> Ahmadiyyat vs. Qadianiyyat by Naseer Ahmad
Books Section > Ahmadiyyat vs. Qadianiyyat by Naseer Ahmad Faruqui Sahib
Most people are not aware that way back in 1914 the followers of Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad Sahib of Qadian, now in the Indian Punjab, broke up into two conflicting groups on two basic articles of faith. The following brief comparison of the articles of faith of the two Jamaats will show how different they are:
Ahmadiyya Jamaat: Qadiani
Jamaat: 1. We the Ahmadis of Lahore
firmly believe that the Holy Prophet (peace and
blessings of Allah be upon him) was the last
prophet of Allah, after whom no prophet old or new
can appear and that Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad Sahib
was the Mujaddid (Reformer) of the
14th Century Hijra, in accordance with
the prophecy of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (peace be
upon him) that at the head of each century Hijra,
Allah shall raise a Mujaddid from amongst
the Muslims to purify their religion of such wrong
ideas and practices as may have arisen during the
previous 100 years. 1. On the other hand, the
Qadianis believe that Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad
Sahib was a real prophet like the prophets who
appeared at various times and in different nations
ever since the birth of humanity. They misinterpret
the expression Khatam-un-Nabiyeen to mean
the seal of the prophets, because the
dictionary meaning of Khatam is seal. Apart
from the fact that this interpretation is against
the Holy Quran and Hadith, it is based on the
totally wrong misrepresentation that a seal opens
up things. Actually, it is always used to close
things finally and firmly, such as the sealing of a
letter or a lock. 2. We the Ahmadis of Lahore
Jamaat also believe that whoever recites the
Kalimah Tayyaba: (laa ilaa-haa ill-Allah
Muhammad-ur-Rasool-Allah) is a
Muslim. 2. The Qadianis believe that
even those who recite the Kalimah Tayyaba
are Kafirs (Disbelievers) if they do not
accept Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad Sahib to be real
Lahore Ahmadiyya Jamaat:
1. We the Ahmadis of Lahore firmly believe that the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) was the last prophet of Allah, after whom no prophet old or new can appear and that Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad Sahib was the Mujaddid (Reformer) of the 14th Century Hijra, in accordance with the prophecy of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) that at the head of each century Hijra, Allah shall raise a Mujaddid from amongst the Muslims to purify their religion of such wrong ideas and practices as may have arisen during the previous 100 years.
1. On the other hand, the Qadianis believe that Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad Sahib was a real prophet like the prophets who appeared at various times and in different nations ever since the birth of humanity. They misinterpret the expression Khatam-un-Nabiyeen to mean the seal of the prophets, because the dictionary meaning of Khatam is seal. Apart from the fact that this interpretation is against the Holy Quran and Hadith, it is based on the totally wrong misrepresentation that a seal opens up things. Actually, it is always used to close things finally and firmly, such as the sealing of a letter or a lock.
2. We the Ahmadis of Lahore Jamaat also believe that whoever recites the Kalimah Tayyaba: (laa ilaa-haa ill-Allah Muhammad-ur-Rasool-Allah) is a Muslim.
2. The Qadianis believe that even those who recite the Kalimah Tayyaba are Kafirs (Disbelievers) if they do not accept Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad Sahib to be real prophet.
3. These are the fundamental differences of faith between the two communities. Other off-shoots of these two articles of faith such as the saying of prayers behind other Muslims, or marriage relationship with them, are merely consequential to the two basic principles of faith mentioned above. If those two are disposed of, their off-shoots will automatically disappear.
History of the
5. Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad Sahib's basic status was that of a Mujaddid, a status that prior to him some of the greatest Luminaries of Islam claimed in accordance with the prophecy of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) as stated in paragraph 2 above. To quote some of their names, they include Hazrat Umar ibn Abdul Aziz (the first Mujaddid in Islam), Hazrat Imam Shafi, Hazrat Imam Ahmad ibn Hambal (two of the four famous founders of Islamic Fiqh -- jurisprudence) Hazrat Imam Ghazali, Hazrat Sayyid Abdul Qadir Jilani, Hazrat Mueen-ud-Din Chishti (of Ajmer, India) Hazrat Mujaddid Alif Sani, Hazrat Shah Waliullah Muhaddas Dehlavi and so on. As shown by the title Muhaddas in the last name mentioned above, all these Mujaddids received Wahy-e-Wilayat (revelation given to a saint, as opposed to "Wahy-e-Nabuwwat" given to a prophet and were therefore called Muhaddaseen (persons spoken to by Allah). Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad Sahib also received Wahy-e-Wilayat and therefore claimed to be a Muhaddas, and as such he reproduced in his writings a large number of revelations which he had received from Allah, and which contained prophecies about future events. Some of those prophecies were fulfilled in his own time, and others continued to be fulfilled after his death, right up to now. Now, those who receive news about future events from Allah and make prophecies accordingly are called Nabi (prophets) purely in the metaphorical sense. The literal or dictionary meaning of the word Nabi in Arabic language is one who receives news from Allah and proclaims them to the people at large. The real prophet in the sense of the Shariah [Islamic Law], however, is one who receives a revealed book from Allah through Wahy-i-Nabuwwat brought by the archangel Hazrat "Jibraeel" (Gabriel of the English language). That kind of revelation terminated with the Holy Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) as he was the last prophet of Allah, and the Archangel Gabriel has ceased to come.
6. Because the use of the word Nabi in the metaphorical sense was known and permissible in Islam, nobody took exception to the occurrence of that word in the revelations containing that title and reproduced by Hazrat Mirza Sahib in his writings. For instance, in his famous book Braheen-e-Ahmadiyya he published several of his revelations in some of which he was called Nabi, etc., but neither he nor the Ulama [religious clerics] of the sub-continent thought anything wrong about it for the reason stated earlier. In fact, that book was acclaimed by all and sundry, including some of the leading Ulama of the sub-continent, as one of the best, if not the best, book on Islam in the centuries preceding it. In the same book he also reproduced revelations informing him that Allah had been pleased to appoint him as the Mujaddid of the 14th century Hijra. And nobody, not even the Ulama, demurred.
7. A storm of opposition, however, arose when a later revelation informed Hazrat Mirza Sahib that the prophet Jesus (Isa), son of Mary, had died a natural death, had not ascended to the Heaven as claimed by the Christians, and innocently accepted by the Muslims, and that the second advent of Hazrat Isa was not that of the original Hazrat Isa (also referred to as the "Messiah") but that of a person possessing the same spiritual characteristics as him. That came as a surprise even to Hazrat Mirza Sahib, but when he looked up the Holy Quran and Hadith, as directed in his revelations, he found no less than 30 verses of the Holy Quran and several reports of Hadith, some of which were reported by Bukhari and Muslim, the most reliable of the books of Hadith which supported this claim and made it clear that the Promised Messiah would be an Imam from amongst you (Muslims). The effects of this claim were two-fold:
a. The Christian misconception that Jesus was a son of God and a God was dealt a mortal blow when it was conclusively proved that he had died a natural death.
So Hazrat Mirza Sahib enthusiastically promoted the Divine revelation.
8. But the reaction among the Ulama of the Indian sub-continent was a mixed one. Some of the most enlightened Ulama (like Hazrat Maulana Noor-ud-Din, Hazrat Maulana Muhammad Ahsan, Hazrat Maulana Adbul Karim) and Hazrat Shah Abdul Latif, the Chief religious mentor of the Ameer of Afghanistan, accepted Hazrat Mirza Sahibs claims and became his disciples. Others only praised him and his great services to Islam but did not become his disciples. Among these were Maulana Abdul Kalam Azad, Maulana Abdullah Al-Imadi, Shams-ul-Ulama Maulana Sayyed Mir Hassan Sahib of Sialkot (Punjab) who was Doctor Sir Muhammad Iqbals [a famous Muslim poet of the sub-continent] teacher, Shams-ul-Ulama Maulana Sayyed Mumtaz Ali, Allama Niaz Fatehpuri, and a famous Pir, Hazrat Khwaja Ghulam Farid Sahib of Chachran Sharif (now in the Punjab) whose disciples included the then Nawab of Bahawalpur State. Doctor Sir Muhammad Iqbal, Ph.D., Barrister-at-Law, famous philosopher and poet who envisaged the creation of Pakistan, said while Hazrat Mirza Sahib was still alive:
"Among the present Muslims of the sub-continent (now India and Pakistan) Mirza Ghulam Ahmad Qadiani is the greatest religious thinker" (Magazine, Indian Antiquary of September, 1900).
9. But the vast majority of the Ulama of the sub-continent whose denigrate condition was attested to by Maulana Hali in his word Muhadass-e-Hali denounced Hazrat Mirza Sahib as Kafir (heretic) on the ground that he had claimed to be a prophet because:
a. The Promised Messiah, who Hazrat Mirza Sahib claimed to be, was to be a prophet as stated in Sahih Muslim, the famous book of Hadith; and,
Hazrat Mirza Sahib emphatically denied having claimed to be a real prophet and added that the use of the word Nabi in the Tradition [Hadith] reported in the Sahih Muslim was only in the metaphorical sense. The same was the case of the revelations received by him, as confirmed by Allah Himself. As for the use of the word Nabi in his own writings and in his speeches, Hazrat Mirza Sahib wrote again and again, and clarified in all his speeches, that he had innocently used the word Nabi in the metaphorical sense only.
But his opponents never forgave him, nor did they withdraw their fatwa [religious pronouncement] of Kufr (heresy) against him.
10. It is a great irony of fate, and the biggest tragedy of Ahmadiyyat, that Hazrat Mirza Sahib's own son Mian Mahmud Ahmad alleged against his deceased father what the hostile Ulama had done in his life-time, and that too merely for self-gain, because it enabled him to become the sole arbiter of his followers as their Khalifah (Caliph) which position is possible only for a real prophets successor in office. This step was taken by Mian Mahmud Ahmad because Hazrat Mirza Sahib had been very democratic in as much as he named a body of his followers to form an Anjuman to succeed him to carry on his mission of the defence and propagation of Islam. The negation of this democratic tradition was necessary for Mian Mahmud Ahmad to gain absolute control over his followers.
Hazrat Maulana Muhammad Ali Sahib, who was Hazrat Mirza Sahibs right hand man, tried to oppose Mian Mahmud Ahmads election as a Khalifah by his partisans who happened to be in an over-whelming majority in the meeting which was held on the death of Hazrat Maulana Noor-ud-Din Sahib, the first Head of the Community, after Hazrat Mirza Sahib's demise. But Maulana Muhammad Ali Sahib was shouted down and ultimately forced to leave Qadian. Those who had taken Mian Mahmud Ahmads "bai'at" (pledge) at that meeting sent telegrams to all branches of the Jamaat that Mian Mahmud Ahmad had been "unanimously" (sic) elected as the new head of the community. Unfortunately, the majority of the Ahmadis who had just come over from the main body of Muslims were inclined to go along with the practice of a religious personage being necessarily succeeded by his son, (the institution of Pirs) although the practice was against the spirit of Islam. They, therefore, accepted Mian Mahmud Ahmads election.
11. So Hazrat Maulana Muhammad Ali Sahib collected such of the Ahmadis as were discerning enough not to accept the profanity of attributing prophethood to Hazrat Mirza Sahib and formed the Lahore Ahmadiyya Anjuman Ishaat-e-Islam [Lahore Ahmadiyya Movement for the Propagation of Islam], which continued to controvert the Qadiani heresy by quoting from the books and speeches of the late Hazrat Mirza Sahib, and from the Holy Quran and Hadith.
In his desperation to prove that Hazrat Mirza Sahib had claimed prophethood Mian Mahmud Ahmad made the curious statement that although God had been trying to tell Hazrat Mirza Sahib for 20 years that he (Mirza Sahib) was a prophet, he did not understand it until 1902 (a date later changed to 1901). Now that was a strange prophet who for twenty long years could not understand that God was trying to make him a prophet, who for those 20 years claimed that he was a muhaddas [one receiving saintly revelation] only, who kept on vehemently denying that he was a prophet, who called those who accused him of claiming prophethood liars and fabricators, and who cursed anyone who claimed prophethood after the Holy Prophet Muhammad. What kind of prophet was this (if one is to believe Mian Mahmud Ahmad) who denied repeatedly even on oath that he was not a prophet, who quoted chapter and verse in favour of his denial and cursed such a claimant? And Almighty Allah watched this for 20 long years and did not take any action against such an unworthy and recalcitrant "prophet"!
Furthermore, even when Hazrat Mirza Sahib had supposedly realised that he was a prophet in 1902 (later changed to 1901), he continued to deny being a prophet till his death in 1908. As he wrote in 1907, "I have been given the name "Nabi" only in the metaphorical sense, not in the real sense." (Supplement to the book Haqiqat-ul-Wahy, p.55). The matter is too absurd to discuss further. The whole affair may be put to rest by quoting Hazrat Mirza Sahib from his own writings:
"From the beginning it has been my intention, which Allah, the Exalted, the Majestic, knows fully well, not to use the word nabi to mean real prophethood but to mean only Muhaddasiyyat which the Holy Prophet has interpreted to mean one to whom Allah speaks; so I have no hesitation, for the sake of setting the minds of my Muslim brethren at rest, to put this word in another way. And that way is that the word Muhaddas should be substituted for the word nabi in every place and to consider it (the word nabi) to be cut out".
12. In fact it was Mian Mahmud Ahmad Sahib, and not his venerable father, who was guilty of blatant inconsistency and self-contradiction when he:
a. Changed the date of his father "seeing" the light of his "true" status from 1902 to 1901.
13. Mian Mahmood Ahmads sons who succeeded him as Khalifas of the Qadianis are following in their fathers footsteps. So they have also recanted from the initial beliefs, and are making confusing and ambiguous statements. This again is due to the fears generated by the anti-Ahmadis laws passed in 1974 and thereafter, and to the implementation of those laws by the Government agencies. Unfortunately, the Lahore Jamaat has also been branded as non-Muslims for the heretical views of the Qadiani Jamaat, who also call themselves Ahmadis, and thus their religious views are wrongly assumed to be our religious views too, although as we are poles apart, as is evident from the discussion above and the clarifications of our beliefs in the following paragraphs. We have also been grouped with the Qadianis because of our faith in Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad Sahib although we consider him to be a Mujaddid and not a prophet. The general misunderstanding about Hazrat Mirza Sahibs true claims should also be dispelled by what has been stated before and what follows later in this leaflet.
14. Before we proceed further, we would like to quote three outstanding Muslims, one of whom is venerated as a great divine. He is Hazrat Shaikh Mohiyuddin ibn-e-Arabi who in his famous book Futuhat-e-Makiyya, Part 2, page 79 wrote as follows:
"From some of the sayings of a Muhaddas a stranger (to such things) thinks that the former is claiming to be a prophet and is cancelling the Shariat (Muslim Law) of Muhammad (peace be upon him). And that stranger then brands him a Kafir (heretic). We have seen much of this in our own time and we have ourselves tasted of it at the hands of the Ulama of our time."
The other famous personage was Maulana Abul Kalam Azad, an eminent non-Ahmadi scholar of the Indian sub-continent who later rose to be a Minister in the Government of India. He said on pages 30-31 of his famous book Tazkirah as follows:
"What the followers of a person say need not be paid attention to (to determine his real position), for whomever a people take for their religious leader they would raise him to no less a dignity than that of Godhood, and even if they are very careful they would not keep him below the position of a Prophet ... It occurred to me that in our own days, a big section of the followers of the Mirza Sahib of Qadian entertains an exactly similar belief about the Mirza Sahib."
The third outstanding opinion was expressed when the late Maulana Muhammad Ali called on a very eminent Arab divine in Karachi, in the presence of the ambassador of his country. When the late Maulana showed him the denials of Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad Sahib of the charge of prophethood made against him, the Arab divine said: "I understand. Since Mirza Ghulam Ahmad Sahib was accused of claiming prophethood in his life-time and he repudiated the charge so categorically, it is not open to his opponents or to his own son to persist in saying that he had claimed prophethood."
How true and how honest to say so!
We Call Allah to
"I enjoin on my Jamaat that they should, with a true heart, have faith in the Kalimah Tayyibah: Laa ilaa-haa ill-Allah Muhammad-ur-Rasool Allah, and should die in that faith. And they should believe in all prophets and all revealed books whose truth is evident from the Holy Quran. And they should carefully and correctly follow the tenets of Islam, and they should consider all the duties laid down by Allah and His Messenger to be incumbent on themselves, such as prayer, Zakat (charity), fasting, etc. And they should give up all that is forbidden (by Allah and His Prophet). In short, it is obligatory to believe in all matters, whether of faith or practice, on which there has been consensus between the past leaders of Islam, and which are considered by consensus among the Ahl-e-Sunnat-wal-Jamaat [Sunnis] to constitute Islam. And we call upon the heavens and the earth to bear witness that this is our religion. And he who accuses us of faith contrary to this religion is guilty of slander against us without regard to fear of Allah and to honesty. And on the Day of Judgement it will be our case against him whether he had opened up our hearts to be able to allege that at heart we believed contrary to what we have professed above. May the curse of Allah fall on those who lie or make false charges." (From the book Ayyam-us-Sulah, published 1899, p. 87)
2. As the detractors of our Founder accused him of all sorts of things he personally read out on October 2, 1892, the following statement in the sanctity of the biggest House of Allah in the Indian sub-continent (now divided into India and Pakistan), namely the Jamia Masjid, Delhi, which was built by the Mughal emperor Shah Jehan, builder of the world-famous Taj Mahal at Agra:
"I have heard that some Ulama of this city are giving publicity to false charges against me that I lay claim to prophethood, or do not believe in angels, or in heaven or hell or in the existence of Gabriel, or in Lailat-ul-Qadr (the Night of Majesty), or in miracles, or in the Meraj (Ascension) of the Holy Prophet. So to make the truth known to all and sundry, I do hereby declare that all this is a complete fabrication. I am not a claimant to prophethood, nor am I a denier of miracles, angels, Lailat-ul-Qadar, etc. On the other hand, I confess belief in all those matters which constitute the Islamic principles of faith. And, in accordance with the belief of the Ahl-e-Sunnat-wal-Jamaat, I believe in those things which are established from the Quran and the Hadith. And I regard any claimant to prophethood and messengership after our Master Muhammad (may peace and blessings of Allah be upon him), the Last of the Messengers, to be a liar and a disbeliever (Kafir). It is my conviction that Wahy-e-Risaalat (revelation given to a Messenger of Allah) began with Adam, the chosen one of God, and came to close with Muhammad Mustafa, the Messenger of Allah."
3. Hazrat Mirza Sahib again wrote in his book Karamat-us-Sadiqeen, (p. 25 of the 1893 edition) as follows:
"I wish to make it abundantly clear to the people at large that I call to witness the Mighty and All-Powerful Allah that I am not a Kafir (disbeliever). I have whole-hearted faith in Laa ilaa-haa il-Allah, Muhammad-ur-Rasool-ul-Allah. And as for the Holy Prophet Muhammad (may peace and blessings of Allah be upon him), I believe that he was the Messenger of Allah and the Last of the Prophets. As evidence of the truthfulness of this, my declaration, I swear by Allah as many times as His Blessed Names are, and as many times as the letters of the Holy Quran are, and as many times as the excellences of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) are in the View of Allah."
4. In his pamphlet Asmani Faisalah (p. 3), Hazrat Mirza Sahib wrote:
"Allah knows that I am a Muslim and have faith in all the beliefs of the Ahl-e-Sunnat-wal-Jamaat," and I whole-heartedly subscribe to the Kalimah Tayyaba: Laa ilaa-haa il-Allah, Muhammad-ur-Rasool-ul-Allah. I face the Qibla (Holy Makkah) and I am not a claimant to prophethood; on the other hand, I consider such a claimant to be outside the pail of Islam."
5. As for the non-Ahmadis, Hazrat Mirza Sahib wrote in his well-known book Tiryaq-ul-Quloob (p. 130, 1902 edition) as follows "It has been my faith from the beginning that no one becomes a Kafir (disbeliever) or Dajjal by denying my claim."
6. Could a claimant to prophethood say in writing, "We also curse him who claims to be a prophet." (Majmuaa-e-Ishtiharat, pp. 223-224). And who summed up his beliefs in the words: "The sum and substance, and the summary, of our faith Laa ilaa-haa il-Allah, Muhammad-ur-Rasool-ul-Allah" (Book Izala-e-Auham, p. 224). And whose tomb-stone erected in 1908, which should have stilled all controversy, described him only as the Mujaddid of the 14th century Hijra? Those who later claimed prophethood for him were very much there. Why did they not speak up then?
7. In the end, we would like to ask a simple question to those who call us Kafirs (non-Muslims): How is it that our universally recognised and appreciated services to Islam were rendered by a Kafir Jamaat? While reviewing the book "The Religion of Islam" by Maulana Muhammad Ali, Mr. Marmaduke Pickthall, the famous translator of the Holy Quran, wrote:
"Probably no man living has done longer or more valuable service for the cause of Islamic Revival than Maulana Muhammad Ali of Lahore. His literary works, with those of the late Khwaja Kamal-ud-Din have given fame and distinction to the Ahmadiyya Movement. In our opinion the present volume is his finest work. It is a description of Al-Islam by one well-versed in the Sunnah who has on his mind the shame of the Muslim decadence of the past five centuries and in his heart the hope of the revival, of which signs can now be seen on every side. Without moving a hairs breadth from the traditional position with regard to worship and religious duties, the author shows a wide field in which changes are lawful and may be desirable because here the rules and practice are not based on an ordinance of the Quran or on an edict of the Prophet (peace be on him) and should be altered when they cease to meet the needs of the community. Such a book is greatly needed at the present day when in many Muslim countries we see persons eager for the reformation and revival of Islam, making mistakes through lack of just this knowledge ... We recommend it as a stimulus to Islamic thought. To use an old-fashioned word it is an edifying book." (Islamic Culture, 1936).
We repeat what our Founder, Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad Sahib, said in a Persian couplet:
"After the love of Allah, I am intoxicated by the love of Muhammad, If this is Kufr (disbelief), then by Allah I am an inveterate Kafir (disbeliever)."