Today I finished reading the book by Iain Adamson “Mirza Ghulam Ahmad of Qadian” published by Elite International Publications in 1989. Before I dive into my thoughts on this book, I would like to present here brief info regarding who Mirza Ghulam Ahmed Qadiani was.
Mirza Ghulam Ahmed Qadiani was born in Qadian, India on February 13th, 1835 (Iain Adamson) or in 1839 or 1840 (Qadianism by Hasan Ali Nadwi). He was a public debator, preacher, and spent most of his youth in debating Christian missionaries and Hindu group Arya Samaj. He defended Islam, became famous in those bad times when Muslims had lost the War of Independence of 1857. Many Islamic Scholars and leaders who participated in the freedom struggle were hanged by the imperial British governemnt and series of political, social and cultural crackdown was undertaken in order to minimze the possible uprising by Indians, especially by Indian Muslims.
In this era of despair, Mirza called himself a reformer (Mujaddid) and then called himself a Promised Messiah. He started preaching that Isa ibn Maryam, Jesus Christ (Peace and Blessing be upon him) had died and that God had sent him as a Promised Messiah to unite all the religions and bring peace to this world. This angered Christians and Muslims both, because both hold the belief in the Second Coming of Jesus Christ.
When he had enough supporters and financial stability, he declared that instead of inspirations from God, he started receiving revelations from God and that in those revelations God revealed to him that he was a Prophet in Islam. Mirza declared that although Prophet Muhammed (Peace and Blessings be upon him) was the last Messenger of Allah (God) with the final Shar’iah (code/way of life), he is the chosen one- a prophet, a Promised Messiah- and he claimed to affirming to the Sharia of Muhammad without abrogating any thing from the teachings of Muhammad!
He, however, abrogated the obligation of Jihad on Muslims, declared himself a Prophet even though it is clear and has been for all these centuries that Prophet Muhammad Arabi ibn Abdullah ibn Muttalib (correction made 7/25/11 see comments) was the Last Prophet and The Messenger of Allah. He also abrogated that Jesus was saved from the death and that Jesus would return in the time of wars and chaos, in order to put an end to the Anti-Christ, and bringing peace to the world (well Mirza thought the he was playing this role somehow!). He also preached and believed that Indians and espacially Indian Muslims should not oppose British government. He had close contacts with British imperial government like his father, and in return British government was kind and graceful towards his family.
Besides this, by the end of his life he had declared all the Muslims as Kafirs (disbelievers), which they of course were in his message; and Mirza had established the city of Qadian as his center with the same role as Makkah has to Islam.
The Book by Iain Adamson:
This book by Iain Adamson, was written as to be a biography of Mirza Ghulam Ahmed Qadiani. However, it lacked all the academic rules of a biographical writing. During my entire reading, I was not able to locate a single cited source of all the direct quotes and paraphrases and dates he was using and refering to.
In the acknowledgments, the author stated
“I sought help of Hazrat Mirza Tahir Ahmad, The Fourth Successor of The Promised Messiah. He opened the Movement’s archives to me. He placed no restrictions on what I wrote.
To Khalifatul Masih IV therefore, my sincere thanks….”
Well that was good to know who supported the author with his research, but the book leaves the reader wondering what evidence he used and how reliable those evidences are! I was also left wondering on 2-3 occasions when the author quoted a “Muslim Scholar” praising Mirza in these words without any name, rank, location, citation or source “Says a Muslim Scholar…” [Pg 40, Adamson] and “Another Muslim Divine wrote…” [Pg 53, Ibid]. I don’t understand what kind of divinity the author is talking about and why his name is not mentioned because after this quote of this so called divine, the author mentions the name of the Hindu leader of Arya Samaj, Pandit Lekh Ram, in 3 lined Paragraph (althought that too without any source!).
The most astonishing part of this reading, which was also annoying was that Mr. Iain Adamson didn’t even bothered to cite the sources of his alleged sayings of Prophet Muhammad, known to the Muslims as Hadith which are preserved to this day and the study of it is called Hadith Sciences. Mr. Adamson also didn’t bother to cite the source of the verses of the Holy Quran he used either in justifying the claims of Mirza’s prophethood or quoting Mirza’s own sayings!
On Page 176, Mr Iain Adamson wrote:
He (Mirza Ghulam Ahmed Qadiani) recalled the words of Ayesha, the wife of Prophet Muhammad when she said, “Say ‘He (Muhammad) is the Seal of the Prophets’, but do not say, ‘There will be no prophet after him.”
He (Mirza) continued, “If there is no longer any prophethood in Islam, then be sure that Islam has also died like other religions and does not possess any distinctive sign.” [Page 176, Adamson.]
Well first of all the simple logical argument I have is, if that saying was true, how come for 12-13 centuries Muslims didn’t know that another Prophet was coming! It is not to be found in any of the legit text unless fabricated or mistranslated!
The returning of Promised Messiah didn’t mean that he was coming as a new Prophet. A hadith in Sahih Al Bukhari is clear in the simplistic language, that when Jesus Christ would come he would follow the Sharia of Muhammad, meaning he would follow the last and the final Sharia without any abrogation and without any innovation by anyone after Islam has been established, which is also stated in the Holy Quran.
The Hadith clearly says:
“Sahih Al Bukhari-Volume 4, Book 55, Number 658:
Narrated Abu Huraira: Allah’s Apostle said “How will you be when the son of Mary (i.e. Jesus) descends amongst you and he will judge people by the Law of the Quran and not by the law of Gospel (Fateh-ul Bari page 304 and 305 Vol 7).”
Also this hadith along with many other Ahadith and Verses of the Holy Quran clearly says that the Son of Mary i.e. Jesus (peace be upon him) will descend. Mirza Ghulam neither descended nor he was the Son of Mary, instead he was the 2nd son of Mirza Ghulam Murtaza.
So without getting into the methodology of Mirza Ghulam Ahmed Qadiani, this book by Iain Adamson is so far the most unacademic biographical book I have ever read.
After reading this unacademic biography of Mirza Ghulam Ahmad Qadiani, the author has opened a door or reasearch and blog posts for me. Inshallah, by the will of Allah, I will write more on this subject, or republish contents on this subject.
May Allah guide all muslims to sirat al mustaqeem- the straight path. May Allah give us the knowledge and understanding of the Deen of Allah.
I would like to conclude with few of the sayings of Salaf Saliheen, the pious predecessors, who were close to the Prophet Muhammad, the servant of Allah; close to his companions; and the companions of the companions of the Messenger of Allah.
It is authentically reported that Allaah’s Messenger said,
“Stick to my Sunnah and the Sunnah of the rightly guided Caliphs after me, cling to that with your molar teeth and beware of new matters, for every innovation is misguidance.” Reported by Ahmad, Abu Daawood (Eng. trans. 3/1294/no.4590), at-Tirmidhee (no. 2676), Ibn Maajah (no. 42), ad-Daarimee (no. 96) and Ibn Abee ‘Aasim in as-Sunnah (no. 54).
Imam Barbahaaree said:
“Know that Islam is the Sunnah, and the Sunnah is Islaam and one of them cannot be established without the other.”
‘Umar ibn al-Khattaab, rahimahullaah, said:
“There is no excuse for anyone going astray thinking that he is upon guidance. Nor for abandoning guidance thinking it to be misguidance, since the affairs have been made clear, the proof established and the excuse cut off.” That is because the Sunnah and the Jamaa’ah have consolidated and safeguarded all of the Religion. It has been made clear to the people, so it is upon the people to comply and follow.
Al-Marwazee reports in as-Sunnah (no. 95) that ‘Umar ibn ‘Abd Allah-‘Azeez said:
“There is no excuse for anyone, after the Sunnah, to be misguided upon error which he thought was guidance.”
Statements taken from Kitaab Sharh us-Sunnah by Al-Barbahaaree. English Translation by Abu Talhah Dawud Burbank.
Post last updated: Oct 30, 2011.
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