The field of religious eschatology represents the study of eschatological events. Islamic eschatology deals with subject of Nation of Abraham and their role in the Middle East. Considering the minimal research work done on basis of scientific knowledge, it is the failure of Islamic scholarship to not be able to provide guidance to the followers of Islam as eschatology is directly linked with Quranic methodology for symbolic interpretationism and relies on evidence from Prophetic traditions for e.g., the Surah Al-Kahf is associated with the topic of eschatological events which can be interpreted through certain type of approach based upon foundational basis of religious symbolism. As an Abrahamic religion, the Islamic faith calls Jews and Christians to inter-faith dialogue. Therefore, it is mandatory to study the other religions under the banner of Nation of Abraham. This also implies that Quran supports Islam as final version of Truth but not the sole source of Absolute Truth. Religious eschatology is as much part of Christianity and Judaism as it is linked to Islamic principles and teachings. The three religions of the Nation of Abraham are awaiting the Messiah. The Muslims and Christians refer to Jesus Christ (Prophet Essa) as the True Messiah. The Jews reject the Messianic authority of Jesus Christ, the son of Mary (Mariam).

The reference to Jesus Christ as the True Messiah and the Jews awaiting their Messiah depicts that the Nation of Abraham is preparing for the Messianic age. Eschatological events indicate the Messianic Age as the Last. However, Quran symbolically lays emphasis on the study of religious eschatology in the Surah Al-Kahf which mentions four cases as the trials for mankind during the time of False Messiah. Amongst the four cases, the case of Zulqarnain refers to Trial of Power. It is further correlated with the mention of Gog-Magog in Surah Al-Anbiya. Zulqarnain literally translates as ‘Two Ages or epochs.’ Following the interpretation based on religious symbolism of eschatological events, the Messianic Age is the Second and Last Age. Therefore, question arises regarding the first age with respect to the trial of power. Historians refer to Zulqarnain as the Cyrus the Great who ruled over Persia and Media. Essentially similar to the Power and Authority given to Prophet Solomon, the historical figure of Zulqarnain was ruler of the Ruling State of the world. Prophet Solomon was the Ruler of the Holy State of Israel which was also the Ruling State of the world. However, Holy Israel lost its esteemed status and fell into ruin after the Assyrian aggression. In ancient time, the Egyptians, Persians, Romans and Assyrians held status as possessors of the Ruling State of the world. Question: How is First Age (ancient times) relevant to the events occurring in the Second and LAST Age (Modern times)? The second age is the Messianic Age in which the eschatological events revolve around the Messianic figure who is prophecised to rule over the Ruling State of the world. The Governance of Ruling State is central idea.

The Ruling State of the world does not have a negative connotation on basis of religious symbolism. A Ruling State can use its power and authority to punish an oppressor as indicated in story of Zulqarnain building wall to protect people from the attacks of warring tribes. In contemporary era, the eschatological bearings suggest that the rise of British and America as Ruling State of the world is the Rise of Modern Western civilization. Despite the secular orientation, there is an obsession of Europe with the religious status of Jerusalem. The transitional period between the two world wars witnessed the transfer of power from Britain to America. The Islamic Institution of Caliphate was replaced with concept of Nation-State. There is an interesting point to note that the basic and underlying notion regarding power in the source of secular and religious scholarship is similar i.e., Power cannot be used or obtained through undue influence or forceful intervention. In Islamic faith, the most valid and relevant example is the moral struggle of Imam Hussain. It is closely associated with the role of Principles of Natural Law in ensuring the Social and Public welfare. Secular Democracy and Religious institution desist actions which conform to undue influence or forceful intervention to grab power and authority. It is not attached with idea of Nation-State but with the idea of serving for purpose of Social and Public welfare. However, the Ruling States in the second age (Messianic age) are part of the Nation of Abraham. Israel is poised to emerge as the third and last ruling state. Islamic eschatology depicts the Messianic rule of Prophet Jesus over the Holy State of Israel. However, Israel will have to forcefully maintain credibility and legitimacy through any possible means. The advancement from regional to global dictatorship is an element of blockage for social and public welfare. Therefore, the return of Messiah is to restore Peace, Balance and Justice. The Quran, therefore, lays emphasis on role of Romans and Byzantines (Christians) in the Surah Ar-Rum as a faction of Christians will resist oppression.

The events mentioned in Islamic eschatology can be interpreted on basis of ‘Quranic methodology’ and ‘religious symbolism,’ associated with Prophetic traditions. The cities of Madinah, Damascus and Constantinople are mentioned as important towns in the Second and Last Age. The Prophetic traditions mention the eschatological events connected with the role and status of cities in the Second Age. The observation of current events occurring in the global affairs indicates the growing importance of religious eschatology in order to explain the reality of events and truth. Israel as the Ruling State of the world can use power and authority either for Punishing or Rewarding. However, the role of Muslims is to assist the ‘True’ Christians amongst the followers of Jesus Christ to gain upper hand and establish rule in the city of Jerusalem. This also requires fighting oppression and overcoming hypocrisy. Secular ideas and religious teachings revolve around conduct for Governance as part of humanitarian agenda. It is linked with Moral compass towards Social welfare by resisting undue influence or forceful intervention in the Power Structure. According to religious eschatology, ‘Power is based on the foundations of Faith.’

The trial of Power for Muslims in the Middle East in Islamic eschatology is associated with the figure of Sufyani. Prophetic traditions reported from Abdullah Bin Masood and Thawban as well as Huzayfa and Abu Hurayra depict the content and context of the dynamics in the second and last age. It is not possible to interpret the eschatological events without the application of International Relations, Political Sciences, Economics, Finance, Business Management etc. Governance occupies the most strategic and central role in religious and secular approach to exercise of Power and Authority. A Prophetic tradition mentions the four phases of Governance style based on type of political leadership: (i) Genuine Caliphate (ii) Incompetent Kingship (ii) Weak Despots (iv) Tyrannical rulers. The four phases indicate the gradual decline of religious and political leadership of the Muslim Ummah. The transfer of Caliphate from Arabs to Turks led to last stage in the Governance phase. The Kurdish Ayyubids laid foundation of First Islamic Republic which upheld the Institution of Pledge of Allegiance of the Caliphate. It was an exceptional case of Political leadership as it dealt with Mongol onslaught, Crusader invasion, Mamluk rivalry and weakening of Abbasid Caliphate. The transfer of Power from Kurdish Ayyubids (SyRaq) to Mamluks (Egypt as province of Ayyubid Sultanate) is an indication of the ‘Law of Succession,’ which Muslim Ummah has lacked over the 1400 years of Islamic history. It was the shift from political and religious leadership from Kingdom to despots. The Mamluks were instrumental in separating Religion and Politics. This also marked the burial of Governance spectrum amongst the ranks of Muslims since the Islamic scholarship and Muslim leadership failed to preserve the Institution of Pledge of Allegiance and the Law of Succession, resulting in complete denial of Principles of Natural Law. As part of Nation of Abraham, it is the duty of Muslims to uphold the moral struggle of Imam Hussain. It was practiced by the Kurdish Ayyubids as they waged moral struggle for Strategic Governance in order to maintain principled stance against opponent forces which challenged the legitimacy and credibility of Caliphate. In contemporary era, Israeli Global dictatorship challenges the idea of Strategic Governance based on Absolute Truth.

The solution to Kurdish Quest for Independence does not lie in ‘Kurdistan.’ The answer is restoration of genuine democratic, political and constitutional struggle with moral compass towards social and public welfare. In contemporary era, the Kurdish people are in close proximity with the cities mentioned in religious eschatology. Therefore, it is necessary to link role of Kurds with ‘current events,’ which are based on idea of pursuing Strategic Governance. Kurds should pursue moral struggle for Freedom. A confederational status of Kurdistan with constitutional status allowed from Turkey, Iran, Iraq and Syria is the most realistic option. In contemporary era, the Kurdish struggle is based on achieving Nation-State but that is not possible. The Kurds can follow the legacy. Following the Principles of Natural Law, the Kurds can play significant role through the idea of Law of Succession which is associated with preserving Institution of Pledge of Allegiance. It sets standards for ensuring practice of Strategic Governance. Furthermore, the application of different and various fields of study suggest that eschatological events occurring in the Middle East have already set a course towards the culmination of the historical process.

The Prophetic traditions reported from Companions of the Holy Prophet indicate the sequence of events which can be further interpreted on basis of religious symbolism. The trial of Power is associated with the eschatological figure of Sufyani. There are certain events which are prophecised to occur before, during and after the advent of Sufyani. Prophetic traditions state that the three individuals will rise after the death of Khalifa. The three individuals are Ashab, Abqa and Sufyani. The appearance and emergence of Sufyani is depicted in following terms: ‘from depths of Damascus.’ However, the symbolic interpretationsim method suggests that role of Russia as balancer will allow Damascus to return to center stage of world politics. During that time, Sufyani will emerge. Furthermore, the treasure can be the economic projects like NEOM, CPEC-OBOR, E-CPEC+ etc. The groups will fight for the treasure. Ashab from Ash-Shaam (Syria, Jordan, Palestine, Lebanon) will contest Abqa from Egypt. However, People of the West (Maghreb i.e., North African counties including Algeria, Morocco, Libya etc) will come to aid to the People of Egypt and will manage to overthrow Abqa. Prophetic traditions state that Abqa will bring the Romans with him but will be defeated at the Battle of Alexandria. In the meantime, Sufyani will rise. Initially, Sufyani will defeat People of the East and the People of the West simultaneously. However, the Prophetic traditions also depict that the People of the East (allies of the black banners) will be present in the SyRaq corridor. Questions: How do these events correlate with current events? The following events occuriing in single month of June 2018: uprising in Sudan, the relentless opposition to Ethiopian Army and the death of ex-Egyptian President Morsi. This is part of activism of People of the West. The unrest in Iraq in October 2019 is also reminder of the proxy war in the Middle East which were part of Iranian pressure on Pro-Israeli NATO after the multiple episodes of Saudi oilfields being targeted. It was a pressure tactic from Iranian Religious leadership before the Turks and Americans decided to initiate military action in Northern Syria. Similar to how Pro-Israeli NATO seeks to encircle Egypt, the other target is Syria. Russia is a major player in Syria. Pro-Israeli NATO seeks to annex Northern Syria similar to rise of ‘authouritarian stooges’ in areas adjoining NEOM who would be powerful than Heads of States.  Sufyani can possibly be person who gains power and authority in Trans-Jordan. The Prophetic traditions mention Ghouta as the most favourable location for Headquarters of Muslims in the Second and Last Age. Furthermore, the role of Turks and Romans (possibly, Russians or NATO) is also mentioned in Damascus. This also relates to Damascus as the international center for diplomacy where Western and Eastern Europeans will contest to gain upper hand. This contest involves the activities of Pro-Israeli NATO in Egypt and SyRaq. The Turkish Military action in Northern Syria (October 2019) is possibly an agreement between Turkey and America regarding the role of Pro-Israeli NATO in Syria. The eschatological events mentioned in the Prophetic traditions categorically fits into current scenario. The Sufyani will defeat Turks and Romans (Western or Eastern Europeans) in Qirqisya (Circesium) city in Syria where one of three parties of Black banners are prophecised to raise flag for ‘Rule of Abbasids’ in comparison to other two parties of Black Banners raising flags for Progeny of Fatima (Az Zawra near Baghdad in Iraq) and those calling for Self-rule (Kufa). Sufyani will symbolically and militarily defeat the forces at Kufa and Az-Zawra, too. However, the alliance of Black Banners and People of the East will lead to rise of force which will then temporarily inflict defeat on Sufyani until the Prophecised Imam appears to put an end to Sufyani’s rule. The purpose of connecting the nodes is not to merely suggest the sequence of events but to adhere to the eschatological position on role of Absolute Truth (Principles of Natural Law, the Institution of Pledge of Allegiance and Law of Succession). Kurds, therefore, can play role in uniting Syria, Iraq, Turkey and Iran for confederational status of the Kurdish regional Governments. This is part of restoration of genuine democratic, political and constitutional struggle with ‘moral compass towards Social welfare,’ in an attempt to oppose the oppression of Israeli Global Military Dictatorship based on undue influence and forceful intervention in the power structure. These events depict that Pro-Israeli NATO will gain upper hand in affairs of Muslim countries but the joint struggle launched by the opponents of NATO will lead cities of Damascus and Constantinople to be returned to control of adversaries of Pro-Israeli NATO. This seems extremely far-fetched idea without acknowledging the role of Kurds. The failure of Pro-Israeli NATO will lead to intervention by the false Messiah. According to a Prophetic tradition, a victorious Muslim Army from Indian Sub-continent will reach Damascus at the moment during which Prophet Jesus shall return.

Firstly, the role of religious symbolism and symbolic interpretationism in study of eschatological events allow researcher to draw deductive and inductive evaluations for meaningful conclusions. The presence of Romans (Pro-Israeli NATO) in Egypt and SyRaq (Syria and Iraq) in near future is inevitable. NEOM would possibly provide the ‘Authority person of NEOM’ to exercise power more than a Head of State. This will serve the agenda of Israeli Global Military Dictatorship which is nothing short of oppression through divide and rule as well as subjugation. The Gulf countries have been forced and trapped to take the bait. It is time to provide Kurds the opportunity to resume their legacy on basis of Quranic methodology as the current events are rapidly signifying an increasing role of eschatological references.