New area: Miracles, Myths, Mistakes and Matters — See Title Page and List of Contents
— latest, 25th April 2016: Allah Who? An Evolutionary Perspective
Refuting the gross distortion and misrepresentation of the Quran, the Prophet Muhammad and Islam, made by the critics of Islam
Submitted by Rashid Jahangiri.
In a news item published in Deccan Chronicle, March 7, 2016 issue, a Kerala High Court Muslim Judge Justice B. Kamal Pasha questions Sharia (Islamic Law). I was under the impression that Indian Superior Courts judges are more sensible than Pakistani Superior Courts judges. I am disappointed.
I wish someone can tell this honorable judge: you make a law allowing women to have four husbands. But it will not work. It is not natural. It is not practical. Women will soon realize it is nothing but their exploitation. They themselves will not practice it.
Condition of a woman having four husbands is worse than a prostitute. Prostitute has a right to refuse to have sex with a customer, if she is not interested that day for number of reasons, her health, physical tiredness, pregnancy, postpartum, nursing a new born etc. Moreover when she decides to have sex it is on her terms. And she receives money for her service. Compare her to a woman who has four husbands. This woman could be in last trimester of pregnancy from husband #1, and husband #2 does not care for her physical condition and wants to have sex; she delivers baby and husband #3 does not care as it is his turn and he wants to have sex; she has to breast feed her new born and husband # 4 has no feeling for new born and wants his share of sex… and cycle keeps on repeating in other situations too. In her ordeal she is unable to refuse without risking her marriage, and also unable to receive some compensation either.
Link to news article:
Kerala judge slams Muslim law, asks why women can’t have 4 husbands
Published Mar 7, 2016, 6:16 am IST
Submitted by Rashid Jahangiri.
In the recent weeks there has been escalation of conflict between Saudi Arabia and Iran. In last few years they have been fighting proxy wars in multiple Muslim countries. Before that there was almost a decade long Gulf war in 80s. In addition to these direct conflicts there has been an ongoing Shia Sunni sectarian conflict in country such as Pakistan. We cannot go back to first Islamic century and fix honest political mistakes that became religious conflict, and with time it only kept on increasing in magnitude.
More than 100 years ago Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad sahib had envisioned how this conflict will only further increase. With development of technology to influence masses and increase in lethality of weapons it is all obvious. In recent days I reread HMGA book ‘Sirr-ul-Khilafah’ (The Secret of Caliphate). I wish fiery speakers among Shia and Sunni had read this book, many innocent Muslims lives could have been spared and Muslim world resources saved. Whether religious and political leaders on both side realize or not, but they will have to come to acceptance of what is written in this book for prosperity, peace, and development in Muslim world. Teachings of Divine appointees are followed one way or other.
Sirr-ul-Khilafah (The Secret of Caliphate):
by Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad of Qadian
Mortality of Prophets
Christmas and Prophet Muhammad’s birthday come together in December 2015
by Zahid Aziz
“Just as there was great regret that there were no arrangements in Lahore for holding this great occasion of remembrance, there was equal pleasure that on 14th April, corresponding to 12th Rabi-ul-awwal 1326 A.H., on behalf of the Anjuman-i Ahmadiyya Lahore a magnificent meeting was organised by Khwaja Kamal-ud-Din, lawyer, High Court. Capable speakers delighted the audience by telling them about the life of the Holy Prophet and his excellent and praise-worthy qualities. It is hoped that in future many people in Lahore will organise events for such a sacred remembrance.”
“And We did not send before you (O Prophet Muhammad) any messengers but they surely ate food and went about in the markets.” (25:20)
“We did not give them (i.e., prophets) bodies not eating food, nor did they live forever.” (21:8)
“And certainly We sent messengers before you (O Prophet Muhammad) and appointed for them wives and children.” (13:38)
“We are nothing but mortals like yourselves, but Allah bestows favours (i.e., message of guidance) on whom He pleases of His servants.” (14:11).
“I am only a mortal like you — it is revealed to me that your God is one God.” (18:110 and 41:6)
“Am I anything but a mortal messenger?” (17:93)
“They said: You are only mortals like ourselves, nor has the Beneficent revealed anything — you only lie.” (36:15).
“…their messengers came to them with clear arguments, but they said: Shall mortals guide us?” (64:6)
“And the chiefs of his (Noah’s) people who disbelieved … said: He is only a mortal like you, eating what you eat and drinking what you drink.” (23:33)
“Their messengers came to them with clear arguments, but … They said: You are nothing but mortals like us; you wish to turn us away from what our fathers used to worship” (14:9–10)
“…they say: Has Allah raised up a mortal to be a messenger?” (17:94)
“And they say (about Prophet Muhammad): What a Messenger is this? He eats food and goes about in the markets.” (25:7)
“The Messiah, son of Mary, was only a messenger — messengers had indeed passed away before him. And his mother was a truthful woman. They both used to eat food.” (5:75)
“And Muhammad is but a messenger — messengers have already passed away before him. If then he dies or is killed, will you turn back upon your heels?” (3:144)
“Certainly you have in the Messenger of Allah an excellent exemplar for him who hopes in Allah and the Last Day, and remembers Allah much.” (33:21)
He was a husband, father, worker, teacher, soldier and general, ruler, lawmaker and judge, and had all kinds of social, business and official dealings with both ordinary people and their leaders. He forgave his persecuting enemies after overcoming them, he overlooked the faults of his followers even if he had suffered as a result, and he punished tyrants for wrongs they had inflicted on innocent persons. Hence he was an excellent exemplar and a perfect model in all walks of life, and he not only gave practical rules of guidance, but gave by his life a practical illustration of all those rules.
How the Holy Prophet Muhammad was an “excellent exemplar” is mentioned in the Quran in the following verse, where God says to the Holy Prophet:
“And surely you have sublime morals.” (68:4)
The word for “sublime” here is ‛aẓīm, which also means “very great”. The exalted height of his moral values and conduct made him an exemplar for his followers.
“Certainly there is for you in them a good example, for him who hopes for Allah and the Last Day.” (60:6)
For preaching the message of truth and adhering to it under great difficulties, the Quran asks Muslims to follow the example of Jesus and his disciples:
“O you who believe, be helpers (in the cause) of Allah, as Jesus, son of Mary, said to the disciples: Who are my helpers in the cause of Allah? The disciples said: We are helpers (in the cause) of Allah.” (61:14)
“The first of all the commandments is: ‘Hear, O Israel, the Lord our God, the Lord is one. And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength.’ This is the first commandment. And the second, like it, is this: ‘You shall love your neighbour as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.” (Mark, 12:29–31).
In another place, giving the same answer, Jesus added: “On these two commandments hang all the Law and the (teachings of the) Prophets.” (Matthew, 22:40)
The Quran says the same in these words:
“And they say: None shall enter the Garden (of heaven) except he who is a Jew, or the Christians. These are their vain desires. Say: Bring your proof if you are truthful. No, whoever submits himself entirely to Allah and he is the doer of good (to others), he has his reward from his Lord, and there is no fear for such nor shall they grieve.” (2:111–112)
Here the Quran rejects the idea that merely by calling oneself a Jew or Christian, or anything else, entry into heaven is guaranteed to you. Submitting “entirely” (or your whole self) to God has the same meaning as what Jesus said about loving God “with all your heart”, etc., and being a “doer of good to others” is the same as loving your neighbour as you love yourself.
“It is not for a mortal that Allah should give him the Book and the (authority of) judgment and the (rank of) prophethood, then he should tell people: Be my servants besides Allah’s; but (he would say): Be worshippers of the Lord because you teach the Book and because you study (it); nor would he command you to take the angels and the prophets for lords. Would he command you to disbelieve after you submit?” (3:79-80)
As every prophet was a mortal, no prophet taught his followers to worship him in addition to worshipping God, nor could any prophet teach this to his followers. Both Jesus and the Holy Prophet Muhammad came to make people into worshippers of the One God and to do good to everyone around them.
Some forty years ago the government of Pakistan declared that being an Ahmadi was incompatible with being a Muslim, and therefore by law it deprived Ahmadis of being Muslim citizens of the state. This fuelled discrimination against Ahmadis, their ostracism in all fields of life, and their social denigration and exclusion.
At that time, and since then, many Muslims in Pakistan urged Ahmadis to adopt a simple solution to their problems. It was that Ahmadis should renounce being Ahmadis and declare that they are Muslims, and moreover, to prove that this declaration is genuine, they should add that their forefathers had made a mistake in accepting Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad (and for further convincing perhaps utter some terms of abuse against their fathers and grandfathers).
I wonder what advice these people would offer to Muslims in Western countries if these countries were to make laws that being a Muslim is incompatible with being a citizen of that country, and Muslims were thus forced to choose between calling themselves Muslims and being (for example) US or French citizens.
Some of the people in Pakistan who gave Ahmadis this advice subsequently themselves migrated to Western countries, or their offspring did.
Would they, under the above circumstances, advise Muslims of Western countries, including their own relatives and in some cases including themselves, to declare that they are not Muslims and that their forefathers made a mistake in embracing Islam?
After all, I recall these people saying to Ahmadis: Why do you want to risk becoming a minority? Join the majority and you will be safe. They always said: It is important to be considered as Muslims under the law of Pakistan and for people to consider you as Muslims. I don't recall them ever saying: It is important to act on the teachings of Islam.
If these are their principles, that right and wrong are not any criteria, and what matters is seeking the approval of society and maintaining a status in it, then what can one expect from them when they are placed in a trying situation?
I have compiled the following article about a quotation attributed to George Bernard Shaw ("I have always held the religion of Muhammad in high estimation because of its wonderful vitality….") which should be of general interest:
Submitted by Rashid Jahangiri.
After a recent terrorist attacks in Paris, there is a surge of videos on internet in which Muslims living in Western Europe are seen pledging their loyalty to their respective non-Muslim governments. Some videos by Muslims, while using profanities asks fellow Muslims if they want to live in non-Muslim European country then they batter live as peaceful citizens, follow the laws of the land and if they disagree with governmental policies then they should follow the legal path and ask courts to ban certain law, but in no case take law into their own hands.
Current events and response by Muslims living in Western Europe and North America takes me back 150 years. In later half of 19th century two important events took place in Muslim world. One was end of Sikh rule in Punjab and take over by British rulers, that allowed Muslims to practice Islam free of persecution including return of Mosques to Muslims for worship and permission to repeat Azan (summons to prayer) [Ref: Masson, Charles. 1842. Narrative of Various Journeys in Balochistan, Afghanistan and the Panjab, 3 v. London: Richard Bentley (1) 37)]. The other was rise of Muhammad Ahmad bin Abdullah [Mahdi Sudiani] (1884-1885) who claimed to be the promised Mahdi. His rebel army was able to defeat the British rulers in Sudan and kill Governor General Charles George Gordon (1833-1885).
In last quarter of 19th century in India, Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad started his mission to defend Islam with pen against the onslaught of Christian missionaries. This turned Christian missionaries against him. Christian missionaries lost in debates with him. When he made claim of the promised Messiah, some Muslims turned against him. They too lost in debates with him. British rulers in India were playing a neutral role so far. When HMGA made claim of promised Mahdi, both Christian missionaries and Muslim opponents of him joined hands, and made efforts to get him incarcerated in order to stop his mission. As HMGA mission was a pure religious mission and not a political mission, so in order to prevent hindrance in his mission he openly appreciated freedom to practice Islam by Muslims granted by British rulers and at the same time published his pledge of allegiance to British government. His mission was to convert the Christian rulers to Islam. In this effort he invited Queen Victoria to accept Islam as her religion. He wrote book ‘The British Government and Jihad’. I am sure if Muslim opponents had not created hindrance in his life, and wasted his precious time, he would have achieved much more in his lifetime. Anyways, as a result of his open support of British rulers, his opponents failed in their mission. But this did not stop his opponents and their progeny to this day from accusing HMGA of being ‘agent of non-Muslim rulers’. These opponents have very easily forgotten that it was they in first place who created such situation for HMGA that he had to publically announce his allegiance to non-Muslim rulers in India.
Now situation in West is such that even if there is false accusation on some Muslim living in Western Europe and North America, they will find police knocking at their door to interrogate and possibly arrest them. Today situation in these countries for Muslims is no different than what HMGA had to face in his life under British rulers in India. When Muslim gets picked up by police in the Western countries they do not hesitate to lick boots of government officials to win back their freedom, but then at the same time they come on internet and question HMGA for his allegiance to non-Muslim European rulers in India.
Opponents of HMGA feel NO SHAME in criticizing HMGA when they themselves go far and beyond to prove their innocence and allegiance.
I take current behavior of Muslims in Western Europe and North America as proof of truthfulness of HMGA. I would rather say, today majority of Muslims living in Western Europe, North America, Russia and Australia are in practice followers of HMGA. They all follow him by being loyal to the non-Muslim rulers and governments in their respective countries.
A friend suggests that a statement by the Iranian leader Seyyed Ali Khamenei addressed to the youth of the West would be interesting to read. Here is the link to it.
Although entitled "The recent events in France…", it was written before the recent attacks in Paris, after the earlier attacks of January this year.
Submitted by Ikram.
While browsing Woking Muslim Mission archives (link) in the journal Islamic Review & Muslim India, August 1917, p. 337, I came across an article by Marmaduke Pickthall ‘Islam and Progress,’ which he opens with the following paragraph:
THE opinion prevalent in Christian countries with regard to El Islam is that, as compared with Christianity, it is a religion essentially unprogressive, and to some extent degrading to the human intellect. Nothing could be farther from the truth. The sort of lethargy, comporting ignorance and superstition, which has weighed upon the Muslim masses for the last three centuries, is the result of historical circumstances very similar to those which darkened Western Europe in the period before the Renaissance. It has little more than a geographical connection with the Muhammadan religion; and now, with the revival of a scientific education, it is at an end. It would be a serious mistake to suppose, in view of the relatively backward state of the Islamic world, that El Islam itself is unprogressive in the modern meaning of the word. How can it be, when one reflects that modern progress is the outcome, not of any Christian doctrine, but free, thought, and that Islam: unlike Christianity, prescribes free thinking as a duty for believers.
With the above read, the verse of Quran, in its chapter ‘Al-Rum – The Byzantines,’ resonated in my mind:
30:30. So pay your whole-hearted attention to (the cause of) faith as one devoted (to pure faith), turning away from all that is false. (And follow) the Faith of Allâh (-Islam) to suit the requirements of which He has made the nature of humankind. There can be no change in the nature (of creation) which Allâh has made. That is the right and most perfect Faith, yet most people do not know (it). [Nooruddin]
In the same issue of Islamic Review, a few pages down, in Editor’s mail [p. 353] is a letter under the title – ‘MORNING STAR OF A CREEDLESS FAITH – which apparently is excerpted from the letter of a Minister to the Unitarian Church:
There is so much in your Faith that rings harmonious with my own deepest belief that I hardly think it necessary to mention points on which there is a difference, and I cannot help thinking that an unprejudiced reading of such publications as the ISLAMIC REVIEW would do much to prepare the way for the rising of that "Morning Star of a Creedless Faith" which, if I interpret aright, was the dream of Jesus and the Faith of your Holy Prophet.
‘Morning Star of a Creedless Faith’ is a quote within a chapter ‘The Idea of a Church’ in the book ‘God, the Invisible King’ by H. G. Well (p. 185, link) that was published in the same year as Islamic Review. I could not help but reproduce it in its entirety below.
Due to its length this post is continued below as a comment.
Submitted by Rashid Jahangiri.
Two or three days before his death, in 1908, Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad sahib wrote his last book ‘Message of Peace’. HMGA had foreseen Hindu-Muslim tension based on religion. To prevent escalation and bloodshed between the followers of these two religions he wrote his book and gave practical suggestions to avoid mayhem. HMGA made one such suggestion that out of respect for Hindus religious feelings, Muslims should stop slaughtering and eating meat of Hindus deity Cow, and Hindus should stop disrespecting and making vituperative attacks on Holy Prophet Muhammad SAWS.
Of course no one among Muslims cared for HMGA suggestion. Last 100 years history is witness to what followed. Hindu-Muslims riots, extreme was in 1947 at time of independence from British rule, then wars between India and Pakistan. In India there have been continuous riots against Muslims. Riots took place in State of Gujrat when Narendra Modi was its Chief Minister. And riots and killing of Muslims taking place in India, on cow slaughter and consumption of its meat by Muslims, when Narendra Modi is Prime Minister of India.
The way new laws are enacted in India in recent days, slaughter of cow and eating of its meat by Muslims will become a serious crime. Muslims will be prevented from eating cow meat. On other hand Hindus will make more bold vituperative attacks on Holy Prophet Muhammad SAWS.
I wish Muslims in India had listened to HMGA, and today situation could have been prevented.
Once again it is proved that Muslims who do not listen to appointees of Allah SWT learn through hard way.
Message of Peace by HMGA: http://www.ahmadiyya.org/bookspdf/mess-pc.htm
Link to news on cow slaughter in India: http://www.firstpost.com/tag/cow-slaughter