More Books on Website

Valuable Additions to aaiil.org

The Light (UK), November 2007 Issue (pp. 5–6)

During September and October [2007] (till today 15th) a large number of Urdu publications, in particular, of the Lahore Ahmadiyya Movement during its history have been made available on the www.aaiil.org website. Many of these are quite rare in that these were now only available in the Central Lahore Ahmadiyya Library or privately with some individuals. In our last issue we mentioned the Urdu book entitled Mukalimat-i Milliyya by Khwaja Kamal-ud-Din, published in 1921, in which he has reported his religious discussions with prominent individuals, largely during his stays in England. The first of the discussions from that book was translated in our last issue.

Several volumes of the khutbas [Friday sermons] of Maulana Muhammad Ali, which are being collected in book form, are now on the website. With the latest volume 9, the end of the year 1934 has been reached. The compiler of these khutbas has made a useful, in fact indispensable, addition by providing footnotes to explain the historical context of many of the Maulana’s references to the current events of the time.

A pamphlet by Maulana Muhammad Ali with a remarkably modern resonance is his “Appeal to the general Islamic opinion” of 1925 after a member of the Qadiani Jamaat was stoned to death in Afghan­istan by order of the government for the crime of apostasy. The Maulana is addressing the general Muslim religious leaders and the Muslim press in India who were delighted and jubilant over this execution. He points out that while he thoroughly disagrees with the distinctive beliefs of the Qadiani Jamaat relating to prophethood, so much so that he departed from Qadian on this account, yet the Qadianis are Muslims and not apostates. Moreover, even if a Muslim did indeed become an apostate by abandoning the religion of Islam, there is no punishment prescribed by Islam for such a person. Such actions as that of the ruler of Afghanistan reinforce the allegation of the opponents of Islam that Islam spread by force — a misconception which, says the Maulana, had almost been cleared before this incident. Islam has been set back years by this and

“in the hearts of non-Muslims, who were being attracted towards Islam by the beauty they could see in it, revulsion for Islam has been regenerated”.

Then the Maulana asks his readers to ponder what the consequences would be for Muslims if non-Muslim governments were to do the same and prohibit people from accepting Islam?

“It was Islam which was the first to announce the concept of religious freedom but today, alas, the sons of Islam are proud to destroy religious freedom from the world”,

he further writes. The Maulana condemns not only those Muslims who supported this stance of their religious leaders but also those who remained silent and failed to denounce their wrong belief. He ends with the words:

“Those who possess the power of understanding should come forward and, with the courage of a believer, correct the wrong notion that the punish­ment for apostasy in Islam is death … If Muslims remain silent now, they will not only be guilty of staying quiet when it was necessary to speak the truth, but they will also bring Islam to disgrace in the world by their own hands.”

Only last year, in 2006, it was in the news world wide that a man in Afghanistan faced the death penalty for converting to Christianity from Islam. Those who are inclined to think that our literature of 80 years ago is now obsolete will have to revise their opinion after reading this pamphlet.

There are many other greatly interesting books that have been added, including several works of Maulana Muhammad Ali, Dr. Basharat Ahmad and Maulana Hafiz Sher Muhammad. A list is too long to be given here and we refer readers to the website  itself for complete information: www.aaiil.org

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