The Ahmadiyya Movement Day
by Muhammad Manzur Ilahi (Joint Secretary, Ahmadiyya Anjuman Ishaat-e-Islam Lahore)
The Young Islam, 1st August 1934 Issue (Vol. 1, No. 5, Supplement pp. 1–2)
Mr P. A. J. writes:
“I was really anxious to prove to you my true cooperation and interest in the propagation of the Mohammedan religion by doing my little part which is the translation of the following small pamphlets from English to Spanish:
- The Muslim Catechism;
- Islam—The Religion of Humanity;
- The Prophet of Islam;
- The Muslim Prayer Book
But unfortunately, shortly after I received you letter of February 4, 1934, I fell sick. Only now I am getting better and so I hope I will accomplish the mentioned work as soon as possible.
We are very glad to hear that a missionary from Java will come to Japan and Borneo and even to the Philippine Islands, if we will be worthy of his visit. We may call the help of one of them as soon as we can have our formal organization here.
It is rather difficult and expensive on your part to send and furnish us always with Islamic literature, but for the convenience of the good work, permit me to ask you once more for one copy of the English translation of the Holy Quran with Arabic text. It is funny to say that most of these Imams here hesitate to receive our words, thinking that this book is different from the one they are using, but having the Arabic text, I believe they will be easily convinced because they can read the same and remember the words written on it and all what shall we do then is to interpret to them only the meaning of the Book in their own dialect in accordance with the English translation.
It is my profound intention to learn the Arabic alphabet once I decide to profess this religion and I believe that that Book will help me a great deal. Permit me to inform you that if there will be no great hindrance I will be baptized in this religion by the coming Maulod [Birthday of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (pbuh)].”
Note by the Editor, The Young Islam: The writer is a Christian friend and Municipal President.
Mr G. P. writes:
“I have read some of the pamphlets and literature which you are sending out for the revival and spread of Islam, and I am very glad to know that you are doing this great work for our religion. If you can only spare some of your pamphlets and literature and send them to me, I shall be very greatly obliged.
I and many of my friends are willing to share with you the burden of spreading Islam throughout the world, but here in our place we cannot do more than pass on the few literature we can get from you. We cannot remit any amount less than fifty dollars and we cannot also raise that amount. However, we are willing to do what work you will let us do for the cause of Islam. … If there are ways by which we can help you, please let us know and if we can, we will gladly do so.”
Messrs Bejche and Nesimahmet (Albanian Muslims) write:
“We have received your letter with the literature. You wish to know the numerical strength and the condition of the Muslims here. It is very hard to explain their condition as they don’t seem to take any interest in their religious affairs. We cannot say exactly but in our opinion there would be about 200 to 300 Albanian Muslims here, besides others.
We have been inviting the Muslims to come down and study the truth which is being propagated through the Ahmadiyya books, as we receive sufficient literature from Headquarters and anyone who wishes to read it can have it free.”
United States of America:
Mr A. G. H. Ahmadi, Moscow, Idaho, writes:
“Some time ago I received a copy of the English Translation of the Holy Quran and with some Islamic literature, but being too busy in examination I could not have the pleasure of writing to you.
In this country persons have perfect freedom of speech, and there is nothing that could debar them from making any kind of propaganda. I think I would need a few copies of Are the Gospels Word of God? as literature like this is very much appreciated.
Copy of Muhammad and Christ is almost worn out by lending it to many eager Americans.
I was much pleased to hear that new Muslim missions will be established in Austria and Spain.
I am enclosing five dollars.”
Mirza Wali Ahmad Beg writes:
“After the Dutch Quran is printed, we shall have two great works before us: the sending of a Muslim missionary to Holland, and establishing a college for preparing Muslim missionaries for Dutch-speaking countries.
Holland, compared to other European countries, is cheaper, and a Muslim mission in Holland will not be so expensive. Mr Soedewo, the Dutch translator of the Holy Quran, who knows four European languages, has been selected for this stupendous work. From now we have begun to collect money in a Dutch bank for this purpose.
The Missionary College that we intend to establish will be an ideal college in Indonesia for Muslim missionaries. Four languages will be taught in it—Arabic, Dutch, English, and Sanskrit.
I am studying the Japanese language now; it is not so difficult. Who knows in future there may arise an opportunity for me to go to Japan to preach Islam there. Japan, as I have been given to understand by my Japanese friends, is a cheap country and living is not so dear there.”
Mr A. O. H. from Enugu writes:
“The answers given to my all my questions are quite satisfactory and I shall be glad if you will kindly convey my best greetings and heartiest thanks to the entire members of the Movement.”
Jamaica, B.W.I. [British West Indies]:
Mr B. A. U. writes:
“I think you have a lot of influence in Muslim circles and you are in touch with Muslims from all over the world. Could you not help Jamaica by influencing an Imam to visit us even twice a year? I understand that there are a lot of Muslims in Trinidad which is not very far from Jamaica. They must have quite a lot of educated Muslims with a thorough knowledge of Islam. Someone could come to Jamaica, give lectures, perform marriage ceremonies, etc. Can you help in this matter?”
Brother Amirali of Trinidad has been requested to visit these Islands.
Mr R. T. K. writes:
“As regards our African Muslim Society, it is not to say that it was dull, but is was no more; that is, it was dead. You know that I founded the Society and asked a few gentlemen to assist me to lay a sound foundation for a Muslim Mission, but the gentlemen failed to do anything; consequently, the Society’s activities stopped. No money was forthcoming for printing handbills and issuing invitations for lectures. I cannot understand the mentality of South African Muslims. They say one thing but do not care to keep up their words.
They oppose the conversion of Africans to Islam on the ground that they would claim equality of status which the Indian South Africans cannot tolerate. Some of them went so far that they visited the houses of wealthy Muslims and induced them not to help this Mission of converting the natives to Islam—who will claim equality and marry their daughters and take food with them; and moreover the natives, being poor, will require their money for their support.
Some of them have peculiar ideas that Islam is not meant for black men but for the Indians and Europeans, hence Islam must not be preached among them. Under the above circumstances it is hard to rely upon these people for the propagation of Islam among the natives, and unless some help from outside is forthcoming, work cannot be started.
These people may help the Mission when they find the work progressing in spite of their apathy. The poor Muslims sympathize with the work but they are unable to give any monetary help. The young Indian Muslims are attracted by the European and coloured Christian girls and several of them have already renounced Islam. They can be found in churches, the beach, bioscopes, dancing halls with these girls. One is really ashamed to see such abominable character of the Muslims of this country.
I rely upon Allah and will never cease to preach Islam to the non-Muslims till my death. There are not more than eighty thousand Muslims in South Africa and some of them being wealthy can afford single-handed to support a Muslim Mission, but having no love of their religion they hesitate to spend anything for it. Truly speaking, the South Africans are wealthier than Americans, as all the best gold and silver are dug in South Africa. The wealthy Muslims give big public dinners for rich people fortnightly for the sake of their names, to which poor Muslims are never invited.
If I can get help for ten years for a Muslim Mission in the countryside, it can be made self-supporting after this period. I have experience of this work and had run a Christian Mission, so I can run a Muslim Mission on the same lines. A successful Muslim Mission on the lines of Christian Missions will be able to help overseas Missions.
The Christians and their Homes for homeless, widows and orphans are built and supported from the money collected from the despised native Africans. The Muslims do not know the value of these poor natives who will sacrifice everything for their religion and conscience. I have already converted Christian teachers to Islam, but they cannot leave the Christian schools unless we open our own work. Rs. 4500 per year will be the cost to run a Mission and a Home, etc. Will some philanthropic person consider over this useful work for Islam and help the cause?
One of my disciples is working right in the heart of Zululand among the big chiefs and is doing very useful work for Islam. He is a pure Zulu and well-known among them. During my tours in the previous years the native people wanted to embrace Islam but I thought that if they became Muslims and were left without a teacher, it would be a useless task, hence I had to ask them to wait for a short time. Their number was 1,670. There are educated Christian clergymen who are ready to become Muslims but are waiting for regular Muslim Mission work to support them.
There is a great opportunity for Islam in this country which is being lost through the apathy of the wealthy South African Muslims.”
Syed Tasadduq Husain Sahib writes:
(1) “On 12th Rabi-ul-Awwal (24th June 1934) we celebrated the Birthday of the Holy Prophet at the house of brother Ibrahim Adam Sachwani, under the Presidentship of Syed Ghalib Sahib Afghani Many Muslims attended the meeting. The function was opened with the recitation of the Holy Quran, after which brother Ibrahim Adam, Syed Tasadduq Husain, Syed Abid Ali and his sons and Syed Sultan Ali spoke on different aspects of the Holy Prophet’s life and read Urdu and Arabic poems. In conclusion, the President made suitable remarks and the meeting came to a close after prayers.
Jamiat-ul-Islamiah Baghdad and other Muslims also held large meetings on this auspicious occasion.
(2) “Iraq Jamaat intends to republish the Arabic tract which had been printed in India and was full of mistakes.” Full report for June 1934 received with the above letter throws light on the different activities of the members. New members were enrolled, Muslims and the non-Muslims made sympathizers, and Rs. 161.5 was remitted to the central treasury. Free literature was distributed in Iraq.