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april 2012

vol. 107 - issue four

Letters to World Leaders

by Head of the Ahmadiyya Community Letters to Israel, Iran, USA & Canada

New Mosque Opens in Catford, UK

Law of this Life and the Hereafter

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46

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The Prophet Muhammad(saw)’s Journey to Ta’if 32


The Promised Messiah

© makhzan-e-tasaweer

and imam mahdi and founder of the review of religions

The Holy Prophet Muhammad(saw) prophesied that the Promised Messiah(as) would be raised near a white minaret, east of Damascus. This prophecy was fulfilled with the advent of the Promised Messiah(as) from Qadian, India, a city directly east of Damascus.

Hadhrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad(as), the Promised Messiah and Mahdi was born to a noble family in Qadian, India. From an early age he had a keen interest in religion and developed a love for the Holy Prophet Muhammad(saw). He was also known for his honesty, friendliness and resolve. Over time his knowledge and understanding of religion and its application to society deepened. Being a Muslim it was his firm belief that all religions were true at their source but with the passage of time had drifted away from their original teachings; he upheld the dignity of religion and demonstrated its relevance to everyone. His earnest defence of religion was ultimately blessed when he started to receive direct revelation from Allah – a blessing that he continued for the rest of his life. His mission was to revitalise the truth that all religions held within them and to revive the teachings of Islam. It was through this that he would bring mankind together and establish everlasting peace. In 1889, under Divine Guidance, Hadhrat Ahmad(as) founded the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community – a community that has since grown in its stature and strength and has remained active in conveying the message of Islam to the ends of the earth.

Hadhrat Ahmad(as) had established himself as a respected writer and had written over 80 books. His writings have been translated into more than 60 languages and continue to inspire readers to this day. One of his greatest scholarly works was The Philosophy of the Teachings of Islam, prepared as a paper and read out at the Conference of Great Religions in 1896. He also wrote a fascinating treatise in 1899 entitled Jesus in India, a book that uncovered remarkable evidence of Jesus(as)’s journey to India. In 1902 the Promised Messiah(as) initiated The Review of Religions which has covered a vast array of topics on religion, philosophy and contemporary issues of the day. It is the longest running English magazine in defence of Islam and the values it teaches. From 1889 until the time of his demise in 1908 tens of thousands of people accepted him. This blessing has continued and will continue through his Khalifas (successors). Currently under the fifth successor, we are seeing that the tide of acceptance is worldwide and that the message of Prophet Ahmad(as) has really reached the ends of the earth.


world faiths

Prayer And your Lord says: ‘Pray

The prayer which produces a

Cast your burden on the

unto Me; I will answer your

sweetness and a zeal for more

Lord, and he will sustain you.

prayer. But those who are

of worship and which strikes

too proud to worship Me will

a communication with God

Judaism and Christianity, Pslam 55:22

surely enter Hell, despised.’

and is offered in all humility,

Islam, the Holy Qur’an, Ch.40:V.61

brings about a change in the life of the man. And this change is instantaneously perceived by the one who

Jabir related that the Holy Prophet(saw) said: Giving up Prayers is tantamount to disbelief and paganism. Islam, the Holy Prophet Muhammad (saw ), Hadith of Muslim

prays like this. This change makes him realise that he is not what he was before. Islam, the Promised Messiah and Imam Mahdi (as), Malfoozat, Vol. 6, pg. 378

Lord of creation! No one other than thee pervades all these that have come into being. May that be ours for which our prayers rise, may we be masters of many treasures! Hinduism, Rig Veda, 10.121.10

Pray constantly. Christianity, 1 Thessalonians, 5:17

Of all the prayers of the heart, the best prayer is the prayer to the Master to be given the grace of properly praising the Lord. Sikhism, Adi Granth, Maru Ashtpadi, M. 5, p. 1018


contents april 2012

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6 Overview

Introduction to Letters Sent by Hadhrat Khalifatul Masih V(aba)

8 Letters Sent to World Leaders

In letters sent to Barack Obama, Benjamin Netanyahu, Stephen Harper and Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, Hadhrat Mirza Masroor Ahmad, Khalifatul Masih V(aba) warns world leaders to try their utmost to avert the destruction the world is heading towards. Hadhrat Mirza Masroor Ahmad(aba),

Khalifatul Masih V, Head of the worldwide Ahmadiyya Muslim Community

22

32

22 The Philosophy of the Teachings of Islam – Part 15

The answer to the Fourth Question asked at the Conference of Great Religions pertaining to the Laws of this world and the Hereafter.

Hadhrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad(as), the Promised Messiah and Imam Mahdi

32 The Life and Character of the Seal of Prophets(saw) – Part 16 The Holy Prophet(saw) had to endure the loss of his wife Hadhrat Khadijah(ra) and then his Uncle Abu Talib, in quick succession. Also featuring the Prophet(saw)’s journey to Ta’if.

Hadhrat Mirza Bashir Ahmad(ra)


M A N A GE M E N T B O A RD Munir-ud-din Shams (Chairman) Syed Amer Safir (Secretary) Ataul Mujeeb Rashed, Naseer Ahmad Qamar Mubarak Ahmad Zafar, Aziz Ahmad Bilal, Abid Waheed Ahmad Khan, Abdul Baqi Arshad C H I EF ED I T O R & M A N A GER Syed Amer Safir

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ED I T O R I A L B O A RD Bockarie Tommy Kallon, Fazal Ahmad, Hibba Turrauf, Mansoor Saqi, Munazza Khan, Nakasha Ahmad, Navida Sayed, Sarah Waseem P R O O FRE A DER S Abdul Ghany Jahangeer Khan,
Farhana

64

Dar, Munavara Ghauri, Hina Rehman DISTRIBUTION Muhammad Hanif

46 New Mosque Opens in South London, UK as a Symbol of Peace The true purpose of a Mosque is eloquently expounded in the keynote address from the inauguration of the Tahir Mosque, in Catford, United Kingdom Hadhrat Mirza Masroor Ahmad, Khalifatul Masih V

(aba)

,

Head of the worldwide Ahmadiyya Muslim Community

64 Calendar of Religious Events and Festivals April 2012

DE S I G N A N D L A Y O U T Ahsan Khan SPECIAL CONTRIBU TORS Arif Khan, Maleeha Ahmad, Khullat Munir, Mansoor Clarke, Sami Ullah, Shehzad Ahmad, Professor Amtul Razzaq Carmichael W e b d e v e lop e r Masood Nasir in d e x in g & ta g g in g t e am Taalay Ahmad, Amtus Shakoor Tayyaba, Humaira Omer, Humda Sohail, Ruhana Hamood, Mirza Krishan Ahmad, Mubahil Shakir, Shahid Malik, Adila Bari, Hassan Raza Ahmad Views expressed in this publication are not necessarily the beliefs of the Ahmadiyya Muslim community. All correspondence should be forwarded to the Editor at: The Review of Religions Tahir House, 22 Deer Park Road London, SW19 3TL, United Kingdom Telephone:

+ 44 20 8544 7614

Fax:

+ 44 20 3044 3030

info@reviewofreligions.org www.reviewofreligions.org


overview

Introduction to Letters At the recent 9 th Annual Peace Symposium organised by the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community, an audience including Government Ministers, Ambassadors of State, Members of both the House of Commons and the House of Lords, the Mayor of London and various other dignitaries and guests from all walks of life joined together to discuss the means of establishing international peace. In the keynote address (which will be published in the May Edition of The Review of Religions), Hadhrat Mirza Masroor Ahmad(aba), Khalifatul Masih V, Head of the worldwide Ahmadiyya Muslim Community warned that the perilous state of the world appears to be leading us to a nuclear conflict in the shape of a Third World War. During the course of his address, His Holiness stated: “One way in which I have tried to promote peace is through a series of 6 The Review of Religions | april 2012


letters that I have written to certain world leaders….. upon observing that hostilities between Iran and Israel were boiling over to a very dangerous level, I sent a letter to both Israel’s Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, and Iran’s President, Mahmud Ahmedinejad, in which I urged them to forsake all forms of haste and recklessness when making decisions, for the sake of mankind. I have also recently written to President Barack Obama and Canada’s Prime Minister, Stephen Harper, calling on both of them to fulfil their roles and responsibilities towards the development of peace and harmony in the world. I am also planning to write and warn other Heads of State and leaders in the near future. I do not know if my letters will be given any value or weight by the various leaders I have written to, but whatever their reaction, an attempt has been made by me, as the Khalifa and spiritual leader of millions of Ahmadi Muslims worldwide, to convey their feelings and emotions about the perilous state of the world. Let it be clear that I have not expressed these sentiments because of any personal fear, but instead, I am motivated out of a sincere love for humanity. This love for humanity has been developed and instilled in all true Muslims by

the teachings of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) who, as I have already mentioned, was sent as a means of mercy and compassion for all of mankind.” The Review of Religions has already published the full letter to Pope Benedict ( January 2012 Edition). We present here some of the letters sent recently by Hadhrat Mirza Masroor Ahmad (aba), Khalifatul Masih V, to various world leaders. co n t en t s o f le t t ers

P10 Letter to Prime Minister of Israel P14

P17

P18

Letter to President of the Islamic Republic of Iran Summary of Letter to Prime Minister of Canada Letter to President of the United States of America

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letter to prime minister of israel

Hadhrat Mirza Masroor Ahmad(aba)

Benjamin Netanyahu

16 Gressenhall Road Southfields, London SW18 5QL, UK His Excellency Mr Benjamin Netanyahu Prime Minister of Israel Jerusalem Dear Prime Minister,

26 February 2012

I recently sent a letter to His Excellency Simon Peres, President of Israel, regarding the perilous state of affairs emerging in the world. In light of the rapidly changing circumstances, I felt it was essential for me to convey my message to you also, as you are the Head of the Government of your country. The history of your nation is closely linked with prophethood and Divine revelation. Indeed, the Prophets of the Children of Israel made very clear prophecies regarding your nation’s future. As a result of disobedience to the teachings of the Prophets and negligence towards their prophecies, the Children of Israel 8 The Review of Religions | april 2012


had to suffer difficulties and tribulations. If the leaders of your nation had remained firm in obedience to the Prophets, they could have been saved from enduring various misfortunes and adversities. Thus, it is your duty, perhaps even more so than others, to pay heed to the prophecies and injunctions of the Prophets. I address you as the Khalifa of that Promised Messiah and Imam Mahdi (peace be upon him), who was sent as the servant of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him); and the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) was sent as the Mercy for All Mankind amongst the brethren of the Children of Israel in the semblance of Moses (peace be upon him) (Deuteronomy, 18:18). Hence, it is my duty to remind you of God’s Message. I hope that you will come to be counted amongst those who hearken to God’s Call, and who successfully find the right path; that path which is in accordance with the Guidance of God the Supreme, the Master of the heavens and the earth. We hear reports in the news nowadays that you are preparing to attack Iran. Yet the horrific outcome of a World War is right before you. In the last World War, whilst millions of other people were killed, the lives of hundreds of thousands of Jewish persons were also wasted. As the Prime Minister, it is your duty to protect the life of your nation. The current circumstances of the world indicate that a World War will not be fought between only two countries, rather blocs will come into formation. The threat of a World War breaking out is a very serious one. The life of Muslims, Christians and Jews are all at peril from it. If such a war occurs, it will result in a chain reaction of human destruction. The effects of this catastrophe will be felt by future april 2012

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letter to prime minister of israel

generations, who will either be born disabled, or crippled. This is because undoubtedly, such a war will involve atomic warfare. Hence, it is my request to you that instead of leading the world into the grip of a World War, make maximum efforts to save the world from a global catastrophe. Instead of resolving disputes with force, you should try to resolve them through dialogue, so that we can gift our future generations with a bright future rather than ‘gift’ them with disability and defects. I shall try to elucidate my views based on the following passages from your teachings, the first extract being from the Zabur: ‘Do not fret because of evil-doers. Do not envy those who do wrong. For they shall soon be cut down like the grass, and wither like the green herb. Trust in God, and do good. Dwell in the land, and enjoy safe pasture. Also delight yourself in God, and he will give you the desires of your heart. Commit your way to God. Trust also in him, and he will do this: He will make your righteousness go forth as the dawn, and your justice as the noon day sun. Rest in God, and wait patiently for him. Do not fret because of him who prospers in his way, because of the man who makes wicked plots happen. Cease from anger, and forsake wrath. Do not fret, it leads only to evildoing. For evildoers shall be cut off, but those who wait for God shall inherit the land. For yet a little while, and the wicked will be no more. Yes, though you look for his place, he is not there. But the humble shall inherit the land, and shall delight themselves in the abundance of peace.’ (Zabur, 37:1-11) Similarly, we find in the Torah:

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‘Thou shalt not have in thy bag divers weights, a great and a small. Thou shalt not have in thine house divers measures, a great and a small. [But] thou shalt have a perfect and just weight, a perfect and just measure shalt thou have: that thy days may be lengthened in the land which the LORD thy God giveth thee. For all that do such things, [and] all that do unrighteously, [are] an abomination unto the LORD thy God.’ (Deuteronomy, 25:13-16) Thus, world leaders, and particularly you should terminate the notion of governance by force and should refrain from oppressing the weak. Instead, strive to spread and promote justice and peace. By doing so, you will remain in peace yourselves, you will gain strength and world peace will also be established. It is my prayer that you and other world leaders understand my message, recognise your station and status and fulfil your responsibilities. Yours Sincerely, MIRZA MASROOR AHMAD Khalifatul Masih V Head of the Worldwide Ahmadiyya Muslim Community

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letter to president of the islamic republic of iran

Hadhrat Mirza Masroor Ahmad(aba)

Mahmoud Ahmadinejad

16 Gressenhall Road Southfields, London SW18 5QL, UK

His Excellency President of the Islamic Republic of Iran Mahmoud Ahmadinejad Tehran Dear Mr President,

7 March 2012

Assalamo Alaikum Wa Rahmatullahe Wa Barakatohu, In light of the perilous state of affairs emerging in the world, I felt that it was essential for me to write to you, as you are the President of Iran, and thus you hold the authority to make decisions which will affect the future of your nation and the world at large. There is currently great agitation and restlessness in the world. In some areas small-scale wars have broken out, while in other places the superpowers act on the pretext of trying to bring about peace. Each country is engaged in activities to either help or oppose other countries, but the requirements of justice are not being fulfilled. It is with regret that if we 12 The Review of Religions | april 2012


now observe the current circumstances of the world, we find that the foundation for another world war has already been laid. As so many countries, both large and small, have nuclear weapons, grudges and hostilities are increasing. In such a predicament, the Third World War looms almost certainly before us. As you are aware, the availability of nuclear weapons will mean that a Third World War will be an atomic war. Its ultimate result will be catastrophic, and the long term effects of such warfare could lead to future generations being born disabled or deformed. It is my belief that as followers of the Holy Prophet Muhammad(pbuh), who was sent to establish peace in the world, and who was the Rahmatullil Aalameen – the Mercy to all of Mankind –we do not and cannot desire for the world to suffer such a fate. This is why my request to you is that as Iran is also a significant power in the world, it should play its role to prevent a Third World War. It is undeniably true that the major powers act with double standards. Their injustices have caused restlessness and disorder to spread all across the world. However, we cannot ignore the fact that some Muslim groups act inappropriately, and contrary to the teachings of Islam. Major world powers have used this as a pretext to fulfil their vested interests by taking advantage of the poor Muslim countries. Thus, I request you once again, that you should focus all of your efforts and energies towards saving the world from a Third World War. The Holy Qur’an teaches Muslims that enmity against any nation should not hinder them from acting in a just manner. In Surah Al Mai’dah, Allah the Exalted instructs us: “And let not the enmity of a people, that they hindered you from the Sacred Mosque, incite you to transgress. And help one another in righteousness and piety; but help not one another in sin and transgression. And fear Allah; surely, Allah is severe in punishment.” (Ch.5:V.3) april 2012

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letter to president of the islamic republic of iran

Similarly, in the same chapter of the Holy Qur’an we find the following commandment to Muslims: “O ye who believe! Be steadfast in the cause of Allah, bearing witness in equity; and let not a people’s enmity incite you to act otherwise than with justice. Be always just, that is nearer to righteousness. And fear Allah. Surely, Allah is aware of what you do.”(Ch.5:V.9) Hence, you should not oppose another nation merely out of enmity and hatred. I admit that Israel exceeds beyond its limits, and has its eyes cast glance upon Iran. Indeed, if any country transgresses against your country, naturally you have the right to defend yourself. However, as far as possible disputes should be resolved through diplomacy and negotiations. This is my humble request to you, that rather than using force, use dialogue to try and resolve conflicts. The reason why I make this request is because I am the follower of that Chosen Person of God who came in this era as the True Servant of the Holy Prophet Muhammad(pbuh), and who claimed to be the Promised Messiah and Imam Mahdi. His mission was to bring mankind closer to God and to establish the rights of people in the manner our Master and Guide, the Rahmatullil Aalameen –the Mercy to all of Mankind – the Holy Prophet(pbuh)demonstrated to us. May Allah the Exalted enable the Muslim Ummah to understand this beautiful teaching. Wassalam, Yours Sincerely, MIRZA MASROOR AHMAD Khalifatul Masih V Head of the Worldwide Ahmadiyya Muslim Community

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Hadhrat Mirza Masroor Ahmad(aba)

Stephen Harper

Summary of Letter to Prime Minister of Canada In his letter of 8th March 2012 to Mr Stephen Harper, the Prime Minister of Canada, Hadhrat Mirza Masroor Ahmad(aba), Khalifatul Masih V, Head of the worldwide Ahmadiyya Muslim Community, similarly warned of the impending outbreak of a Third World War, and the horrific consequences that will ensue as a result. He mentioned that hostilities between nations, and injustices carried out by the major and minor powers, had already laid the foundation for a global catastrophe. He requested the Prime Minster to use his authority to help bring about peace in the world through purely peaceful means, rather than by the use of force. His Holiness wrote: “Canada is widely considered to be one of the most just countries in the world. Your nation does not normally interfere in the internal problems of other countries. Further, we, the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community, have special ties of friendship with the people of Canada. Thus, I request you to strive to your utmost to prevent the major and minor powers from leading us into a devastating Third World War.�

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letter to president of the united states of america

Hadhrat Mirza Masroor Ahmad(aba)

Barack Obama

16 Gressenhall Road Southfields, London SW18 5QL, UK

President Barack Obama President of the United States of America The White House 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW Washington D.C.

8 March 2012

Dear Mr President, In light of the perturbing state of affairs developing in the world, I felt that it was necessary for me to write to you, as you are the President of the United States of America, a country which is a world superpower, and thus you hold the authority to make decisions which will affect the future of your nation and the world at large. There is currently great agitation and restlessness in the world. Small-scale wars have broken out in certain areas. Unfortunately, the superpowers have not been as successful as was anticipated in their efforts to establish peace in these conflict-hit regions. 16 The Review of Religions | april 2012


Globally, we find that almost every country is engaged in activities to either support, or oppose other countries; however, the requirements of justice are not being fulfilled. It is with regret that if we now observe the current circumstances of the world, we find that the foundation for another world war has already been laid. As so many countries, both large and small, have nuclear weapons, grudges and hostilities are increasing between nations. In such a predicament, the Third World War looms almost certainly before us. Such a war would surely involve atomic warfare; and therefore, we are witnessing the world head towards a terrifying destruction. If a path of equity and justice had been followed after the Second World War, we would not be witnessing the current state of the world today whereby it has become engulfed in the flames of war once again. As we are all aware, the main causes that led to the Second World War were the failure of League of Nations and the economic crisis, which began in 1932. Today, leading economists state that there are numerous parallels between the current economic crisis and that of 1932. We observe that political and economic problems have once again led to wars between smaller nations, and to internal discord and discontentment becoming rife within these countries. This will ultimately result in certain powers emerging to the helm of government, who will lead us to a world war. If in the smaller countries conflicts cannot be resolved through politics or diplomacy, it will lead to new blocs and groupings to form in the world. This will be the precursor for the outbreak of a Third World War. Hence, I believe that now, rather than focusing on the progress of the world, it is more important and indeed essential, that we urgently increase our efforts to save the world from this destruction. There is an urgent need for mankind to recognise its One God, Who is our Creator, as this is the only guarantor for the survival of humanity; otherwise, the world will continue to rapidly head towards self-destruction. april 2012

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letter to president of the united states of america

My request to you, and indeed to all world leaders, is that instead of using force to suppress other nations, use diplomacy, dialogue and wisdom. The major powers of the world, such as the United States, should play their role towards establishing peace. They should not use the acts of smaller countries as a pretext to disturb world harmony. Currently, nuclear arms are not only possessed by the United States and other major powers; rather, even relatively smaller countries now possess such weapons of mass destruction, where those who are in power are often trigger-happy leaders who act without thought or consideration. Thus, it is my humble request to you to strive to your utmost to prevent the major and minor powers from erupting into a Third World War. There should be no doubt in our minds that if we fail in this task then the effects and aftermath of such a war will not be limited to only the poor countries of Asia, Europe and the Americas; rather, our future generations will have to bear the horrific consequences of our actions and children everywhere in the world will be born disabled or deformed. They will never forgive their elders who led the world to a global catastrophe. Instead of being concerned for only our vested interests, we should consider our coming generations and strive to create a brighter future for them. May God the Exalted enable you, and all world leaders, to comprehend this message. Yours Sincerely, MIRZA MASROOR AHMAD Khalifatul Masih V Head of the Worldwide Ahmadiyya Muslim Community

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The Friday Sermon

Every Friday live at 13:00 GMT on MTA International

Each week on Friday, Muslims are required to take a bath, dress in their best and clean clothes, wear perfume and assemble in the mosque for Jumu’ah, the Friday Prayer. The

Live Translations: English, French, Arabic, German, Bengali

to meet together to discuss and solve their

Other Tanslations: Russian, Turkish, Swahili, Tamil, Malayalam

Hadhrat Mirza Masroor Ahmad(aba), Khalifatul

UK viewers: watch MTA on Sky channel 787

Community, delivers the Friday Sermon each

For info on viewing MTA in other countries, or for online stream, visit www.mta.tv

Ahmadiyya International (MTA). Through MTA

Friday Prayer gives Muslims an opportunity individual as well as community problems.

Masih V, Head of the Ahmadiyya Muslim week, broadcast live by Muslim Television therefore, the Imam is able to address not just the congregation, but also the entire world. It gives the Imam a chance to advise all Muslims at the same time on urgent matters that face them.

www.mta.tv

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The Philosophy of the Teachings of Islam part 15

Hadhrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad(as), the Promised Messiah and Mahdi translated from urdu by sir muhammad zafrulla khan


The Holy Qur’an, upon which The Philosophy of the Teachings of Islam was based.

FOURTH QUESTION T he Operation of the Practical Ordinances of the Law in this Life and the Next We have already stated that the effect of the true and perfect Divine law upon man’s heart in this life is that it lifts him from a savage condition and converts him into a human being, and thereafter invests him with high morals, and finally makes him godly. One of the effects of the practical ordinances of the law is that a person who follows the true law progressively recognises the rights of his fellow beings and exercises his faculties of equity, and benevolence, and true sympathy, on their proper occasions. Such a one shares with his fellow beings, according to their respective ranks, the bounties with which God has favoured him, like knowledge, understanding, wealth and means of comfort. He sheds his light like the sun upon the whole of mankind, and like the moon, acquiring light from God, conveys it to others. Being illumined like the day he shows the paths of virtue and goodness to others, and like the night he covers up their weaknesses and provides comfort for those who are weary. Like the sky he provides shelter under his shade for everyone who is in need, and pours down the rain of grace

at its proper time. Like the earth, out of utter humility, he becomes like a floor for everyone’s comfort and gathers them close to afford them security, and offers them diverse types of spiritual fruits. Thus, he who adheres to the perfect law discharges his obligations to God and to his fellow creatures to the utmost. He loses himself in God and becomes a true servant of His creatures. This is the effect of the practical ordinances of the law on his life here.

Being illumined like the day he shows the paths of virtue and goodness to others.

Their effect in the hereafter is that a person who adheres to them will observe his spiritual relationship with God as a manifest reality. The service that he rendered to God’s creatures out of his love for God, which was stimulated by his faith, and his yearning for righteous action, will be manifested to him as the trees and rivers of paradise. In this context, God Almighty has said: we call to witness the sun and its light; and We call to witness the moon when it follows april 2012

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the philosophy of the teachings of islam

This is an indication that the fruit of conforming to the practical ordinances of the law will be the eternal life of the next world.

the sun and obtains its light from it and conveys it to people; and We call to witness the day when it manifests the light of the sun and shows up the paths; and We call to witness the night when it darkens and envelops everything within itself; and We call to witness the heaven and the purpose for which it has been created; and We call to witness the earth and the purpose for which it has been spread out like a floor; and We call to witness the human soul and its quality which makes it equal to all these other things; that is to say all those qualities which are found dispersed among the other bodies that have been mentioned are all comprehended in the soul of the perfect man. As these bodies serve man in diverse ways, the perfect man performs all that service by himself. Then He says: he will be delivered from death and will attain salvation who purifies his soul, that is to say, who serves God’s creatures out 24 The Review of Religions | april 2012

of his devotion to God like the sun and the moon and the earth. It should be kept in mind that in this context life means life eternal, which will be bestowed upon perfect man. This is an indication that the fruit of conforming to the practical ordinances of the law will be the eternal life of the next world, which will be sustained for ever by the vision of God. Then it is said that he who corrupts his soul and does not acquire the qualities for which he was bestowed appropriate capacities and goes back after spending an unclean life, shall be ruined and shall despair of life eternal. Then he said: this is illustrated by the event of the she-camel of Allah, which was hamstrung by a wretched one of the tribe of Thamud and was prevented from drinking at its fountain. This is an indication that the soul of man is the she-camel of God which He bestrides, meaning that the heart of man is the place of Divine manifestations. The water of the she-camel is the love and understanding of God which sustain it. Then he said: when the Thamud hamstrung the she-camel of God and prevented it from having its drink, they were overtaken by God’s chastisement and He cared not how their dependants would fare. Thus would be ruined one


who corrupts his soul and prevents it from taking spiritual nourishment and does not desire to foster it.1

As their intelligence is earthly and not heavenly they fail to appreciate true insights.

The Philosophy of Allah’s Swearing by Various things Here one needs to be reminded that there is a deep philosophy in God’s calling the sun and the moon etc. to witness. Some of our opponents, out of taking an oath. Divine manifestations their lack of knowledge, criticise God for are of two types. One, those that are calling to witness created things. As their obvious and concerning which there intelligence is earthly and not heavenly is no controversy. Secondly, there are they fail to appreciate true insights. The those Divine manifestations which are purpose of taking an oath is that the inferential concerning which people one who takes an oath puts forward differ and can fall into error. By calling a testimony in support of his claim. A to witness the obvious phenomena, God person who has no witness of his claim Almighty’s purpose is to establish by their calls God to witness, for He knows what evidence His inferential manifestations. is hidden and He is the foremost witness in every controversy. Such a person puts It is obvious that the sun and the forward the testimony of God by taking moon and the day and the night and an oath in His name, meaning thereby the heaven and the earth, possess the that if God does not thereafter chastise respective characteristics that we have him, that would be proof that God has mentioned, but everyone is not aware confirmed the truth of his claim. It is, of the characteristics possessed by the therefore, not permissible for a person to human soul. Thus, God has set forth His take the oath of any created thing, for no obvious manifestations as witnesses for created thing possesses knowledge of the the purpose of explaining His inferential unseen, nor has it the power to punish manifestations. It is as if He says: If you one who takes a false oath. In these are in doubt with regard to the qualities verses, God calling various phenomena to with which the human soul is invested, witness is not the same thing as a person then reflect upon the sun and the moon april 2012

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and depressions become distinct when the day dawns. In the same way perfect man is the day of spiritual light, by his advent every path becomes clearly distinguishable. He points out the right path, for he himself is the bright day of truth and righteousness. Similarly, you observe how the night accommodates the weary and how the labourers, after working hard during the day, sleep in and the other phenomena cited which the gracious lap of the night and rest obviously possess these qualities. You from their labours. The night also covers know that man is a microcosm that up all defects and imperfections. In the comprises a tiny representation of the same way, the perfect servants of God pattern of the universe. As it is clear come to provide comfort for people and that the great bodies of the macrocosm the recipients of revelation relieve all possess these qualities and provide wise people of extreme effort. Through benefits for God’s creatures, then how can them great problems of insight are easily man, who ranks above all those bodies, be resolved. Also, Divine revelation covers without those qualities? That is not so. up the defects of human reason and, Indeed, like the sun, man possesses the like the night, does not let its faults to light of knowledge and reason whereby become known, inasmuch as wise people he can illumine the world. Like the correct their mistakes on their own in the moon he receives the light of vision and light of revelation, and thus through the revelation from the Divine and conveys it blessings of God’s holy revelation save to others who have not yet arrived at the themselves from being exposed. That is highest stage of human progress. Then the reason why no Muslim philosopher how can you say that prophethood is a offered the sacrifice of a rooster to an idol false notion and that all prophethoods as was done by Plato. Plato was misled as and purported Divine laws and books he was deprived of the light of revelation are only the imposture and selfishness and despite being a great philosopher he of certain human beings. You observe perpetrated such a stupid and hateful act. how all paths are lit up and the heights The following of our lord and master the

In the same way perfect man is the day of spiritual light, by his advent every path becomes clearly distinguishable.

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Holy Prophet(saw) safeguarded the Muslim philosophers against such stupid and unholy practices. This shows how Divine revelation covers up, like the night, the deficiencies of the wise.

Reflect, therefore, how full of wisdom is the Word that is found in the Holy Qur’an and which issued from the mouth of an unlettered dweller of the desert.

You are also aware that the perfect servants of God provide, like heaven, shelter for every weary one. His prophets and the recipients of His revelation pour down the rain of their beneficence like criticism becomes proof that that point the sky, and they also possess the qualities of wisdom is above and beyond the reach of the earth. Diverse types of trees of of average minds. That is why those who high knowledge spring forth from their are accounted wise raised an objection fine souls, from the shade and flowers against this phenomenon; but now and fruits of which people derive benefit. that the mystery has been resolved no Thus, this visible law of nature which is reasonable person will criticise it, but will displayed before our eyes is a witness of derive pleasure from it. the hidden law whose testimony God Almighty has cited in these verses by The Holy Qur’an has, at another place, way of oaths. Reflect, therefore, how full recited such an oath for the purpose of of wisdom is the Word that is found in citing an instance of the law of nature in the Holy Qur’an and which issued from support of the phenomenon of revelation, the mouth of an unlettered dweller of and has said: we call to witness the heaven the desert. Had it not been the Word of that sends down rain and the earth that God, the wise ones and those who are sprouts diverse types of vegetation with called highly educated, being confronted the help of such rain, that the Qur’an is with this fine insight, would not have God’s word and His revelation, and that made it the subject of criticism. It is a it decides between Truth and falsehood common experience that when a person and is not vain talk, that is to say, it has is unable to appreciate something on not been revealed out of time and has the basis of his finite reason he criticises come like seasonable rain.2 that which is based on wisdom and his april 2012

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When heavenly water, that is to say, divine revelation, is held back, the earthly water also dries up gradually.

Here, God Almighty has set forth a well-known law of nature in support of the Truth of the Holy Qur’an, which is His Word. It is a matter of common observation that at a time of need rain comes down from heaven and that the vegetation of the earth all depends upon rain. When rain is held back then gradually the wells also run dry, so that the water in the earth also depends upon rain from heaven. That is why in the rainy season the level of the water in the wells also rises, the reason for which is that heavenly water exercises a pull upon earthly water. The same is the relationship between divine revelation and human reason. Divine revelation is heavenly water and reason is earthly water which receives sustenance from heavenly water. When heavenly water, that is to say, divine revelation, is held back, the earthly water also dries up gradually. That is the reason why, when a long time 28 The Review of Religions | april 2012

passes and no recipient of revelation appears on the earth, the reason of the wise is corrupted, as earthly water is corrupted and dries up. To appreciate this phenomenon, it would be enough to cast a glance at the condition of the world immediately before the advent of the Holy Prophet(saw). As six hundred years had passed after the time of Jesus(as), and no recipient of revelation had appeared during the interval, the whole world had been corrupted. The history of every country shows that before the advent of the Holy Prophet(saw), falsehood had become current throughout the world. Why did this happen? This happened because divine revelation had been held back for a long time and the kingdom of heaven had fallen into the hands of human reason alone. No one is unaware of the corruption in which the people were involved by following defective reason. Thus, when the rain of revelation did not descend for a period, the water of reason dried up. So, in these oaths God Almighty draws attention to this firm and eternal law of nature, and calls for reflection upon it that all the vegetation of the earth depends upon the water of heaven. Thus, for the hidden law that governs divine revelation, the obvious law of nature is a


witness. Then, try to derive benefit from draws a veil over it, and by the heaven and its making, the testimony of this witness and do not and by the earth and its spreading out, and by the make reason alone your guide, for it is soul and its perfection—and He revealed to it what not a water that can continue without is wrong for it and what is right for it—He indeed heavenly water. As it is a characteristic of truly prospers who purifies it, and he who corrupts heavenly water that it pulls up the water it is ruined. The tribe of Thamud denied the truth of all the wells, whether it falls directly because of their rebelliousness. When the most wretched into a well or not, in the same way, when among them got up, then the Messenger of Allah said, a recipient of divine revelation appears in ‘Leave alone the she-camel of Allah, and let her the world then, whether a wise person drink.’ But they rejected him and hamstrung her, so follows him or not, reason is illumined their Lord destroyed them completely because of their and clarified to a degree not witnessed sin, and made it (destruction) overtake all of them before. People begin to search for the alike. And He cared not for the consequences thereof. truth and their faculty of reflection is (Ch.91:Vs.2-16) stirred up from the unseen. Thus, all 2. By the cloud which gives rain after rain, and this upsurge of reason and of the heart by the earth which opens out with herbage, it is is initiated by the blessed advent of the surely a decisive word, and it is not a useless talk. recipient of divine revelation and the (Ch.86:Vs.12-15) waters of the earth are pulled up by it. So, when you find that everyone has started a search for religion and an upsurge has stirred earthly waters, then rise up and be warned and know for certain that heavy rain has fallen from heaven and that the water of divine revelation has fallen upon a human heart. endnotes

1. By the sun and its growing brightness, and by the moon when it follows it (the sun), and by the day

Write to us with comments, feedback and suggestions at info@reviewofreligions.org

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The English Rendering of Volume I of Seerat Khatamun Nabiyyin (The Life and Character of the Seal of Prophets) is available to read online at www.alislam.org


Vintage engraved illustration, Holy city and burial place of the Holy Prophet Muhammad(saw), Founder of Islam (Trousset Encyclopedia (1886-1891)

IMPORTANT ANNOUCEMENT FOR OUR READERS Since January 2010, The Review of Religions has been serialising the English rendering of Volume I of Hadhrat Mirza Bashir Ahmad(ra)’s epic Seerat Khatamun Nabiyyin (The Life and Character of the Seal of Prophets). As this book has now been published, we will be discontinuing the serialisation of Volume I. Starting in one of our upcoming Editions, we will begin the first ever serialisation of the recently translated, English Rendering of Volume 2 of Seerat Khatamun Nabiyyin, prior to its publication and release in book form. To read the brand new translation of Volume 2, read our upcoming Editions of The Review of Religions.


The Life and Character of the Seal of the Prophets (saw)

part 16 Hadhrat Mirza Bashir Ahmad(ra) CHAPTER VII – Days of Struggle


Continued serialisation of the English rendering of Hadhrat Mirza Bashir Ahmad(ra)’s outstanding biography, Seerat Khatamun Nabiyyin, on the life and character of the

Holy Prophet Muhammad(saw). In this section, the Holy Prophet(saw) has to tragically endure the demise of two of those closest to him, in quick succession. Also, featuring

the start of Chapter VIII, ‘Expansion of Preaching’ featuring the Prophet(saw)’s journey to Ta’if.

translated from the urdu by ayyaz mahmood khan

Demise of Hadhrat Khadijah(ra) and that is, 10 Nabawi, the ‘Amul-Huzn, Abu Talib ‘The Year of Grievances’.1 Abu Talib was When the Holy Prophet(saw) came out of like a father to the Holy Prophet(saw). He the Valley of Abu Talib, he was struck loved the Holy Prophet(saw) immensely by two consecutive misfortunes. Hadhrat and the Holy Prophet(saw) also loved Khadijah(ra) and Abu Talib passed away, him dearly. When Abu Talib was in his one after the other. Both of them were aged, and death is ordained for every individual. However, the demise of When the Holy Prophet(saw) both of them so close to the era of their came out of the Valley of Abu besiegement in the Valley of Abu Talib, Talib, he was struck by two strongly gives rise to the possibility that the insistent hardships of their consecutive misfortunes. imprisonment had a great role to play in their demise. It seems as if under the influence of constant severities, their health greatly deteriorated. While they were besieged, the thought of struggle kept their dispositions well-maintained, but as soon as they came out, the adversity of their besiegement brought forth its impact, and both of them fell victim to death, one after the other. On A General shot of a desert account of these consecutive grievances, valley in Saudi Arabia. the Holy Prophet(saw) named this year, april 2012

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“Uncle! Merely utter the Kalimah Shahadah [Muslim declaration of faith] and on the Day of Resurrection, I shall intercede on your behalf.”

The Muslim Creed: ‘There is no God but Allah, and Muhammad is His Messenger’

presence of my Lord for your forgiveness, except that I am prohibited from doing so.” But it was not long before the Holy Prophet(saw) was forbidden from doing so, and an injunction was revealed that it is unlawful to pray for the forgiveness of idolaters and disbelievers, instead, their matter should be left to God.2

terminal illness, the Holy Prophet(saw) would regularly bless him with his presence. Thus, on one occasion, when his demise was near, the Holy Prophet(saw) went to visit him. At that time, Abu Jahl and other idolaters were also present. When the Holy Prophet(saw) sensed his There is another narration which approaching demise, he said, “Uncle! might be true and it relates that upon Merely utter the Kalimah Shahadah his deathbed, Abu Talib said to the [Muslim declaration of faith] and on the Chieftains of the Quraish that: Day of Resurrection, I shall intercede on your behalf.” On hearing this, Abu Jahl “O Party of the Quraish! Among the and the rest became apprehensive, and creation of Allah, you are a chosen people. began to say to Abu Talib, “Will you God has given you great reverence. I forsake the religion of ‘Abdul-Muttalib?” advise that you treat Muhammad well, and continued to persuade him in many because amongst you, he is a man of the ways, the outcome of which was that the highest morals. He possesses distinction last words heard of Abu Talib were that, “I among the Arabs on account of his die upon the religion of ‘Abdul-Muttalib.” truthfulness and straightforwardness. When the Holy Prophet(saw) heard these If you ask the truth, he has brought a words, he said in great anguish, “All message to us which the tongue rejects right, I shall continue supplicating in the but the heart accepts. I have stood by 34 The Review of Religions | april 2012


Although Abu Talib held fast to polytheism during the whole of his life and also died in the same state, the Holy Prophet(saw) always considered him his father… The last verse from Surah An-Najm (Chapter 53) of the Holy Qur’an embodies the Message that the Holy Prophet(saw) was commissioned to preach, ‘So prostrate yourselves before Allah, and worship Him.’

Muhammad a lifetime and have stepped forward to protect him in all times of difficulty, and if I receive more time, I shall continue to do so in the future as well. And O Quraish! I also advise you not to insist upon causing him grief, but help him and support him, for your betterment lies in this.”3 Shortly thereafter, Abu Talib passed away. The Holy Prophet(saw) was greatly hurt by his demise and since Abu Talib remained a supporter and protector to the Holy Prophet(saw) against the Quraish, by his demise, the position of the Holy Prophet(saw) became even more sensitive. At the time of his demise, which occurred

in 10 Nabawi, Abu Talib was over eighty years of age.4 Although Abu Talib held fast to polytheism during the whole of his life and also died in the same state, the Holy Prophet(saw) always considered him his father and demonstrated such a high model of love, loyalty, service, obedience, honour and respect, the likes of which cannot be found. On the other hand, Abu Talib always treated the Holy Prophet(saw) with an extreme level of protection and loyalty, and preferred putting himself in every type of difficulty, but did not leave the side of the Holy Prophet(saw). Where this treatment is evidence of his own graciousness and loyalty, it also proves that although he may have believed the Holy Prophet(saw) to be mistaken, on account of his polytheistic beliefs, he did not consider the Holy Prophet(saw) a liar or deceiver at all. He was a heartfelt believer of the excellent morals, truthfulness april 2012

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When the Holy Prophet(saw) saw this necklace, he was reminded of the late Khadijah(ra) and his eyes filled with tears. “Jannatul Mu’alla” (Hajun) cemetery before 1925, where Hadhrat Khadijah(ra) was buried.

and sincerity of the Holy Prophet(saw). Therefore at this instance, Muir writes: ‘The sacrifices to which Abu Talib exposed himself and his family for the sake of his nephew, while yet incredulous of his mission, stamp his character as singularly noble and unselfish. They afford at the same time strong proof of the sincerity of Mohammad. Abu Talib would not have acted thus for an interested deceiver; and he had ample means of scrutiny.’5 A few days after the demise of Abu Talib, Hadhrat Khadijah(ra) also passed away.6 Khadijah(ra) had stood by the Holy Prophet(saw) in times of extreme grief and anguish. She loved the Holy Prophet(saw) and the Holy Prophet (saw) loved her immensely. For this reason, naturally, the Holy Prophet(saw) was exceedingly grieved at her demise. After her demise, 36 The Review of Religions | april 2012

whenever she was mentioned, the eyes of the Holy Prophet(saw) would become suffused in tears, and he would praise her often. He would say that, “Khadijah was among the best of the women in her era.” Hadhrat ‘A’ishah(ra) narrates that: ‘The Holy Prophet (saw) would praise Hadhrat Khadijah(ra) so often, that I would begin to feel jealous of her, and I would say, “You mention Khadijah as if she was the only lady who was ever born in this world.” The Holy Prophet(saw) would respond, “O ‘A’ishah! She possessed great qualities and God gave me children from her as well.”’ Hence, the Holy Prophet (saw) would mention Hadhrat Khadijah (ra) with extreme love. If ever an animal, etc.,


was slaughtered in his home, the Holy Prophet(saw) would always send a portion to the friends of Hadhrat Khadijah(ra). At one occasion, the Holy Prophet(saw) was sitting in the home of Hadhrat ‘A’ishah(ra), when the sister of Hadhrat Khadijah(ra), Hallah bint Khuwailid, came to visit the Holy Prophet(saw). She asked permission to enter at the door. Hadhrat ‘A’ishah(ra) relates, “The Holy Prophet stood up restlessly saying, ‘the voice of Khadijah, it appears as if her sister Hallah has come.’”7 In the Battle of Badr, when Abul-‘As, the son-in-law of the Holy Prophet(saw), who had not yet accepted Islam, was captured, his wife, in other words, Zainab(ra), the daughter of the Holy Prophet(saw), who still resided in Makkah, sent her necklace as a ransom. This was the same necklace which Hadhrat Khadijah(ra) gave to Zainab(ra) in her bride’s paraphernalia. When the Holy Prophet(saw) saw this necklace, he was reminded of the late Khadijah (ra) and his eyes filled with tears. The Holy Prophet(saw) said to his companions, “If you wish, return the reminiscence of Khadijah(ra) to her daughter.” They needed a single indication, and the necklace was immediately returned.8 At the time of her demise, Hadhrat Khadijah(ra) was sixty-five years of age. She was buried in Makkah at a location known as Hajun.

Once, the Holy Prophet(saw) was walking on his way, when an ill-behaved person publicly threw filth upon the head of the Holy Prophet(saw).

The Holy Prophet(saw) descended into her grave himself, but a funeral prayer was not offered, because at that time, the injunction pertinent to funeral prayer was not yet revealed.9 Adversity of the Holy Prophet Intensified After the demise of Hadhrat Khadijah(ra) and Abu Talib, the Quraish of Makkah became bolder towards the person of the Holy Prophet(saw) and began to inflict severe hardships upon him. 10 Once, the Holy Prophet(saw) was walking on his way, when an ill-behaved person publicly threw filth upon the head of the Holy Prophet(saw). The Holy Prophet(saw) returned home in this state, and when one of his daughters saw this, she quickly fetched some water, washed his head, and began to weep bitterly. The Holy Prophet(saw) calmed her down and said, “Daughter, weep not, for Allah shall april 2012

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Himself protect your father and all these difficulties shall pass.”11 Then, at another instance, the Holy Prophet(saw) was in prostration before God the Almighty in the courtyard of the Ka’bah, where a few Chieftains of the Quraish were gathered as well. Abu Jahl said, “At this time, if someone can muster the courage, throw the uterus of a camel upon Muhammad” Hence ‘Uqbah bin Abi Mu’it stood up and threw the uterus of a slaughtered camel, full of blood and filth, upon the back of the Holy Prophet(saw), and all of them burst into laughter. When Fatimatuz-Zahra learnt of this, she came running and removed this burden from her father’s shoulders. It was only then, that the Holy Prophet(saw) was able to lift his head from prostration. It is narrated, that once, the Holy Prophet called upon the chieftains of the Quraish by name, who were adamant on erasing and humiliating Islam, and prayed against them, seeking a verdict from God. The narrator states that, “Then I saw all of these people killed on the day of Badr, at the hands of the Muslims, polluting the air in the valley of Badr.12

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( The next section after ‘Adversity of the Holy Prophet(saw) Intensified’ of the Life and Character of the Seal of Prophets was featured in the February 2012 Edition – see note at end of this article. Below we present the start of Chapter VIII ) VIII - EXPANSION OF PREACHING Visits to the Tribes During the days of Hajj, people would gather in Makkah from far and wide, and in the Ashhur-e-Hurum, very large assemblies would be held in significant numbers at ‘Ukaz, Majinnah, and DhulMajaz. From the start, it was a custom of the Holy Prophet(saw) to utilise such occasions to his advantage. He would visit the various encampments of the Arab tribes and would invite them to Islam.13 However, until now, naturally, the attention of the Holy Prophet(saw) was more directed towards the Quraish of Makkah. Nonetheless, during the days when the Quraish of Makkah had besieged the Muslims in the Valley of Abu Talib, the Holy Prophet(saw) began to turn his attention towards the other tribes of Makkah. As such, during the


conversion of the Makkans themselves. As such, due to the opposition of the Quriash, that although the Holy era of siege, in the peace of the Ashhur- Prophet (saw) visited various tribes at e-Hurum, the Holy Prophet(saw) would numerous occasions, and he would go especially visit the various tribes who to every camp presenting them with the had arrived for Hajj. He would regularly invitation to Islam, there was no prospect visit the assemblies at ‘Ukaz, etc. and of success.14 preach the message of Islam. However, the Quraish of Makkah began to create Journey to Ta’if hindrances in this preaching as well. They When the ban was lifted, and the Holy knew that for these tribes to become Prophet(saw) found a sort of freedom in Muslim was almost as dangerous as the his movements, he decided to visit Ta’if Pilgrims at Masjid Al-Haram, Makkah during the Hajj

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The location of Ta’if in Saudi Arabia.

and invite its people to Islam. Ta’if is a famous place situated forty miles to the south-east of Makkah. During this era, it was home to the Banu Thaqif. Putting 40 The Review of Religions | april 2012

aside the speciality of the Ka‘bah, Ta’if was recognised equal to Makkah and many eminent, influential and affluent people resided there. The people of Makkah themselves admitted to this importance of Ta’if. As such, it was the very Makkans who said: “Why has not


When he left the city, this rabble chased the Holy Prophet(saw) and began to bombard him with rocks, due to which the entire body of the Holy Prophet(saw) became drenched in blood. this Qur’an from God been sent to some great man of Makkah or Ta’if ?”15

to you is useless.” Then, concerned that the youngsters of the city may become influenced by the Holy Prophet(saw), he said, “It is best that you leave this place, for there is nobody here who is willing to listen to you.” After that, this evil man had the miscreants of the city start off behind the Holy Prophet(saw). When he left the city, this rabble chased the Holy Prophet(saw) and began to bombard him with rocks, due to which the entire body of the Holy Prophet(saw) became drenched in blood. These people pursued the Holy Prophet(saw) for three miles, more or less, and cursed at him and threw stones at him continuously.

Therefore, in Shawwal of 10 Nabawi,16 the Holy Prophet(saw) took the journey to Ta’if by himself.17 On the authority of other narrations, Zaid bin Harithah(ra) At a distance of three miles from Ta’if, also accompanied him.18 Upon his arrival, there was an orchard, which belonged the Holy Prophet(saw) remained there for to a Chieftain of Makkah named ‘Utbah ten days, and one after another he met bin Rabi‘ah. The Holy Prophet(saw) took with many chieftains, but like Makkah, refuge in this orchard, and his ruthless it was not in the destiny of this city to enemies returned exhausted. Standing accept Islam either. Therefore, all of beneath a shadow, the Holy Prophet(saw) them refused, and as a matter of fact prayed before Allah in the following they mocked the Holy Prophet(saw). At words: last, the Holy Prophet(saw) approached the grand chieftain of Ta’if, named “O My Lord, I complain to you of my ‘Abdu Yalail,19 and invited him to Islam, helplessness, and my inability, and my but he also refused, rather, in a manner helplessness before the people. O My of mockery he said, “If you are truthful, God, You are the most merciful, for then I have not the strength to speak to You are the guardian and protector of you, and if you are a liar, then to speak the feeble and helpless – You are my april 2012

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Lord. I seek refuge in the light of Your countenance. It is You who dispels all darkness and it is You who bestows the inheritance of favor in this world and in the next.” At this time, ‘Utbah and Shaibah were in their garden. When they saw the Holy Prophet(saw) in this state, perhaps moved by emotions of near or far relations, or perhaps national responsibility, they sent the Holy Prophet(saw) a tray of grapes in the hand of their Christian slave named ‘Addas. The Holy Prophet (saw) took them and addressed ‘Addas saying, “Where are you from, and a follower of which religion?” “I am from Nineveh,” responded ‘Addas, “and a Christian.” The Holy Prophet(saw) inquired, “The same Nineveh, which was home to the righteous servant of God, Jonah(as) son of Matthew?” “Yes,” responded ‘Addas, “but how are you aware of Jonah(as)?” “He was my brother,” said the Holy Prophet(saw), “for he was a prophet of Allah, and I am also a prophet of Allah.” Then the Holy Prophet(saw) preached the message of Islam to him, which moved him greatly. In his passion of sincerity, he moved forward and kissed the hands of the Holy Prophet(saw). ‘Utbah and Shaibah observed this sight from afar; as such, when ‘Addas returned to them, they said, 42 The Review of Religions | april 2012

“What happened to you that you began to kiss the hands of this man? This man shall ruin your faith, while your religion is better than his.”20 The Holy Prophet (saw) rested in this orchard for some time. He then departed from here and arrived at Nakhlah, which is situated at a distance of approximately one day’s journey from Makkah, and remained there for a few days. After this, the Holy Prophet(saw) departed and reached the mountain of Hira, and since the apparent failure at Ta’if entailed the possibility of the Makkans growing overly bold, the Holy Prophet(saw) sent word to Mut’im bin ‘Adiyy that I wish to enter Makkah, can you help me in this regard? Although Mut‘im was a firm disbeliever, his disposition possessed graciousness, and in times like these, it was against the nature of noble Arabs to refuse. For this reason, along with his sons and relatives, fully armed, they stood by the Ka‘bah, and sent word to the Holy Prophet(saw) that he may enter. The Holy Prophet(saw) entered and performed the tawaf [circumambulation] of the Ka‘bah, and along with Mut‘im and his children, escorted under the shadow of swords, the Holy Prophet(saw) entered his home. On the way, when Abu Jahl witnessed Mut‘im in this state,


he was astonished and inquired, “Have you given Muhammad (saw) refuge, or have you become a follower?” Mut‘im responded, “I am only one to give refuge, not a follower.” Upon this Abu Jahl said, “Alright, then there is no problem.” Mut‘im died in a state of disbelief, but the Muslims were not ones to lose sight of rightly due value. Alluding to the gracious treatment of Mut‘im, Hassan bin Thabit(ra), who was practically the court-poet of the Holy Prophet (saw), said many passionate couplets in his praise, which have been vouchsafed in his collection to this day.21 The journey to Ta’if was a special occurrence in the life of the Holy Prophet(saw). The details of this journey shed light on the lofty In his book, Sir William Muir acknowledged the magnificence of the Holy Prophet(saw), Holy Prophet ’s bravery in travelling to Ta’if. his astronomical magnanimity, and his incomparable patience and steadfastness. As such, Sir William Muir writes: It is mentioned in Hadith that on one occasion, it was inquired of the Holy ‘There is something lofty and heroic in Prophet (saw) by Hadhrat ‘A’ishah (ra) , this journey of Mohammad to Al-Ta’if; “Were you ever confronted by a day a solitary man, despised and rejected by more difficult than the Battle of Uhud?” his own people, going boldly forth in the The Holy Prophet(saw) responded, “O name of God, like Jonah to Nineveh, and ‘A’ishah(ra), your people have compelled summoning an idolatrous city to repent me to confront times of severe adversity.” and support his mission. It sheds a strong Then the Holy Prophet(saw) described the light on the intensity of his belief in the details of his journey to Ta’if and said: divine origin of his calling.’22 “During my return from this journey, the (saw)

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Angel of the mountains came to me and said, “God has sent me to you, that if you so command, I may bring the two mountains of this valley together upon these people, and destroy them.”

Vol.1, p.59, Babu Dhikri Abi Talib wa Dammihi

But the Holy Prophet(saw) said, “Nay! Nay! I trust that Allah the Exalted shall give birth to such people from among them who shall worship the one true God.”23

6. * Tarikhut-Tabari, by Abu Ja’far Muhammad

(Erratum: the section ‘Demise of Hadhat Khadijah(ra) and Abu Talib’ and ‘Adversity of the Holy Prophet(saw) Intensified’ should have been included in the February 2012 Edition, hence has been included here.)

Rasulillahi, Darul-Ihya’it-Turathil-‘Arabi, Beirut,

Lebanon, First Edition (1996)

5. Life of ‘Mahomet’, by Sir William Muir, p.105, Reprint of the 1894 Ed. Published by Voice of India, New Delhi

bin Al-Jarir Tabari, Vol.2, p.241, Babu Dhikril-

Khabri ‘amma kana min Amri Nabiyyillahi ‘inda

Ibtida’illahi Ta’ala….,Darul-Fikr, Beirut, Lebanon, Second Edition (2002)

* At-Tabaqatul-Kubra, by Muhammad bin Sa’d,

Vol.1, p.59, Babu Dhikri Abi Talib wa Dammihi

Rasulillahi, Darul-Ihya’it-Turathil-‘Arabi, Beirut,

Lebanon, First Edition (1996)

7. Sahih Bukhari, Kitabu Manaqibil-Ansar, Babu

Tazqijin-Nabi Khadijata wa Fadliha, Hadith No. 3818,3821

endnotes

8. As-Siratun-Nabawiyyah, by Abu Muhammad

‘Abdul-Malik bin Hisham, p.444, Babu Dhikri

1. Sharhul-‘Allamatiz-Zarqani ‘alal-Mawahibil-

Ru’ya ‘Atikata binti ‘Abdil-Muttalib, Darul

Az-Zarqani, Vol.2, p.49, Babu Wafati Khadijata

(2001)

Ladunniyyah, by Muhammad bin ‘Abdul-Baqi

wa Abi Talib, Darul Kutubil-‘Ilmiyyah, Beirut,

Lebanon, First Edition (1996)

Kutubil-‘Ilmiyyah, Beirut, Lebanon, First Edition

9. Sharhul-‘Allamatiz-Zarqani ‘alal-Mawahibil-

Ladunniyyah, by Muhammad bin ‘Abdul-Baqi

2. Sahih Bukhari, Kitabu Manaqibil-Ansar, Babu

Az-Zarqani, Vol.2, p.49, Babu Wafati Khadijata

3. Sharhul-‘Allamatiz-Zarqani ‘alal-Mawahibil-

Lebanon, First Edition (1996)

Qissati Abi Talib, Hadith No.3884

Ladunniyyah, by Muhammad bin ‘Abdul-Baqi

wa Abi Talib, Darul Kutubil-‘Ilmiyyah, Beirut,

10. As-Siratun-Nabawiyyah, by Abu Muhammad

Az-Zarqani, Vol.2, pp.46-48, Babu Wafati

‘Abdul-Malik bin Hisham, p.299, Babu Wafati Abi

Beirut, Lebanon, First Edition (1996)

Beirut, Lebanon, First Edition (2001)

Khadijata wa Abi Talib, Darul Kutubil-‘Ilmiyyah,

Talibin wa Khadijah, Darul-Kutubil-‘Ilmiyyah,

4. At-Tabaqatul-Kurba, by Muhammad bin Sa’d,

11. Tarikhut-Tabari, by Abu Ja’far Muhammad

44 The Review of Religions | april 2012


bin Al-Jarir Tabari, Vol.2, p.241, Babu Dhikril-

* Tarikhut-Tabari, By Abu Ja‘far Muhammad bin

‘inda Ibtida’illahi Ta’ala……, Darul-Fikr, Beirut,

Khabri ‘amma kana min Amri Nabiyyillahi(saw)

Khabri ‘amma kana min Amri Nabiyyillahi(saw)

Al-Jarir Tabari, Vol. 2, p. 241, Babu Dhikril-

Lebanon, Second Edition (2002).

‘inda Ibtida’illahi Ta‘ala......, Darul-Fikr, Beirut,

Du‘a’in-Nabiyyi (saw) ‘ala Kuffari Quraish…..,

18. At-Tabaqatul-Kubra, Vol. 1, p. 102, By Ibni

13. At-Tabaqatul-Kubra, By Muhammad bin

Darul-Ihya’it-Turathil-‘Arabi, Beirut, Lebanon,

12. Sahih Bukhari, Kitabul-Maghazi, Babu Hadith No. 3960

Sa‘d, Vol. 1, p. 104, Dhikru Du‘a’i Rasulillahi(saw)

Lebanon, Second Edition (2002)

Sa‘d, Dhikru Sababi Khuruji Rasulillahisa ilat-Ta’if,

First Edition (1996)

Qaba’ilal- ‘Arab fil-Mawasim, Darul-Ihya’it-

19. The name Ibnu ‘Abdi Yalil is mentioned in

(1996)

Khalq, Babu Idha Qala Ahadukum Amin, Hadith

Sa‘d, Vol. 1, p. 104, Dhikru Du‘a’i Rasulillahi(saw)

20.

Turathil-‘Arabi, Beirut, Lebanon, First Edition

302, Babu Sa‘yur-Rasuli ila Thaqifin Yatlubun-

* Tarikhut-Tabari, By Abu Ja‘far Muhammad bin

Lebanon, First Edition (2001)

Turathil-‘Arabi, Beirut, Lebanon, First Edition 14. * At-Tabaqatul-Kubra, By Muhammad bin

Qaba’ilal-‘Arab fil-Mawasim, Darul-Ihya’it-

(1996)

Hadith– refer to Sahih Bukhari, Kitabu Bad’il-

No. 3231

* As-Siratun-Nabawiyyah, By Abu

Muhammad ‘Abdul-Malik bin Hisham, pp. 301Nusrah, Darul-Kutubil-‘Ilmiyyah, Beirut,

Al-Jarir Tabari, Vol. 2, pp. 243-244, Babu

* Tarikhut-Tabari, By Abu Ja‘far Muhammad bin

Nabiyyillahisa ‘inda Ibtida’illahi Ta‘ala......,

Dhikril-Khabri ‘amma kana min Amri

Dhikril-Khabri ‘amma kana min Amri Darul-Fikr,

Beirut, Lebanon, Second Edition (2002)

15. Az-Zukhruf (Ch.43:V.32)

16. At-Tabaqatul-Kubra, By Muhammad bin Sa‘d,

Vol. 1, p. 102, Dhikru Sababi Khuruji Rasulillahisa

ilat-Ta’if, Darul-Ihya’it-Turathil-‘Arabi, Beirut,

Al-Jarir Tabari, Vol. 2, pp. 241-242, Babu

Nabiyyillahisa ‘inda Ibtida’illahi Ta‘ala......, Darul-

Fikr, Beirut, Lebanon, Second Edition (2002)

21. Sahih Bukhari, Kitabu Bad’il-Khalq, Babu

Idha Qala Ahadukum Amin, Hadith No. 3231

22. Life of ‘Mahomet’, By Sir William Muir, pp.

112-113, Reprint of the 1894 Ed., Published by

Lebanon, First Edition (1996)

Voice of India New Delhi (Publishers)

Muhammad ‘Abdul-Malik bin Hisham, p. 300,

Idha qala ahadukum amin..., Hadith No. 3231

17.

* As-Siratun-Nabawiyyah, By Abu

Babu Sa‘yur-Rasuli

23. Sahih Bukhari, Kitabu Bad’il-Khalq, Babu

ila Thaqifin Yatlubun-Nusrah, Darul-Kutubil-

‘Ilmiyyah, Beirut, Lebanon, First Edition (2001)

april 2012

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Inauguration of the Tahir Mosque in Catford, United Kingdom

hadhrat mirza masroor ahmad (aba), khalifatul masih v , h e a d o f t h e w o r l d w i d e a h m a d i y ya m u s l i m c o m m u n i t y

46 The Review of Religions | april 2012


Top Left: The Tahir Mosque. Top Right: Official Opening of the Mosque Above: Tree Planting Ceremony

On 11th February 2012, Hadhrat Mirza Masroor Ahmad(aba), Khalifatul Masih V, Head of the worldwide Ahmadiyya Muslim Community, inaugurated the new Tahir Mosque in Catford, London. An official reception marking the opening of the mosque was held in the evening, which was attended by various dignitaries, professionals, guests and local residents. Heidi Alexander MP congratulated the Ahmadiyya Muslim Jama’at (Community) on the opening of the mosque and said that she looked forward to working with the community in the future. Mayor of Lewisham, Sir Steve Bullock, congratulated the Jama’at and said that having a home for any community was very important and was a means for its growth. Both Heidi Alexander MP and Sir Steve Bullock also thanked the Ahmadiyya Muslim Jama’at for making donations to their local nominated charities as a further means to mark the opening of the mosque. Also in attendance were: Mercy Addo from the charity Youth Aid Lewisham, who was presented a cheque and gift by Hadhrat Mirza Masroor Ahmad(aba), and Chief Inspector Simon Davis of Lewisham Police Station. The function was concluded with the keynote address by Hadhrat Mirza Masroor Ahmad(aba). The transcript of this address is presented below: april 2012

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After reciting Tashhahud, Ta’awwudh and Bismillah, Hadhrat Khalifatul Masih V(aba) said:

We are all gathered here today for the inauguration of our new, Tahir Mosque, in this part of London.

“All our guests, Assalamo ‘A laikum Wa Rahmatullahe Wa Barakatohu – peace and blessings of Allah be upon you all.

The Ahmadi Muslims who live in the surrounding area have had a long standing and deeply held desire for april 2012

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inauguration of the tahir mosque

an Ahmadi mosque and centre to be have such high regard for the importance built here in this area. This is because of human values and for the need to care they wanted to have a place where they for and respect the feelings of others. could join together to worship God You are people who share in both the Almighty and where their spiritual and happiness and in the grief of others. religious well-being could be facilitated. Therefore, for the Ahmadi Muslims who These are the core values, which elevate live in this area, certainly this mosque the status of mankind. It is these qualities, is of great significance and holds great which are essential for the spread of love value. Here I should mention that the and affection in today’s world. construction of this mosque would not have been possible without the help and The teachings of Islam on religion are support given to us by the local council, very clear. We, Muslims, are commanded the local authorities and the local people that every person’s religion is a matter themselves. strictly between him and God Almighty. For this reason, I would like to take this opportunity to first of all thank all of the people who have fully co-operated and assisted with the building of this mosque, despite not being members of the Ahmadiyya community.

Our Holy Book, the Holy Qur’an, is very clear that there should be no compulsion in religion (Ch.2:V.257).

At the outset, I would also like to thank all of you, our distinguished guests, for attending the opening of the mosque today.

Nevertheless, putting religion to one side, it is absolutely essential for each and every person to fulfil the rights owed to his fellow man because this is the only way that an atmosphere of peace, reconciliation and harmony can be developed.

Through this kind gesture you have made it quite apparent that although you do not share the same religious beliefs as the Ahmadiyya community, you are willing to set aside such differences, because you

A question that is often asked is how should people who are not religious be treated? We believe that this will be determined by God Almighty in the Hereafter and is a matter for God alone

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Catford is located in South London in the

to decide. However, on the other hand Borough of Lewisham, United Kingdom there are people who continually destroy the peace of society because as they fail to discharge the due rights of other people. Such people will face God’s punishment in the next world, but apart from this they are normally brought to justice in (Ch.1:V.2) this world also. In His Holy Book, the This translates as: Holy Qur’an, God Almighty has started ‘All praise belongs to Allah, Lord of all the with the following words: Worlds’. april 2012

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inauguration of the tahir mosque

These words thus teach us that God is that Being, Who is the Lord of all the Worlds, and it is He who nurtures and sustains the entire Universe.

These words thus teach us that God is that Being, Who is the Lord of all the Worlds, and it is He who nurtures and sustains the entire Universe. The Arabic word –‘Aalam’ – used here includes all nations of the world, and entails different eras and time periods also. These few words are repeated by Muslims in every prayer, indeed not just in every prayer but at the start of every single Unit (called Rakat) of every prayer. Thus, for every true Muslim there is an extremely important lesson contained in these words, which is that man should always remember that he is the Creation of God and that God Almighty is always watching him. It is He alone Who we worship, because God is the Lord of All the Worlds, Who has Created everything and sustains it. 52 The Review of Religions | april 2012

The Holy Qur’an has further taught that humans are the very best of God’s Creation. The sun, air, water and countless other things, both in the earth and in the atmosphere, have been commissioned to serve God’s creation. Because mankind is the best of Creation, humans have been given superiority in comparison to other life forms, and so other forms of living beings have been made subservient to man.


The Andromeda Galaxy (photo) contains approximately 1 million stars. Scientists estimate that there are approximately 170 billion galaxies in the observable universe.

from these blessings all humans derive benefit. Nonetheless, certain people have a special relationship or association with God Almighty. Who are these people? It is those people who show gratitude to God and who bow down before Him because of all the blessings and favours that He has granted them. Such people truly believe Him to be their Lord and have accepted all of His prophets. These are the people who are recipients of His special favours. The results of this mutual relationship and bond are witnessed in this world on a daily basis. Then upon death, such people are granted special treatment by God Almighty again.

They have essentially been designed to serve mankind to ensure the continuing sustenance of human beings in the most excellent manner. Some of these facilities and blessings are granted equally to all of mankind without discrimination and are Therefore, another reason that Muslims not dependent upon a person’s religion, repeatedly recite the prayer ‘Lord of All the or whether he even believes in the Worlds’ is so that they realise that within existence of God. Thus God Almighty, their own circle of influence, Muslims in his Grace, has designated many should seek to adopt the Attributes of blessings equally to all people regardless God to whatever extent they are capable. of their religion, caste, creed or faith and That is why we recite this prayer again april 2012

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inauguration of the tahir mosque

In every prayer a Muslim offers, he is also reminded that God is both ‘Graicious’ and ‘Merciful’.

and again, and this is why we start every unit of our prayer with this supplication, repeating it in our prayers at least thirtytwo times each day. Keeping this in view, it is essential that a Muslim should never usurp the rights of others and instead he should cast aside all differences of religion, nationality or ethnicity and seek to become the means of support and love for all others. A Muslim should seek to utilise all of his faculties and abilities to help and serve his fellow man. Each Muslim should try his utmost to provide all other people with their due rights. In every prayer a Muslim offers, he is also reminded that God is both ‘Gracious’ and ‘Merciful’. ‘Gracious’ means that God continually bestows His Creation with favours out of His own love, and even without being requested. By ‘Merciful’ it means that God is also He who 54 The Review of Religions | april 2012

responds to the prayers and requests of His Creation. As I just mentioned, God Almighty has instructed a true Muslim to try and come to reflect God’s own Attributes. Hence, it is the duty of a Muslim to show mercy to his fellow man and indeed all other forms of Creation. For this reason, if someone comes to a Muslim for help, it is the duty of the Muslim to try and fulfil that need. Bearing all of this in mind, can a true


The men’s Prayer area in the Tahir Mosque. Hadhrat Khalifatul Masih V(aba) addressing members of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community earlier in the day.

possible that a true Muslim, who claims to believe in God, should then try to destroy the lives of God’s Creation? As I said, it is impossible for a true Muslim to act in this way because such acts are contrary to God’s Laws. We, Ahmadi Muslims, claim to have accepted the Imam of this era, Hadhrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad(as) of Qadian, who we believe to be the Promised Messiah. It was he who founded our community and he shined a light on the true teachings of Islam. Having accepted him, we act upon the real teachings that a true Muslim, who believes in God and Muslim ought to. That is why we, who who worships Him in the proper way, are his followers, use all our resources ever contemplate usurping the rights and capabilities to provide provisions to of another? How can this be possible people in need, irrespective of differences when he knows that he will be liable to of nationality or religion. In addition, we punishment for failing to follow God’s are also providing health and educational Commands? services in various parts of the world. On the one hand God Almighty has provided so many provisions for the well being and sustenance of His Creation. Then how, on the other hand, can it be

Our goal is to serve humanity wherever we can. We do so not due to any vested interests, but only out of our desire to seek God’s Pleasure and Nearness. When april 2012

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inauguration of the tahir mosque

That is why we recite this prayer again and again, and this is why we start every unit of our prayer with this supplication. Ahmadi Muslims enter mosques, their primary purpose is the worship of God. Apart from this the only other point of discussion is trying to find ways and means to help and serve humanity. Or perhaps, the Ahmadi Muslims will be involved in deep reflection, that as our Khalifa has launched such and such scheme for the betterment of mankind, how can we contribute towards this project?

Arabic calligraphy carved on Mosque wall in Alexandria, Egypt, meaning ‘In the Name of Allah, the Gracious, the Merciful’. Muslims recite this in every Prayer.

God’s pleasure. We certainly believe that any mosque devoid of these two aspects is not fulfilling its true purpose. Having heard all of this, I am sure that you will agree with me that if these are the true and real purposes of a mosque, then there should be a mosque in every area.

Therefore, where on the one hand our mosques unite people for the worship of God, they are also a place where we collectively endeavour to join together in an effort to serve humanity. In summary, we truly believe that mosques have We often find that upon just hearing two overarching purposes. First is the the word ‘mosque’ or upon hearing that worship of God Almighty, and second is planning permission for a mosque has to be a place where projects are launched been submitted to the local council, the to help God’s Creation. Both of these local non-Muslims become worried, purposes are essential and should be and indeed frightened. They become undertaken with the aim of seeking only anxious that if a mosque is built in their 56 The Review of Religions | april 2012


Churches and Mosques in old quarters of Jerusalem.

area then the peace of the town could be destroyed. They, therefore, try their utmost to prevent permission for the mosque or centre to be built. If truth be told then this fearful frame of mind is justified, because some Muslim groups are undoubtedly destroying the peace of the world. However, the acts of a few people should not be classed as the norm. Indeed, the actions of just a handful of misguided people should not be used as a pretext to raise objections against our

In fact, the Holy Qur’an teaches that a Muslim must protect the places of worship of all religions, be they churches, synagogues, temples or any other place of worship. religion and to hurt the sentiments of the sincere and innocent Muslims of the world. april 2012

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So today we must set aside our own personal desires and instead be concerned for the future existence and wellbeing of our next generations.

negative reaction, through which the peace of society will be harmed. The people who display the wrong reaction are certainly in error but those who provoke them are just as responsible for the breakdown in peace. Today we, the Ahmadiyya Muslim Jama’at, are trying to bring peace in the world. We are playing our role and trying to fulfil our responsibilities in this regard. Thus, I would request all of you to join us in this task. Human values and mutual love can be developed even where differences of belief exist, as long as we all co-operate and respect each other. Today, the world stands in need of peace because the sparks of war can be seen all around the world. If these sparks ever truly explode then we will be witness to the Third World War, which is a truly frightening and horrific thought.

Peace in society is a two-way process and can only be established if all parties work together towards mutual reconciliation. This is why every individual in a society, irrespective of his background, has a role to play towards achieving this goal. We believe in the Founders and Prophets of all religions and because of this, a true Muslim can never mock or ridicule any religious leader or religion itself. In fact, the Holy Qur’an teaches that a Muslim must protect the places of worship of all religions, be they churches, synagogues, temples or any other place of worship. Thus, in every direction and at every level Without any doubt, the true teachings we must try our best to extinguish the of Islam are peaceful and beautiful and flames of hatred. If we are successful so when they are ridiculed it can only in this task, only then will we be able lead to the feelings of Muslims being to guarantee the bright futures of our hurt. Hurting the feelings of innocent coming generations. people, I am sure one will agree, is unjust and wrong. When sentiments are deeply So today we must set aside our own wounded then even decent and sincere personal desires and instead be concerned people can display an inappropriate or for the future existence and well-being 58 The Review of Religions | april 2012


online

of our next generations. We must adopt selflessness rather than selfishness. When we all join together and come to respect each other’s feelings and sentiments then, and only then, will an atmosphere of mutual love develop. It is then that we will truly see the beautiful society that all peaceful people desire. Alongside all of this, to safeguard our future generations it is essential that we remember that it is God who has created us. It is He who loves His Creation and it is He who desires its prosperity and success. It is due to all of this that He has granted us countless favours and blessings, through His eternal Grace. It is my sincere prayer that each and every one of us becomes a good and sincere person, Amin. In the end I would like to once again express my gratitude to all of the guests who have sacrificed their time to be with us today, and whose presence has enlightened this event. May Allah reward all of you for this abundantly. Thank you.�

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Calendar of

Religious

Events & Festivals

Sunday 1st April Faith: Hindu Event: Rama Navami

Saturday 7th April Faith: Jewish Event: Passover (first day)

The birthday of Lord Rama, the seventh incarnation of Vishnu. On this day, temples are elaborately decorated, and the story of Rama is recited.

This day commemorates the liberation of the Children of Israel, when Moses led them out of Egypt. It involves abstention from work on the first two and last two days of the festival.

Friday 6th April Faith: Christian Event: Good Friday

Sunday 8th April Faith: Christian Event: Easter Sunday

A solemn day for Christians, commemorating the crucifixion of Jesus. It is called ‘Good’ because the day represents the ultimate example of Jesus’ sacrifice for the world.

This celebrates the Resurrection of Jesus(as). The day is considered as the most important of the Christian calendar. (See Easter Special Edition of The Review of Religions – March 2012)

64 The Review of Religions | april 2012


april 2012 Friday 13th April Faith: Sikh Event: Vaisakhi (Baisakhi) A harvest festival celebrated in North India, also marking the new solar year for Sikhs. The day represents the formation of the Khalsa (the pure one), in 1699.

Saturday 14th April Faith: Sikh Event: Birthday of Guru Nanak (Nanakshahi Calendar) The birthday of Sikh founder, Guru Nanak. The festival is in accordance to the Lunar Calendar.

april 2012

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In the next Edition...

The 9th Annual Peace Symposium The world at the brink of a 3rd World War... ( AB S O LU T E J U S T IC E REQ U I RED)


The Review of Religions, in print since 1902, is one of the longest-running comparative religious magazines. The objective of the magazine is to present the teachings of Islam, reflecting its rational, harmonious and inspiring nature. It also brings together articles and viewpoints on different religions and seeks to make discussions on religion and religious philosophy accessible to a wider readership. The magazine is devoted to promoting intellectual and lively debate that is based on respect for all prophets and religions. Islam repeatedly stresses the need to seek knowledge and The Review of Religions provides a unique platform for people to acquire, and share knowledge. Yearly subscription is only ÂŁ15 sterling or $30 for overseas customers. To subscribe, or for more info, visit

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The Review of Religions (April 2012)  

Letters to World Leaders by Head of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community