I am doing a research and trying to figure out an answer to my question:

Throughout centuries numerous people have claimed to be Mahdi the savior, some have been killed right away, some have died yet they have gathered some followers that are still following their claim. So how are we to distinguish a fake Mahdi from The Mahdi himself? What are the key attributes that once someone claims to be Mahdi we could assess and then say: "No! This person is a fake" Or "Subhanallah he is the Mahdi". Please give me answers that are logical, yet with proof from Quran and narrations, I would like to hear both Sunni and Shiite views.

Just have in mind that I am considering that surely there would be a savior known as Mahdi.

  • 1
    I doubt anyone would be able to proof the Mahdi from the Quran, only narrations.
    – user12537
    Jul 31, 2015 at 0:36
  • 1
    May be it has not come in the quran directly but narrations can be good enough to prove a matter next to the quran. Also, there are many items which are not available in the quran but we believe and perform them like how many rek'ats do salats have and etc. Jul 31, 2015 at 13:40
  • 2
    Sunni and Shias have difference over some aspects of al-Mahdi due to their different hadith corpora. So you should study all sects for information. But the most remarkable difference is that Twelver Shias believe that al-Mahdi is already born and currently in occultation. They identify Muhammad ibn Hassan as the promised Mahdi.
    – infatuated
    Aug 1, 2015 at 7:06
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    @infatuated For a man who is to rule the whole planet, there is to be something that no one else can have...as Muhammad Abdullah mentioned, aid from the sky is something I believe as a sign of a divine proof; yet I want a Quranic support to it.
    – Thaqalain
    Aug 1, 2015 at 16:36

4 Answers 4


First of all, I ought to appreciate the response of @Muhammad Abdullah as a relatively nice answer. In truth, he termed some characteristics and signs regarding Imam Mahdi and reappearance which could be helpful for you in order to identify the real Mahdi (A.J.). There are some or even several characteristics which together give us certainty concerning actual Mahdi (A.J.). Briefly speaking, I name some of them.

It is narrated that Hazrat Qaem (Imam Mahdi (A.J.)) reappears, (next to the Kaaba) he will stand between Rokn and Maqaam, and says five sentences:

الأول: ألا یا أهل العالم أنا الإمام القائم

الثانی: ألا یا أهل العالم أنا الصمصام المنتقم.

الثالث: ألا یا أهل العالم إن جدّی الحسین قتلوه عطشان.

الرابع: ألا یا أهل العالم إنّ جدّی الحسین علیه السّلام طرحوه عریانا؛

الخامس: ألا یا أهل العالم إنّ جدّی الحسین علیه السّلام سحقوه عدوانا


یزدى حایرى، على‏، إلزام الناصب فی إثبات الحجة الغائب (عج)، محقق، مصحح، عاشور، على‏، ج ‏2، ص 233، بیروت، مؤسسة الأعلمى‏، چاپ اول‏، 1422ق.

On the other hand, it is narrated that:

it will be heard a heavenly (celestial) call which it has been interpreted as Saihah or Sowt as well. (Apparently it would be at the night of Friday and likewise it will be coincided with twenty third night of Ramadan. And everybody on the earth will hear it.

Source: شیخ صدوق، کمال الدین و تمام النعمة، محقق و مصحح: غفاری، علی اکبر، ج 2، ص 650، دار الکتب الاسلامیة، تهران، چاپ دوم، 1395ق. ر. ک: علائم ظهور، پاسخ ۴۹، و بخش شیعه چه می‌گوید در سایت اسلام کوئست ذیل «امام مهدی».

Furthermore it is quoted that there are five certain signs for His coming that include:

  1. The rise of Seyyed al-Yamani
  2. The rise of Sofiani
  3. The heavenly (celestial) call
  4. Murder of the pure soul (nafs az-zakiyya)
  5. Subsidence of the land of Baida’

Source: کمال الدین و تمام النعمة، ج 2، ص 650.

Citing attributes regarding his apparent form would be helpful as well. Al-Mahdi looks:

  • Good looking
  • Middle length (not tall, not short)
  • Sweet-smelling
  • High-direness (awe-inspiring)
  • Having a young face (despite being aged)
  • And more...

Source: اکمال الدین، ج 2، ص 65۲ / [8] نک: موعود شناسی ص 437


By paying heed to the above-mentioned items and apparent characteristics, you’ll be more certain about that. Good luck mate.


www.islamquest.net (1)

www.islamquest.net (2)

www.islamquest.net (3)


Imam Mahdi is the last of the minor signs and the beginning of the major sign. So he's like a hint for the start of the major signs. There are many signs that will precede him, a general and very important sign is that he will come at a time when there is great confutation, intense disputes and violent deaths. When people are afflicted by disturbance and experiencing great fear. Calamities will fall upon the people, so much so that a man shall not find a shelter to shelter himself from oppression. There will be battles and fitnas before his appearance. Every time a fitna has come to end, another will start, spread and intensify. The people will be troubled to such an extent that they will long for death. It is then that Imam Mahdi will be sent.

"In Dhul Qaidah (Islamic Month) the tribes will fight, Hajis will be looted and there will be a battle in Mina in which many people will be slain and blood will flow until it runs over the Jamaratul Aqba. Their companion (referring to Imam Mahdi) will flee to a point between the corner and the Maqaam and will be forced to accept people's allegiance." (Al-Fitan, Nuaim ibn Hammad)

"A man will emerge from the depths of Damascus. He will be called Sufyani. Most of those who follow him will be from the tribe of Kalb. He will kill by ripping the stomachs of women and even kill the children. A man from my family will appear in the Haram, the news of his advent will reach the Sufyani and he will send to him one of his armies. He (referring to Imam Mahdi) will defeat them. They will then travel with whoever remains until they come to a desert and they will be swallowed. None will be saved except the one who had informed the others about them."

> Abu Saeed Al-Khudri has repoted that the Messenger of Allah said "He will be sent at a time of intense disputes and differences among people and earthquakes..." (Ahmed)

Physical Attributes:

He will be of a medium height.

He will have a broad forhead and a prominent nose.

I am just doubtful about his name because Hazrat Mohammad (S.A.W.S) said that that his name will be like His name and same goes for his Father but AllhulAlam. I am not quite sure if he meant what we think. I think, and this is my point of view, He (Mahdi) will be called by the name of Hazrat Mohammad (Saws) because He will have the same attributes like His Grand Father Hazrat Mohammad (S.A.W.S)

  • 1
    If I am not mistaking you mentioned some signs that are related to the situation or environment, which is independent from the person, I mean many people can come today and say " oh look at Iraq, Egypt, Syria, Lybia,Ukraine,etc. so now is the time". I want something that would make him stand out, any person with a claim and medium height and a broad forhead with the name of Muhammad could be that person. As there have been people like Ahmad Qadiyani, Ali Muhammad Bab, Mahdi Sudani...though they lacked the name, but again name isn't enough...people can change their name to have people fooled
    – Thaqalain
    Jul 31, 2015 at 13:03
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    Only the true believers will recognise Him. Yes @asma22 Ofcourse I totally agree with you because anyone can proclaim that he is Imam Mahdi etc. Imam Mahdi will not proclaim that He is the Mahdi. People will force Him and give him baiyah(alegence) to become there Imam. He will be hunted down in Madinah, so He will run with his followers towards Makkah. People will recognise Him and will tell that He must be some well known person. He will hide and the people will take him out and give Him the baiyah. If you see anyone proclaiming he is the Mahdi Khalifullah, than he must be misguided. Jul 31, 2015 at 13:55
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    One question people always ask, Why does Imam Mahdi doesn't want to proclaim Himeself as the real Mahdi. It's a responsibilty and controlling the Ummah is a great deal so he doesn't want to take that responsibility. Let's go to the signs that will proceed after He has been given aligence: A call from the sky will be heard by the people making it clear saying "He is the Mahdi, follow Him"! and AllulAllam. Jul 31, 2015 at 14:00
  • @Mohammad_abdullah "A call from the sky will be heard by the people making it clear saying". Can you please back that up with Quran and narrations, since that is something that something that will bring Awe to everyone across the globe, I mean that it's a key attribute, since no one other than God can pull up something like that, therefore the person linking himself to that is true
    – Thaqalain
    Jul 31, 2015 at 19:23

(2:248) And their Prophet said to them: “The Sign of his dominion is that in his reign the Ark, wherein is inner peace for you, will be brought back to you, and the sacred relics left behind by the house of Moses and the house of Aaron borne by angels.270 Truly in that is a Sign for you, if indeed you are people of faith.”


How can I tell if someone is truly Mahdi the savior?


Syed Mohd/Prncesyedo

THIS IS GENUINE HADITH by Tirmidhi. Answer the questions asked by Tirmidhi in his book of Khatm al-Awliya: "He [Hazrat Mahdi ] is someone who acquires the truth and closely resembles his forefather [Muhammad (sas)]. (HE) THE TRULY AL MAHDI DOES NOT SPEAK ARABIC VERY WELL, but he is no different to him in moral terms. HE WILL BE OF MEDIUM HEIGHT. THE AGE OF PROPERTY WILL COME TO AN END WITH HIM, AND SOVEREIGNTY WILL END WITH HIM. His essence is spiritual and humane.

What I as Muslim understand that The truely & One only Imam Al Mahdi would not let anybody know him because he is very very TOP Secret chosen straight from God Almighty only knew him & of course Al Mahdi himself knew he is Al Mahdi, last verily not least he would not reveal himself to public to avoid misunderstanding of his existence. He (Al Mahdi) never holds any black flag & not from Khorasan either because that Hadith is 50 50 not Sahih (not genuine). Peaceful Mind Brothers and Sisters: http://prncesm.ws/Peaceful_Mind

Yes, Imam Al Mahdi will bring peace and harmony with God Al Mighty The Most Gracious & The Most Merciful help of course.

Yes, I have forgotten to add some things here, sorry to say I personally do not believe Al Mahdi himself must be Totally from the Arab Nation, might be & most porbable Al Mahdi-related to Prophets Muhammad s.a.w. How if 3000 Arabs came forward that can talk Arab language and the name Mohammad Ibn Abdullah since they were born, so of course, difficult for Muslims to recognize the TRUE & ONE only AL-MAHDI not even by the name Muhammad Bin Abdullah, sorry to say this again. Nobody knows where Al Mahdi born except himself & God Al mIghty. Has Al Mahdi already Exist? As & when or How or from where He Al Mahdialaihissalam should exist, God Al Mighty Knew Best.

  • "THIS IS GENUINE HADITH by Tirmidhi" <-- Do you have any references to back this up? Because every single source I find indicates it's a quote by Ibn Arabi, not a hadith, much less a genuine hadith, much less a genuine hadith by Tirmidhi.
    – goldPseudo
    Oct 15, 2017 at 20:43
  • @goldPseudo hey, not sure If this can be a separate question on Islam SE or not, but I just wanted to ask you, are Ibn Arabi and Ibn Al Arabi the same? and can you provide a small explanation about both of them in a comment, please?
    – user44632
    Sep 12, 2021 at 13:15

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