Need for a Quranic Research Cell — In Memoriam of Maulana Muhammad Ali
The Light (Pakistan), 1st/24th October 1978 Issue (Vol. 58, Nos. 37–40, p. 28)
September 11, 1978
Dear Sir, Islam is like the Nature. Both are revelations of God. Nature is timeless and yet eternally new. The more man studies Nature the more of its secrets does he discover and greater is the benefit that he derives from it. Similarly, the more man studies the Quran the more truths and hitherto unrevealed meanings he will find in it and greater will be the guidance he will derive from it for the good of his soul and for solving the human problems in an ever-changing world. Unfortunately, some time in the past, Muslims had closed the door of Ijtihad and stopped thinking over the meaning and significance of the Quran. They began depending exclusively on the commentaries of former times. The Ahmadiyya Anjuman reopened the doors of ijtihad in the modern age and restarted the process of thinking and pondering over the Quran to discover its meaning for the man of the twentieth century. The result was that the Ahmadiyya thinkers and writers succeeded in removing many misunderstandings about Islam, purged Islam of many ideas and practices which were not integral to Islam but were vestiges of knowledge and mode of thinking of the past ages, and unveiled to the world the beautiful, pure and eternally youthful face of Islam which had irresistible attraction for the modern man. This went on till 1950. But after 1950 or so, the Ahmadis also put a stop to the vital process of original and creative thinking regarding Islamic matters and its significance for the modern world. When you stop thinking and growing, you begin stagnating. I am afraid, the Ahmadiyya Movement will also begin stagnating and will become a thing of the past if the Ahmadis do not restart the process of original thinking and research. I suggest that the Ahmadiyya Anjuman Ishaat-i-Islam (Lahore) should establish a research cell, whose task should be, among, other things:
- to present the message of Islam in terms meaningful to the man of today, and
- to find the solutions of the problems of the modern world from the Quran and in the light of the eternal principles of Islam.