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Caliph of Peace

For the past 100 years, another institution has arisen that has gained this title and is now recognised as the true ambassador for world peace. That institution is the Caliphate of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community.

By Muddabir Din
Published on December 17, 2020 at 3:12 pm

At this moment in time what is the single most powerful force in spreading world peace? Some would say the UN, or the World peace council, or any number of peace activists.

For the past 100 years, another institution has arisen that has gained this title and is now recognised as the true ambassador for world peace. That institution is the Caliphate of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community.

Just as other religions of the world go through various eras in history, similarly, the religion of Islam has seen various eras during its 1,400 years. As the hadith below suggests:

 “O Muslims! This Prophethood (The reign of Muhammad) will remain with you as long as Allah wishes it to remain. Then it would come to an end, to be replaced with Khilafat which would be on the pattern of prophethood and would remain as long as Allah wills. Then this Khilafat would also come to an end. Then there will be Kingship and will remain as long as Allah wills. Then there will be the rule of the oppressors and that period too will come to an end. After that, Khilafat on the pattern of prophethood, would re-emerge.” [i]

This prophecy highlights 4 eras in Islam. Firstly, a Caliphate after the demise of the Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him). Secondly, an era of kingship. Thirdly, a rule of oppressors. Finally, a Caliphate would re-appear after the emergence of the Messiah.

At this moment in time the religion of Islam is in the 4th and final era. This is the Ahmadiyya Caliphate. The Caliphate that is to last forever.

The Ahmadiyya Caliphate emerged in 1908 after the demise of Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad (peace be upon him), who claimed to be the Messiah and saviour of all religions. After his demise the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community elected their first caliph: Hazrat Hakeem Maulvi Nooruddinra . His scholarly work, knowledge of Islam and divinely inspired guidance laid a strong foundation for the Community to grow upon. Under his leadership the Community established a mission in the United Kingdom. This was the first Caliph of the Messiah.

The second Caliph was Hazrat Mirza Bashiruddin Mahmood Ahmadra. A crucial role in the establishment of the state of Pakistan, efforts for the liberation of Kashmir and Palestine, and the initiation of a world renowned scheme for the education of the rural subcontinent are some of his outstanding achievements.  His 52-year era as the Second Caliph lead the Community to huge leaps and bounds and the Community was spreading across the world’s continents and being recognised as striving for world peace.

The achievements of the third and fourth Caliphs include: establishments of schemes related to doctors and teachers to volunteer in West Africa, the launch of the Humanity First charity and formation of schemes to aid in the marriage of poor families. The peace slogan of the community Love for All Hatred for None had now become world renowned and the Ahmadiyya Caliphs were being recognised as champions of peace.

Now we enter the present day. Hazrat Mirza Masroor Ahmad (may Allah be his Helper) is the fifth Caliph of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community. In June 2020 the Caliph wrote a series of letters to various world leaders urging them to consider the paralysing and devastating effects of the Covid-19 pandemic as a divine warning for mankind. The letters were written to Australia, Canada, China, France, Germany, Ghana, India, Israel, Japan, Nigeria, Russia, Sierra Leone, the United Kingdom and the United States of America. Letters were also written to Pope Francis and the UN Secretary General. The world leaders were urged by the present Caliph of Islam that during these precarious and unstable times it is the responsibility of world leaders to uphold the highest standards of justice at a domestic and international level and set a positive and noble example for their people.

Since his election in April 2003, the present Caliph of Islam has been invited to various parliaments of the world to deliver speeches on world peace. Just to name a few are:

 

  1. Islamic Perspective on the Global Crisis, The British Parliament, London, 2008
  2. The Path to Peace—Just Relations Between Nations, Capitol Hill, Washington D.C, USA, 2012
  3. The Key to Peace—Global Unity, European Parliament, Brussels, Belgium, 2012
  4. World Peace—The Critical Need of the Time, New Zealand National Parliament, Wellington, New Zealand, 2013
  5. World Peace & Security—The Critical Issues of Our Time, Dutch Parliament, Binnenhof, The Hague, Netherlands, 2015
  6. Islam’s Teachings of Loyalty and Love for One’s Nation, Military Headquarters Koblenz, Germany, 2012
  7. Islam—A Religion of Peace and Compassion, Houses of Parliament, London, 2013
  8. The Keys to Peace in a Time of Global Disorder, Tokyo, Japan, 2015

 

Another crucial aspect of the Caliph’s constant pursual of world peace is the Annual Peace Symposium. Since 2004 the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community UK, under the leadership of the Caliph of the Messiah, has hosted thousands of influential politicians and leading personalities to this symposium, the aim of which is to always draw the world’s attention towards achieving world peace.

One significant aspect that separates the Caliph from every other world leader is that in every speech and lecture, the Caliph’s focal point is always for mankind to recognise its Creator, as this is the only true way of establishing world peace.

“Here, I wish to make something very clear, and that is the relationship of mutual love, affection and loyalty between one person and another cannot be established until a relationship of love, affection and loyalty with the Lord Who created us is developed. Distress and anxiety exist nowadays in a large part of the world’s population because the world has forgotten its Creator. People have forgotten the fundamental teachings of their faith. In fact, a great number of people even reject the existence of God.”

Hazrat Mirza Masroor Ahmad – Khalifatul-Masih Vaba

 

Addressing world leaders in Germany he further clarified this point:

“The leaders and their governments should strive to create laws that foster an environment and spirit of truth and justice, rather than making laws that are a means of causing distress and frustration to the people. Injustices and cruelties should be eliminated and instead we should strive for true justice. The best way to do this is that the world should come to recognise its Creator. Every form of loyalty should be linked to loyalty with God. If this occurs, then we will come to witness with our own eyes that the very highest standards of loyalty will be established by the people of all countries and new avenues leading us to peace and security will open throughout the world.”

Hazrat Mirza Masroor Ahmad – Khalifatul-Masih Vaba

Lastly, an aspect of the Caliphs peace struggle that no person can ever account for. It is his continuous and fervent prayers for all world leaders and world peace. As a religious leader he considers it his utmost duty to help world leaders through prayer.

It has surely become evident now that the Caliphate of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community holds the spot as the greatest advocator for world peace. Over the course of only 115 years this Islamic Caliphate has positively influenced the lives of millions and will continue to do so. It has time and time again proven to be a fearless champion of world peace. The time has now come for the whole world to recognize that the single most powerful force in establishing world peace is in fact the current Caliph of Islam, Hazrat Mirza Masroor Ahmad (May Allah be his Helper).

“I have delivered the same message calling for peace and justice. On many occasions in different parts of the world I do the same. I do not know how much impact my views have had on those who have listened to me and I am not aware to what extent they are working towards developing peace within their own circles of influence. Nevertheless, I will, God willing, always continue to carry out my task and my responsibilities of promoting peace, tolerance, justice and compassion to the corners of the world. I will continue to tell all people that in order to be relieved of the pain and suffering that we face today, we must adopt true justice and equality”

Hazrat Mirza Masroor Ahmad – Khalifatul-Masih Vaba

 

[i] Musnad Ahmad: Vol.5, P.404

 

Articles

Spirituality in the New Space Age

Where Missions Meet Missionaries

Every night, the universe reveals itself in all its galactic glow. The light of astral bodies—suns, stars and moons—streak and stipple the night sky, expanding the margins of our world as the vast cosmos comes into view. We peer into the dark of the unknown, tracing light that warps and wefts from afar, launching telescopes, rovers and probes at the sky to better understand our place in the wider universe. The latest in our mission for greater understanding was the launch of the James Webb Space telescope. But as we beam signals of our curiosity to the farther corners of the galaxy, will we be ready for what we might find?

The successful launch of NASA’s $10 billion space telescope will see an ambitious 10-year mission to seek out planetary systems hospitable to life. Propelled nearly a million miles away from Earth, the telescope will analyse infrared light, observing some of the earliest galaxy formations in the universe. The hope to find evidence for extraterrestrial life, however, raises questions on how religions may react to the discoveries found in space — questions that the Centre for Theological Inquiry hopes to answer with the help of 24 theologians.

For example, did Jesus atone for the sins of different life forms across the universe? What if other life forms were found, would our relationship with God change? Ultimately, how might religion make sense of what is out there as we take our giant leaps for mankind across the galaxy?

At first glance, it may seem that religions would struggle with such questions, and that any reverence held for theology would become obsolete in this new space age. Islam however doesn’t need to grapple with these concepts — the Quran explicitly mentions alien life and its wider spiritual significance within its opening chapter no less.

“All praise belongs to Allah, Lord of all the worlds.” – Chapter 1, verse 2

The introduction of God as ‘Rabb Ul Alameen’ (Lord of all the worlds) establishes our relationship with Him. God is not for one people, but for all creation in every plane of existence. That He is ‘Lord of all the worlds’ also speaks to the universality of His Rule and Reach — something that is referred to later on more specifically.

At another place, the Quran strikingly refers to other life forms:

“And among His Signs is the creation of the heavens and the earth, and of whatever living creatures (daabbah) He has spread forth in both. And He has the power to gather them together whenever He pleases.” – Chapter 42, verse 30

The Arabic word used for living creatures — daabah — has specific connotations to animals that are land-dwelling and move along the surface of the earth, thus indicating the existence of life beyond our planet. This verse continues on to claim that “He has the power to gather them together whenever He pleases”. The Arabic term for ‘gather’ جمع (jama’) can mean, among other things, gathering together physically or drawn closer in proximity, suggesting that we will make some form of contact with extraterrestrial life.

In another verse, the Quran mentions that there are other planets that are hospitable to life:

“Allah is He Who created seven heavens, and of the earth the like thereof…” – Chapter 65, verse 13

Here the Quran claims that just as there are ‘seven heavens’, there are also ‘seven earths’. The number seven is significant in Arabic because it symbolises repeating patterns, or multitudes of a thing. Taken together, the Quran explains that there are almost innumerable Earth-like planets that harbour life just like ours.

But this verse continues on to a more extraordinary claim:

“…The divine command comes down in their midst, that you may know that Allah has power over all things, and that Allah encompasses all things in His knowledge.”

The term ‘divine command’ can be taken to mean revelation. Thus, according to the Quran, there is life out in the cosmos that are aware of God’s existence through revelation that is sent down to them. This brings us back to the initial introduction of God in Islam as ‘Lord of all the worlds’ – all the worlds that have life and are made aware of their Creator.

Ultimately, Islamic theology is replete with references to the vastness of the cosmos and the various forms of life it holds. It speaks in unequivocal, unambiguous and unadaptable terms. Man is not the only creation of God. That God is also Al-Khalaq (the Creator), who ceaselessly creates and perfects His creation, also points to other forms of life existing beyond our own planet. Rather than ending spirituality, our cosmic discoveries can validate its true origins. So as we begin to extend our reach across the stars, we may find that in the dark expanse of the universe, our spirituality shine in a new light.

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Qaid: A Leader, Brother, Khadim.

Qaideen Forum 2021

The word Qaid means leader. Throughout Islamic history the term has been used for leaders within Islamic communities, in fact, it has even entered Latin in the form of Alcayde.

But cutting across the fabric of time and the worldly connotations of the past, today it refers to a Muslim youth leader who guides and leads others in the spiritual sense. It is upon discussion of this that local Qaideen from across the UK have met in Baitul Futuh and Darul-Aman at the Qaideen Forum of Majlis Khuddamul Ahmadiyya UK.

The point of this gathering is to discuss and contemplate how to further the spirituality of thousands of Khuddam across the country. Sitting at the back and observing this event one would find something that is perhaps not mirrored in other. Most of the Qaideen are young, they’re eager to discuss how to further the Talim and Tarbiyyat of their fellow Khuddam.

The event starts off, in the opening session, with a video being played of Hazrat Khalifatul-Masih Vaba addressing a Khuddam gathering. Huzooraba explains that the role of Khuddamul Ahmadiyya is to protect Khilafat. This goes above and beyond Amoomi duties or any physical protection: true protection is to act upon the words of the Khalifah, to spread them and to get people to follow them. Merely promising that we shall fight left and right is not the actual Jihad, the true Jihad is the acting upon Huzoor’s instructions. Khuddam should look towards the Khalifah’s words, it is the specific task of Khuddam to imbue the youngsters with this spirit.

This year’s Qaideen Forum (12 December for the southern Regions at Baitul Futuh and 18th December for northern regions at Darul-Aman) is split into 2 main workshops: a discussion on the Lahe-Amal (Conduct Manual) and a interactive session on true leadership.

The interactive workshop is very enjoyable, videos of Huzoor addressing various issues that Khuddam face are continuously played. For example in one video Huzoor advises that if something is not working, Khuddam office bearers should change strategy and that Khuddamul Ahmadiyya should work according to the temperaments of people.

The discussion in the second workshop which runs simultaneously is equally important and beneficial. The Lahe-Amal (conduct manual) is discussed and the nature of Khuddamul Ahmadiyya along with its setup is explained. This workshop is delivered by 3 Naib Sadrs (Usman Ahmad Sahib, Tariq Hayat Sahib and Dr Anas Rana Sahib) all of whom have extensive experience in Khuddamul Ahmadiyya. Perhaps the most important part of the presentation, and one that captures everyone’s attention immediately is how Khuddamul Ahmadiyya began: the actual incident that led to it being established—how Hazrat Khalifatul-Masih IIra asked a group of Khuddam who were not scholars to form a board which was named Khuddamul Ahmadiyya a few days later.

Khuddam are given the opportunity to mix and socialise (with social distancing in place!) so they can learn from each other and a lot of interesting conversations take place.

At the end a collective concluding session takes place with many questions being asked by Qaideen. For the benefit of everyone some of these questions and the answers given are presented below:

1. I am a local Qaid, who can get Khuddam emails?

Answer: anyone who holds an office in Khuddamul Ahmadiyya should be conducting Khuddam activities on an official email address. For further information on this you can contact [email protected]

2. What if a Khadim says he cannot give time, do I block him out?

Answer: That would be damaging in the long run. Even if a Khadim can only give 1 hour a month, then that should be utilised and eventually when a relationship develops and the Khadim draws closer to you as a local qaid he may begin to dedicate more time

3. How can we engage with students?

Answer: There are a lot of AMSA engagements that take place over the year. Every university does have an AMSA body and they should plan their annual calendar of events accordingly. Sometimes getting students to do presentations about their own studies can help with engagement.

4. I’m concerned about the physical wellbeing of Khuddam, are there any individual resources that can used during lockdown?

Answer: the Sehat-e-Jismani department has been planning and holding events such as the Khuddam Football League. But as a local qaid if there are Khuddam who cannot participate in such group activities then you should look to arrange some other form of exercise plan which can benefit your Khuddam, this can be done in by working with the national Sehat-e-Jismani team.

5. Are events taking place, I have planned my local Ijtema but am uncertain about restrictions?

Answer: Every region has a Disaster Management Committee. Before planning any event or gathering you should present your plan to them, and they will be able to advise as to whether the event should take place based on whatever the current guidelines of Covid restrictions are. This should not dissuade you from planning events, you just need to ensure that the Regional Qaid is aware and that proper planning has gone into the Covid side of the event.

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Honouring our Pledge: What, Where, When and Why?

The theme for the Khuddam year beginning now is “Honouring our Pledge”. It’s time to start evaluating whether we’re fulfilling the promise we’ve been making.

Majlis Khuddamul Ahmadiyya UK is happy to announce the new theme approved by Hazrat Khalifatul-Masih Vaba as Honouring our Pledge. Here’s a quick read to get you thinking about the theme and what the focus will be for this Khuddam year.

Of course, we all know that Islam lays particular emphasis upon fulfilling one’s promises; whether they relate to everyday matters, one’s family, work or religion. But in this case the theme refers to our Khuddamul Ahmadiyya pledge: the one where we stand-up, place our right hand above our left, and recite in unison at the beginning of Khuddam gatherings. This year’s theme is not about a pledge, rather the pledge. (Download it here!)

 

 

The Khuddam pledge goes back to the inception of Khuddamul Ahmadiyya itself. All auxiliaries within the Jama’at have their pledges according to their aims and objectives. As part of the Khuddam pledge Tashahhud is recited and then the pledge reads:

“I bear witness that there is none worthy of worship except Allah and I bear witness that Muhammadsa is the servant and messenger of Allah. I solemnly pledge that I shall always be ready to sacrifice my life, wealth, time and honour for the sake of my faith, country and nation. Likewise, I shall be ready to offer any sacrifice for guarding the institution of Khilafat-e-Ahmadiyya. Moreover, I shall deem it essential to abide by any ‘maroof’ decision made by Khalifatul-Masih. Inshallah”.

This is what we pledge (and have been pledging since we were Atfal, though the Atfal pledge speaks about honesty and not using foul language instead).

Khuddam reciting the pledge before Hazrat Khalifatul-Masih V at National Ijtema 2021.

The Khuddam pledge can be traced back to 1938 where only the first part relating to sacrificing wealth, time and honour can be found. It was later that amendments were made by Hazrat Khalifatul-Masih IIra adding to the pledge.

The Khuddam pledge talks about sacrificing four things we hold dear:

  1. Life
  2. Wealth
  3. Time
  4. Honour

Though a true Khadim is always ready to sacrifice his life—as we saw in the recent example of Syed Taalay Ahmad Sahib Shaheed—in this day and age what we are asked of most frequently is to sacrifice our wealth and time. Wealth is sacrificed in the form of chandas and charity whereas time is sacrificed by committing a certain portion of it in pursuit of the Majlis’ activities. If we reflect upon the history of Islam, this is indeed a very small sacrifice that we are being asked to make. Today’s jihad is that of self-reformation and we are not burdened as Muslims were burdened in times of the past. Therefore, this makes it even more important to ensure we are living up to the little we are being asked to commit.

Hazrat Khalifatul-Masih III leading Khuddam in the pledge. The Khuddam pledge is as old as the organisation itself.

Undoubtedly, this new year will bring a revived focus around the pledge and what it means. But on an individual level we should begin contemplating and evaluating the extent to which we fulfil our pledge.

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