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Archive for the ‘general’ Category

Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad’s book ‘The Secret of Caliphate’ in context of ongoing Shia Sunni conflict.

Monday, January 25th, 2016

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

English translation by Mirza Muhammad Hussain

UK Lahore Ahmadiyya Jamaat’s written submission to UK Parliamentary Home Affairs Committee

Thursday, January 21st, 2016

Please visit this link of 'Countering extremism inquiry' of the UK Parliament's Home Affairs Committee, and look under the heading Latest oral and written evidence to find the link to our submission.

Here is the direct link to it.

Zahid Aziz

 

A Christmas and Milad-un-Nabi message

Friday, December 25th, 2015

Mortality of Prophets

Christmas and Prophet Muhammad’s birthday come together in December 2015

by Zahid Aziz

  • This year there is almost a conjunction of Christmas and the birthday of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (may peace and the blessings of Allah be upon him).
  • Interestingly, neither of these great personalities ever asked their followers to celebrate their birthdays.
  • In case of Islam, no such celebration of the birth of the Holy Prophet is found in its first six centuries. Then some people in the Middle East started observing it.
  • In the Indian subcontinent the practice of commemorating his birthday only began as recently as a century ago, around 1910.
  • It was in fact the pioneers of the Lahore Ahmadiyya Movement who held the first such meeting in Lahore in April 1908 to mark the Holy Prophet’s birthday. At this public meeting, in Ahmadiyya Buildings, there were speeches and poems about the Holy Prophet and his life. Non-Muslims were also present in the audience.
  • A famous Muslim newspaper, Watan, wrote about this occasion as follows:

“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.”

  • Other Muslims then took it up and expanded it to an elaborate “Eid” function, celebrated with much fanfare, including activities that are in no way a part of Islam, nor do they serve any useful purpose for Islam. There now seems to be an eleven-day preamble leading up to the 12th day of the month of Rabi-ul-Awwal.
  • What the Lahore Ahmadiyya pioneers started was a simple meeting with speeches and poems to inform the public about the Holy Prophet’s life, mission and qualities, and to refute allegations against him. It was not an “Eid” festival as it has now become.
  • Islam’s great contribution to religion is to show that all prophets were mortal human beings. Any person who has a birthday was born as a human being, and born as a helpless baby.
  • Both Jesus and the Holy Prophet Muhammad, and other prophets, were born exactly like other human beings. As babies they depended on other human beings to feed and wean them. Throughout their lives they had to eat and drink and satisfy other physical needs, like every other human being. They all completed their lives and their physical bodies went to dust, like every other human being.
  • The Quran says that all prophets had mortal needs:

“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)

  • All prophets declared to their people about themselves:

“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).

  • The Prophet Muhammad declared the same:

“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)

  • Their opponents raised this as an objection against them, that they were only mortals. To their minds, a mortal like them could not be a messenger of God:

“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)

  • Like prophets before them, both Jesus and the Prophet Muhammad were mortals who would die:

“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)

  • The prophets and messengers of God were mortal human beings because their mission was to act as models and examples for others. They came to show what human beings can achieve. About the Prophet Muhammad, the Quran tells Muslims:

“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.

  • The Quran also requires Muslims to follow the examples of other prophets, who appeared before the Holy Prophet Muhammad, and their immediate loyal followers. Regarding Abraham and his followers of his time, the Quran says:

“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)

  • Both Jesus and the Prophet Muhammad, instead of asking their followers to celebrate their birthdays, gave them the same basic commandments to follow. Jesus was asked: “Which is the first commandment of all?” He replied:

“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.

  • The Quran also says:

“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.

Will Muslims in USA (and the West) face similar situation to Ahmadis in Pakistan?

Wednesday, December 9th, 2015

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?

George Bernard Shaw’s quotation about the Prophet Muhammad’s religion

Friday, December 4th, 2015

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:

www.ahmadiyya.org/islam/bernard-shaw.htm

Zahid Aziz

Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad’s Praise of British Rulers in India in Context of Current Security Situation in Western Europe and North America

Saturday, November 21st, 2015

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.

Iranian spiritual head’s advice to youth in the West

Tuesday, November 17th, 2015

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.

Pickthall, Quran, H.G. Wells and all the musings about – ‘Morning Star of a Creedless Faith’

Monday, October 26th, 2015

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.

Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad ‘Message of Peace’ more relevant today than ever

Friday, October 23rd, 2015

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

Moon crescent sighting tragedy

Wednesday, July 15th, 2015

At the last Eid, the Eid-ul-Adha in October 2014, I said in my Eid Khutba that it was a tragedy that:

"on 24th and 25th September Muslims around the world tried to sight the new moon by human eye to determine the start of the present month of the Islamic calendar"

because:

"On 21st September 2014 a US spacecraft reached the planet Mars and was placed into orbit around it. On 24th September a spacecraft built and launched by India reached Mars and was placed into orbit around it."

It has happened again and the tragedy is even worse this time.

While Muslims are wondering whether the new moon for Eid-ul-Fitr will be sighted on 16th July or 17th July 2015, NASA's New Horizons probe passed close to Pluto on 14th July, sending back photos of this minor planet. Pluto is at present about 3 billion miles from earth, which is about 12000 (twelve thousand) times the distance of the moon from the earth.

The tragedy is worse this time than at the last Eid because Pluto is much further away than Mars.