A mong the Signs of the Last Day as disclosed by Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) is that “time would move faster – so that a whole year would pass like a month, a month would pass like a week, a week like a day, a day like an hour, and an hour like the amount of time it takes to kindle a fire.” Why so?
He explained that the perception of time moving faster would be in consequence of the ‘remembrance’ of Allah Most High (Dhikr) departing from the heart, and a preoccupation with the worldly life (Dunyah) taking exclusive possession of the heart. The consequence of this spiritual vacuum would be that “people would make business agreements with one another and scarcely anyone would fulfill his trust”, and “it would be said that among such and such a tribe there is a trustworthy man. People would remark of how intelligent, excellent and resolute a man he is while (in fact) he would not have as much faith (in Allah) in his heart as a grain of a mustard seed.”
The blessed Prophet also warned that such would be a time of great betrayals in which “temptations would be presented to men’s hearts as a reed mat is woven stick by stick, and any heart which is impregnated by them would have a black mark put in it. The result would be that hearts would be of two kinds, one, white like a white stone, which would not be harmed by temptation as long as the heavens and earth endure, and the other, black and dust-colored like a vessel which is upset, incapable of recognizing what is reputable, or rejecting what is disreputable, but being enveloped by its passion.”
There can be no doubt whatsoever that this so-called age of ‘progress’ is, indeed, the age when these signs of the Last Day have appeared. This is the age of secularism. Even the state is secular, and so too politics, the economy, education, the market, the media, sports, entertainment, etc. The dining room and the bedroom are today also secularized. Secularism begins by ‘excluding God’, and culminates by ‘denying Him’! How so? When knowledge is secularized it leads to the belief that knowledge comes from only one source, i.e., external observation and rational enquiry. The implication of the adoption of this epistemology is as follows: since this material world is the only world we can ever ‘know’ in this way, it follows that this is the only world that really ‘exists’.
Thus it is that secularism leads inevitably to materialism, i.e., the acceptance, for all practical purposes, that there is no reality beyond material reality. And materialism has led, naturally so, to a world of greed, lies, promiscuity, injustice, oppression, godlessness, and great betrayals since the moral foundations of society cannot be sustained without the spiritual heart of religion. And such a world is not bothered in the least with such things as the ‘remembrance’ of Allah Most High.
What is ‘remembrance’? When a man visits in his heart the woman that he loves, he shudders as an enchanting fragrance envelops his heart. It happens every time! When he hears her name mentioned,
the same thing happens. That is ‘remembrance’! Clearly ‘remembrance’ is only possible when there is true love. And so it is really when love of Allah Most High departs from the heart that ‘time’ moves faster and yet faster. Hence it follows that when sincere love for Allah Most High allows truth (al-Haq) to enter and take possession of the heart, that ‘time’ would surely move slower and yet slower, until that truth (al-Haq) transports us to a ‘timeless’ world.