Khatm-e-Nabuwwat ﷺ and Qadiyaniat
An Unfulfilled Prophecy
In 1888, when the Mirza was fifty years old, he asked one of his relatives, Mirza Ahmad Beg for the hand of his young daughter Muhammadi Begum. The Mirza made it clear that he had been commissioned by God for that task and God had promised him, in unequivocal terms, and that this marriage would, therefore, certainly take place.
In a leaflet which was disturbed on July 10, 1888 the Mirza wrote: –
“The Omnipotent and Omniscient God has asked me that I should seek the hand of the elder daughter of this man (Ahmad Beg); should tell him that good conduct and courtesy to be shown to him would depend on this (i.e his acceptance of the marriage proposal);
Her marriage with me would be a source of blessing and a sign of mercy for her father; and that he would have his share in all those blessings and mercies which have been laid down in the leaflet dated February 20, 1886 but if he declines to marry her, then the girl would meet an extremely tragic end. The other person to whom she would be married would die within two and a half years after the day of wedding, and so would die the father of the girl within three years, and her household would be afflicted with discord and poverty and adversity, and during the intervening period the girl would encounter several events of unpleasant and grievous nature”1
- This announcement has been reproduced in full by the Mirza in Aina-e-kamalat-e-Islam, p 286. It has also been reproduced by Qasim Ali Ahmadi in Tabligh-e-Risalat I, pp 111-18
In his work, Izala-e-Auham, he mentions his prophecy in the following manner:
“By way of prophecy the Exalted God revealed it to this humble one that ultimately the elder daughter of Mirza Ahmed Beg, son of Mirza Ghulam Beg, Hoshiarpuri, would be married to me. These people would resort to great hostility and would place obstacles in the way, but in the end, it would surely take place. The Exalted God would, by all possible means, bring her to me, whether as a virgin or a widow, and would remove all impediments, and would, of necessity, fulfil this task, and none would be able to prevent it”
After mentioning his prophecy that he would ultimately marry the said girl, he said: “This should be clear to the people that there can be no better criterion of testing our truth or falsehood than our prophecy3”.
- Aina-e-kamalat-e-Islam, p 288
This particular prophecy, however, has a uniqueness of its own in so far as the Mirza put it forward as a heavenly sign and as a verdict in his favor.
He not only made this prophecy the criterion of his own truth and falsehood, but also of the victory or defeat of Islam. On July 10, 1888 he announced:
“Then, when I repeatedly meditated in order to seek clarification and elaboration of the prophecy, it was made known to me that God has pre-determined that the elder daughter of the addressee (i.e Mirza Ahmed Beg) will ultimately be married to this humble one (after all impediments had been removed) and this event will make the irreligious people (true) Muslims, and provide guidance to the misguided”.
It was still possible for people to forget the matter.
But the Mirza was so confident about the fulfilment of this prophecy that he kept on reiterating it in an increasingly forceful and confident manner. He said:
“Wait for (the fulfilment of) the prophecy mentioned in the announcement of July 10, 1888, along with which there is also appended the inspiration: And they ask thee if this is true. Say: Yes, by my Lord, it is true, and you cannot prevent it from taking place. We have ourselves wed thee to her. There is none to change My words. And on seeing the sign they will turn their faces aside and will say: This is thorough deception, and a thorough magic”.
When he felt agitated about the realization of this prophecy owing to some serious illness which caused him the suspicion of being close to death, he received fresh inspiration to reassure him.
“Soon after this prophecy was revealed and had yet to be fulfilled (as it has not been fulfilled as yet, this is, by April 16, 1891), this humble one encountered as a severe ailment bringing him so close to death that he got even his will drawn up. At that critical moment the prophecy almost came before his eyes and it appeared that the last moment had come and that the next day would be his day of funeral. At that time, he thought of this prophecy; that, may be, it had some other meaning which he had not understood. Then, in that critical condition, he received the inspiration: This thing is truth from thy Lord. Why dost thou doubt?” Thus, the Mirza’s marriage with Muhammadi Begum was a settled matter-a matter which had been decided upon in the heavens and, hence, there was no possibility of any alteration.10
Mirza Stoops to Conquer
But as luck would have it, Mirza Ahmed Beg spurned the proposal and decided to give his daughter in marriage to another relative of his, Mirza Sultan Muhammad.
- Kalmah-i-Fazl-i-Rahmani, by Qazi Fazl Ahmed (cited in Qaddiani Mazhab).
This book is a collection of Mirza’s letters to the relatives of Muhammadi Begum. The letters are authentic and even the Mirza did not deny having written them.
The Mirza also came to know the ‘Izzat Bibi, his own daughter-in-law (wife of his son, Mirza Fazl Ahmad), and the mother of ‘Izzat Bibi, the wife of Mirza Ali Sher Beg (who was also the aunt of Muhammadi Begum), were opposed to the Mirza’s proposal and favored the marriage of the girl to Mirza Sultan Muhammad.
This infuriated the Mirza and he wrote the following to Ali Sher Beg (the father-in-law of his son, Fazl Ahmed):
“I have already written a letter to her (i.e. the wife of Mirza Ali Sher Beg) that if she did not give up (pursuing) her idea and did not prevail upon her brother (i.e. Mirza Ahmed Beg) to prevent this marriage (with Mirza Sultan Mohammad), then, as your own intention appears to be, my son Fazl Ahmed too will not be able to keep your daughter (Izzat Bibi) in his marriage. Rather, the very moment the wedding of (Muhammadi Begum) will take place, Fazl Ahmad will divorce her, I will declare him to be no longer regarded as my son and will disinherit him. But if for my sake you oppose Ahmed Beg and try to prevent him from carrying out his design, then I am at your disposal on all counts with my heart and soul. Fazl Ahmed is still obedient to me. I will convince him in every way possible and will endeavor to rehabilitate your daughter Then whatever I have shall belong to her”.16
- Kalma-i-Fazl-i-Rehmani, by Qazi Fazl Ahmad (Cited in Qadiani Mazhab)
The Mirza also prevailed upon ‘Izzat bibi, his daughter-in-law, to write to her mother that if they did not change their mind the Mirza would have her husband divorce her and thus ruin her family life.17
After Muhammadi Begum’s marriage, Fazl Ahmad did divorce ‘Izzat Bibi’. Another son of the Mirza Sultan Ahmad, and his mother, were also of the same view as the members of Muhammadi Begum’s family. Hence, consistent with what he had said earlier, the Mirza declared Sultan Ahmad to be no longer regarded as his son. Besides, he disinherited him and divorced his mother.18
However, even after the marriage of Muhammadi Begum to Mirza Sultan Muhammad (on April 7, 1892), the Mirza did not despair. He kept on saying that ultimately the girl would become his wife. In 1901, he made the following statement under oath:
“The women is still alive. She will inevitably come to my wedlock. I expect this to happen, rather, I have full faith in this. These are divinely ordained matters and are bound to occur.19
In his first announcement the Mirza had prophesied that the person to whom Muhammadi Begum would be married, would die within two and a half years after the marriage. This period elapsed the Mirza Sultan Muhammad remained alive, enjoying a happy married life.
- Al-Hukm, August 10, 1901 (cited in Qadiani Mazhab and Tahqiq-i-Lathan)
Thus, the Mirza insisted that his prophecy was true, and he had no doubt about its ultimate fulfilment. He again insisted that:
“I say again and again that the prophecy about the son-in-law of Ahmed Beg (i.e. Sultan Muhammad), is assuredly pre-destined. Wait for it. If I am a liar, this prophecy will not be fulfilled, and my death will come”.22
- Anjam-i-Atham, p. 31
Mirza Sultan Muhammad had a long life. He took part in the first world war. He was wounded during the war but survived and remained alive long after the Mirza had died.
As for the Mirza, he died in 1908, and his wedding which according to him had taken place in the heavens, could not take place on earth.
Protagonist of British Imperialism
But contrary to the illustrious teaching of the Holy Quran and the spirit of Islam and in violation of the noble example of the Prophets, their companions and their followers, Mirza Ghulam Ahmed, who claimed to be a God-sent messenger, is full of praise for the greatest force of evil of his age – the British Government. He never tires of praising that very government which had been the usurper of Islamic dominions, the greatest rival to the temporal power of Islam, and a great standard-bearer of atheism and moral degeneration. He praises the British with a vehemence which casts doubt on the motives of any conscientious man, not to say of a prophet. From the very beginning he was so greatly concerned with praising the British that there is hardly any work of his which has remained immune from flattery. We have already noted that in his first book, Barahin-i-Ahmadiyah (Vol. I), he had lavishly praised the British, had recounted their benevolent achievements and services, had assured them of Muslim loyalty, and had expressed his view against the doctrine of jihad. These trends persisted in his writings right up to the end of his life. He almost produced a whole library of books on the subject. In these books he returned again and again to assuring the British of his unswerving loyalty and recounted the services of his family to the British along with his own support. At a time when the feeling of Islamic self-respect was in need of being aroused and the nation needed the impulse to resist its oppressors, he again and again repeated that jihad had become out-of-date. Below are a few excerpts from the Mirza’s own writings to illustrate his trend of thought:
“The greater part of my life has been spent supporting and defending the British Government. And I have written so many books regarding the prohibition of jihad and obedience to the British that were they to be gathered together, they would fill fifty book-cases. Such books have been disseminated over all the countries: Arabia, Egypt, Syria, Kabul and Rome. I have always endeavored that Muslims became true well-wishers of this Government and their hearts were purged of baseless traditions about the bloody Mahdi and the bloody Messiah and those fanatical teachings which corrupt the hearts of the stupid”2
- Tiryaq-ul-Qulub, P. 15
At another place, he propounds allegiance to the British as one of the two pillars of faith:
“My religion, which I have been explaining again and again, is that there are two parts of Islam: one, to obey the exalted Allah, and, second, to obey the government which has established peace, and has provided its shadow of protection as against oppression. Such a government is the British Government”3
In a request to the Lieutenant Governor of Punjab on 24th February 1898, he wrote:
“The other thing worth mentioning is that from my early age till now when I am about sixty years of age, I have been engaged, with my pen and tongue, in an important task to turn the hearts of Muslims towards the true love and good-will and sympathy for the British Government, and to obliterate the idea of jihad from the hearts of the less wise among them, since it stands in the way of cordiality and a sincere mutual relationship. And I notice that my writings have had a tremendous influence on the hearts of Muslims and hundreds of thousands of people have changed”4
At another place he observes:
“I have written scores of books in Arabic, Persian and Urdu with the view that jihad against the benevolent government was in no way justified; rather, wholehearted obedience to it was a religious duty. I had these books published at great cost and then had them distributed in Islamic countries. And I know that these books had a great influence even in this country. The people who owe allegiance to me are growing into a party whose hearts are filled to the brim with sincere fidelity to the Government whose moral condition is excellent; I think they will be a boon to this country for they are wholeheartedly ready to sacrifice themselves for the government”5
- “Government ki Tawajjuh ke Laiq” in Shahadat el Quran p.3
- Tabligh-i-Risalat, Vol. VII, p.10
- ‘Arizah Baali-i-Khidmat Government ‘Aliyah Angrezi min janib Mirza Ghulam Ahmad Qadiani Sahib, cited in Mir Qasim ‘Ali Qadiani’s Tabligh-i-Risalat, Vol. VI p.65
At yet another place he wrote:
“The service which has been rendered for the sake of British Government was that I published and distributed in this country and other Islamic countries about fifty thousand books, treatises and leaflets, stating that the British Government is the benefactor of Muslims and therefore it should be the duty of every Muslim to obey it sincerely and heartily feel grateful to it and to pray for it. And, I had these books published in different languages, that is, Urdu, Persian and Arabic, and then distributed them in all the countries of Islam, so much so that I had them distributed even in the two holy cities of Islam, Mecca and Medina, and, as far as possible, also, in the capital of Rum-Constantinople, and Syria, Egypt and Kabul and many other cities of Afghanistan. The result was that hundred of thousands of people gave up their filthy ideas about jihad which had permeated their hearts due to the teachings of ignorant mullas. I am proud of this service which I have been able to render, and no Muslim of British India can boast of a parallel record”6
Abrogation of Jihad
The Mirza’s main concern was jihad which, indeed, had caused the greatest worry to the British not only in India but in all Muslim countries (quite a number of which had already been occupied by the British). The Mirza’s proclaimed jihad to have been abrogated forever and put forward this as the sign of his being the Promised Messiah. He proclaimed:
“Thirdly, the clock which will be installed in some part of the wall of this minaret, would signify that the people should realize that the time for the opening of the doors of the heavens has arrived. From now on there shall be no terrestrial jihad and wars shall cease. It has been mentioned earlier in the Traditions that when the Messiah would come, wars for the sake of religion would be prohibited. From now on whosoever shall raise the sword for the sake of religion and slay the infidels by proclaiming himself to be a ghazi, he will be disobedient rebel of God and His Prophet. Open Sahih al-Bukhari and read the hadith about the promised Messiah, that is, the one in which there occurs the expression which means that when the Messiah will come jihad would cease.
- 6. Sitara-i-kaiswiah3
Now the Messiah has come and it is he who is speaking to you.7
He regards this abrogation of jihad as the greatest object of his advent:
To cite his own words:
“In short, I have not come in order to stimulate war and strife. I have appeared in order to open, in the manner of first Messiah, the doors of peace. If the foundation of peace is not amidst us, then our whole religious order is useless, and it is also meaningless to believe in it”8
At another place, he becomes even more explicit:
“I believe that as my followers increase, the believers in the doctrine of jihad will decrease. For, accepting me to be the Messiah and Mahdi itself means the rejection of the doctrine of jihad.9
Citadel of the British Government
In his Arabic treatise Nurul-Haq he went as far as to say that he was the citadel and amulet for protecting the British Government:
“I am entitled to assert that I am unique in respect of these services. And I am entitled to say that I am an amulet and a citadel to protect it from afflictions. My Lord has given me glad tidings and has said that He will not chastise them as long as I am among them. So, the Government has no parallel and equal to me in supporting and assisting it and the Government shall know this if it is capable of knowing people”10
Seedling of the British
In an application submitted to the Lieutenant Governor of Punjab on 24th February 1898, he wrote:
- Khutba-i-Ilhamiyah, Appendix entitled Ishtihar Chandah Minaratal Masih
- Tiryaqul-Qutab p. 335
- Tabligh-i-Risalat, Vol Vii, p. 17
- Nurul Haq, p. 34
“I have to submit that in regard to a family which has proven itself to be loyal; had ever been prepared to make sacrifices for the Government during the last fifty year; of which the
respectable officials of the exalted Government have borne weighty testimonies in their official letters about its being all long a well-wisher and servant of the British Government, which is the self-implanted seedling (of loyalty), the Government should exercise utmost caution and make all possible efforts to know about it and pay attention to it. The Government should also instruct its lower officials that they should look towards me and my group with the eyes of kindness and benevolence in view of the established loyalty and sincerity of this family”.11
In another application he refers to himself and his group as ‘those who had been brought up as tried and true friends of the British: those who had earned a good name with the Government and had enjoyed its merciful kindness’.
- Tabligh-i-Risalat, Vol. VII p. 19
Shah Wali Ullah on Finality of Prophethood
“ In Musawwa, an Arabic commentary on Muwatta, Imamul Hind, Shah Waliullah Muhaddith Dehlavi writes:
“It may be explained that a person who is opposed to the true Faith and does not believe in Islam, nor does he acknowledge the religion of Islam, either outwardly or inwardly, is called a Kafir. If he believes in the Faith only verbally, but offers such interpretations of some fundamentals of the Faith as contradict the views of the Sahabah, the Tabi‘een and the consensus of the Ummah, then such a person is called a Zindeeq.”
By way of explaining the difference between a correct interpretation and a wrong interpretation, Shah Waliullah further writes:
“Moreover, there are two kinds of interpretations: One that does not contravene a decision that stands finally established under the authority of the Qur’an and the Sunnah; the other one is that interpretation which contravenes a decision that stands proved under a finally established evidence (based on the Qur’an and/or the Sunnah). Such an interpretation is Zandaqah.”
Citing examples of interpretations that involve Zandaqah, Shah Waliullah further writes:
“… or some person says that although the noble Prophet (Sallallaho Alaihe Wassallam) is undoubtedly the last of the Prophets, yet this only means that after him none will be given the name of a Prophet, but the concept of prophethood — viz., the sending down by Allah of some person who must be obeyed as a matter of obligation and who has been protected from persevering in sins and faults — continues in the Ummah even after the noble Prophet (Sallallaho Alaihe Wassallam) then such a person is a Zindeeq.” (Musawwa, Vol. 2, p. 130)
Fatawa on Khatm-e-Nabuwwat ﷺ
FATWA 1: Fatawai-Alamgiri (Who is not a Muslim)
“If a person does not have the belief that the holy prophet Muhammad (PBUH) is the last prophets then he is not a Muslim. If he says, “I am a prophet of Allah” or says in Persian language, “I am a Paighambar”, thereby meaning, “I convey Allah’s message”, then he also becomes an infidel (Kafir)”
(Fatawa Hindiya, Vol. 2 p. 363 printed Bolaq, Egypt)
FATWA 5: Fiqah Shafa’I Mughni ul Muhtaj Sharah Minhaj (Ten types of Kafirs)
In this book, which contains standard ‘fatawa’ of Fiqah Shafai, is written:
“A person will become a Kafir, if (1) he rejects the Prophets and (2) says Allah, the Exalted, did not send them, or (3) negates the prophethood of some specific prophet, or (4) claims prophethood for himself after our Holy Prophet (PBUH) or (5) affirms such a claimant’s prophethood, or (6) says that our Prophet (PBUH) was (Allah forbid) dark-colored, beardless and not a Qureshi, or (7) says that prophethood can be acquired or that status can be achieved through piety and purity of heart, or (8) says Allah’s Revelation (Wahi) comes to him without laying any claim to prophethood, or (9) calls any prophet a liar and reviles him or scorns him, and (10) despises the name of Allah, the Exalted”.
(Mughni ul Muhtaj, Vol.4, p.135)
FATWA 6: Fiqah Hambali: Mughni Ibn Qudamah (Follower of Claimant of prophethood is also an apostate)
From Mughni Ibn Qudamah which is standard ‘Fatawa’ of Fiqah Hambali: “A person becomes a ‘murtad’ or an apostate (i.e renouncer of the Faith) if he claims prophethood for himself or testifies to a claimant’s prophethood. Therefore, the supporters of Musailma were adjudged apostates because they testified to Musailma’s claim of prophethood. The same if true of Tulaiha Asadi and his followers. Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) declared that Resurrection will not take place until thirty liars have not come forward each one of whom will claim that he is Allah’s prophet”.
“Anybody who, (Allah forbid), abuses Him is a kahir even if he forgets at that moment what he is doing, or says so in a joke or in reality. That person is also kafir who makes fun of Allah the Exalted or ridicules His Ayaat or His prophets or His Books. Allah, the Exalted, says in the Holy Quran “And if you ask them, they will say ‘We were just amusing (ourselves) and jesting’. You ask them ‘Were you jesting with Allah, His Ayaat and His Prophet? Don’t make excuses. You have become kafir after accepting the (true) faith”.
“Therefore, a person who commits an act of derision should not be left to his (lip profession of) Islam only but should be punished and given a lesson and taught some wisdom as a deterrent lest he should relapse into this mischief. When penitence alone is not deemed adequate (exoneration) for saying indecent words against the Holy Prophet (PBUH) then the one who says arrogant words against Allah the Most High deserves punishment pre-eminently”.
(Mughni Ibne Qudamah, Vol. 10, p. 112)
FATWA 7: Al Sharah al Kabir Sharah ul Muqney which is a standard ‘Fatawa’ of Hambali jurisprudence also contains the same passage word for word as quoted above from Mughni Ibne Qudamah.
(Sharah Kabir on Hahiah Mughni, Vol. 10, p. 111)
Death of Mirza Qadiyani
When in 1891, the Mirza declared that he was the Promised Massiah31 and later on in 1910, that he was a prophet of God32, the Muslim ulama began to refute and oppose him. Among those prominent in opposing him was Maulana Sana Ullah Amritsari, the editor of Ahl-i-Hadith. On April 5, 1907, Mirza Ghulam Ahmed issued an announcement in which, while addressing the said Maulana, he wrote:
“ If I am such a big liar and impostor as you portray me in each issue of your magazine, then I will die in your life-time, for I know that the life-period of a mischief-maker and liar is not very long and ultimately he dies an unsuccessful man, during the life of his greatest enemies and in a state of humiliation and grief. And if I am not a liar and impostor and have been honored by God’s communication and address to me, and if I am the promised Massiah, then I hope that with the grace of God and in accordance with God’s practice you will not escape the punishment of the rejectors (of Truth). Thus, if that punishment which is not in man’s but in God’s hand, that is, fatal disease like plague and cholera, do not afflict you during my lifetime,33 then I am not from God.34”
- Haqiqat al-Wahy, p. 211
- Ibid, p. 211.a.
- Sirat al-Mehdi, Vol. II, p.150
- Sirat al-Mehdi, Vol. II, p.151
One year after the publication of this announcement, on May 25, 1908 the Mirza fell ill, being afflicted with diarrhoea at Lahore. Along with loose motions, he also had vomiting. He was put under treatment at once, but weakness increased, and his condition became critical. The next day, on May 26, he breathed his last in the forenoon. About his death his father-in-law Mir Nasir Nawab has stated:
“The night on which Hazrat Mirza Sahib fell ill, I was asleep at my place. When he felt very uncomfortable, I was awakened. When I went to Hazrat Sahib he addressed me and said, ‘Mir Sahib I am ill with cholera’. After this, in my opinion, he did not speak a clear word till he died the next day after ten o’clock”.
The dear body was carried to Qadian. On May 27, 1908 the burial took place and Hakim Nurrudin became his successor, the first Khalifah of the Qadiani movement.
- Refer Part II, Chapter 2
- Refer Part II, Chapter 3
- It would be interesting to note that Maulana Amritsari died at the age of eighty on March 18, 1948 some forty years after death of the Mirza.
- Tabligh-i-Risalat, Vol. X, p. 120
- Hayat-i-Nasir, ed. Shaykh Yaqub Ali Irfani