Qadyani Movement – An Introduction
Belief in the Absolute Unity of Allah, and in the prophethood of Muhammad (Peace and Blessings of Allah Be Upon Him), particularly its finality for all time to come, constitute the two basic tenants of the Islamic faith. It was Islam which apprised the humanity that Allah and Allah alone is entitled to man’s worship and adoration, and that He is the Creator as well as the Sustainer of this Universe, its sole Lord and Master, and its Sovereign Ruler. It also declared categorically that Muhammad (P.B.U.H) is the last true Messenger of Allah, and that the code of conduct he presented to the world, based on Quran and Divine Revelation, was the only one that could guide humanity on the right path and lead it to prosperity in this world as well in the Hereafter. It was, therefore, eminently deserving of unwavering adherence by man for his own eternal good.
Since the unequivocal affirmation of the finality of Syedna Muhammad’s (P.B.U.H) Prophethood has been made in the following verse of the Holy Quran (Surah 33, Ayah 40):
Translation: "Muhammad (P.B.U.H) is not the father of any of your men, but (he is) the Apostle of Allah and the Seal of the Prophets (closing the line of Prophets for all time to come, in the same manner as a “seal” completes a document beyond any addition or alteration)”.
The aforesaid announcement is supported by a number of ahadith of the Holy Prophet (P.B.U.H) himself. One of these ahadith is : "The Messenger of Allah said (to Hazrat Ali (R.A) ) : Are you not happy that you are (in relation) to me as Harun (was to Musa), except that there is no Prophet after me.”
From the beginning, the anti-Islamic movements have played their part to harm the beliefs of the Muslim Ummah, thus trying to harm the Din (Islam) itself. These anti-Islamic movements were unable to make much headway against Tawhid (Absolute Unity of Allah) in the minds of the Muslims. So their concentration was on eroding the finality for all times to come of the Prophethood of Muhammad (P.B.U.H), and diminishing the unbounded love and respect in which every Muslim without exception held, and still holds, his great Prophet (P.B.U.H). They hoped that by weakening this concept they would be helping in the weakening the concept of Tawhid as well.
The aforesaid disruptive efforts had started during the closing years of the Holy Prophet’s (P.B.U.H) own life and immediately following his passing away. They had found expression, inter alia, in the emergence of a number of imposter prophets in the Arab peninsula such as Musailimah, Aswad Anasi, Abu Ubaidah Thaqafi, Dhul Khamar Anasi and Tulaihah Asadi. All these were, however, summarily crushed through firm and timely deterrent action, initially by the Holy Prophet (P.B.U.H) himself and later by first righteous Caliph Abubakar (R.A). Similar false prophet-hoods continued to raise their heads occasionally in other periods also in other lands but failed to make much impact so long as Muslim power and influence (both material and spiritual) were in zenith. The position of the Muslims changed dramatically in the 13th Hijrah century (19th century AD) when the Muslim community coincided with the rise of political, intellectual and economic ascendancy of the non-Muslim nations of the West. This provided to hitherto low-lying anti-Islam elements an environment in which they could rally their forces once again, and try to deal a decisive and crushing blow to the principles and beliefs of the Islamic faith and to the Muslim community in general.
It was during this period of adversity for the Muslim Ummah that, with the socio-political tactic of the then British Government of India, there arose in India that mischievous movement which is known as Qadianism (after the name of its domicile founder Mirza Ghulam Ahmad of Qadian) and Ahmadiyat.
All schools of Islamic thought were fully unanimous in their acceptance of the finality of Syedna Muhammad’s (P.B.U.H) Prophet-hood, until the founder of Qadianism (Mirza Ghulam Ahmad) put forth a claim to be a full-fledged apostle of Allah. This claim was the culmination of some lesser claims made by Mirza Ghulam Ahmad (to be referred to later as “Mirza” only) to start with. His initial step, for example, was to challenge the following clear Quranic declaration to the effect that Jesus Christ had been raised alive to heaven and not killed on the Cross, as the Jews claimed and as was believed by some people later (italics provided):
“ And they (i.e., the Jews) said (in boast): we killed Messiah son of Mary, Allah’s messenger; however, they killed him not nor did they crucify him, but it was made to appear so unto them, and those who disagree concerning it are in doubt thereof; they have no knowledge thereof save the pursuit of conjecture; for certainly they killed him not; but Allah raised him up unto Himself; and Allah was ever Mighty, Wise: (IV, 157-158).
Mirza also repudiated the unanimous Muslim belief, based on authentic ahadith of the Holy Prophet (P.B.U.H), that Christ would descend alive from heaven sometime before the Judgment Day, to complete his interrupted life span and mission on earth, and that he would do so in the cause of Islam. In these ahadith, contained in Sahih-e-Muslim, which ranks among the most authentic and authoritative hadith collections, the Prophet (P.B.U.H) is on record as having stated that the period sometime before the Resurrection (i.e., Judgment day) would be characterized by widespread turmoil and upheavals in the world. It would witness the appearance on the world scene of a person named Dajjal (Antichrist), who with the help of his magic and other satanic forces, would make life miserable for its inhabitants, especially the believing Muslims who would be the special target of his atrocities. It would be then that Jesus Christ would descend from heaven at a spot on earth near a “white minaret” towards the eastern side of the city of Damascus (Syria), supported by two angels. Christ would then join the battle against Dajjal, would kill him in combat, and would thereafter lead the revival and rejuvenation of Islamic forces in the world. After living for another seven years, he would die a natural death and would be buried in the compound of the Prophet’s Mosque (P.B.U.H) in Madina Munawwara.
Sometime before the descent of Jesus Christ on earth, a person belonging to Banu Fatima (The Fatimid descendants of the Prophet (P.B.U.H)) would have been born, whose real name would be Muhammad and his honorific title Mahdi (The Rightly-guided One). Mahdi, who would be in full youth at the time of Christ’s descent, would welcome the latter on his arrival, and would serve as his chief aide both in fighting Dajjal and in bringing about the resurgence of Islam in the world.
Since the precise timing of the appearance of the Mahdi, and of the subsequent descent of Jesus Christ from heaven, is not indicated in the ahadith mentioned above, a number of persons put forward claims to being the predicted Mahdi in different periods since the passing away of the Holy Prophet (P.B.U.H) of Islam. Before, however, they could have the privilege of greeting Jesus Christ, they themselves passed from the world scene for ever.
The founder of Qadianism adopted an approach somewhat different from his forerunners. To start with, he averred that Jesus Christ had not been raised alive to heaven as believed by the mass of Muslims on the basis of interpretations of the relevant ahadith by the early ulama. Instead, he asserted that Christ had in fact died on the Cross, and that the person predicted to appear before the Judgment Day would, therefore, not be Christ himself but his masil (replica, likeness or prototype). Simultaneously, he claimed, first that he himself was that masil of Christ, and later that he was the promised Messiah (or Christ) in his person and not only a masil. From here he proceeded to refute the firmly-established concept of the absolute finality of the Prophet-hood of Muhammad (P.B.U.H) first calling himself a zilli nabi or “shadow prophet” and then announcing his elevation to full prophet-hood. He thus sought to demolish a fundamental Muslim belief that is rooted in the Quranic verse quoted above, is re-affirmed in a number of the Prophet’s (P.B.U.H) authentic ahadith (one of them also cited as specimen above), and has been unanimously accepted by the Muslim Ummah for the past 13 centuries and more.
Early life of the Founder of Qadianism, Mirza Ghulam Ahmad Qadyani
Mirza Ghulam Ahmad, founder of the Qadyani movement, was born in the village of Qadian in the Gurdaspur District of Punjab (India) in 1839 or 1840. His father, Ghulam Murtaza, was a physician-cum-landowner of Mughal descent. After completing his education in the Arabic and Persian languages (as was customary in orthodox Muslim families of the day) and in Tibb (Eastern medicine), Mirza Ghulam Ahmad served for about four years beginning 1864 as a clerk in the office of Deputy Commissioner (District Officer) of Sialkot District. He then gave up this job to join his father’s practice of medicine. Simultaneously, he continued his somewhat irregular study of religious literature and also participated in religious debates. As far as is known, his ancestors had been orthodox Sunni (Hanafi) Muslims, and Mirza also subscribed to the same school of thought in his early years. In fact in 1879, at the age of about 40, he publicly announced his intention to write a fifty-volume book titled Barahin-e-Ahmadiyah (The Ahmadi Proofs), seeking to expound in strong and irrefutable terms, but on the basis of solid logic and reasoning, the truth of Islam vis-à-vis other religions. He also appealed to the Sub-continent’s Muslim community to provide material help to him in this noble task. In response to this call, the Muslims in general extended generous financial support to him in what they viewed as a laudable venture. After publishing only four volumes (out of the 50 initially promised) in the years between 1880 and 1884, however, Mirza abandoned the project, and stopped publication of subsequent volumes of the book. He did this on the plea that since he was the mujaddid of the century, he had been commanded by Allah to propagate Islam through divine inspiration rather than through intellectual effort and the written word. (More than 23 years later, Mirza wrote and published the fifth and last volume of the Barahin in 1905, i.e., three years before his death).
In 1886, Mirza wrote his second book, titled Aryah Dharm (The Aryah Creed), and also held a debate in Hoshiarpur (Punjab) with the Hindu Aryah Samaji sect. This enabled him to make some name for himself as an Islamic debater, and also helped him build up a group of disciples around him. Hakim Nurrudin (1841-1914), then personal physician of the Maharajah of the Jammu and Kashmir princely State and a relation of Mirza through his wife, was a prominent member of this influential band of advisors and helpers.
Mirza’s Early Beliefs
Till now, Mirza’s religious beliefs, including that in the finality of the prophet-hood of Muhammad (P.B.U.H), were fully orthodox like any other true Sunni Muslim. In a public notice dated 2 October 1891, which is included in the second volume of his book Tabligh-e-Risalat (Dissemination of Prophet-hood), he wrote as follows:
“I subscribe to all Islamic beliefs, and uphold all those things which are borne out by the Quran and the Hadith and are accepted as true by the Ahl-e-sunnah wal jama’ah (Sunni Muslims). I regard anyone claiming prophet-hood after Muhammad (P.B.U.H), the last of all Prophets of Allah, to be an impostor and a kafir (infidel). I firmly believe that divine prophetic revelation had started with Adam and had finally ended for all time to come with Prophet Muhammad (P.B.U.H). Let everyone be a witness to this”.
Mental state of the contemporary Muslim community
The Muslim community of India was passing through a grave mental and emotional crisis around this time. On the one hand, it has lost its former political supremacy lasting for several centuries, and was forced to wait expectantly for the emergence of a leader who could rid it out of its state of gloom and despair through his dynamic leadership. On the other, its religious, moral and cultural values were being seriously threatened by the materialistic ideas of Europe which had invaded the Sub-continent via the British rule. Its common people as well as the intellectual elite were finding themselves helpless against this onslaught. The intellectual element of the community had in fact been forced to conclusion that coping successfully with this dual challenge was impossible without acquiring and adopting the materialistic values of the West. It was on this premise that Sir Syed Ahmad Khan, the noted Muslim educationist and founder of the Muslim University at Aligarh, launched his historic movement to introduce the Muslims of India to the new cultural values of the West, and to popularize English education and arts among them. Consciously or otherwise, however, Sir Syed’s movement came to be associated with the spread of “naturalism”.
Journey of Mirza’s claims from a Masil to a full prophet
In spite of Mirza’s early beliefs, his false predictions proved to be a masil-ul-Masih (likeliness or analog of Jesus Christ) to a full prophet with a shariah (Religion).
Mirza’s claim to be a Masil of Jesus Christ, The Messiah
It was around this time that Hakim Nurrudin, the disciple, relative and close associate of Mirza mentioned earlier, advised him to exploit the prevailing demoralized state of the Indian Muslims to his own advantage. Nurrudin felt that if Mirza were to present himself before the nation as a masil of Jesus Christ, he was sure to be greeted as a savior and a redeemer, and would be able to play a vital role in the Muslim nation’s revival. Initially, Mirza did not view this idea with favour and wrote to Nurrudin as follows in his letter dated 24 January 1891, which in included in Maktubat-e-Ahmadiyah (The letters of (Ghulam) Ahmad):
“With reference to your suggestion that, regardless of the hadith concerning the prospective descent of Jesus Christ near the minaret on the eastern side of Damascus (Syria) I should put forward a claim to be the masil of Christ, I wish to say that I have no need to do any such thing. My sole desire is that Allah may include me in His humble and obedient bondsmen. For us (human beings) there is no running away from trials and tribulations, which are indeed the only means of (material and spiritual) progress….”.
Not long after writing the aforesaid letter, however, Mirza put forward a claim to be a Masil of Jesus Christ in the following words reproduced from the posture included in the book Tabligh-e-Risalat, Vol. II:
“I do not claim to be a Messiah Jesus son of Mary (in person), nor do I believe in tanasukh (transmigration of the soul). My only claim is to be only the Masil of Jesus. This is because my spiritual state resembles the spiritual state of Jesus Christ as closely as does muhaddithiyat (mastery of the Prophet’s Hadith) resemble prophet-hood”.
From Messiah’s Masil to promised Messiah in person
Mirza did not stick to his claim to be a Masil of Jesus Christ for long. His next step was to refute the belief concerning the “aliveness” of Christ and to assert that Christ had in fact “died” on the Cross. He then proceeded to declare himself to be the promised Messiah and the promised Mahdi. This he did in the following statements excerpted from his books titled Tawdih-e-Maram (The Elucidation of Objectives), Fateh-ul-Islam (The victory of Islam), Tabligh-e-Risalat, Tohfa-e-Golraviyah (The Golravi present) and many other books like this.
“Both the Muslims and the Christians believe (with a slight difference of detail) that Jesus son of Mary was lifted bodily and alive to heaven, and that he would descend to earth at some future date. I have denied the validity of this belief earlier in this journal”
“ If you are true believers, you should be thankful and should bow to God that the moment for which your ancestors waited expectantly for long, and countless souls passed away without witnessing it, has finally arrived. I cannot help saying repeatedly that I have been sent in good time to reform mankind and to re-instill the din in people’s heart, in the same manner as he (i.e., Jesus Christ) who was sent after Moses and whose soul was raised to heaven after great agony in the reign of Herod. The Masil of Jesus Christ (i.e., Mirza himself) promised (by God) to Prophet Muhammad (P.B.U.H) has now descended from heaven in the fourteenth Hijrah century, i.e., approximately the same length of time after Prophet Muhammad (P.B.U.H) as that between Moses and Jesus Christ. This is a spiritual descent. It has taken place during a period very similar to the one in which the original Christ had come, and is meant to be a “sign” for those who understand”;
“ And this is the long-awaited Christ, and it is I who am referred to in revealed texts as Mary and Jesus, and about whom it was said that he would be made a “sign” and it was also said that he would be the Jesus son of Mary that was due to come. Those who doubt this are in manifest error”.
"I swear by God who has sent me, and to whom only the accused ones attribute anything but the truth, that He has sent me as the Promised Messiah".
“I hereby claim to be that promised Messiah, about whom there are prophecies in all the sacred books of Allah that he would appear (again) in the last period of history”.
To prove his claimed resemblance to Jesus Christ, Mirza put forward some queer arguments. Here are some examples:
“ My birth had a novelty about it similar to the birth of Christ, in that a girl had been born as my twin. This is an uncommon happening, since a single child is born in most cases”.
“Another point of resemblance between Jesus Christ and the promised Messiah of this Ummah (i.e., Mirza himself) is that Christ was not a full-fledged Israelite but was considered so only because of his mother. Similarly some of my grandmothers were descendants of the Prophet (P.B.U.H) of Islam. Furthermore, the secret about Christ having been born without a father was that Allah was highly displeased with the children of Israel because of the multiplicity of their sins”.
A lecture delivered in Sialkot
“ Be sure that the person who has now descended (i.e., Mirza) is in fact (Jesus) son of Mary, who, like the original Jesus Christ, had no human as his ‘spiritual father’. Allah Himself, therefore, became his custodian, took him under His protection, and named him (also) Son of Mary. He is thus symbolically Jesus Son of Mary, who was born without father? Can you prove (also) that he is a member of any one of the four schools of fiqh (Islamic jurisprudence)? If not, then who is this person if not the Son of Mary?
“The fourteenth specialty of Jesus Christ was that because of a father, he was not part of the Bani Israel (i.e., Children of Israel). He was, nevertheless, the last Prophet of the chain of Moses, and came fourteen centuries after Moses. Similarly, even though I do not belong to a family of Quraish, I have been deputed (by Allah) in the fourteenth century (after the Holy Prophet (P.B.U.H), and am the last of all”.
Tazkirahtush Shahadatain (An Account of Two Testimonies)
By Mirza Ghulam Ahmad of Qadian
Following the afore mentioned declarations, Mirza placed distorted interpretations on some of the Holy Prophet’s (P.B.U.H) ahadith concerning the future descent of Jesus Christ. Some examples are given below:
As indicated earlier, the descent of Jesus Christ was to take place, according to the hadith in Sahih Muslim, in the following circumstances:
a) His descent would be next to at the eastern minaret in the city of Damascus (Syria).
b) He would be clad in two yellow sheets.
c) On being requested by the Imam (leader) of the Muslims to lead the prayers, Jesus Christ would say that this should be done by their own Imam (your Imam is from among yourselves) other corroborating ahadith indicate that Hazrat Mahdi would be the Imam in question.
Mirza made the aforesaid three circumstances applicable to himself on the following rather funny premises:
a) Just as Damascus (Syria) had been inhabited by wicked people who had martyred Imam Hussain (R.A), so as Qadian (Punjab) inhabited by people who do not hesitate to kill pious and pure people. It was therefore necessary that the masil of Christ should also descend among such wicked people.
Damascus and Qadian are geographically “situated on the same latitude", and there would be a “minaret of Messiah” in Qadian similar to the “eastern minaret” of Damascus mentioned in the Prophet’s hadith.
(Mirza also started building a minaret in Qadian but died before its completion. Furthermore, there was in fact no similarity about “killing of pious people” between the inhabitants of Damascus and Qadian. There are no instances of any Qadyani having murdered any holy personality like Syedna Imam Hussain (R.A) or ever of making an attempt on Mirza’s own life.)
Mirza also asserted that the Al-Aqsa Mosque, which is situated in Jerusalem, and to which Allah had miraculously transported the Holy Prophet (P.B.U.H) across hundreds of miles from Makkah on the night of the Miraj (Ascension), in fact meant the mosque of the promised Messiah that was situated in Qadian.
(Tazkirah-e-Majmuah-e-Wahy-e-Muqaddas, An Account of the Collection of Sacred Revelations).
b) As regards the two yellow sheets in which, according to the Holy Prophet’s above-cited hadith, Christ would be clad at the time of his future descent to earth, Mirza likened these symbolically but far-fetchedly to the two types of physical ailment from which he then suffered, viz., frequent headaches, vertigo, insomnia, and heart spasm in the upper part of his body, and diabetes in its lower part.
(cf. Appendix to Araba’in, Nos. 3 and 4).
c) With reference to the word (Your imam is from among yourselves), which are attributed to Jesus Christ in the aforementioned hadith in response to the request to be made to him lead the prayers, Mirza interpreted (or rather misinterpreted) them to mean that Christ would assume the form of his own masil and would then lead the prayers himself - an interpretation that clearly conflicts with those accepted by all previous scholars and interpreters of hadith and also with other portions of the same hadith.
Concerning that part of hadith, for example, in which it was predicted that Jesus Christ would kill the Dajjal signified those Christian priests whom he (i.e., Mirza) had already “killed” through arguments contained in his various books. In placing this construction on the hadith, Mirza in fact implied that the Prophet (P.B.U.H) erred in interpreting the message revealed to him by God on this point, since, according to him (i.e., Mirza) it was by no means certain that an apostle could fully comprehend all the aspects of even those future events which God Himself revealed to him!
From Promised Messiah to a full prophet
Mirza’s claim to be the promised Messiah lasted for about 10 years. Thereafter, in November 1901, he went a step further, and, repudiating the unanimous Muslim belief in the finality of prophet-hood of Prophet Muhammad (P.B.U.H) for all time to come, to which he himself had categorically subscribed as shown earlier, put forward an unequivocal claim to be a full-fledged prophet of Allah.
The occasion for this arose initially in August 1901 when the khatib (leader of congregational prayers) of Mirza’s mosque in Qadian referred to Mirza in his Friday khutbah (sermon) as a prophet and messenger of Allah. Despite a strong objection raised to this remark by one of those present in the congregation, the khatib repeated the statement in the next Friday khutbah and the objector raised his objection once again. On being requested by the khatib to adjudicate, and to correct him if he was in the wrong, Mirza Ghulam Ahmad, who hitherto had been hesitant to venture a direct claim to prophet-hood, and had confined himself to claiming to be “God’s deputed one”, “His appointed one”, “His trusted one”, and the “Masil” of Messiah etc. decided to take the final plunge and confirmed the statement made concerning him by the khatib. This greatly infuriated that person (Syed Muhammad Ahsan Qadyani), who started arguing loudly with the khatib. Thereupon, Mirza himself appeared on the scene and chided both of them by reciting the following Quranic verse, which had in fact been revealed in relation to Prophet Muhammad (P.B.U.H) (O believers! Raise not your voices above the voice of Prophet Muhammad (P.B.U.H))
(Cf. Al Fadl, official Qadyani newspaper, Qadian, 4 January 1923, and journal Furqan-e-Qadianiyat, October 1942 issue).
His former hesitancy in the matter having thus been removed, Mirza followed up the aforesaid incident by making clear and written assertions to the same effect. For example:
“How can I deny being a prophet or a messenger when Allah Himself has conferred these titles upon me? Why should I reject them or fear anyone besides Him”?
Eik Ghalati Ka Izalah (Removal of an error)
“ God has endorsed my prophethood through thousands of ‘signs’ in a manner no other apostle’s prophethood was endorsed in past______ I swear by God (who holds my life in His hands) that He alone has sent me and named me prophet as well as the Promised Messiah, and He has manifested as many as three hundred thousand ‘signs’ in my favour”.
Epilogue to “Haqiqat-ul-Wahi (The Reality of Revelation), 1907.
Bizarre arguments against Holy Prophet Muhammad (P.B.U.H) Finality of Prophethood
In his earlier books (e.g., Barahin-e-Ahmadiyah, Vol. IV, and Izalatul Awham, etc.), Mirza had stated categorically that the coming of any prophet after Muhammad (P.B.U.H) was “impossible and contrary to the promise of God”. However, when he decided to become a prophet himself, he put forward all sorts of arguments contrary to confirmed Muslim beliefs on this point.
In Barahin-e-Ahmadiyah (Vol. V, published 1905), for example, he wrote thus: …………. “ How wrong and absurd it is to believe that the door to Divine revelation has been closed for all time to come after Prophet Muhammad (P.B.U.H), and that there is no hope of its resumption until the Day of Judgment. This means that future generations of humanity have been left to worship and believe in ancient tales only, and that even if someone (implying Mirza himself) strives in path of Allah with such devotion as to sacrifice everything including his life for His sake, he will have no direct opportunity to learn about Him or to be addressed by Him at a personal level……..What is the value of religion that does not provide any direct knowledge about God but relies instead on stories and legends only? I swear by Allah that regard such a religion as the religion of Satan, and one which leads its followers straight to hell.
Claim to be a shadow prophet
For sometime after making his prophetic claim, Mirza projected himself as a zilli nabi (shadow prophet), implying that even though the door to prophet-hood was still open, no one could be invested with it directly as in the past but only through endorsement and certification by Prophet Muhammad (P.B.U.H), whom God had called Khatim-un-Nabiyyin in the Quran. He interpreted this appellation to mean, not “the last of all Prophets” as universally believed by the Muslim Ummah on the basis of undisputed evidence from the Quran itself as well as numerous ahadith, but the “seal of prophets” which was intended to endorse or ratify the prophet-hood of others. Thus, in turn, also implied that persons could and in fact would appear after Prophet Muhammad (P.B.U.H) whom the latter would certify with his “seal”. According to Mirza, the criterion for such certification was to be the concerned person’s strict and consistent adherence to the Prophet’s shariah, as he claimed to have done himself.
Full prophet with a shariah
After remaining a shadow prophet for some time, Mirza finally proceeded to take a step about which even the most accomplished ulama and Awlia (Saints) of the Ummah shuddered to think. He put forward a claim to be a full-fledged prophet of Allah with his own shariah (canonical code), and also Khatim-un-Nabiyyin (the last of the prophets). He thus ventured to transgress that most hallowed boundary which even Angel Gabriel had excused himself from crossing on the night of the Holy Prophet’s Miraj (Ascension) to the high heavens, and where the Mashaikh of the Ummah dared not to breath with ease.
In the words of a Persian poet,
"There exists a place commanding the highest respect below the sky (i.e., the tomb of Holy Prophet (P.B.U.H), which is holier that even the Throne of Allah;
Even (such sublime personalities as) Junaid (of Baghdad) and Bayazid (of Bastam) approach this place with held breath".
In his book titled “Eik Ghalati Ka Izalah”, Mirza wrote:
“Many a time have I told people that in consonance with the Quranic ayah (Surah Al-Juma-Ayah 3) (Translation: Along with others who have not yet joined them__ LXII, 3), I am symbolically the last of the prophets, that god named me Muhammad and Ahmad twenty years ago, and also that He pronounced me to be Prophet Muhammad himself. So when the Promised Messiah and Muhammad are one and the same in record of Allah, when they possess the same dignity, status, mission as well as name, and when there is no duality or difference between them except of a verbal nature only, how far removed from truth it would be for people to deny that the Promised Messiah is none but Muhammad himself”.
(Excerpt published in the journal Al-Fazl dated 16 September 1915).
In his book Haqiqat-ul-Wahi, Mirza also interpreted a number of Quranic verses addressed to or glorifying Holy Prophet (P.B.U.H) as having in fact been revealed concerning himself. These verses are listed below:
Translation: "Say (O Muhammad, to mankind): If ye love Allah, follow me; Allah (too) will then love you". (III, 31)
Translation: "He hath no partner. This I am commanded, and I am first of those who surrender (to Him)". (VI, 164).
Translation: "And thou (O Muhammad) threwest not (dust in the enemies eyes) when thou didst throw, but Allah threw (it)". (VIII, 17)
Translation: "Glorified be He who carried His servant by night from the Inviolable Place of Worship (the Holy Kaabah in Makkah) to the Far Distant Place of Worship (Jerusalem)". (XVII, 1)
We sent thee not (O Prophet!) save as a mercy for the worlds. (XXI, 107)
Translation: "Yaaseen. By the wise Quran, Lo! Thou art of those sent, on a straight path". (XXXVI, 1-4)
Translation: " Lo! We have given thee (O Muhammad) a signal victory, that Allah may forgive thee of thy sin, that which is past and that which is to come". (XLVIII, 1-2)
Translation: "Lo! Those who swear allegiance unto thee (O Muhammad) swear allegiance (in fact) to Allah. The hand of Allah is above their hands". (XLVIII, 10)
Translation: "He it is who hath sent His messenger with the guidance and religion of truth, that He may cause it to prevail over all religions". (XLVIII, 28)
Translation: " Then he drew nigh and came down, until he was (distant) two bows’ length or even nearer". (LIII, 8-9)
Translation: "And bringing good tidings of a messenger who cometh after me, whose name is Ahmad (the Praised One)". (LXI, 6)
Translation: " Lo! We have sent unto you a messenger as witness against you, even as We sent unto Pharaoh a messenger". (LXXIII,15)
Translation: "Lo! We have given thee abundance". (CVIII,1)
To minimize the repugnance (from the Islamic point of view) of these unfamiliar and far fetched claims, the argument was given that Mirza was Muhammad and Ahmad himself and no separate personality. Some examples of this:
“He (i.e., Mirza) derives his inspiration, not from his own self but from the fountain-head of his Prophet and not from his own but his Prophet’s glory. That is why his name is Muhammad and Ahmad in the heaven, implying that the prophethood of Muhammad has passed on to Muhammad himself, and to non else, even though this was done in a symbolic sense.”
(Eik Ghalati ka Izalah)
“ And know ye that just as our Holy Prophet Muhammad (P.B.U.H) was sent amongst the five thousandth (in the sequential order?), so did he descend (again) amongst the six thousandth by assuming the symbolic form of the Promised Messiah. Thus whoever denies this reality in fact denies the Truth and the Word of the Quran. And the truth is that the prophethood of Muhammad at the end of the six-thousandth, i.e., at the present time, is far more perfect, strong, and powerful than his earlier prophethood. It is indeed like the full moon in its ascendant”.
Khutba-e-Ilhamiyah, The Inspired Discourse
“ It is obligatory for every believer that the Holy Prophet (P.B.U.H) was deputed by Allah on his mission twice, in the same manner as he is enjoined to believe in Allah’s other commands.”
“ Whoever made a distinction between me and the Holy Prophet Muhammad (P.B.U.H), and considered the two as separate entities, did not recognize, see, or understand me”.
-“The shadow (i.e., the reflected image) never gets detached from the original self. Since I am Muhammad in the reflected sense, the seal of finality of prophethood has not been broken by my arrival. Prophethood has continued to be vested in Muhammad as before, and no one but him can claim to own it.___ In other words, since I am symbolically Muhammad himself, and all his accomplishments and attributes, including his prophethood, and reflected in my “mirror”, where is the other human being who has put forward a claim to prophethood? You are obliged to accept this fact as true, since in the Prophet’s ahadith it is clearly set down that the Promised Mahdi would resemble the Holy Prophet (P.B.U.H) in physical creation as well as character, that he would be named Muhammad and Ahmad, and also that he would be from among the members of the Prophet’s household.
Note: The history of my ancestors proves that one of my paternal grandmothers belonged to Bani Fatima (i.e., off-spring of the Prophet’s daughter Fatima (R.A)). This fact was certified by the Holy Prophet (P.B.U.H) himself, who named me Salman in a dream, and said that like his grandson Hasan I would be instrumental in bringing about peace on two fronts, viz., (i) in suppressing dissension and hatred within the Muslim community, and (ii) in not only defeating the designs of outside forces inimical to Islam but, also by projecting the greatness and virtues of Islam to them and bringing them round to this faith. It appears furthermore that I am also the Salman named in the Prophet’s hadith, since the prophecy of bringing about “two peaces” is not applicable to Salman the Companion of the Holy Prophet (P.B.U.H).
On the basis of the divine revelation, I also hereby affirm that I am from among the Bani Faris (children of Persia), and that according to another ahadith, the Bani Faris also rank among the Children of Israel and the Ahl-e-Bait (members of the Prophet’s Household)”.
(Eik Ghalati ka Izalah)
Wahi (revelation), Ilham (inspiration) and predictions of Mirza Ghulam Ahmad
Having made a claim to full prophethood, Mirza proceeded to take all those steps which he considered necessary to substantiate that claim. These included assertions that he was receiving wahi (divine revelation), ilham (inspiration), and kashf (vision) in the manner of other prophets. This is borne out, inter alia, by the following poem reproduced on page 287 of the collection of his poetry titled Durr-e-Thamin (The Precious Pearl):
(By God, whatever I hear through divine revelation, I consider it to be free from error).
(I regard it errorless like Quran, and this is (part of) my faith).
(By God, this is Glorious Quran. Which is from the mouth of the One and pure God Himself).
In another book Arba’in No.4, he wrote that had as full a belief in divine revelations to himself as he had in the Torah, the Bible and the Quran. In Haqiqatul Wahi, he wrote:
“God’s revelations to me are so numerous that they would cover 20 chapters if compiled”.
“The angel A’il came to me. (Note: Allah has named Gabriel as A’il here because he comes again and again). He chose me, spun his finger and said to me that God’s promise had been fulfilled, and that blessed would be he who receives and witnesses it”.
(The followers of Mirza give the name Kitab-ul-Mubeen (the Manifest book) to the collection of his wahi and inspirations. This is in fact the appellation used by Allah for the Quran in the Holy Book itself).
In addition to wahi, Mirza also claimed to receive ilham (inspiration) from time to time. In his book Izalatul Awham, he had described at some length the various types of ilhamat, and the condition of those who receive them as follows:
“Ilham is of two kinds: Rahmani (Divine) and Shaitani (Satanic). The former ilham is accompanied by divine light and blessings. The latter is, however, influenced by the inspired person’s own hopes and wishes. This happens especially when he entertains in his mined a hidden desire to have a certain ilham which is in line with his own inclination. In such a situation, Satan intervenes and makes some words issue from him which are in effect satanic words, but which the inspired person construes as divine words. Such satanic intervention occurs sometimes in the wahi of God’s apostle and messengers also, but the words resulting from it are struck off instantly by divine intervention”.
“ I have seen many persons who consider every voice that come to them to be ilham; in fact, such voices are little more than confused dreams. Every voice that one hears cannot be regarded as the voice of God, unless it is accompanied by the light and blessings that characterize that sacred Word of God”.
“ Until and unless the inner dirt and pollution are got rid of and person reaches the stage when this world and its attraction appear to him even less significant than a dead worm, and unless Allah becomes for him the sole Object and Raison d’etre of all his words and deeds, no one can attain that station where he can hear the voice of Allah”.
(Mirza Sahib’s pronouncement published in the Al-Hakam Newspaper dated 31 March 1903).
In his book Haqiqatul Wahi, Mirza classified the receivers of ilham into three categories, viz. : (i) those who possess no skills and have no relationship with God, but who sometimes see true dreams and experience kashf (clairvoyance or inner vision) by true virtue of their mental attributes only; (ii) those who have some but not a perfect relationship with God; and (iii) those who burn their carnal desires in the fire of God’s love and opt for a life of bitterness and hardship solely for His sake. He simultaneously claimed to have been placed by God in the last-named category, “not because of any effort on my part but even while I was in my mother’s womb”.
Some specimens of Mirza’s ilhamat (inspirations) and of his “cognition” of Allah:
- My God pledged allegiance unto me. (“Dafi-ul-Bala”, The Repeller of Calamity).
- (God said to me): “O sun, O moon! Thou art from me and I am from thee.” (Haqiqat-ul-Wahi)
- (i) Thou art like a son to Me”.
(ii) Listen to me My Son. (Al-Bushra, Vol. 1)
(How brazenly this negates the Quranic assertion that Allah begetteth no, nor was He begotten, (CXII,3) ).
- I am with the Messenger. I reply; I make errors, and I (also) do the right things.
- (God said to me:) “Your name, and not Mine, would be perfected”.
- “(Such is thy greatness that) if thou decideth to do something, and orderest it to be, it shall be”.
- “Thou art from Our water, while they are from dryness”.
- “The earth and the sky are with thee, as they are with Me”.
(It may be mentioned that the aforesaid so-called “inspirations” are not only flagrantly blasphemous, in that they elevate Mirza to the position of virtual equality with God Himself; there are blatant errors of grammar and diction also in the Arabic language in which they are couched).
- “Allah praises thee from His Throne, and comes to thee”.
- "Like Mary, the spirit of Jesus was breathed into me, and I was allegorically made pregnant! After no more than 10 months, I was transformed from Mary to Jesus. In this way, I am the son of Mary!"
- "We give thee tidings of a son, who will be such a manifestation of truth and loftiness as if God Himself had descended from heaven!"
(Istafta, The Verdict by Mirza himself)
- I yet another ilham quoted in A’ina-e-Kamalat-e-Islam (Mirror of the Accomplishment of Islam), he said he had dreamt that he was Allah Himself and had created the sky and earth!
- In Al-Bushra, (Vol. II) he wrote: “Allah revealed that He will say His prayers, shall observe fast, shall wake, and shall sleep”.
In volume 1 of the same book, he wrote: “God will descend in Qadian”.
- In dafi-ul-Bala, he said: “He is the true God, who sent His messenger to Qadian”.
- In Ijaz-e-Ahmadi (The Miracle of Ahmad i.e., Ghulam Ahmad), the following ilham was quoted: “ News about thy coming is there in Quran and the Hadith. The Quranic ayah (He it is who sent His Messenger with correct guidance and the true religion, so that He may cause it to prevail over all the other religions) (IX, 33) pertains to thee”.
- I saw (in a dream) that I was in a jungle, and was surrounded by many kinds of beasts such as monkeys and swine, whom I construed to be the people of the Ahmadi community (i.e., his own followers!).
(Quoted in Paigham-e-Sulh Newspaper, dated 7 April 1934)
- When Mirza Sahib needed money to finance his planned second marriage, he received loans of Rs. 500 and Rs. 300 from two different parties as a result of an ilham!
Many of Mirza’s ilhamats are in the form of predictions, which Mirza put forward as criteria and signs of his truth. Some of these predictions, and the fate they met in each case are reproduced in the succeeding, paragraphs. It will be seen that unlike the prediction of Allah’s true prophets of the past which were invariably proved to be correct, a large majority of Mirza’s predictions turned out to be wrong.
(i) Divine inspiration revealed to me that a son will be born to Muhammadi Begum, wife of Mian Manzur Muhammad, who will be given on of the following four names: Bashiruddawlah, Alam-e-Kabab, Shadi Khan, Kalimatulah Khan. (Al-Bushra, Vol. II).
(In fact, a daughter and not a son was born to the lady in question on 17 July 1906. being a master of adroitly explaining away such perverted happenings, Mirza claimed that the birth of a daughter instead of a son was a result of his own prayer to Allah, since the advent of a son would have resulted in a calamitous earthquake!)
(ii) With respect to his commentary on the Holy Quran, titled Ijaz-ul-Masih (The Miracle of Messiah), Mirza had made an inspired prediction that whoever thought of writing a reply to that commentary would be put to shame and would perish. However, when Hazrat raised more than a hundred objections to the commentary in question in his book Saif-e-Chishtiyai (The Chishtia Sword), Mirza tried to explain things away on a variety of flimsy grounds. In the end he had no choice except that his prediction had been proved wrong.
(iii) Simultaneous with the death of one of Mirza’s son, named Mubarak Ahmad, he claimed that God had given him tidings of a ‘mild-mannered’ son who would have qualities similar to those of (the late) Mubarak Ahmad. (Mirza’s poster dated 5 November 1907, included in his book Tabligh-e-Risalat, Vol. X).
However, Mirza did not have any issue, male or female, after this prediction.
(iv) In June 1893, Mirza published an “inspired” prediction that Abdullah Atham, a Christian priest with whom he had engaged in a religious debate sometime earlier, “would die and go to hell within the next 15 months”. He said he was ready to suffer any penalty including showering of disgraces upon him, blackening his face, and putting a noose round his neck and hanging him, if the prophecy turned out to be wrong, unless Abdullah Atham embraced Islam in the mean time. In fact Atham, despite his old age, lived for many years after the predicted date, i.e., September 1894, without embracing Islam.
(v) In 1886, at the age of 46 years, Mirza had requested his cousin Mirza Ahmad Beg for the hand of his daughter Muhammadi Begum (then hardly 12-13 years old) in marriage. In 1888, he announced his ilham that God Himself had given Muhammadi Begum in his wedlock, and that this was bound to happen sooner or later whether she remained virgin or became a widow. The ilham also indicated that if the girl were to be married to someone other than Mirza, her husband would die within 21/2 years and her father within three years. Mirza claimed in his book Anjam-e-Atham, (1897) that he had made this prediction only after God Himself had informed him about it, and that he therefore regarded it as an acid test of his truthfulness or falsity. However, while the girl’s father did die within the predicted period of three years, the girl herself and her husband, Sultan Muhammad, lived until long after Mirza’s own death.
In support of his aforesaid prediction, which turned out to be so blatantly wrong, Mirza was also audacious enough to try to back it up by the Holy Prophet’s prophecy in one of his ahadith that after his future descent from heaven, “Christ would also marry and have children”. Mirza argued that since marriage and having children are common human phenomena, which need no “prediction” to Promised Messiah indicated the special nature of his own predicted marriage to Muhammadi Begum (Mirza’s poster dated 20 February 1888). He conveniently ignored, or perhaps failed to understand, the fact that Jesus Christ had not married before his prediction was therefore meant to signify that he would do so, and thereby fill the erstwhile vacuum in his earthly life, after his future descent from heaven.
In an interesting, even though far-fetched and absurd rationalization of this prediction, Hakim Nurrudin, Mirza’s loyal companion and disciple, expressed the view in the June-July 1908 issue of the Qadyani Journal “Review of Religions” (i.e., after Mirza’s death) that someone from among the descendents of Mirza Sahib would in due course of time marry a girl from among the progeny of Muhammadi Begum!!!
(vi) The gist of some of Mirza’s inspirations quoted in his books titled Mavahib-ur-Rahman (The gifts of Rahman i.e., Allah), Arba’in No.3, and Tohfa-e-Golraviyah, was that “he would live up to an age of 80 years, or a little less or more”. In fact, his age at the time of his death on 26 May 1908 was 68 or 69.
Dr. Abdul Hakim Surgeon of Patiala Princely State, who was a former devotee of Mirza but had parted ways after remaining with Mirza for nearly twenty years, predicted on 13 July 1906 that Mirza being an imposter and cunning and extravagant person, would meet his end within three years. Sometime later, in July 1907, he advanced the predicted date of Mirza’s death by about 101/2 months, and prophesied that Mirza would die within 14 months of that date. In retaliation to these predictions, Mirza published two posters titled “God will favour the truthful one” and “A comment” to be the liar by outliving the predicted date of his death. He did however pass away within the period prophesied by Dr. Abdul Hakim, while the latter lived until long after his death.
(vii) Concerning Maulvi Sanaullah of Amritsar, who had denounced Mirza as an imposter, Mirza published on 15th April 1907 a poster containing a fervent prayer to Allah (which he later claimed to have made not on his own initiative but on God’s bidding, cf. the Newspaper Badr dated 25 April 1907), that if Sanaullah was right in his accusation against him, he (i.e., Mirza) should die within the former’s lifetime, otherwise Sanaullah should meet his end within the lifetime of Mirza. He added that he had been abused and persecuted a great deal by people like Sanaullah, but had suffered all their calumnies with patience. Since, however, the hostile attitude of these persons had now surpassed all descent limits, they deserved to be destroyed by God in order to rid the world of the threat posed to it by them.
In fact, while Mirza died in 1908, Maulvi Sanaullah lived for as long as 40 years thereafter up to March 1948, i.e., until after the creation of Pakistan, having spent his whole life in waging a relentless struggle against Qadianism.
(viii) Mirza is also known to have made predictions on some occasions about the incidence of lunar and solar eclipses, and about the outbreak of bubonic plague and the occurrence of earthquakes. Apart from the fact that eclipses of the sun and the moon can be and are predicted with a high amount of accuracy by astronomers and one does not need to be a prophet to predict them, the eclipses fore told by Mirza failed to materialize on the dates predicted by him. As regards earthquakes Mirza had himself stated sometime earlier that these represented normal phenomena of nature which kept occurring from time to time, and that making prediction about them does not call for any special or extra ordinary prophetic talent. In reference to Jesus Christ, for example, he had written as follows in the appendix of his “Anjam-e-Atham”:
“What were the so called predictions of this miserable man (Jesus Christ)? Only that earthquakes would take place, that famines would occur, or that wars would break out. Accused of God be the hearts and souls of those who regarded such predictions as an evidence of his divinity, and made a dead man (like him) their god! Do earthquakes not occur and famines not break out always and do not wars keep talking place somewhere or the other in the world at every point of time. How could this ignorant Israelite claim such ordinary things to be his predictions?”
Hazrat’s observations about Mirza’s Ilhamat
Incidentally, Hazrat has made the following classification of Mirza Sahib’s inspirations in book “Saif-e-Chishtiyai”:
(i) Ilhamat-e-Kazibah (false inspirations). These are the inspirations whose falsity is either testified to buy Mirza’s own utterance from time to time, or which have turned out to be false due to non-fulfillment.
(ii) Ilhamat-e-Sayyadiyah, i.e., inspirations resembling those of Ibn-e-Sayyad, which are meaningless and incomprehensible. Such inspirations owe their name to the hadith according to which the Holy Prophet (P.B.U.H), on the occasion of the revelations of Surah-e-Addukhan (Smoke or Mist), 44th Surah of Quran, asked one Ibn-e-Sayyad (possibly a soothsayer) as to what he (i.e., the Prophet) was concealing in his mind and the latter replied “dukh” (smoke)! (Hazrat Shaikh Muhyuddin Ibn-ul-Arabi (R.A) equates such an inspiration with “delusion” in his famous book Futuhat-e-Makkiyah (The Makkan Revelations)).
(iii) Ilhamat-e-Shaitaniah Insiyah, i.e., those satanic inspirations which some other human being had put into his mind.
(iv) Ilhamat-e-Shaitaniah Jinniyah, i.e., those satanic inspirations which had been put into his mind by some jinn (gene).
(v) Ilhamat-e-Shaitaniah Manawiyah. These rank somewhere between Nos. (iii) and (iv) above, and consist in the development of an obsession, primarily through the agency of Satan, that the person concerned possesses capabilities which he in fact does not have. The obsession acquired by Mirza, for example, was that he was “the promised Messiah” and he had clung to this obsession without analyzing it with reason and in the light of the shariah of the Holy Prophet (P.B.U.H).
In the light of Shaikh Muhyuddin Ibn-ul-Arabi’s observations mentioned against (ii) above, Hazrat expressed the view that the only way to guard against such delusions was through strict observance of the dictates of shariah in all matters. Many persons before Mirza, he said, had been assailed by similar delusive “inspiration” but had been able to successfully ward them of through meticulous shariah observance, and through correct guidance by their respective Mashaikh (spiritual guides).
Distortions of the Quran and the Hadith by Mirza Sahib
Having put forward a categoric claim to prophethood and to the receipt of wahi and ilham, Mirza turned hid attention to manipulation of the Quran and the Hadith for his ends. He started by claiming in his Arba’in no. 4, that God Himself had informed him about the meanings of the Quran, and also about which of the Prophet’s ahadith were correct and which of them had been falsely attributed to him. Similarly, in his Tohfa-e-Golraviyah, he said he had been authorized to accept or reject whatever he desired to the compilations of ahadith “on the basis of knowledge received by him directly from God”.
Mirza’s son Mehmood Ahmad stated as follows on this subject in a khutbah (sermon) reported in Al-Fazl, official Qadyani journal, dated 15 July 1938:
“ There is now no Quran other than that presented by the promised Messiah (i.e., Mirza), no hadith other than that seen in the light emanating from him, and no prophet other than that seen in the same light- if any one wishes to see anything by this dissociating himself from the Promised Messiah, he would be unable to do so. Even if he were to see the Quran, such a Quran would not be the one to provide correct guidance but the one to misguide and mislead- the Promised Messiah used to say that the current compilations of hadith were like the “juggler’s bag”, from which anyone could draw out a hadith of his own liking”.
Disagreement with Muslim Ummah on every principle of Islam
Mirza exploited the aforesaid self-conferred divine authority to temper with the Quran and Hadith, for the purpose of expressing disagreement with the general mass of Muslims in every sphere, be it religious, social or national. His son Mirza Mehmood Ahmad said thus in one of his sermons:
“ These words of the Promised Messiah are still ringing in my ears: ‘ It is wrong that we differ from other people only with respect of the death of Christ or a few other matters. The fact is that we differ from them concerning Allah Himself, the Holy Prophet (P.B.U.H), the Quran, the daily canonical prayers, fasting, Hajj, Zakat - in short in each and everything”.
(Al-Fazl, 3 July 1931)
The detailed reproduction of all those issues on which Mirza expressed dissent with the Muslim Ummah would require several volumes. Consequently, only few of the salient issues are listed below by way of illustrations:
(i) Decent of angles
Mirza described angels to be the “souls of the stars” and on that basis argued in his Ayyam-us-Sulh (Days of Peace) that id the angels were to descend to earth as most Muslims believed, the stars would disintegrate and fall away from the sky. In support of this view, he quoted (or rather misquoted) portions of the following verses of Quran:
Translation: "They say: 'Why is an angel not sent down to him? If we did send down an angel', the matter would be settled (at once), and no respite would be grated them." (VI, 8)
Say (O Prophet!): “If there were settled on earth angels walking about in peace and quiet, we should certainly have sent down from the heaven an angel for an apostle”. (XVII, 95)
A perusal of the detailed context of the preceding verses would show that they had no relevance to the point made by Mirza. They had in fact been revealed by Allah to answer the objection of the disbelievers as to why a human being and not an angel had been sent to them as a prophet. Yet, in another of his writings containing a commentary on verse 4 of Surah Al-Qadr of the Quran (XCVII), Mirza himself conceded that angels did in fact descend to earth. (cf., Izalah-e-Awham). Furthermore, according to an entry in the “diary” of Mian Mehmood Ahmad, Khalifa of Qadian, published in Al-Fazl dated 10 April 1922, Mirza Ghulam Ahmad and a fellow student during his childhood concerning a statement in an old book that Angel Gabriel no longer descended to earth: “ What the book says is wrong; Gabriel does come to earth even now”.
In his book " Mavahibur Rahman", Mirza wrote: “Gabriel came near me, and pointing towards me said, “God will protect thee against enemies”.
In short, Mirza Sahib had no scruples in interpreting even the Quranic verses in a manner that suited his purpose in a given situation.
(ii) The Human Spirit (Ruh-e-Insaani)
The Holy Quran declares the Ruh (human spirit) to be “by the Command of the Lord” (XVII, 85). It thus belongs to a category of creation that is beyond human comprehension and transcends “abode and direction”. A hadith of the Holy Prophet (P.B.U.H) describes the spirit in the following words:
Translation: "The spirits are the assembled armies (of God). Those of them that loved each other in the erstwhile world (of spirits), and those apposed to each other there, do the same in this world also".
On the other hand, Mirza declared thus in a speech made by him in a religious public meeting held in Lahore on 27 December 1896:
“We witness daily that thousands of germs infest the rotten sores in the human body. The fact, therefore, is that the spirit is a fine light, which is born right in the sperm that breeds in the female womb, and the essence of which is present in the sperm from the very beginning”.
(iii) Yowm-ud-din (The Day of Judgment)
The words Yowm-ud-din have been used to denote the day of judgment at a number of places in the Holy Quran, for example:
1. And lo! The wicked verily will be in hell; they will burn therein on the Day of Judgment. (LXXXII, 14-15)
2. And what will explain to thee (O Prophet) what the Day of Judgment is? Again, what will explain to thee what the Day of Judgment is? (It will be) the Day when no soul shall have power (to do) aught for the other: for the Command, on that Day, will be (wholly) with Allah. (LXXXII, 17-19)
As against these clear Divine pronouncements, Mirza declared that Allah had named the period of the Promised Messiah (i.e., his own period) as “Yawm-ud-Din” because the Din i.e., the religion of Islam would be given new life during this period.
Jihad Bissaif (Armed holy war)
In a period when Christian nations, especially Britain, France, and the Czarist Russia, were wrecking Muslim realms every where, Mirza declared armed jihad (holy war) as forbidden by God for all Muslims, and termed the Promised Mahdi and Messiah, to whose advent the Muslims were looking forward and who were to come and fight the forces inimical to Islam, as “the blood-thirsty Mahdi” and “the blood-thirsty Messiah”. Some of Mirza’s writings and pronouncements on this point are reproduced below:
(a) Give up the idea of jihad now, O friends, because war and fighting in the cause of religion have now been forbidden (by Allah). The Promised Messiah, who is the leader of Religion (i.e., Mirza himself) has now arrived, and this has put an end to all religious wars. The Light of God now descends from the heavens, rendering holy war as meaningless. Whoever participates in jihad from now on wards will be an enemy of God and a rejecter of the Holy Prophet (P.B.U.H).
(Tabligh-e-Risalat, op. cit. Vol. IX)
(b) Look! I have come to you with the message that from now on all armed jihad has come to an end, and only the jihad to purify your souls remains.
(The British Government and Jihad By Mirza Ghulam Ahmad, published by Zia-ul-Islam Press, Qadian, 22 May 1903)
(c) Ghulam Ahmad (i.e., Mirza himself) enjoins upon this party, which regards him as the Promised Messiah, that it should always desist from such unholy practice. Since God has sent me as the Promised Messiah and invested me with the garb of Jesus Son of Mary, I admonish my people to avoid making mischief.
(d) Jihad is now totally forbidden. It was valid only when the use of the sword has necessarily to be made in the cause of Islam. Now an environment has been created when every one views the shedding of blood for the sake of religion with disdain.
(e) From now on, all holy wars on earth have been stopped forever, and have come to an end. According to the Prophet’s hadith which indicates that fighting is in the path of religion would be banned after the re-appearance of Jesus Christ on earth, such fighting has been forbidden from today. Any one who now wields the sword in the cause of religion and kills infidels is guilty of disobedience to God and His Prophet (P.B.U.H)---- Now that I have come as the Promised Messiah, there is to be no armed jihad in future. We have raised aloft the white flag of peace. (Appendix to Khutbah-e-Ilhamiyah-The Inspired Discourse published by Zia-ul-Islam Press, Qadian, 1913)
Mirza thus made a persistent attempt, by either disregarding or distorting the relevant Quranic verses and the Prophet’s ahadith, to strike out of the Islamic shariah a duty that has been enjoined upon the Muslim Ummah as absolutely essential for its continued survival against forces threatening its existence from time to time.
In pursuance of the pronouncements of their “Promised Messiah” reproduced above, the successors of Mirza also adopted the same soft and permissive attitude towards the suppression of evil by force where and when warranted. This attitude, too, was characterized by the same inconsistency and opportunism that had marked the conduct of the “Leader” himself. In 1929, for example, when Ghazi Ilmuddin Shaheed assassinated Rajpal, a bigoted Hindu who had written and published an insulting and abusive treatise concerning the Prophet (P.B.U.H) of Islam, Mirza Bashiruddin Mehmood, Khalifa of Qadian, denounced this action in his speeches and ruled that killing others to avenge disrespect to any prophet was not permissible. Yet only two years later, when one of his disciples, Qazi Muhammad Ali of Nowshehra, was sentenced to death by hanging for killing one Haji Muhammad Hussain for the simple reason that the latter had stood surety for a person who had insulted Mirza Bashiruddin, both Mirza Bashir and the Qadyani Newspaper Al-Fazl praised his action as an evidence of the strength of his iman (faith) and predicted salvation for Qazi Muhammad Ali.
(iv) Miraj (Ascension) of the Holy Prophet (P.B.U.H)
In his Izalah-e-Awham, Mirza Ghulam Ahmad expressed the view that the Miraj of the Holy Prophet to heaven had not been “physical”, as borne out by the Quran and the hadith and firmly believed in by the mass of Muslims through out history. Instead, he averred that it had been a kashf (vision) of a very high order. He wrote further that he himself had ample experience of such visions!
(v) Attitude about Allah’s true prophets
Mirza Ghulam Ahmad referred in slighting and disparaging terms to Jesus Christ on many occasions. In his book Dafi-ul-Bala, for example, he wrote”:
“The truthfulness of Jesus Christ was no greater than that of other truthful persons of his time. In fact Yahya (John the Baptist) was superior to him since unlike Jesus, Yahya did not drink wine nor had any immoral woman ever touched him with her hand or hair or “any un-related young woman” served him at any time (as had been with the case with Jesus Christ). That is why the Quran had referred to Yahya as Hasur (chaste) (cf. III, 39) but not so Jesus Christ since incidents like the above did not permit this.
In the Appendix to his Nazul-ul-Massiah (Descent of the Messiah), he wrote:
“----- And the Jews have raised such strong objections concerning Jesus Christ and his prophecies that even we (Muslims) are unable to rebut them. One is thus left with no argument in favour of Christ’s prophethood beyond the fact that the Quran has called him a prophet of Allah. On the other hand, there are a number of grounds to refute his claim to prophethood,------Alas! Three of Christ’s prophecies turned out to be patently false”.
Since the sinlessness of the true prophets of Allah, and the protection vouchsafed by Allah to all their thoughts as well as deeds against error and transgression, precludes any of their predictions to prove wrong, non of the prophecies of Jesus Christ ever turned out to be incorrect. On the other hand, as already demonstrated above most of Mirza’s own predictions met this fate to the embarrassment of his followers.
To pre-empt a possible adverse reaction, amounting even to punitive measures, from the ruling British (Christian) Government of India to his fore-going disrespectful references to their sacred religious personalities and especially to Jesus Christ whom the mass of Christians believe to be the son of god, Mirza was quick to submit an apologia in the form of “A humble petition to the Exalted (British) Government” as follows:
“------- I also confess that when the writings of some Christian priests and missionaries became increasingly harsh and disrespectful about our Holy Prophet (P.B.U.H),-------- I became apprehensive lest these might cause a violent reaction from the highly sensitive Muslim community--- I therefore concluded, in good faith and with clean intensions, that the best strategy to avoid such a backlash and thereby prevent a possible law and order situation, would be to reply somewhat firmly to the Christian missionaries’ writings----”.
(Appendix to Tiryaq-ul-Qulub).
(vii) Attitude towards descendants of the Holy Prophet (P.B.U.H)
In his various writings and posters, etc., Mirza has tried to prove himself to be a descendant of Holy Prophet (P.B.U.H), his successor, and his “spiritual son”. In particular, he has tried to downgrade the importance of blood relationship with the Holy Prophet (P.B.U.H). Some examples:
the al (offspring) of Holy Prophet (P.B.U.H) does not denote any worldly relationship, but refers to those who inherit the spiritual legacy of the Holy Prophet (P.B.U.H). This is what the Holy Prophet (P.B.U.H) meant by the word al whenever he used this word, and not the transitory worldly relationship which ceases to exist after death.-----How is it possible that while Allah indicates the worldly relationship pertain to the present world only and would not remain valid on the Day of Judgment, His Apostle (P.B.U.H) should continue to emphasis a lowly physical relationship, and that too based on the offspring of his daughter (Fatima)-------”
However, the foregoing principle laid down by Mirza does not apply to his own offspring. In one of his “inspirations”, for example, he claims that verse 33 of Surah XXXIIII of the Quran, reproduced below, which refers to the purification by Allah of members of the Holy Prophet’s (P.B.U.H) household from uncleanliness and sin, is applicable to his own family members as well. Some examples:
Translation: "Allah wishes to remove uncleanliness far from you, O folk of the (Prophet’s) Household, and cleanse you with a thorough cleansing". (XXXIII, 33)
Translation: "Allah wishes to remove uncleanliness far from you, O folk of the (Prophet’s) Household, and cleanse you with a thorough cleansing". (XXXIII, 33)
In his book Nuzul-ul-Massih, he wrote as follows:
“It is a pity that these people (i.e., those who venerate the Ahl-e-bait of the Holy Prophet (P.B.U.H) do not understand that the Quran has not accorded the right of the Holy Prophet’s (P.B.U.H) sonship to Imam Hussain (R.A). In fact it does not even mention his name, whereas Zaid, a Companion and an adopted son of the Holy Prophet’s (P.B.U.H), has been mentioned by name in it to call Imam Hussain (R.A) a “son of the Holy Prophet’s (P.B.U.H)”, as done by some people, is therefore against the contents of the Holy Quran, especially the Ayah (Muhammad is not the father of any of your men, XXXIII, 40). This particular ayah has made the relationship of Imam Hussain to the Holy Prophet’s (P.B.U.H), by virtue of his being a son of his daughter, very very ‘insignificant’.”
In making the above observation, Mirza appears to have completely overlooked the following ayah of the Holy Quran:
Translation: "If anyone disputes in this matter with thee (O Prophet!) now after (full) knowledge has come to thee, say: “Come! Let us gather together, our sons and your sons, our women and your women, ourselves and your selves; then let us earnestly pray, and invoke the curse of God on those who lie" (III, 61)
Translation: "And those who believe and whose progeny follow them in faith (even though they fall short of them in deeds) to them shall We join progeny (in Paradise): nor shall We deprive them (of the fruit) of aught of their works: Each individual is in pledge for his deeds. (LII, 21)
(This ayah makes it clear that the believing persons and their believing offspring would both be joined in paradise in recompense for their respective pious deeds. This would be despite any differences that may exist between the degree of piety of those deeds, thus underscoring the significance of blood relationship not only in this world but in the Hereafter as well).
Translation: "Say (O Prophet!): No reward do I ask of you for this except the love of those near to kin". (XLII, 23)
Mirza also appears to have overlooked those authentic ahadith in which the Holy Prophet (P.B.U.H) termed both Imam Hassan (R.A) and Imam Hussain (R.A) as “his sons”.
In his poetic collection Durr-e-Thamin Mirza also asserted that he was superior to Hazrat Imam Hussain (R.A) and that he had “one hundred Hussains under his collar”. In several verses included in his Arabic language Qaseeda (Eulogy) titled Ijaz-e-Ahmadi, he speaks about Imam Hussain (R.A) in highly derogatory language not even worthy of reproduction here. What is more, he claims in the Urdu introduction to the Qaseeda that the words used by him in it were not his own but had been put in his mouth by God Himself in His supreme wisdom!
Pronouncement of the entire Muslim Ummah as kafir (infidel)
When Mirza found with the passage of time that the number of person responding to his call continued to remain very thin, he declared that all those who did not believe in him and his message were infidels. Here are some of his sayings on this point:
· God has revealed to me that every person who has received my message but has not believed in it is not a Muslim.
· God has also said to me: “Anyone who does not follow thee, or does not pledge allegiance to thee and opposed thee, is guilty of disobedience to Allah and His Prophet Muhammad (P.B.U.H) and is therefore hell-bound”.
· In the official Qadyani newspaper, Al-Fadl, dated 15 December 1921, it was reported that “Mirza Sahib had not joined the funeral prayers of his own son (Fadl Ahmad) simply because he had been a non-Ahmadi”).
Factors and forces at the back of Qadianism
It is not very difficult to identify the anti-Islam forces that were providing tacit and veiled support to the movement launched by Mirza Ghulam Ahmad. Following the War of Independence of 1857, and the role of the Indian Muslim community in that war, the then British Government of India had become suspicious and wary about the Indian Muslims in general. Yet it continued to treat Mirza and his party with special indulgence. The petitions and reports submitted by Mirza to the Government against some Muslim leaders and single, ulama excerpts from some of which reproduced below, show clearly that he was a special lacy of the Government of the day:
“It appears expedient to me, as a well-wisher of the British Government (of India), that the names of those misguided Muslims who, in their heart of hearts, consider British India to be a dar-ul-harb (land of belligerency), should be entered in the government records------, I have therefore prepared a list of names of persons with such rebellious minds------ who harbour secret anti-government intension----- we submit respectfully to the Government, however, that such lists should be allowed to remain in our possession as a ‘political secret’ until the Government feels the need to call for them. In the latter event, we would expect our ‘judicious-minded’ Government also to keep these lists in its safe custody as a ‘state secret’. The names and addresses are given below” (cf., Tabligh-e-Risalat op. cit, Vol. V)
Further more, seeing that the Hindus of India were engaged in a struggle for India’s liberation from British rule along side the country’s Muslims, Mirza started writing and lecturing in favour of the scriptures and holy personalities of the Hindus in order to win the latter’s sympathies for his own party addressing the Hindu public in a lecture delivered in November 1904 at Sialkot, he said:
“It has been revealed to me that Lord Krishna was an accomplished person, the like of whom is not found in any other holy Hindu personality. He was an avatar or Prophet of his time, and was visited by the Holy Spirit (i.e., Angel Gabriel).------ God has promised that in the last period of history, He would create a ‘projection’ of Krishna, and this promise has now been fulfilled in my appearance. Besides other inspiration, I had also received this inspiration: O Krishna Gopal! Thy praise has been recorded in the Bhagvad Geeta”.
In his book Shahadatul Quran (Testimony of the Quran), Mirza observed that the allegiance of the British Government amounted to “half of Islam”. In the same vein, he wrote in his Tiryaq-ul-Qulub as follows:
“I have written so many books on the subject of prohibition of jihad and on allegiance to the British as to fill no less than fifty book-cases. I have also had these books distributed to far-off lands such as the Arab countries, Egypt, Syria, Kabul and Rum (i.e., Turkey). I have tried to ensure that the Muslims should become truly loyal to this government and also that the baseless tales about the Blood-thirsty Mahdi and the Blood-thirsty Messiah, as well as the violence-inciting beliefs like jihad, which corrupt the minds of the foolish ones, should be obliterated”.
Hindu expectations from the Qadianis
It was writings and declarations like the above that made the Hindus of India entertain expectations that the rise and success of the Qadyani movement would help them to counter the insistence of India’s Muslim in general upon their identity as a nation as separate from other communities inhabiting India, and thereby enable them to offer a united front to the British in collusion with the Qadyani community of India. An idea of the Hindus hopes in this behalf can be had from the following excerpts from an article by one Dr. Shankar Das Mehrubi of Lahore, which was published in the 22 April 1932 issue of the Hindu Newspaper Band-e-Matram and which was later published in the form of a pamphlet by the Qadianis themselves with a sense of pride:
“--------The most important problem now facing the country is how to create a national spirit among the Indian Muslims, who regard themselves as a separate nation. They constantly sing the praises of Arabia, and would not hesitate to name even India as an Arab land if they could.
“ In this state of despair, the only way of hope lies in the Ahmadiya movement. As more and more Muslims join this movement, they would tend increasingly to regard Qadian (which is a part of India) as their Makkah, and would eventually become loyal to India and therefore staunch nationalists. The progress of the Ahmadiya movement alone can finish off the Arab cultural influence on the Indian Muslims and spell the end of pan-Islamism.
“ ------A Qadyani Muslim believes firmly that:
1. From time to time, God sends for the guidance of people persons who are prophets of their time;
2. God had sent Prophet Muhammad (P.B.U.H) among the people of Arabia in their period of moral decline;
3. After the Holy Prophet (P.B.U.H), God again filled the need for a prophet and He has therefore sent Mirza Sahib for the guidance of the present-day Muslims.
Just as a Hindu convert to Islam transfers his allegiance from Rama, Krishna, the Vedas, and the Geeta to the Quran and the Arab land so is the point of view of a Muslim transformed on his becoming an Ahmadi, and his faith in the Holy Prophet (P.B.U.H) undergoes a gradual decline. Furthermore, his Khilafat (Caliphate), which he considered hitherto to be in Arabia and in Turkey, now shifts to Qadian. Makkah and Madina then become only traditional holy places for him. In whichever part of the world an Ahmadi may be, he turns towards Qadian for a spiritual satisfaction. Qadian then becomes the land of deliverance and salvation for him. And herein lies the secret of India’s superiority. Qadian being a part of India, and Mirza and his successors being Indians, every Ahmadi will love India.-------- The day is not far-off when the Ahmadis will openly declare that they are “Ahmadi” Muslims and not “Muhammadi” Muslims.
“The Ahmadis have not sided with other Muslims in the Khilafat movement, because they wish to establish the Khilafat in Qadian rather than in Turkey or Arabia.--------All this explains why the Muslims look upon the Ahmadiya movement as being inimical to Islam as well as to Arab culture.
“ ----------- Howsoever despairing this situation may be for the Muslims in general who are constantly dreaming of Pan-Islamism, it is nevertheless a matter of delight for every nationalist (Indian)”.
The relationship of mutual consideration and trust between the Hindus and Qadianis grew with the passage of time. Thus in May 1936, the then President of the All India National (Hindu) Congress, Pundit Jawaharlal Nehru, was accorded a grand welcome by the Qadianis and their volunteer corps on his visit to Lahore. When Allama Muhammad Iqbal, world-famed poet-philosopher of the East, cautioned the Muslims about the implications of this situation, several exchanges of correspondence took place between him and Pundit Nehru.
Qadyani tirades against Prophet Muhammad (P.B.U.H) and his Companions
To cap all their other profanities, Mirza as well as some of his followers and admirers, had been guilty in their various writings and pronouncements of gross and brazen disrespect towards the august personality of Prophet Muhammad (P.B.U.H) himself and those of his companions. To cite a couple of examples, one Hakim Muhammad Hussain Qadyani, who was also a relative of Mirza, mentioned in his book Al Mahdi that a distinguished member of Mirza’s household had once observed to him that the prophecies of the “promised messiah” (i.e., Mirza) far out numbered those of even the Prophet Muhammad (P.B.U.H) himself. He further had the audacity to say that the righteous Caliphs Abubakar (R.A) and Umar (R.A), were not fit even to untie the shoelace of Mirza Sahib! (Na’uz-u-Billah)
Reaction of the Muslim Ummah to Mirza’s claim
The claims and assertions of Mirza Ghulam Ahmad Qadyani as explained earlier intended to strike at the very roots of the Muslim belief structure in many vital spheres: interpretations of the Quran and Hadith; wahi (divine revelation); jihad (holy war); raising alive of Jesus Christ to heaven by God and his predicted future descent to earth; and above all Mirza’s blatant violation of the concept of finality of the prophet-hood of Prophet Muhammad (P.B.U.H) which is the cornerstone of the edifice of Muslim belief. What was more, Mirza’s character, life-style, social dealings, the vulgar and intemperate languages used by him in reference to some of the most eminent an respected Muslim personalities, his volte-faces concerning many of his claims and pronouncements the absurdity of those claims, and similar other factors all these helped preclude his being accepted even as an honourable ordinary person, what to speak of being considered worthy of the high station of prophet-hood.
Contrary to unanimous Muslim beliefs based on the Quran and the Sunnah, Mirza had declared, inter alia, that: (a) the door to wahi (divine revelation) was permanently open, and that on that basis he himself was an apostle of Allah; (b) only his own interpretations of the Holy Book were the correct ones, and all others were wrong; (c) God had given him the choice to accept or reject whatever he wished out of the current collection of the Prophet’s ahadith; and (d) anyone who did not pledge allegiance to him was outside the pale of Islam.
For all these reasons, the Muslims naturally found it impossible to accept Mirza’s ludicrous claim to prophet-hood. Since Mirza’s claims had started initially in a low key, and had gradually become more and more daring, it took the students and scholars of religion some time before they could grasp the real gravity of the threat which Mirza’s writings, pronouncements, and doings posed to the solidarity of the Islamic Ummah. Inevitably, however, the time came when Muslim ulama and intellectuals were compelled to take serious notice of the activities of this 19th / 20th century impostor, and to launch a unanimous crusade against his heretical creed. Through sustained writings and speeches, they exposed the sinister designs underlying the Qadyani movement with such force and vigour as to render it largely ineffective.
Hazrat Pir Meher Ali Shah (R.A) was in the vanguard of this combined struggle of the ulama of India against Qadianism. He was indeed amongst the first to grasp its real evil motives, publicly denounce those motives, and warn other Muslims against them.
The Qadyani and Lahori factions
Following this sentencing of two Qadianis to death in Kabul (Afghanistan) on grounds of apostasy (which is an offense punishable by death in an Islamic state), the Qadianis desisted for a long time from visiting Islamic countries for the preaching of their creed. Qadyani (or Ahmadi as they prefer to call themselves) missionaries are now working in some European and African countries, but in doing so they present themselves to the people of those countries as orthodox Muslims and followers of the Holy Prophet (P.B.U.H) of Islam. In its own homeland, the Ahmadiya have split into two factions: The Qadianis and the Lahoris. The former factions believes Mirza to be a full-fledged prophet with a shariah of his own, and regards anyone not believing him to be a prophet as a kafir (infidel). The latter, however, considers Mirza to be the Mujaddid-e-Azam (the Great Reviver of Religion) only, or at best a zilli nabi (shadow prophet), and regards anyone rejecting him as a sinner but not an infidel.
These two factions have engaged in hot debate on their respective points of view from time to time. Here are two examples:
1. Verse 81 of Surah 3 (Al-e-Imran), quoted below speaks of a covenant made by Allah with the earlier prophets to believe in and extent their support to a prophet who was to come at a later date and was to re-affirm what they themselves had brought to mankind:
“When Allah made (His) covenant with the Prophets (He said): Behold that which I have given you of the scripture and knowledge. And afterwards their will come unto you a messenger confirming that which ye possess. Ye shall believe in him and ye shall help him. He said: Do ye agree, and will ye take up My burden (which I lay upon you) in this (matter)? They answered: We agree. He said: Then bear ye witness. I will be a witness with you. (III, 81)
The Qadianis interpret the foregoing verse as referring, not to Prophet Muhammad (P.B.U.H) as unanimously believed by the Muslim Ummah, but to Mirza Ghulam Ahmad. The Lahoris however, totally reject this distorted interpretation.
2. The Qadianis have tended to gloss over the many inconsistencies in Mirza’s ever-changing interpretations of prophethood to suit his own ends. They have, in fact, lent unquestioning credence to those interpretations, and have allowed themselves to be misguided by them. The Lahoris, on the other hand, have not only exposed the inconsistencies but have even mocked at the brain which produced them. (Cf., Al-Fazl, official Qadyani newspaper, dated 26 February 1924, and Paigham-e-Sulh, official organ of the Lahoris, dated 27 April 1934 and 3 May 1934).
Analysis of factors responsible for Mirza’s blundering into misguidance
The most important lesson to be learnt from Mirza’s “tale of woe” is that anyone who wishes to traverse the thorny and uphill path of religion and spiritualism must do so under the guidance of an accomplished teacher and a guide. Failure to do so is apt to land the seeker into pitfalls of superstitious, delusions and misgivings etc., from which it would be well-nigh impossible for him to extricate himself. Maulana Jalaluddin Rumi (R.A) has forcefully underscored this point in the following verse of his Mathnavi:
Translation: “Seek a Pir (spiritual guide) (for thyself), because without a Pir this (spiritual) journey is full of hardships, fear and hazards”.
Mirza Sahib has stated at various places in his writings that he had not linked himself with any spiritual school, that he had no “spiritual father”, and that God Himself was his sole spiritual teacher and guide. He also regards this as a sign of his resemblance to Jesus Christ, and of the blessing of God. He does not, however, realize that what he considers to be a source of divine benediction for him is in fact the real tragedy of his life. He also fails to recognize the basic truth that in this world which is governed by the interplay of cause and effect in every sphere, be it secular or spiritual, every art and craft has to be learnt from a skilled teacher. Without such guidance, aspirants to spiritual accomplishment remain ever vulnerable to self-delusion, which could lead them to make claims of prophet-hood in the same manner as Bab and Baha-ullah did in Iran and Mirza Ghulam Ahmad in India in the recent past. What is even worse, these ill-fated personalities were responsible not only for their own spiritual damnation, but also for misguiding large number of simple-minded and ignorant people who readily succumbed to their seemingly ”revolutionary” calls in a spirit of hero-worship. In the case of Mirza, for example, those who rallied round him as his devotees and followers took no notice whatsoever of his palpably sacrilegious and heretical “ilhamat” (inspirations). They completely ignored Mirza’s claim, inter alia, that his God had called him His son, thus violating the Quranic assertion in Surah Al-Ikhlas (“God begetteth not nor was He begotten”), or that he had claimed to be Muhammad and Ahmad, thereby refuting the Quranic pronouncement that Muhammad (P.B.U.H) was the last of the Prophets (cf. XXXIII, 40).