Submitted by Ikram.
Lord Headley’s views about Qadiani Dogma.
In all the beautiful religions of the world there are the evidences of that strong desire of the created to return to and be at one with the Creator, and a compassionate regard for the welfare and happiness of other is a characteristic feature of the Buddhist, Christian and Islamic Faiths, and the last named, being the simplest and most free from dogmatic encumbrances, is most likely to be the universal religion of the world. There is, as far as one can see, no class in Islam which bids for temporal power. The grandeur of the religion is uninfluenced by any such sordid considerations. Every true Muslim looks to a reward which is as far above mere mundane advantages and riches as the light of the sun is above that of the ignis fatuus. I do not myself think that Islam has anything to fear from outside attacks, or even from the unworthy misrepresentations of which I have so frequently complained, for these will fade away as the Truth becomes evident. What may cause obstruction and delay is the attempt to establish fresh sects within the great fraternity of Islam. It has always been my great delight to point to the Muslim Faith as being so free from sectarian trouble which honeycombs modern Christianity. The Sunnis and the Shiahs and the Wahabis have all very decided views and may almost be looked upon as “sects,” and in very recent years the Ahmadis Qadianis followers of Mirza Ghulam Ahmad proclaim the advent of their leader, whom they regard as the “promised Messiah.” These latest reformers insist that all those who refuse to acknowledge Mirza Ghulam Ahmad as the Messiah shall be “deprived of the light of faith” and, further, that the rejection of Mirza Ghulam Ahmad “means the rejection of the Holy Prophet Muhammad himself.” It strikes a blow at the solidarity of Islam which is greatly to be deplored. One cannot find fault with the Ahmadis (Qadianis) for thinking anything they like (it is a free country), but one may reasonably object to being excluded from the ranks of the Faithful at the behest of a small number of zealous adherents of a certain idea.
I do not propose to go into the question of the Messiahship of Mirza Ghulam Ahmad, but I may be permitted to point out that the high handed line now being followed by the Ahmadis (Qadianis) is hardly in accord with the true spirit of Islam, which, places toleration very high amongst the virtues to be encouraged.
As must be admitted by any fair-minded person, the innovation is entirely from the Ahmadis [Qadianis - comment added] who can hardly complain because questions are asked concerning the new rules. According to these rules I am led to understand that all Muslims who fail to recognize the claims of Mirza Ghulam Ahmad are to be placed outside the pale, and can no longer be regarded as true Muslims.
I look upon this as a very serious matter, for it seems like an attempt to bind the consciences of the whole Muslim world to the views of one particular sect; indeed, it reminds one of a slogan used elsewhere: “No salvation outside the Church.”
As I have said elsewhere, the Ahmadi [Qadiani - comment added] declaration appears to my simple and, I hope, unbiased mind to be far too dictatorial. It must be evident even to the most cursory observer that such ex-cathedra declarations must prove distasteful to a large proportion of the great Muslim community. Not very long ago I informed my friend the Imam of the Southfield Mosque that I could not subscribe to the views he promulgated because they savoured too much of the intolerance we complain of in another Faith [i.e. Christianity – comment added], and might almost be inspired by the spirit of the Athanasian Creed which most of us unite in condemning.
[The Strength of Islam – by Khwaja Kamaluddin/Lord Headley, pg 21-24]
“ignis fatuus” = a light that sometimes appears in the night over marshy ground and is often attributable to the combustion of gas from decomposed organic matter [Merriam Webster]
“ex-cathedra” = by virtue of or in the exercise of one’s office or position [Merriam Webster]