A missionary from the UK sent two narrations from Sunan at-Tirmidhi to Hazrat Amirul Momineen, Khalifatul Masih Vaa, enquiring whether these ahadith are correct and whether we can use them in our arguments. Huzoor-e-Anwaraa, in his letter dated 18 August 2022, provided the following guidance in response to this question:
“These narrations from Sunan at-Tirmidhi are reported under ‘Kitab at-Tafsir, Bab wa min surati Muhammadsa’. Their content is as follows: The Holy Prophet Muhammadsa recited the following verse:
وَإِنْ تَتَوَلَّوْا يَسْتَبْدِلْ قَوْمًا غَيْرَكُمْ ثُمَّ لَا يَكُونُوا أَمْثَالَكُمْ
“‘And if you turn your backs, He will bring in your stead a people other than you, then they will not be like you.’ (Surah Muhammad, Ch. 47, V. 39)
“Upon this, the Companions enquired, ‘Who will be these people?’ The Holy Prophetsa, tapping on the shoulder of Hazrat Salman al-Farisira, stated, ‘This man and his people, this man and his people.’ In another narration, it is mentioned that Hazrat Salman al-Farisira was sitting beside the Holy Prophetsa when the Companions asked. The Holy Prophetsa tapped on his thigh and declared, ‘This man and his companions,’ and he further swore by the One in Whose hand his life was, that if faith were to ascend to the Pleiades, men from Persia would surely retrieve it.
“A similar narration is also found in Sahih al-Bukhari, which pertains to the revelation of the following verse from Surah al-Jumu‘ah, upon which the Companionsra asked who the fortunate people would be among whom the Holy Prophetsa would be raised again:
وَ اٰخَرِيۡنَ مِنۡہُمۡ لَمَّا يَلۡحَقُوۡا بِہِمۡ
“‘And will raise among others from among them who have not yet joined them.’ (Surah Al-Jumu‘ah)
“To this, the Holy Prophetsa placed his hand on Hazrat Salman al-Farisira and said, if faith were to go up to the Pleiades, some men or a man from these people of Persian descent would surely find it.
“Essentially, both sets of narrations prophesy the same era and the same event. The narrations in Sunan at-Tirmidhi also warn the Muslim ummah that if they neglect Islamic teachings and disregard the commandments of Allah the Exalted and His Messengersa, becoming embroiled in various worldly evils, Allah will lift the blessing of faith from such a nation. Then, righteous and virtuous men from among the Persians will re-establish this faith in the world. The narration in Sahih al-Bukhari gives the glad tidings that when the world becomes corrupt as a consequence, resulting in the deprivation of the blessing of faith (which always leads to the commissioning of prophets and other chosen ones by Allah), Allah will, for the reformation of the world during this period of corruption on earth, raise righteous and virtuous men from among the Persians who will be like the reflection of the Holy Prophetsa, and their coming will be like the advent of the Holy Prophetsa. They will retrieve the faith from the Pleiades and re-establish it in the world.
“Thus, the narrations from both books are correct and support each other, giving glad tidings about the same era. We utilise the narration from Sahih al-Bukhari more in our theology because this book is deemed more authentic and is considered by the majority of Muslims to hold the highest authority after the Book of Allah.”