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Archive for October, 2019

Qadiani Jamaat translation of a statement in ‘Haqiqat-ul-Wahy’

Tuesday, October 29th, 2019

In the Lahore Ahmadiyya literature, a statement by Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad from an Arabic section in his book Haqiqat-ul-Wahy has long been given as follows:

“And I have been called nabi by Allah by way of metaphor, not by way of reality.”

(Haqiqat-ul-Wahy, Zameema, pp. 64–65; Ruhani Khaza’in, v. 22, pp. 688–689).

Our friend Kamrul Hasan Siam came across the Qadiani Jamaat translation of the complete book Haqiqat-ul-Wahy and searched for long to find this statement in it, and failing to find it he then asked me where it was. So I looked in the Qadiani translation and found it in the following words:

“I have been granted the name ‘Prophet’ by Allah, not in its original sense [of being raised independently], but as a subordinate Prophet.” (p. 878)

The statement in Hazrat Mirza sahib’s book is exactly as we have been translating it, the word for metaphor being majaz and the word for reality being haqiqat. A person being called “prophet” by way of metaphor means that he is not a prophet, and Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad has made this point further clear by adding: “not by way of reality.”

If there could be any doubt about what he means by metaphor and reality, it is removed by his expla­nation, earlier in the same book, of how prophets of God were called as ‘sons of God’. He writes:

“In the earlier scriptures the perfectly righteous ones have been called sons of God. This also did not mean that in reality (haqiqat) they were sons of God, for this is heresy and God is clear of having sons and daughters. The meaning is, in fact, that God had manifested Himself as an image in the clear mirror of (the hearts of) these perfectly righteous ones. …

As to Jesus being called son of God in the Gospels, if Christians had remained within the limit of saying that just as Abraham, Isaac, Ishmael, Jacob, Joseph, Moses, David, Solomon etc. were called sons of God in a metaphorical (isti‘arah) sense in the books of God, in the same way is Jesus so called, then there would have been no objection. For, just as these prophets were called son metaphorically in the books of the earlier prophets, our Holy Prophet has been called God in some prophecies. The fact is that neither were all those prophets sons of God, nor is the Holy Prophet God. All these are meta­phorical expressions based on love.”

(Haqiqat-ul-Wahy, pp. 63–64; Ruhani Khaza’in, v. 22, p. 65–66).

Just as, in the earlier scriptures, prophets had been called ‘sons of God’ or even ‘God’ metaphorically, similarly it was by way of metaphor that Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad was called ‘prophet’ in his revelation and in a Hadith prophecy about him. According to Islam, the prophets did not become sons of God or God in reality by any stretch of the imagination. However, Christians took Jesus for son of God in reality, which was a great error. This amply illustrates what is meant by meta­phor as opposed to reality. Similarly, Hazrat Mirza sahib was not a prophet in reality, and it is a great error to consider him so.

It is clear that the Qadiani translation of this statement has no justification whatsoever. They have converted “prophet by way of reality” into “independent prophet” and converted “being called prophet by way of metaphor” into “being a subordinate prophet”, while the statement contains no mention of independent or subordinate at all.

— Zahid Aziz

English Translation of Sahih al-Bukhari, Parts 1 to 7, now online

Monday, October 21st, 2019

Please see this link to this new publication.

The work Faḍl al-Bārī is an Urdu translation of Ṣaḥīḥ al-Bukhārī with extensive explanatory notes by Maulana Muhammad Ali. Its first volume, consisting of nearly the first half of Bukhari, was published in 1932, and the rest as the second volume in 1937.

Maulana Muhammad Ali, shortly before his death in 1951, had started an Eng­lish translation of this voluminous work. He reached only as far as Book 2, ch. 21, and left the manuscript with Mau­lana Aftab-ud-Din Ahmad to continue the translation. Mau­lana Aftab-ud-Din Ahmad was a scholar and missionary of the Lahore Ahmadiyya Movement who had, during the 1930s, served as Imam of the Woking Mosque and Muslim Mission in Woking, Surrey, England. He had also been editor of the Islamic Review and was since 1950 editor of The Light, the Lahore Ahmadiyya weekly organ. Sadly he died in 1956, having completed the first three Parts and some of the fourth Part. The first three Parts were published in 1956, 1962 and 1973 respectively, and the incomplete fourth Part was serialised in The Light between 1983 and 1985.

(Note: The collection of Bukhari has, like the Holy Quran, been divided into 30 roughly equal parts, irrespective of subject-matter.)

In 2015 we decided to continue the translation and take it up to the beginning of Part 8, since that is the point where Bukhari completes his coverage of the fundamentals of Islam. The Parts that we completed were placed online individually as they were done, and now, in October 2019, we have combined them into one volume (see link given above).

There is, of course, a well known English translation of Sahih Bukhari by Dr Muhammad Muhsin Khan. However, it contains almost no commentary. I am unaware of any other English translation of Sahih Bukhari. In Urdu there are several translations and commentaries of Bukhari. So it appears that our work is the only English translation with commentary of Bukhari (although, of course, it consists of only the first 2046 reports out of the total of 7563 reports in Bukhari).

In the preface to his Urdu work, Maulana Muhammad Ali wrote (and this part of his preface is included in our English translation):

“I have to confess my handicap that I lack a sufficiently broad knowledge of the field of Ḥadīth. Most of all, I regret that, for the translation of Bukhārī, I could not benefit from the vast and detailed knowledge of the learned Maulana Nur-ud-Din, as I had done in case of translating the Holy Qur’ān. This regret was expressed by the Maulana [Nur-ud-Din] himself in the last days of his life when he said to me: “The Qur’ān has been done, but Bukhārī remains.”

I must also mention here that this shortcoming of mine has to some extent been removed by the participation of Maulana Ahmad in this work, who shared with me the task of writing the footnotes. I also received much help from Maulana Abdus Sattar.”

The Maulana Ahmad mentioned here was the paternal grandfather of the esteemed contributor to this blog Mr Abdul Momin.

— Zahid Aziz