Mirza Ghulam Ahmad of
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Articles and Sermons (Vol. II) by Imam Kalamazad
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of the Ahmadiyya Movement:
Allah raised up in the fourteenth century A.H. [Islamic Era] Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad as the Mujaddid [Reformer] of the Age, the Promised Messiah and Mahdi, and entrusted him with several tasks for the regeneration of our noble religion, Islam, to revive the hearts of Muslims by infusing zeal and enthusiasm into them after torpor and defeatism: to break the cross and kill the swine, to kill the Dajjal and to overpower Gog and Magog (with arguments); to usher in the final triumph of Islam in the last thousand years of this dispensation.
The Hadith also predicts that in the latter days (of the triumph of Islam) the sun will rise in the West and this is interpreted as the sun of Islam that will overspread the Western world as it has done in the East.
The Messiah has come and gone, but he has given us inspiration, and the arguments that are needed for the final triumph of Islam worldwide, especially in the West. This is the assignment that he has bequeathed to his followers.
However, in order to succeed, it is incumbent on us to study the characteristics of the Western nations, to go back to their roots in order to understand their present attitudes and behaviour so that we may better formulate the correct approach that Ahmadis must adopt in our efforts to transform them.
Superficially, Western civilisation seems to be derived from and based on Christianity, but if we delve deeper we shall see that the origins of this civilisation go back to thousands of years to ancient Greece and Rome.
According to Nadwi (Islam and the World):
"The real fundamentals of the Greek civilisation may be summed up as follows:1. Disregard of transcendental truths;
Dr Hass, a German scholar, in explaining the question: "What is European civilisation?" answers that the first stage "was the aim to develop man harmoniously. The supreme measure was physical education games and dancing and mental education poetry, music, drama, philosophy, even the sciences were kept in proportion so as to develop the mind but not at the expense of the body. Its religion had no spirituality, no theology, no mysticism" (p. 114).
Nadwi himself opines on the absence of spirituality in the Greeks (and by extension in their progeny of today):
"The repudiation of the attributes of God and of His personal control over the universe and the replacement of Him as the Creator and Sustainer of the worlds by a self-supposed Active Intellect could only lead to the destruction of spiritual enthusiasm. The Greeks did not strictly deny God, but they had no place for Him in their practical scheme of things. They supposed that He had, after having brought forth the Active Intellect, retreated into seclusion" (Islam and the World, p.115).
How closely have the descendants of today imitated their ancestors and how devastating the consequences to mankind in general! Didn't the Holy Quran warn us:
"Certainly man is inordinate, whenever he thinks of himself self-sufficient" (96:6-7)?
As regards the second ancestors, the Romans, Lecky (as quoted by Nadwi) in his book History of European Morals, writes:
"The Roman religion was purely selfish. It was simply a method of obtaining prosperity, averting calamity and reading the future. Ancient Rome produced many heroes, but no saints. Its self-sacrifice was patriotic, not religious. Its religion was neither an independent teacher nor a source of inspiration..." (Islam and the World, p. 118).
And, in addition to the gross materialism of the Romans, was their imperialistic drive which resulted in the exploitation of weaker nations for the benefit of the Master nation.
Muhammad Asad explains further in Islam at the Crossroads:
"The underlying idea of the Roman Empire was the conquest of power and the exploitation of the nations for the benefit of the mother country alone. To promote better living for a privileged group, no violence was for the Romans too bad, no injustice too base. The famous 'Roman Justice' was justice for Romans alone. It is clear that such an attitude was possible only on the basis of an entirely materialistic concept of life and civilisation, a materialism certainly refined by intellectual taste, but nonetheless foreign to all spiritual values. 'The Romans never in reality knew religion,' neither do their modern progeny, for all of the above anti-religious attitudes have been inherited in whole or in part by Europe and America" (pp. 38-39).
The Holy Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) has indeed given to us a most sharp-sighted description of these nations when he spoke metaphorically and symbolically of the Dajjal as being "heavily built, white and shining, whose one eye (the materialistic eye) is brilliant like a shining star."
Muhammad Asad explains the reason for the anti-religious mindset of the Western nations as:
1. The heritage of materialistic Roman civilisation.
He then describes the new religion that has replaced Christianity thus:
"The average Occidental be he Democrat or Fascist, a Capitalist or a Bolshevik, a manual worker or an intellectual knows only one positive 'religion' and that is the worship of material progress, the belief that there is no other goal in life than to make that very life continually easier.... The temples of this 'religion' are the gigantic factories, cinemas, chemical laboratories, dancing halls, hydro-electric works, and its "priests" are bankers, engineers, movie stars, captains of industry, record airmen. The unavoidable result of this craving after power and pleasure is the creation of hostile groups armed to the teeth and determined to destroy each other whenever and wherever their respected interests come to clash. And on the cultural side, the result is the creation of a human type whose morality is confined to the question of practical utility alone, and whose highest criterion of good and evil is material success" (Ibid. pp. 55-56).
This situation in itself is dangerous, but what is more pernicious and deadly is their attitude towards Islam, an attitude mixed with hatred and fear and the desire to neutralise at all cost and even to obliterate Islam from the face of the earth. That is a central part of the New World Order envisaged by President George Bush Senior. [The policy of George Bush Senior is being carried out by his son and namesake, the present President of the USA.]
Muhammad Asad also examines this attitude of Westerners to Islam. Their feeling of racial superiority over the rest of mankind is not sufficient to explain the dark feeling of the West against Islam, he says, but Westerners are still bitter over their defeats in their Crusades against Islam centuries ago and they are forever trying to blunt or kill the rise of Islam by using whatever means possible from bribery to outright force. A recent example of this is the way the Western nations masterminded the destruction of Iraq under the umbrella of the United Nations. [The destruction of Iraq was completed in 2003 without the approval of the U.N. by George Bush, Junior.] It was not tiny Iraq they feared but what they dreaded was the rise of a Muslim leader who would rally Muslims around him as Salahuddin did in earlier times. Muslims must never unite. Islamic civilisation must never be a threat to the Western way of life. That is their motive as they bribe and cajole and threaten one Muslim country after another to fight against its Muslim brothers. And how readily our Muslim leaders line up to collect their pieces of silver!
Proof of this irrational fear comes from Graham Fuller, a Middle East specialist with the CIA during the 1980's. He writes:
"There was genuine fear of Islam in Washington as a force that was utterly alien to American thinking, and that really scared us. Senior people at the Pentagon and elsewhere were much more concerned about Islam than Communism. It was an almost obsessive fear, leading to a mentality on our part that you should use any stick to beat a dog to stop the advance of Islamic fundamentalism. That stick was Iraq (versus Iran)" (Time magazine, March 1991).
Of course, we all know what happened to Iraq when they "threatened the American way of life," as George Bush termed it.
This gives us a clear picture of what we have to face in the last battle between the forces of good and evil. As predicted by our Founder, the task is a difficult one that calls for the complete sacrifice of property and person to ensure success. And this task is made all the more difficult because of several factors which conspire to prevent Lahore Ahmadis from presenting true Islam in a manner that would appeal to the hearts and intellects of all people. And all these are internal and more deadly for that.
Firstly, we are branded as kafirs [non-Muslims] by the so-called orthodox Muslims and are persecuted not only in Pakistan but in other parts of the world as well.
Secondly, the split in the Ahmadiyya Movement has complicated matters further for we now have to fight against their wrong belief also.
Thirdly, the Muslim world is in a state of disorder and chaos with mutual hatred and internecine warfare, not to mention the fragmentation of the religion into multitudinous sects. This in no way encourages non-Muslims to consider Islam as an alternative way of life.
Fourthly, the belief by many orthodox groups that Islam allows the use of the sword for political revolution further repels non-Muslims from even considering the beauties of our religion in a rational and unbiased manner.
Fifthly, there is the myopic attitude of isolation preached by many Muslim sects, that is, that everything Western is evil so we must avoid all contacts with them in order to save our religion from contamination. They do not seem to realise that this is impossible given the advances in science and technology that have transformed the world into a global village.
And lastly, the poverty financial, personnel and otherwise of the Lahore Ahmadiyya Movement, as compared to other religious groups, has left Lahore Ahmadis a prey to the seduction of other groups.
Which approach shall we choose the militant one, the isolationist one, or the passive one? None of these. We are fortunate in that the Founder has already charted the way for us both in words and behaviour the true path in the propagation of religion, he explained, is the part of the peaceful jihad with the Quran and the pen; of appealing to the hearts and intellect by means of convincing arguments, clean hearts and exemplary lives. Political glory and economic power yes but we need first a spiritual revolution that will put to naught the threat of materialism and military domination of the world of Islam by the Western world.
The Holy Quran tells us what we must do:
"So obey not the disbelievers and strive against them a mighty striving (jihad) with it" (25 52);
and also how we must proceed:
"Call to the way of thy Lord with wisdom and goodly exhortation and argue with them in the best manner" (16:12);
"Allah does not change the condition of a people until they change their inner selves" (13:11).
And the Founder further clarified the concept that jihad with the sword is suspended:
"Considering the divine Law and present condition of the Muslims, we have said that this is not the time of the sword."
"Before all, I thank the Government under which we can publicly teach the religious doctrines of our pure faith without any interference whatsoever, and we can pay back our opponents whether they are Christian or others in their own coin."
Peaceful propagation of Islam was the hallmark of the Founder's modus operandi. The situation in Pakistan is the opposite today. The Lahore Ahmadiyya Movement is, I believe with all my heart, the only group that gives the world the truest picture of Islam, a concept that can be understood by all people of whatever capacity and temperament. My hearts weeps when I reflect on the present state of our organisation: we lack a missionary school, we witness the non-existence of missionaries to service the various centres worldwide that are now shrinking. When I see the naked hatred of 'orthodox' Muslims for Ahmadis; when I observe the false beliefs and the psychological wiles and blandishment of the Rabwah Jama'at with their efficient propaganda machinery; when I hear the snide and boastful taunts of some Rabwah missionaries echoed by their servile rank and file: "The Lahoris are dead!"; my heart bleeds and every atom of my being cries out to Allah: "O Allah, when will Thy promised help and victory come?"
In these times of despondency, fear and grief, my chief resort besides salah [prayer] and the Holy Quran is to the life-giving prophecies of the Founder, some of which I will now quote in order to breathe new zeal and enthusiasm into our hearts, to refresh and invigorate our flagging spirits. This is how the Founder inspired the heart of despondent and despairing Muslims:
"There is no need to be disappointed and dismayed, nor to be afraid of the attacks of false religions. Islam is a living religion and the God of Islam, too, is a living God Who is even today as He was 1000 years ago or ever since the world began. He is the very same God Who revealed the Holy Quran and called Islam His Own everlasting religion. He has sent me as a mujaddid and khalifah of the Holy Prophet so that I may, in accordance with the divine promise, 'cause Islam to prevail over all religions and all materialism,' although the political predominance has arrived and the Word of God shall be fulfilled in all splendour and glory."
As regards the certainty of Divine assistance and ultimate success, he wrote in Lajjahtun-Nur:
"In a vision bringing good news, I beheld a congregation of sincere believers and righteous kings, some of which belonged to this country, some to Arabia, some to Persia, some to Syria, some to Rome and some to the countries which I know not. Then I heard a voice from the Most High God intimating that these people 'will vouch for and attest thee, and believe in thee, and invoke benediction on thee, and I shall shower My blessings on thee so that kings shall seek benison from thy garments, and then I shall cause to enter the list of the sincere.' It is the vision which I beheld, and it is the revelation that came to me from God, the Knower of the Great Unseen."
Regardless of opposition, persecution and even martyrdom, we should never renege, for the Founder assures us that Allah revealed to him this promise:
"I shall show My splendour and raise thee (Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad) up, displaying My power. A warner came into the world, and the world accepted him not; but the Most High God will accept him, and establish his truthfulness by means of powerful onsets.
Again, in his book, Jesus in India, he gives us the powerful assurance:
"As you observe the fruit to appear in season, so also the Light descends at its appointed time; none can cause it to descend before; it comes of its own accord, nor can one obstruct its passage when it begins to descend. There will be disputes and controversies, but at the end Truth must prevail. It is so because this is not the work of man nor is it within the power of the children of Adam. It is the work of Almighty God Who rotates the seasons, changes times, and brings forth the day from the night and the night from the day. Though He creates darkness as well, it is the light which He really desires, He also permits idolatry to spread, yet it is Unity which He loves to see prosper. He does not will that His majesty be shared by others. Ever since man came to be born, until the time that he ceases to be, it is the unchanging law that God will remain on the side of Unity (belief in the Oneness of God)" (p. 65).
And finally, note the majesty of his conviction as he infuses power into our hearts:
"Rest assured that this is a tree planted by the Hand of God. He will never permit it to go to waste. He will not be satisfied until He has seen it through to its fullness. He will see to it that it is well-irrigated and will build a protective fence around it. Thus God will bless my followers with astounding progress and prosperity. Have you, O enemies of truth, left any stones unturned? Had it been the work of man, this tree would have been cut and felled since long and no trace of it would have remained" (Anjam-e Atham, p. 64).
We must bear in mind that when the Holy Prophet, peace and blessings of Allah be on him, described the essential features of the Dajjal that he would be blind in the right eye and resplendent in the left eye he was not only giving us an accurate representation of future events and dangers but he was also subtly intimating to us the substantive task that we had to perform in those days.
Rudyard Kipling wrote in one of his poems the following lines: "O East is East and West is West. And never the twain shall meet," but Allah, Most High, has refuted that notion when He says in the Holy Quran:
"Lord (Rabb) of the two Easts and Lord of the two Wests, which then of the bounties of your Lord will you deny?" (55:17-18).
In other words, He is the Nourisher, the Provider, the Loving and Sustaining Lord of both East and West not only materially, but also spiritually, and in His sight both are one and also equal, for as He says elsewhere in the Holy Quran:
"So whoever believes in his Lord (Rabb), he fears neither loss nor injustice" (72:13).
How then will the sun rise in the West as it does in the East? It is here that the Founder comes again to our rescue. He says that on the one hand the Western nations are a blessing to mankind as a result of their shining left eye, that is, their scientific and technological brilliance and their prowess in all areas of the material sciences. On the other hand, they are a pernicious example to the world for their right eye, that is, their moral and spiritual eye, is blind and so they are bereft of the nobler principles of life. In fact, they are in some cases worse than the animals for animals are faithful to their covenant with Allah, that is, their instincts, but when man rejects the messages of the Prophets he inevitably takes false gods and follows his lust (hawa) which brings him down from his God-given elevated pedestal and makes him prey to all kinds of degenerate, unnatural and perverted behaviour as the Holy Quran states in the following verses:
"Certainly We created man in the best make. Then We render him the lowest of the low" (95:4-5).
Our mission, in fact, our sacred task, therefore, according to Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad, is to borrow from their left eye and put light into their right eye and thus will the ideal of universal brotherhood come into being. Unfortunately, the majority of Muslims are blind in both eyes. They are strangers to scientific research and experimentation and this in part has caused them to engage in deviating and fanatic behaviour so that spiritually superstition and erroneous doctrines have clouded their rationality and have infused them with narrow and misguided zeal. For example, physical confrontation with the Western world and a mistaken concept of jihad are causing them to waste their energies in vain and fruitless endeavours. As a result, they are sullying the good name of Islam and instilling hatred, aversion and fear in the hearts of people for our religion, not to mention giving the opponents of Islam a welcome and gratuitous opportunity to launch once more a concerted attack against the Holy Prophet, the Holy Quran, the religion of Islam and against even innocent, peace-loving Muslims. As the Holy Quran states, wittingly or unwittingly, they are encouraging others to "lie in wait on every road, threatening and turning (others) away from Allah's way and seeking to make it crooked" (7:86).
In today's world there is only one party that is divinely equipped to put light in the blind right eye of the Dajjal and Gog and Magog and that party is the Lahore Ahmadiyya Movement. There is no other group that sufficiently possesses the intellectual arguments, the unswerving faithfulness to pristine Islamic doctrines and the spiritual qualities to carry out this Divine mission. So, although small in number and seemingly insignificant, we must realise that ours is a God-given role and we must never despair nor relax in our efforts to bring about the reformation for which we were chosen by the Divine will.
"Remember you were few, then He multiplied you, and see what was the end of the mischief-makers" (7:86).
"How often has a small party vanquished a numerous host by Allahs permission? And Allah's is with the steadfast" (2:249).
Remember, as pointed out by the Founder himself that the same promise of victory has been given to the second Messiah, Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad, as was given to the first Messiah, Prophet Jesus:
"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. So a party of the Children of Israel believed and another party disbelieved; then We aided those who believed against their enemy and they became predominant" (61:14).
Allah, Most High, has favoured us with the most enlightened school of thought, the most correct interpretation of Islam. I pray that He will give us the courage, resources and determination to fulfil our God-given mission of making the sun rise higher in the West and of making Islam predominate over all religions.
Articles and Sermons (Vol. II) by Imam Kalamazad
> Future of the Ahmadiyya