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July 8th, 2010

Lord Headley’s views about Qadiani Dogma.

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]

16 Responses to “Lord Headley’s views about Qadiani Dogma.”

  1. I notice that Lord Headley did not wish to comment on the “Messiahship” of Mirza Ghulam Ahmad. Why?

  2. July 8th, 2010 at 3:39 pm
    From Zahid Aziz:

    Lord Headley considered himself a Muslim not belonging to any group or sect. He regarded Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad as a great preacher of Islam. He regarded members of the Qadiani Jamaat as Muslims as well. He wrote many times that what disillusioned him with Christianity was the existence of a large number of bickering sects, differing even in basic beliefs, and each claiming exclusive salvation and denying it to others. One of the main features that attracted him to Islam was that all Muslims shared the same basic beliefs and practices. He wished to see unity among the few Muslims that were in Britain at the time, and not to show a bad example of sectarianism to others.

    To perform hajj at the age of 68 years in the month of July shows his devotion to Islam. The Arabian secretary of state (pre-Saudi dynasty) wrote about his proposed hajj:

    “3) As to the climate, it is with regret that it is quite hot this year. The best way to withstand it is to keep patient in it. For the Hajj comes in the hottest time.”

    There were no modern facilities, and you just had to bear the heat.

    Lord Headley also believed that political emancipation of Muslims was only possible by unity and through propagation of Islam along the lines of the Khwaja sahib.  Quaid-i Azam M. A. Jinnah held the same belief and created Pakistan on that basis.

  3. Lord Headley reminds me of Alexander Webb, another prominent western personality and American diplomat.  Neither of them formally accepted the Promised Messiah and joined the Ahmadiyya community. I wouldn’t doubt their devotion to Islam, but there was also an element of their attraction to the orient,  a mystical and romantic aspect which among things lead them to proudly adorn ‘eastern’ garb.  Perhaps due to the nature of their position in life, neither really wanted to follow anyone; rather both wanted to lead and direct.

  4. July 10th, 2010 at 3:02 pm
    From Zahid Aziz:

    Lord Headley relied very much on Khwaja Kamal-ud-Din sahib’s advice in Islamic activities. So when he visited South Africa, India and Makka (also Egypt on the same visit), he was accompanied by the Khwaja sahib.

    A few minutes before dying in 1935, he scribbled a note for his son which ran: “Means permitting, I should like to be buried with my brother Khwaja.” Khwaja sahib had already died in 1932 and buried in the Lahore Ahmadiyya cemetery in Lahore.

    Views of grave of Khwaja Kamal-ud-Din (photos taken by me in May 2008):

    image 1

    image 2

    Regarding “garb”, Lord Headley wrote again and again that a man in Western clothing can be as good a Muslim as one in eastern clothing, because Some Muslims at the time considered Arab or Indian garb to be essential for a Muslim. I am quoting from memory his words that: A Muslim heart can beat just as proudly under a waist coat as under eastern robes.

    Lord Headley was also a highly qualified man with great achievements of his own, and not just a born aristocrat. He did the “tripos in Mathematics” at Cambridge University (which is hard, and I couldn’t achieve it) and was in the Civil Engineering profession, becoming President of the Society of Engineers, London.

  5. Question for Lutf and T. Ijaz sahibans:
    In a recent email exchange with a relative of mine belonging to Qadiani Jamaat I got the impression that young Qadiani Jamaat friends have different understanding of continuation of prophethood than what was repeatedly stated and written by their Khalifa 2 Mirza Mahmud Ahmad. I will appreciate if you can comment. Thanks.
    Mirza Mahmud Ahmad in his book Anwar-e-Khilafat (pages 124 to 127, see link further down):

    “I say there shall be thousands of prophets”

    “I say even now there can be a prophet”

    “Even if someone placed a sword on my neck and ask me to say there cannot be any nabi after Rasul Allah, I will say you’re a liar; nabi can come after Rasul Allah and they will come.” 

    Does Qadiani Jamaat friends continue to hold belief that prophets will continue to come after Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad sahib, or not anymore?

  6. We only know of one prophet after Holy Prophet (saw) who has been mentioned clearly in Ahadith as Nabiullah. i.e., a person recepient of divine revelation given the status of Prophethood because his appointment needs to be recognized by the world.

    We are not aware of any other Prophet (appointed in the same capacity as above), but the quality of prophethood continues. In this sense, there can be thousands, millions of Prophets. But we are not aware of any verses or Ahadith which confirm that there will be an appointed prophet in the future, like Promised Messiah (as). This is the Bounty of Allah.. He may choose another, if He likes as we may not be aware of such secrets of Quran yet. But such prophets (whether formal or informal) can only come in the footsteps of Promised Messiah (as).

  7. July 13th, 2010 at 10:19 am
    From Zahid Aziz:

    A verse of the Quran commonly put forward by the Qadiani Jamaat to argue that prophets can come after the Holy Prophet Muhammad is:

    “O children of Adam, if messengers come to you from among you relating to you My messages, then whosoever guards against evil and acts aright — they shall have no fear, nor shall they grieve.” (7:35)

    I think the question was if messengers as described in this verse can come after the Holy Prophet Muhammad, one such being Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad sahib, then can more such messengers come?
    Anyone having the “quality of prophethood” is not relevant here because such persons don’t impose the obligation on the public to accept them. If someone thinks he has revelations at home everyday, but considers it a private and not public matter, it doesn’t oblige anyone else to decide whether to accept him or not.

  8. 7:34 And every nation has a term; so when its term comes, they cannot remain behind the least while, nor can they precede (it).

    7:35 O children of Adam, if messengers come to you from among you relating to you My messages, then whosoever guards against evil and acts aright — they shall have no fear, nor shall they grieve.

    if we read this verse with previous one then it is clear that the messengers spoken in next verse are the national messengers of every nation.

    Probably i have read in translation of Maulana Muhammad Ali that it is sunnah of Allah that He does not punish any one until He has made clear to them that they are wrong by sending a messenger. Coming of a messenger is …so when its term comes, they cannot remain behind the least while, nor can they precede (it)… judgment time for it.

    I do not understand how next verse can be used for future coming of messengers for every nation.

    O children of Adam includes all nations.

    I feel that ‘O children of Adam’ refers to spirtual decendants of Adam in every nation. May be coming of messengers among the spiritual decendants of Adam is spoken here. ..relating to you My messages .. means that these are those prophets who delivered His messages.

  9. “Anyone having the “quality of prophethood” is not relevant here because such persons don’t impose the obligation on the public to accept them. If someone thinks he has revelations at home everyday, but considers it a private and not public matter, it doesn’t oblige anyone else to decide whether to accept him or not.”

    To Qadiani relative of mine, I put the same question in a different way. I asked him, referring to LAM member who passed away few years ago and this relative knew him very well: he was recipient of ilhams (revelations), which he kept to himself, or only informed his immediate family members. Why he (my Qadiani relative) does not accept him as “ummati-nabi” since he was recipient of divine communication (i.e. nabi) and ummati of Rasul Allah SAWS. Unfortunately, Qadianis very jealously guard this “ummati-nabi” status to their own creed. Qadianis are not willing to extend courtesy, and accept “ummati-nabi” outside their community.

  10. One of the reasons that i am inclined to Lahore jamaat that i also have some experiences since young age which i was not able to understand. I wanted an understanding about it. Whenever i asked any elder about it they could not give me a satisfying answer.

    The only satisfying answer was given by Mr Basharat Ahmad Baqa (May Allah bless him). He was very sick and after few days he died. After listening to me he told me that this means that you will be more accountable for it.

    He was right. Those who are granted such favours are more accountable than others. It does not mean that they have become better than others if Allah has spoken with them but it only means that they are under constant scrutiny so their best can come out. it seems like a trail.

  11. July 14th, 2010 at 12:51 pm
    From Zahid Aziz:

    The history of the Woking Muslim Mission is showing its worth now because it provides clear and irrefutable evidence that leading Muslims supported the work of the Lahore Ahmadiyya elders. This refutes the modern anti-Ahmadiyya propaganda that all Muslims have always regarded Ahmadis as non-Muslim. Famous Muslims co-operated with the Islamic work of the top-most, close associates of Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad.

    Please read at this link accounts of two meetings in Lahore in connection with Lord Headley, held at Ahmadiyya Buildings HQ of AAIIL, attended by the general Muslim public and their leaders.

    Some of the anti-Ahmadiyya brigade who have been submitting taunting comments under this topic, which I have not posted, might benefit by reading the above link.

  12. Few grains of salt:
    “Lord Headley relied very much on Khwaja Kamal-ud-Din sahib’s advice,” writes Zahid Aziz in his comment above.  This pretty much explains Lord Headly’s entire perspective about the ‘Ahamdis’ or Ahmadiyyat and Islam for that matter.

    Khawaja Sahib’s influence on Lord Headley can be determined easily by the statement by the latter, “Means permitting, I should like to be buried with my brother Khwaja,” as reported by Zahid Aziz in the same comment.

    Just a few grains of salt, when one considers Lord Headley’s view of the ‘Ahmadis’…..

  13. @ Imran J above, implies that Lord Headley is “entirely” under influence of Khwaja Kamaluddin, as if the former did not have independent opinion, analysis and outlook.

    To get to know Lord Headley, I will encourage Imran to read his writings. I am sure that any reader will be amazed at Headley’s independent thought. To understand Headley is to understand the path to Islamization of the West.

    Even if Imran is correct in his skepticism, then burden is on him to show how much erroneous is Kamaluddin in the subject matter, else it is a baseless doubt.

  14. @ikram: Thank you. You actually verified my point.
    The thread is titled “Lord Headley’s views about Qadiani Dogma” to which I raised my skepticism.
    The test you suggest for its validity, vis-a-vis my skepticism, “how much erroneous is Kamaluddin in the subject matter,” renders Headley’s own perspective and all his writings (right or wrong),  irrelevant with respect to his own “views about Qadiani Dogma.”
    … And that exactly was my point… that take Headley’s  statement with a grain of salt. Kamaluddin’s views, right or wrong, are already known and could/would not require Headley’s support.

  15. Qadiani missionary activities in USA
    In a book ‘African American Islam’ by Aminah Beverly McCloud, Assistant Professor in Department of Religious Studies at DePaul University, USA, author makes following observations:
    1-Mufti Muhammad Saddiq sahib since his arrival in USA in 1920 made significant successes in propagation of Islam among African Americans.
    2-Mufti sahib and other immigrant Ahmadi [Qadianis ] missionaries used and propagated English Translation of Holy Quran by Maulana Muhammad Ali.
    3-Despite the earlier gains influence of Ahamdi [Qadiani] missionaries declined as the 20th century progressed. And African American members of Ahmadiyya [Qadiani] left. In this regard she points out 2 factors:
    (i)                  Despite religious training of African American and conferring them titles of ‘Shakyh’ they were NEVER appointed as missionaries, and did NOT give them any authority over communities. [Interestingly, here author has not given reason for such attitude of Qadiani leadership in USA. In my opinion reason was that as objective and aim of Qadiani Jamaat is to collect ‘Chanda’ (financial contributions), with Qadiani Khalifa as the only person to decide where and how to spend the money. So, if the financial issues had gone into hands of African American Ahmadis, the main purpose of existence of Qadiani Khilafat would have been defeated].
    (ii)               As African American Ahmadis did Islamic study it raised questions over the Ahmadi [Qadiani] notion of prophethood. In this regard particularly name of Dr. Yousaf Khan teacher/ missionary (Qadiani of subcontinent origin) is mentioned. On page 26: “During the time of growth, however, there emerged a new conflict pertaining to Dr. Khan’s teachings. This conflict, which arose in 1935, centered on Dr. Khan’s claim that Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad was the prophet who came after Muhammad (PBUH).
    After much debate, most of the community concluded, against Dr. Khan, that there would be no “compromise on the finality of Muhammad’s (PBUH) prophethood”.”
    4-The Ahmadi [Qadiani] mission houses/mosques, which use to have majority of African Americans are now predominantly Pakistani Ahmadis [Qadianis]. Now African Americans are bare minimum among ranks of Ahmadis [Qadianis] in USA.
    My comments:
    Time and again it has been proved that the Qadiani concept of ‘Continuity of Prophethood’ and belief that Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad was prophet of Allah, has not only damaged and hindered Qadiani propagation efforts, but has also tarnished the image of HMGA himself and his original movement.
    Had Mirza Mahmud Ahmad the Qadiani Khalifa 2 had not created all the problems by changing the original teachings of HMGA and if the original Ahmadiyya Movement of HMGA had stayed intact in 1914, today Islam of HMGA interpretation [which is different than Qadiani interpretation] would be a dominant player in a positive sense in USA.


  16. Incidental Observation – T. Ijaz mentioned above the influence of Ahmadiyyat on  Alexander Webb.  In the preface of the “The Teachings of Islam,”, 1910 p-IX, Maulana Muhammad Ali acknowledges Mohd. Alex. Russel Webb (New Jersey, U.S.A.) for his assistance in revision of the translation.

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