I have come to establish the truth of Islam and to convince men of its beauty, and to lead them to the fountain of its teachings and to refresh their souls with its waters. I have brought no new law or command. The Holy Quran is the final code of Divine laws and Muhammad (on Whom be peace and blessings of God) is His last Law-bearing Prophet. I am His messenger but without a new law; and I am a Prophet but without a book; and the sole object of my advent is to serve Islam and to propagate it and to remove from its bright face the dust that has been settled there as the result of the stormy thoughts of man during the latter days.
AHMAD OF QADIAN
(The Promised Messiah and Mahdi)
Q What is Ahmadiyyat and who founded it?
A The Ahmadiyya Movement in Islam was founded by Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad of Qadian in 1889. It was foretold by the Holy Prophet Muhammad (may peace of Allah be on him) that in the latter days when moral and spiritual values would be in decline among the Muslims, the Messiah and Mahdi would appear and revive Islam. He would present Islam in its original purity and beauty and would establish the superiority of Islam over all other faiths. It was also prophesied by the Holy Prophet Muhammad (may peace of Allah be on him) that through the Promised Messiah Islam would spread to the western world also. Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad of Qadian claimed that he was the Messiah and the Mahdi as had been prophesied by the Holy Prophet Muhammad (may peace of Allah be on him).
Q Tell me more about Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad of Qadian.
A Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad was born in 1835 at Qadian (India). He belonged to a noble family of Mughals. His father was the Chief of Qadian. He was born at a time when little thought was given to learning. There were no regular schools or colleges in smaller towns. His father was very eager for his education so he employed a tutor named Fazli Elahi for the purpose. From him he learned to read the Holy Quran and few Persian books. At the age of ten he had another teacher named Fazi Ahmad who instructed him in Arabic grammar and a few other books. He read some books on medicine, logic and philosophy with another teacher named Gul Ali Shah.
After the completion of this course of initial education he was asked by his father to take up some Government job. In obedience to his father he offered himself for a job in the Deputy Commissioner’s office at Sialkot but he soon found that thiswas not the kind of work that suited his temperament. So he gave up his appointment and returned to Qadian. Now most of the time was devoted to the study of the Holy Quran, the books of Hadith and religious literature. He loved retirement and seclusion form the world and found his joy in meditation and worship of Allah.
He was just over 40 when his father died. Before his father’s demise he was warned of the event through Divine revelation. His father’s death was naturally painful for him and made him very sad. While thinking about his future, after his father’s death a thought passed through his mind who would look after his needs. Thereupon he received another revelation.
Is not Allah All-Sufficient for His servant?
This brought him great comfort and he was reassured that Allah would not suffer him to perish.
Since his early life Hazrat Ahmad had been deeply distressed at the terrible state into which the Muslims had fallen. Christians and Hindus were making outrageous attacks on the Holy Founder of Islam and on the Holy Quran. The Christians had even announced that within a short space of time the standard of Christ would be hoisted all over India and Arabia. Muslin divines, on the other hand, were woefully lacking in all spiritual knowledge. The Promised Messiah stepped into the breach to defend Islam. He wrote hundreds of books, pamphlets and handbills defending Islam and proving its superiority over all other faiths. His first book called Baraheen-i-Ahmadiyya, was enthusiastically received by the Muslims. They called him the Lion of Islam. The Christians and Hindus retreated before him everywhere.
Hazrat Ahmad married twice and had seven sons and three daughters. Two sons and a daughter died in infancy. He prophesied about the birth of an illustrious son who was born or 12th January, 1889 and was given the name of Mirza Bashirud Din Mahmud Ahmad. Hazrat Ahmad challenged the followers of all other faiths to come forward and hold debat with him on the subject of the superiority of Islam over all other faiths. None turned up. He was given the miracle of penmanship. He wrote many books in Arabic, and challenged Arab scholars to produce the like of them. He made thousands of prophecies many of which were fulfilled in his own life time. Many have been fulfilled since and there are others yet to be fulfilled. Hazrat Ahmad spent all his life in the service of Islam. He was a great soldier of Islam. His knowledge of the Holy Quran was miraculous. He had a store of vast spiritual and religious knowledge bestowed upon him by Allah Himself. Hazrat Ahmad died on 25th May, 1908 at Lahore and was buried the next day at Qadian.
Q Who were Successors (Khalifahs) to the promised Messiah?
A Hazrat Alhaj Maulvi Nooruddin was the first Successor (Khalifah) to the Promised Messiah.
Hazrat Alhaj Mirza Bashirud Din Mahmud Ahmad was the second Khalifah.
Hazrat Hafiz Mirza Nasir Ahmad was the third Successor (Khalifah) to the Promised Messiah and
Hazrat Mirza Tahir Ahmad is the present Head of the Ahmadiyya Movement, and is the fourth Khalifah.
Q Tell me more about Hazrat Maulvi Nooruddin?
A Hazrat Maulvi Nooruddin was born in 1841 at Bhera (Pakistan). His father was Ghulam Rasul. He was a great scholar of Arabic and Persian. His quest for knowledge took him all over India. He spent a few years at Mecca and Medina where he studied Hadith and other theological subjects. He was a highly qualified physician and was personal Physician to the Mahraja of Kashmir for a number of years. At the death of the Promised Messiah he was elected to the most elevated position of Khalifah by all the members of the Community. He passed away on March13, 1914, on a Friday.
Q Tell me more about Hazrat Mirza Bashirud Din Mahmud Ahmad.
A He was the second Khalifah and the illustrious Promised Son of the Promised Messiah. He was born on 12th January, 1889 at Qadian. On the death of Hazrat Maulvi Nooruddin he was elected the second Successor (Khalifah) to the Promised Messiah on March 14, 1914. Hazrat Mirza Bashirud Din Mahmud Ahmad was a great scholar of the Holy Quran and his comments on the Holy Quran are unique. He was a great orator. He was also a very good writer. He wrote scores of books on various Islamic subjects. He was extremely intelligent. He organised the Community on a sound basis. It was during his time that the Ahmadiyya Missions outside India were established. He died on 9th November, 1965.
Q Tell me more about Hazrat Mirza Nasir Ahmad.
A Hazrat Hafiz Mirza Nasir Ahmad was born in November 1909. He was educated in India and Oxford. Before his election as Khalifah he served the Community in various capacities. He was a lover of nature. His knowledge of the Holy Quran and Hadith was remarkable. He was also an able administrator.
He launched Nusrat Jehan Scheme. Under this scheme, scores of medical centres and High Schools were opened in the West African countries of Nigeria, Ghana, Sierra Leone, Liberia, Ivory Coast and the Gambia. He died at Rabwah, Pakistan, in 1982.
Q Who is the present Head of the Ahmadiyya Movement in Islam?
A He is Hazrat Mirza Tahir Ahmad. He was born on the 18th of December 1928 at Qadian, Punjab, India. He received his early education in Qadian. He then joined Government College, Lahore, Pakistan.
In 1955 he went to London and studied at the University of London, School of Oriental and African Studies. He returned to Pakistan in 1957. Upon his return he was elected President of Khuddamul Ahmadiyya Association (International) and later President Ansarullah (International). He served the movement in various other capacities before being elected to his current position of Khalifatul Masih.
Hazrat Mirza Tahir Ahmad is a great scholar, a fine orator, a brilliant author and a spiritual guide. His Friday sermons are a great source of inspiration and knowledge for not only the members of the jamaat but for non Ahmadis also. These sermons are being transmitted live all over the world through radio, T.V. and satellite networks.
Hazrat Mirza Tahir Ahmad has travelled all over the world and has met Heads of State, intellectuals of international repute, politicians, writers and journalists.
Recently an English author Mr. Ian Adamson has written an excellent biography of Hazrat Mirza Tahir Ahmad. It is called ‘A Man of God’. His speeches and discourses have been widely reported in the International press.
The Holy Quran has been translated into 50 languages of the world under his guidance. He also plans to publish the Holy Quran into 100 languages of the world.
He has launched schemes for the uplift of African people and other nations of the Third World.
Hazrat Mirza Tahir Ahmad is married and has four daughters.
Q What are the main organisation in the Ahmadiyya Jama’at?
A The Ahmadiyya Jama’at is organised into several associations. The Women’s Association is called the ‘Lajna Imaullah’, which consists of two sections. Those up to the age of 15 are called Nasiratul Ahmadiyya. The male members of the Jama’ats are divided into three associations. Children between the ages of 8 and 16 are organised into an association called the Atfalul Ahmadiyya. Those between 15 and 40 are members of Khuddam-ul-Ahmadiyya. This is the most active of the three associations. Those above 40 are organised in an association called the Ansarullah.
Q Which is the first Ahmadiyya Muslim Mission established outside Indo-Pak continent?
A The first mission established outside India was the London Mission which was established in 1914 under Hazrat Chaudhri Fateh Muhammad Sial, the first Ahmadiyya missionary to England. In 1924, The London Mosque was built by the Ahmadiyya Jama’at, the first to be built in London. This project was financed entirely by the ladies of the Jama’at. The London mission has the distinction of having been visited twice by Hazrat Khalifatul Masih II, Hazrat Khalifatul Masih III also visited the London Mission eight times during his Khilafat. The London Mission publishes a monthly magazine called the Muslim Herald.
Q How many Ahmadiyya missions are there all over the world?
A There are Ahmadiyya missions all over West and East Africa, in Singapore, Indonesia, Japan, the Philippines, Malaysia, United States of America, United Kingdom, Holland, Germany, Switzerland, Spain, Denmark, Sweden and Mauritius. There are Ahmadiyya Jama’ats in 120 countries of the world.