Our Teachings [Part 1]
From the Work, ‘Kisthi-i-Nuh’ [Noah’s Ark]
by Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad of Qadian
The Light & Islamic Review (US), September/October 1991 Issue (Vol. 68, No. 3, pp. 3–4)
[Related: Listen to the audiobook]
Relationship with God:
To follow me it is necessary in the first place to believe in One God, the Creator and the Supporter of all existence, powerful over all, eternal, everlasting and unchanging in His attributes, neither being a son nor having a son, and free from suffering injuries, cross or death. Being far off, He is yet very near, and being near He is still very far. He is One but His manifestations are many. For those who renew themselves, He is a new God, and His dealings with them are new. They witness a transformation in God to the extent to which they transform themselves. But it is not God Who changes, for He is unchanging and perfect in His attributes from all eternity. It is a new manifestation of Divine which is disclosed to a man when he is transformed by a renewal of his mind. As a man rises higher, a higher manifestation of Divine power is revealed to him. When he shows an extraordinary transformation, Almighty God reveals to him extraordinary manifestations of His power. This is the root from which signs and miracles spring.
Such is my Lord, in Him you must believe and Him you must set before you. Let God be uppermost in your mind; let Him be dearer to you than your own selves, your comforts and all your connections. Be constant and firm in His path so that no storm might shake you. The world trusts in its resources and prefers not God to its own dear objects, but you should trust in God alone and prefer Him to all else, so that you may be numbered in heaven with His people. Almighty God has been exhibiting His signs of mercy from ancient times, but you cannot avail yourselves of His tender mercies until you are one with Him and fulfil all the laws of righteousness. His will must be your will and His desires your desires. Be faithful to Him in adversity and lie at His door whether He hearkens to your voice or not, so that His will be done in all cases. If you trust in Him thus, the Living God Who has long hidden His face from the world will manifest Himself in you. Is there anyone among you who acts upon these ordinances, who can seek to do the will of God and submit to the decree of Heaven without uttering a word of complaint? When adversities encompass you all about, your faith in Him should be the greater.
Treatment of Fellow Beings:
Let all your power be exerted to establish His unity upon earth. Be kind and merciful to the creatures of God. Let not your tongue speak evil against them or your hands do injury to them. Do not oppress them, but try your best to do good to them. Speak not the word of pride and vanity to anyone though he be your subordinate or servant. Abuse not anyone though he might abuse you. Walk upon earth in humility and meekness and sympathise with your fellow beings that you may be accepted of God. There are many who show meekness outwardly but inwardly they are ravening wolves. There are many who are smooth in appearance but they have the nature of a serpent. You cannot be accepted of your God until your tongue conforms to your heart. If you are in a high place, glory not in your greatness and do not look down upon the lowly but have mercy on them. If you are learned, glory not in your learning and do not despise the ignorant with vanity but give them a word of kind advice. If you are rich, glory not in your wealth and behave not proudly towards the poor, but serve and assist them. Shun the paths that lead to destruction. Fear God and be righteous. Worship not the creatures, but severing all your earthly ties become wholly devoted to God. Let not your delight be in this world. Serve God only, and devote your life to His service. Hate every impurity and evil for God’s sake, for your Lord is holy. Let every morning bear witness that you have passed the night with righteousness, and let every evening bear witness that you have passed the day fearing God.
True Inner Reform:
Fear not the curses of this world, for they are like the smoke which disappears instantly and cannot turn the light of your day into the darkness of night; but fear the curse of God which comes down from heaven, and brings ruin, both in this life and the next, upon the heads of those upon whom it descends. You cannot save yourselves with hypocrisy, for your Lord sees the inmost secrets of the heart. Can you deceive Him? Therefore, stand uprightly before Him, purge your hearts of every impurity and cleanse them of every dross. If the slightest darkness remains in you, it shall overcome your light and all shall be darkness. If there is vanity, hypocrisy, self-approbation or idleness in you, you cannot be acceptable in the sight of God. Be not deceived that a few words which your lips utter are the goal of your life, for Almighty God wishes to bring about a thorough transformation in your lives. He demands of you a death, after which He shall breathe a new life into you. Be at peace with each other and forgive the trespasses of your brethren, for wicked is the person who does not agree to be at peace with his brother. He is in danger of being cut off, for he sows the seed of dissension.
(Adapted from the translation published in the Review of Religions, 1902)
[Read the next part: ‘Part 2’]