; Dajjal; Muhammadan preaching; economic strife; Christianity

Article.  8049 words. 

Subjects: Religion ; Religious Studies ; Islam

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