The Great Reformer (Vol. 2) [‘Mujaddid-e-Azam’]
Biography of Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad of Qadian
by Dr. Basharat Ahmad
Translated by Akram Ahmad
Chapter 49: The Announcement Titled ‘Tabligh-ul-Haq’ (Propagation of the Truth)
It is a well-known fact that members of the Shiite sect of Muslims curse and malign certain Islamic personalities (including the first three Caliphs of Islam).
One day, a Shia (member of the Shiite sect) took issue with a disciple of Hazrat Mirza, and while arguing that Hazrat Mirza had called himself superior to Hazrat Imam Husain [Imam Hussain], he cursed Hazrat Mirza profusely.
Angered by these remarks, Hazrat Mirza’s disciple retorted:
“What great service did Hazrat Imam Husain perform for the faith? Yazeed was the reigning Caliph; Hazrat Imam Husain revolted against the Caliph; his revolt was unsuccessful and he was killed. This is not jihad for the sake of religion. You people have elevated him quite undeservedly.”
When Hazrat Mirza learned about these statements, he at once set about rectifying the ignorance displayed by his disciple by publishing an announcement titled Tabligh-ul-Haq. It was published on October 8, 1905.
Some excerpts from that announcement are reproduced below so as to dispel some misunderstandings:
“May it be known that I have been informed via a postcard about certain statements made by some people who claim to be members of my Organization. They spoke words in respect of Hazrat Imam Husain, may Allah be pleased with him, to the effect that, God forbid, Hazrat Husain by virtue of not having pledged allegiance to the ruling Caliph was a rebel, and Yazeed was within his right (to take the action he took). May the curse of Allah be upon the liars.
“I had not hoped that any righteous person in my organization would ever utter such vile words. Then, the thought crosses my mind that many Shias have included me in the list of people that they curse and malign. Hence, it is not surprising that some ill-mannered, ignorant person may have responded to a foolish statement with an equally foolish statement of his own. This is akin to the disparagement of Jesus (peace be upon him) by ignorant Muslims in response to the Christians that malign Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him).
“In any case, I would like to inform the members of my Organization through this announcement that we believe Yazeed to be a person of impure nature, a vile insect of this world, and a tyrant. He did not possess any of the qualities that are the hallmark of a believer… However, Yazeed was not fortunate enough to have these qualities. The love of this world had blinded him.
“But Husain, may Allah be pleased with him, was pious and pure. And without a doubt, he was from those pious men who are cleansed by God with His own hand, and then filled with His love. And without a doubt, he is among the chiefs of Heaven. And anyone who harbors even an iota of malice towards him effectively renders void his own faith.
“And this Imam’s righteousness, love of God, patience, steadfastness, piety and devotion is a worthy example for us. We are the followers of the guidance that was vouchsafed to this innocent person. Ruined is the person who harbors enmity to him.
“Successful is he who shows his love for him in practical ways by instilling within himself his (Hazrat Imam Husain’s) faith, morals, bravery, piety, steadfastness and love of God, and then reflecting these qualities like a clean mirror reflects the image of a beautiful person. Such people (like Hazrat Imam Husain) are hidden from the eyes of the world. None knows the measure of their worth except those who are like them. The eyes of the world cannot recognize them because they are far removed from the temporal world. This was the reason for Hazrat Husain’s martyrdom because (his real worth) was not recognized.
“Which pure and pious person has been loved by the world in his lifetime so that Hazrat Husain should have been loved? So it is the height of villainy and faithlessness to disparage Hazrat Husain, may Allah be pleased with him.
“And whoever disparages Hazrat Husain or any other pious and pure religious leader or utters any remark slighting them destroys his own faith. This is so because Allah, all Glory is His, becomes the enemy of the person who is an enemy of His beloved and chosen ones.
“Even if somebody disparages or curses me, it is still very sinful to retaliate by uttering anything disrespectful of the beloved and chosen ones of Allah. In such a situation, it is better to exercise forbearance, and to pray for the ignorant opponents because if they only knew Who has sent me, they would never have disparaged me…
“O my Dears! Be patient. The affair that is secret will ultimately be revealed. God knows that I am from Him and have come at an appropriate time. But what cure can I prescribe for hearts that have hardened and eyes that have become closed… Be kind, and remain engaged in supplications. Let sincere repentance be your intercessor.
“Tread softly on this earth. God is not bound to any nation by ties of kinship. If you call yourself God’s party but do not inculcate righteousness and piety, and the fear and dread of God finds no place in your hearts, then know for sure that you shall be destroyed before your opponents because you were awakened and still you went back to sleep. And do not think that God stands in need of you.
“If you do not follow His injunctions, and if you do not respect His limits, then He will destroy you and bring in your place another nation who will follow His commandments.
“The purpose of my advent is not merely to show that Jesus (peace be upon him) has died. This would (certainly) remove a barrier from the hearts of the Muslims and make them aware of a true event. But the real reason for my coming is to make the Muslims stand firm for the real Unity of God; to enable them to develop a connection with God; to make their prayers and worship manifest pleasure and gratitude and to enable them to cleanse themselves of all internal impurities.
“If only my opponents understood, there is really no big difference between their beliefs and mine. For example, they say that Jesus (peace be upon him) was bodily raised to the heavens.
“I too concede that Jesus was bodily raised to the heavens following his death, as is the purport of the verse:
اِنِّیۡ مُتَوَفِّیۡکَ وَ رَافِعُکَ اِلَیَّ
‘I will cause thee to die, and exalt thee in My presence,’ (3:55).
“The only difference is that that body was not physical but a spiritual one that was granted to him by God in the same manner that it was granted to Adam, Abraham, Moses, David, John, and our Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) and other prophets.
“Similarly, it is our belief that he (Jesus) was to return to this world, and that he has come. The only difference is that in accordance with the ancient tradition of God, his coming is only in the sense of a manifestation (burooz), just as Prophet Elias’ return to this world was only in the form of a manifestation (burooz).
“One should reflect how far removed it is from the path of piety to make such a fuss over such minor differences that were bound to occur.
“After all, the person who has come from God as a hakam (arbitrator) must necessarily identify, as is implicit in the meaning of the word hakam, the misguided notions of the nation to whom he has been sent. Otherwise, it would be a misnomer to call him a hakam.
“There is no need to expand any further. I only say the following to my opponents and close my announcement:
اعۡمَلُوۡا عَلٰی مَکَانَتِکُمۡ اِنِّیۡ عَامِلٌ ؕ سَوۡفَ تَعۡلَمُوۡنَ ۙ
‘Act according to your ability, I too am acting. You will come to know soon.’ (11:93).
“And peace to him who follows the guidance.”
This announcement removes many misunderstandings.
First, it shows the great reverence in which Hazrat Mirza held Hazrat Imam Husain (peace be upon him).
Second, it reveals the real purpose of Hazrat Mirza’s advent, and shows that Hazrat Mirza’s beliefs did not differ from those of the Ahle-Sunnat-Wal-Jamaat sect of Muslims except in the interpretation of one or two issues.
Third, it shows that opposition to a Caliph is not necessarily an act of rebellion. If a Caliph has not been appointed according to the Islamic rules of appointment but has usurped the Caliphate through trickery or propaganda, or if the person who has become the Caliph subscribes to wrong beliefs or commits wrong actions or if he has an immoral character, then it is incumbent on pious people to oppose him, to declare his Caliphate null and void and to try to depose him. Such an action would then be considered as righteous and a service to the nation and Islam. If a person is killed while striving for this objective, he will be considered a martyr.
So those who have eyes should see for themselves, and those who have ears should hear for themselves — this is the judgment of the hakam who was appointed by God for the reformation and guidance of mankind in this era.