CONTENTS August 2006, Vol.101, No.8

Editorial: ...... 2

Sarah Waseem, London – UK

Essence of Islam – Part 10 ...... 3 A translation of some poems in remembrance of the Holy Prophet(saw) by his ardent

lover and devoted servant. Hadhrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad(as) – Promised Messiah and Mahdi Mercy for the Universe ...... 16 Why is the offence of ‘sabb’ (defaming the Holy Prophet(saw)) not a capital offence? Its punishment is in the Hands of Allah alone. Hadhrat Mirza Tahir Ahmad(ru) – Khalifatul Masih IV Jalsa Salana – Fiji ...... 30 Speech by Head of the worldwide community on how its members should follow the teachings of Islam by following the examples of the Holy Prophet(saw). Hadhrat Mirza Masroor Ahmad – Khalifatul Masih V Dangers of the Age and Safeguarding of Islamic Values ...... 43 By following guidance given by Islam, we can prevent ourselves from the immoral

and evil dangers affecting mankind. Bilal Atkinson, Hartlepool – UK Abdus Salam and the International Centre for Theoretical . . . . 58 A brief look at the origins and achievements of the Centre as it celebrates its

fortieth anniversary Sameen Ahmed khan – Oman

COVER PIC: Fijian palm trees: Copyright of dreamscape photo library.

Basit Ahmad Chief Editor and Manager: Mansoor Ahmed Shah Bockarie Tommy Kallon Management Board: Special contributors: Design and layout: Fareed Ahmad Mr Munir-ud-din Shams (Chairman) Amatul-Hadi Ahmad Tanveer Khokhar d Fazal Ahmad Farina Qureshi r Mr Mansoor Shah (Secretary) Publisher: a Fauzia Bajwa Mr Naseer Ahmad Qamar Proofreaders: Al Shirkatul Islamiyyah o Mansoor Saqi Mr Mubarak Ahmad Zafar Abdul Ghany Jahangeer

B Khan and Shaukia Mir Distribution: Mahmood Hanif Mr Mirza Fakhar Ahmad l Muhammad Hanif Mr. Abdul Baqi Arshad a Mansoora Hyder-Muneeb i r Navida Shahid All correspondence should The Review of Religions © Islamic Publications, 2006 o

t Sarah Waseem. be forwarded to the editor at: The London Mosque ISSN No: 0034-6721 i 16 Gressenhall Road d Saleem Ahmad Malik London, SW18 5QL

E Tanveer Khokhar

Views expressed in this publication are not necessarily the beliefs of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community 1 EDITORIAL Sarah Waseem– UK

Prophets of God demonstrate through pened to all prophets. Those of the their messages and personal example established faiths believe that their way how God wants us to live our lives. The of life is the truth and do all they can to most excellent of these models was the discredit new ideas. Holy Prophet(saw) of Islam. His qualities of truthfulness and beneficence to his ‘After the Hijrah, the Quraish of fellow men were known and appreciated Makkah joined forces with these Jews to by those around him even before his stop the progress of Islam. The claim to prophethood. hypocrites were already there, starting work as fifth columnists’ (Murder in the In his Jalsa address in Fiji this year, Name of Allah). Hadhrat Khalifatul Masih V said: ‘He [the Holy Prophet(saw)] established high Such individuals tried to create examples in honouring the rights and dissention among the believers. Sadly obligations that man owes to Allah and this continues today albeit in a different the rights that are due to other human form. Muslims themselves are guilty of beings.’ The standard of his worship are misunderstanding the message of the an example for those who wish to attain Holy Prophet(saw) and create disunity by nearness to Allah and want that their end fighting one another in the name of should be good.’ Islam and try to demonstrate that they are the true believers. They fail to When we ignore the commandments of appreciate that the real message of Islam God, and guidance given to us, society is to worship God and then declare that opens itself up to dangers. Bilal ‘Muhammad(saw) is the prophet of God’. Atkinsons discusses some of these in his article ‘Dangers of the age and Hadhrat Khalifatul Masih IV(ru) warns us safeguarding of Islamic values’. He that ‘….people who reject prophets of explains how Islam provides clear God and men of peace ….. stand directions as to how to avoid those evils disunited and bereft of the blessings of which ultimately destroy a society. the peace they sought to disturb. They breed violence and terrorism’ (Murder However, it is the way of man that in the Name of Islam) The truth of these whenever prophets are sent to him with words is evident in the world today. guidance, his initial stance is to disbelieve and ridicule. This has hap-

2 The Review of Religions – August 2006 ESSENCE OF ISLAM: Poems in Rememberance of the Holy Prophet(saw) – Part 10

This series sets out, in the words of the Promised Messiah(as), Hadhrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad, a summary of his exposition of four outstanding topics: ISLAM; ALLAH, THE EXALTED; THE HOLY PROPHET(saw) and THE HOLY QUR’AN. The original compilation, in Urdu, from which these extracts have been translated into English, was collated with great care and diligence by Syed Daud Ahmad Sahib, Allah have mercy on him and reward him graciously for his great labour of love. Amin. The English rendering is by the late Sir Muhammad Zafrullah Khan, may Allah be pleased with him, and is quoted from The Essence of Islam, Volume 1. All references throughout, unless otherwise specifically mentioned, are from the Holy Qur’an.

Fire of Devotion to the Beauty of Of the excellences of Muhammad(saw) Muhammads(saw) – (Persian Poem) I am ready to offer my heart and soul The fire that burns within me For the beauty of Muhammad(sa); Is the fire of the love of My body is merely the dust of the lane Muhammad(saw); Treaded by the progeny of The water that I possess Muhammad(sa). Is from the sweet and pure water of Muhammad(sa). I have seen with my heart’s eye (Majmu-ah-Ishtiharat, Vol.1, p.97) And heard with perceptive ears; The trumpet of the beauty of Muhammad(sa) Manifestation of the Eternal God – Echoes everywhere. (Persian Poem) Except the Lord of Mercy, This ever-flowing water which I Who can ever comprehend the lofty distribute station of Ahmad(saw). Freely among God’s creatures; He effaced himself to such an extent Is but a drop from the ocean As if the letter ‘M’ had fallen away

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from the name ‘Ahmad(saw)’

So lost was he in the Beloved Lord, That because of his extreme love His person became the very similitude Of the Gracious Lord.

From his holy countenance Emanates the fragrance of the True Beloved; His divinely inspired person and its attributes Became the very mirror of the Eternal Lord. The founder of the Ahmadiyya Muslim community was Hadhrat Even if I am accused of heresy and Mirza Ghulam Ahmad(as). disbelief, The founder of the Ahmadiyya I cannot help saying: Muslim community was Hadhrat There is no loftier Divine Throne Mirza Ghulam Ahmad(as). In 1891, Than the heart of the Holy Prophet – he claimed, on the basis of Divine Ahmad(saw) revelation, that he was the Promised Messiah and Mahdi whose advent God be thanked had been foretold by Muhammad, That despite opposition on the part of the Holy Prophet of Islam (peace the worldly-wise and blessings of Allah be upon him) I would court a thousand and one and by the scriptures of other faiths. troubles His claim constitutes the basis of the For the sake of that Spring of Grace. beliefs of the Ahmadiyya Muslim community. By the grace of God And by His bounties to me I am an enemy of the Pharaoh and (was so passing strange) that his hordes, I can’t help proclaiming it aloud Because I love this Moses of mine-the If only I could find Holy Prophet(saw). One eager heart along the path.

The unique and exalted station This alone is my wish, my prayer, and Of the Holy Prophet(saw) as revealed my firm resolve.

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That may my heart and soul be His countenance is so blessed that sacrificed one glimpse of it In the sacred path of love Transforms an ugly face into a For the Holy Prophet beautiful one. Muhammad(saw). (Taudih-e-Maram, Ruhani Khaz’ain, Like a star, his enlightened soul has Vol.3, pp.62-63) lit up Countless hearts which were full of darkness. The Status of Ahmad(saw) – (Persian Poem) He is so blessed that his coming My heart is aflame praising the Holy Signifies the mercy of the Lord of all Prophet; Who has no peer in the worlds. excellence. He is Ahmad of the latter days, it is Who loves the Eternal Friend with all for his his heart, That human hearts became brighter And whose soul is in communion with than the sun. the Beloved. He is more beautiful than all the He who is the recipient of divine progeny of Adam; favours, He is purer than the purest pearl. And has been brought up like a child in the lap of God. From his lips issues forth the fountain of wisdom; He is an ocean of virtue and piety, His heart overflows with the water of And is a unique pearl in all its Kauthar – the heavenly stream. splendour. For the sake of God, he repudiated In generosity and beneficence, he is all else; like the spring rain; On land and sea there is none like His bounties and favours are like him. those of the sun. God has granted him the lamp He is ever merciful and is the sign of Which is forever immune from any divine mercy; danger or windstorm. He is gracious and is the manifestation of divine grace. Champion warrior of the Lord God;

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Wearing his dagger with great dignity. For everyone with insight, he is the sign of the Gracious His arrow has demonstrated its God; swiftness in every field; He is the proof of God for all who His sword has displayed its skill have eyes to see. everywhere. Out of compassion, he is the help of He proved the helplessness of idols to the helpless; the world; With his loving kindness, he shares He plainly showed the power of the the grief of the grief-stricken. One, All-Powerful God. His countenance exceeds the sun and Lest the idols, their makers, and the moon in beauty; worshippers The dust of his threshold is more Should remain ignorant of the power fragrant than musk and ambergris. of God. How can the sun and the moon be He loves truth, straightforwardness like him? and uprightness; In his heart shine hundreds of suns of He is the enemy of falsehood and evil. divine light.

He is the master, yet he is a servant to A single look at the beautiful one the helpless; Is better than eternal life. He is the king, yet he is like a servitor to the weak. I who am so well aware of his beauty, Will give my very life, while others The compassion that the world offer their hearts. received from him, None has ever experienced even from Remembrance of his countenance a mother. Sends me into transports of ecstasy; I am in a state of perpetual He is intoxicated with the wine of the intoxication, Beloved’s love; Having drank from his goblet. For His sake, he is so prostrate and humble. I would keep on flying towards his His light reached out to every people, lane forever; And lit up every country. Had I but the wings.

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Of what use are to me the two lips Without doubt the reign of all and the sweet basil, Prophets ended with his commg. When I have fallen in love with that beautiful face. He is the sun for all time and space; His beauty pulls at the strings of my He is the guide of all-the black and heart; the brown. The powerful one drags me along with great force. The meeting point of the ocean of knowledge and recognition of Allah; I found him to be the light of the Combining in him the attributes of eyes; the sun and the shade. And in its impact, his love is like the bright sun. My eyes searched all around but did not find Resplendent became the face that did A fountain fairer than his faith. not turn away from him. He found the remedy, who held on to For seekers, there is no guide except his threshold. him; For pilgrims, there is no leader other Everyone who dares enter the ocean than him. of faith without him, Misses his port at the very outset. His is the exalted station whose intensity of light He is unlettered, yet peerless in Would scorch the wings of the Holy knowledge and wisdom; Spirit. Can there be brighter testimony than this? Almighty Allah has granted him the Law and Faith, God granted him that elixir of Which is forever immutable. knowledge and understanding; Before whose dazzling light, every First he shone upon the land of the star paled into insignificance. Arabs To cleanse it of all evil. Through him the all human potentials Were fully actualised. Then the light of faith and holy law Covered the world like the sky. Every excellence is culminated in his holy person; He gave to the people the elixir of life

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And rescued them from the jaws of Grant me wisdom, as You have the dragon. granted me a yearning heart; Grant me the wine, as You have The monarchs of the time were granted me the goblet. wonder-struck, O my Lord God, for the sake of Your As were the sages dumbfounded. chosen one, Whom You supported at every step; No one could equal his knowledge or power; Hold my hand with compassion and He has humbled the pride of the generosity; arrogant. Be my Friend and Helper in all my affairs. What need has he that anyone should glorify him; My reliance is on Your power even To praise him is an honour for the though one who praises. I am like dust, or even humbler still. (Barahin-e-Ahmadiyya, Ruhani He resides in the beautiful garden of Khazain, Vol.1, pp.17-23) purity and grandeur; Far above the imagination of those who praise him. Can I ever succeed in adequately praising the exalted leader; O Allah, convey our greetings to him Whom the heaven and earth and both And to his brotherhood of Prophets. the worlds cannot praise enough?

We are the humble servants of all the The station of nearness that he has Prophets; achieved with the Eternal Beloved We lie like dust on their threshold. Is beyond the ken of all those who have ever attained nearness to God. May our life be sacrificed for the Prophet, None in this world can even dream of Who showed the way to the True God The favours with which the eternal beloved continues to visit him. O my Lord, by the host of the Prophets, He is the leader of the elect of God Whom You sent with Your abundant and king of the company of lovers; grace; His soul has traversed every stage of union with the Beloved.

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congregation and a proof of God on That blessed one who is the earth; manifestation of divine signs, A great and powerful sign of the Came as a mercy from the Nourisher existence of the Creator. of all the worlds. Every vein and particle of his being is His is the exalted and unique station the abode of the Eternal Beloved; in the divine court; His every breath and particle is Which is beyond the reach of the elect imbued with the beauty of the Friend. and the great. The beauty of his countenance far He is Ahmad of the latter days, exceeds a hundred suns and moons; Who is the source of honour for those The dust of his threshold is superior who came before; to a hundred pieces of musk for For those of the latter days he is the Tataristan. leader, Haven of refuge, security and He is beyond human reason, thought, strength. and imagination; How can thought dare reach out to His distinguished threshold is the ark that limitless ocean! of protection For the whole creation; His soul is the first to proclaim: No one on the Day of Judgement will ‘Bala’ – ‘Yes, indeed!’ attain salvation, He is the Adam of faith in the Unity But through his intercession. of God; Even before the creation of Adam, He surpasses all and every kind of He had communion with the Beloved. excellence; The heavens are a mere speck of dust It is embedded in his nature to lay compared to his great resolve. down his life For God’s creatures; He manifests the light which had He is ever ready to sacrifice himself been hidden since eternity; for the downtrodden; He is the source and exordium of And he is the help of the helpless. sunrise, which was hidden since eternity. At the time when the world was filled With idolatry and polytheism; The chief of the heavenly No heart wept blood

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But the heart of that sovereign. In the heavens: The angels too were moved to tears No one was aware of the evil of polytheism At last, because of his humility, And the filth of idols; His prayers and supplications, Ahmad’s soul alone was cognizant of The Lord turned with compassion it: His heart was lost in Divine love. To the dark and gloomy world.

Who knows and who is aware The world was rocked Of the cries of the intercessor By a great storm of sin; Which arose for the sake of mankind In every land people became blind In the silence of the cave. and deaf Because of sin and polytheism. I cannot fathom the pain, The agony, and the distress, In the time of Noah, Which brought him to the cave, The world was filled with every So troubled and full of anguish. mischief; No heart was free He was afraid neither of the dark, From darkness and dust. Nor of loneliness; He did not fear death, The devils had ruled Nor was he scared of scorpions or Over every body and soul; snakes. Then the All-Powerful Lord appeared in glory He deeply loved his people, To the soul of Muhammad. He was devoted to mankind and the world; His grace encompasses alike He cared little about his bodily The black and the white; comfort, He it is who sacrificed his life Nor about his personal needs. For the sake of mankind.

He raised cries of pain O Prophet of Allah! For the good of mankind; You alone are the sun of the path of Day and night he was preoccupied righteousness; In supplication to God. No pious or righteous one, without you His humility and prayers Can find his way to the right path. Caused a great commotion

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O Prophet of Allah! Which the seeker cannot attain Your lips are the life-sustaining In a whole lifetime. fountain; You alone are the guide Of the wonders of the universe, To the path of the True Lord. Whatever is beautiful and sublime; I clearly behold in you. There is the one who seeks to hear No time is better than the time your sayings Spent in your love; From Tom, Dick and Harry; Nor is any pastime more pleasant There is another who doesn’t have to Than that devoted to your praise. wait: He hears directly from your own lips. Since I am cognizant of your unlimited virtues, He indeed is alive, who drinks from I am eager to sacrifice my life for your fountain; you; Wise is he who follows you. Whereas others are content with their services. The ultimate point of knowledge for those who know, Everyone supplicates for himself Is the knowledge of your face; In his prayers, but; For the truthful, steadfastness and O my garden of eternal spring! loyalty to you I supplicate only for your progeny. Is the height of truth. O Prophet of Allah! Without you no one can ever attain I am lost in love with every particle The wealth of true knowledge; Of your holy person; Even if he dies in the exercise Were I to have a hundred thousand Of unlimited devotion and worship. lives, I would bequeath them all To bank on one’s own efforts To be sacrificed in your path. Without the love of your countenance, Is to be naive What is the truth about submission to For he who is unaware of your face, you, Can never see the face of virtue. And love for your countenance? It is a panacea for every heart, Each moment a new light is attained An elixir for every lacerated soul. Through the love of your countenance, How worthless is the heart,

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That does not bleed for you! My heart is in ecstasy; How useless is the life, My very being, my body, and my soul, That is not sacrifice for you! Are but an offering at the altar Of his body and his countenance. Because of your love, My heart does not fear death; I see hundreds of thousands of Look at my steadfastness: Josephs I am walking to the scaffold In the dimple of his chin; With a smile! I see countless Messiahs Being born by his breath. O mercy of God! We have come to you seeking your He is the sovereign of the seven mercy; continents; Like us, there are hundreds of He is the sun of the East and the thousands of hopefuls West; Waiting at your threshold. He is king of both the worlds; He is a haven for the humble. O Prophet of Allah! I offer my being For your lovely countenance; Successful is the heart, This head of mine, lying heavy on my Which treads faithfully in his path; shoulder, Lucky is the head, Is but an offering in your service. That is sacrificed for that warrior.

Ever since I have been allowed O Prophet of Allah! To witness the light of the Holy The world is dark with disbelief and Prophet(saw); idol worship; His love, like a spring, It is time you revealed your face Has been gushing forth from my Which is bright like the sun. heart! O my beloved! I see the light of God The fire of devotion Reflected in your countenance; Emanates from my breath like I see the heart of a wise person lightening; Intoxicated with your love. O weak hearted companions! Move away from my proximity Lovers and the enlightened Recognise your station; Ever since I saw his countenance in a But the eyes of the bat vision, Cannot see the bright midday sun.

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Everyone in this world has a beloved, Recall the time when you revealed but; Your countenance to me in a vision; O beloved of rosy countenance! Recall the time when you visited me I am devoted only to you. With great longing and eagerness.

Out of the entire world, Call to mind the kindness and favours I have fallen in love with your lovely That you showered upon me; face; Call to mind the glad tidings I have forsaken my own self for you. You conveyed to me from the Lord.

What is life? Recall the time, when in full To be sacrificed it in your path; wakefulness, You granted me a What is freedom? glimpse To be like a prey in your captivity. Of the loveliness of the charming face And the beauty which is the envy of As long as I live, Spring. Your love will always dwell in my (A’ina-e-Kamalat-e-Islam, Ruhani heart; Khazain, Vol.5, pp.23-28) As long as blood flows in my heart, It will always be sustained by my love for you. Muhammad(saw) is the Proof of Himself (Persian Poem) O Messenger of Allah! There is a wonderful light in the My ties with you are very strong person of Muhammad(saw); indeed; There is a wonderful ruby in the mine I have been devoted to you of Muhammad(saw). Ever since I was a suckling infant. The heart is cleansed of all darkness At every step I have taken towards When it joins the lovers Allah, ofMuhammad(saw). I have seen you as an invisible helper, A supporter and a guide. Alas for the hearts of those unworthy ones; In both the worlds, Whom turn their backs upon the So strong is my affiliation to you: hospitality of Muhammad(saw). You have nourished me Like a baby in your lap. I know not of anyone in both the world;

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Who has a station equal to Muhammad(saw). Muhammad(saw). For the sake of faith, I fear no one in God is utterly displeased with the the world: person; For I am coloured after the faith of Who bears a grudge against Muhammad(saw). Muhammad(saw). How easy it becomes to renounce the world, God Himself bums that worthless When remembering the beauty and worm; Muhammad(saw)! Which is among the enemies of Muhammad(saw). Every particle of my being has been sacrificed in his path; If you wish to be delivered from the I have witnessed the latent beauty of stupor of the lower self; Muhammad(saw). Corne and join the ranks of the lovers of Muhammad(saw). I know not the name of any other teacher; If you desire that God should praise I have studied at the school of you; Muhammad(saw). Become a true admirer of Muhammad(saw). I have nothing to do with any other beloved; If you desire a proof of his I am a prey to the loving ways of truthfulness, become his Muhammad(saw). lover: Muhammad(saw) himself is the proof of I only crave a single glance; Muhammad(saw). I need nothing but the garden of My body craves to be sacrificed for Muhammad(saw). the dust of Muhammad’s(saw) feet; My heart is ever eager to die for Search not for my anguished heart in Muhammad(saw). my bosom; By the tresses of the Prophet of God! I have surrendered it to the lap of I would die for the illumined Muhammad(saw). countenance of Muhammad(saw). I am the merriest among the birds of Cut me to pieces or bum me to death, Paradise; I will not turn away from the court of That have built their nests in the

14 The Review of Religions – August 2006 ESSENCE OF ISLAM – PART 10 garden of Muhammad(saw). References to the Holy Qur’an item You have illumined my heart and soul count ‘Bismillah...’ (In the Name of with love; Allah...) as the first verse of each My life is an offering to you, O Chapter. In some non-standard texts, (saw) Muhammad ! this is not counted and should the Were I to sacrifice my life for him a reader refer to such texts, the verse hundred times; quoted in The Review of Religions Alas! it would not be worthy of the will be found at one verse less than high station of Muhammad(saw). the number quoted.

So awe-inspiring is the station In this journal, for the ease of non- granted to this champion; Muslim readers, ‘(saw)’ or ‘saw’ No one can even dare to compete after the words, ‘Holy Prophet’, or the name ‘Muhammad’, are used. with Muhammad(saw). They stand for ‘Sallallahu ‘alaihi wa Beware, O foolish and misguided sallam’ meaning ‘Peace and enemy! blessings of Allah be upon him’. Likewise, the letters ‘(as)’ or ‘as’ Beware of the sharp sword of after the name of all other prophets is Muhammad(saw)! an abbreviation meaning ‘Peace be The path of the Lord God, which upon him’ derived from ‘Alaihis mankind has lost; salatu wassalam’ which are words Seek it in the progeny of that a Muslim utters out of respect Muhammad(saw). whenever he or she comes across that name. The abbreviation ‘ra’ or (ra) Beware, O denier of the status of stands for ‘Radhiallahu Ta’ala anhu Muhammad(saw) and is used for Companions of a Prophet, meaning Allah be pleased And of the manifest light of (saw) with him or her (when followed by the Muhammad ! relevant Arabic pronoun). Finally, ‘ru’ or (ru) for Rahemahullahu Ta’ala Even though miracles are no more; means the Mercy of Allah the Exalted Come and witness them among the be upon him. devotees of Muhammad(saw). In keeping with current universal (Announcement February 20,1893, practice, local transliterations are Majmu’a Ishtihiirat, Vol.1, pp. 371- preferred to their anglicised versions, 372) e.g. Makkah instead of Mecca, etc.

The Review of Religions – August 2006 15 MERCY FOR THE UNIVERSE Part 8 This is the eighth extract taken from the book Murder in the Name of Allah by Hadhrat Mirza Tahir Ahmad(ru). This chapter examines the teachings of Islam from the Holy Qur’an and examples of the Holy Prophet(saw) on how to treat verbal abuse against the status of the Holy Prophet(saw).

‘They were clever enough to Disparaging a prophet of God is as realise that a Musalman’s old as prophecy itself. Even feelings are never more easily Muhammad(saw) could not escape it. aroused than over a real or He was mocked, not only during fancied insult to the Holy the Makkan period of his life, but Prophet(saw). They, therefore, also in Madinah where he had the began to proclaim that their authority to punish. The Jews of activites were meant to Madinah had sharp tongues and a preserve the nabuwwat sick sense of humour and did not [prophethood] of the Holy miss an opportunity of ridiculing Prophet and to repel attacks on the Prophet(saw). his namus [honour]. . . . The trick succeeded and they began After the Hijrah, the Quraish of to attract large audiences to Makkah joined forces with these their meetings. Since some of Jews to stop the progress of Islam. the Ahrar speakers are experts The hypocrites were already there, in the choice of words and starting work as fifth columnists. expression and the use of Apart from intrigue and war, they similes and metaphors and can also employed the communications intersperse their speeches with network for propaganda. The flashes of humour of however propagandist poets, whom Maxime Iow an order, they soon began Rodinson has described as ‘the gaining in popularity.’ journalists of the time’ and Justice Mohammad Munir1 Carmichael as ‘kindlers of battle’2; accused the Muslims of dis-

16 The Review of Religions – August 2006 MERCY FOR THE UNIVERSE honouring themselves by sub- Malik b. alSayf4 who also lamented mitting to an outsider. Abu Afak the loss of Quraish at . 5 In an taunted the children of Qayla (the elegy he said: Aws and the Khazraj): ‘Drive out that fool of yours that you may be safe ‘I have lived a long time, but I From talk that has no sense! have never seen Do you taunt me because I Either a house or gathering of shed tears People For people who loved me More loyal and faithful to sincerely? Its allies, when they call on it, As long as I live I shall weep Than that of the children of and remember Qayla The merits of people whose (the Aws and the Khazraj) as a glory is the houses of whole. Makkah.’ 6 The mountains will crumble before they submit Obviously, the main purpose of this Yet here is a rider come among vulgar and abusive campaign was them who had divided them. to sow the seeds of dissention (He says) ‘This is permitted; between the Ansar and the this is forbidden’ Muhajirs on the one hand and To all kinds of things. between the Aws and the Khazraj But if you had believed in on the other. The campaign seemed power to pay off when a Jew from the And in might, why did you not Banu Qua’inq’ua, Shas b. Qays, follow a tubba?’ 3 ordered a Jewish youth to recite some poems composed at the battle Abu ‘Afak in effect was saying, of Buath. They were recited to a ‘The tubba was, after all, a south mixed gathering of Muslims, Arabian king of great reputation, comprising the Aws and the yet you resisted him. Now what has Khazraj. Eventually, both sides got happened to you that you have worked up and challenged each accepted the claims of a Makkan other, saying: ‘If you wish we will refugee?’ Meanwhile, Kab was do the same thing again.’ They elected chief of the Jews, replacing both replied: ‘We will! Your

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meeting place is outside – that your duty to Allah in all being the volcanic tract. To arms! respects, every moment of your To arms!’7 As soon as the Holy lives, so that whenever death Prophet(saw) heard the news he overtakes you, it will find you in hurried to the spot with the a state of complete submission Emigrants and addressed the men to Him. All of you, take hold of of the Aws and the Khazraj: Allah’s rope which He gave you when you hated each other. He ‘O Muslims! Remember God, united your hearts in love so remember God. Will you act that by His grace you became like pagans while I am with brethren. you? After God has guided you (Ch.3:Vs.101-104) to Islam and honoured you and saved you from paganism? This was the atmosphere of unrest After he has delivered you from in Madinah when the Prophet(saw) unbelief and made you friends decided to stop the poets’ by so doing?’ 8 propaganda campaign and asked for volunteers to execute them. It The following verses of the Qur’an was clear they had become a grave were revealed on the occasion: 10 danger to peace. To say that they were killed because they reviled O ye who believe... if you obey and insulted the Prophet(saw) is to any of those who have been twist historical fact. To use these given the Book, they will turn executions as a precedent for the you again into disbelievers execution of those who defame the after you have believed. When Prophet(saw) is either deliberate you are the people to whom the dishonesty or sheer historical signs of Allah are given and ignorance. Defaming the among whom the Messenger of Prophet(saw), known technically as Allah is present, how can you sabb, is neither a hadd offence disbelieve? He who holds fast according to the Qur’an nor a capital to Allah is indeed guided to the offence according to the Sunnah. In right path. fact it is not punishable at all, unless there are contributing circum- O ye who believe, be mindful of stances. Its punishment, like that of

18 The Review of Religions – August 2006 MERCY FOR THE UNIVERSE apostasy, is in the hands of Allah in the next and hath prepared alone. The Qur’an uses goodwill to for them the doom of the uphold the honour of Allah and his disdained. And those who prophets, not the sword. The malign believing men and Qur’an says: women undeservedly, they bear the guilt of slander and Revile not those to whom they manifest sin. pray besides Allah, lest they (Ch.33:Vs.57-59) wrongfully revile Allah through ignorance. Thus unto every The Qur’an is very clear about nation have We made their deed sabb. It asks Muslims not to scorn seem fair. Then unto their Lord even the false gods of unbelievers is their return, and He will tell and it does not lay down any them what they used to do. punishment for those who show (Ch.6: V.109) disrespect to the Prophet(saw) – for them, God has prepared the ‘doom Respect, honour, love and esteem of the disdained’. for someone come from the heart. Force can shut mouths, create And how did the Excellent terror and result in disrespect and Exampler(saw) treat those who irreverence. This is why the Qur’an reviled him? Let us return to the takes a positive view in matters of leader of the munafiqun, Abdullah the heart. b. Ubayy. After the battle of AI- Mustaliq (6AH/AD737), while the As regards respect for the Holy Holy Prophet(saw) was staying by Prophet(saw), the Qur’an says: the watering-place of Al-Muraysi, an unpleasant dispute took place Lo! Allah and His angels between the Muhajirs and Ansar. A shower blessings on the hired servant of Umar, Jahjah b. Prophet. O ye who believe! Ask Masud, and Sinan b. Wabar aI- blessings on him and honour Juhani, an ally of Ansar, began him with a worthy salutation. fighting. According to Ibn Ishaq: Lo! Those who malign Allah and His Messenger, Allah hath ‘The Juhani called out: “Men cursed them in this world and of AI-Ansar!” and Jahjah

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called out “Men of the The Holy Prophet(saw) was, of Muhajirun!” Abdullah b. course, greatly upset. The tribal Ubayy b. Salul was enraged. appeal of Juhani to Ansar and With him were some of his Jahjah’s call to ‘the men of people, including Zayd b. Mahajirun’ reminded him of the Arqam, a young boy. He said: Day of Buath and the war of Basus, “Have they actually done this? which lasted forty years. Had They dispute our priority, they Abdullah b. Ubayy succeeded the outnumber us in our country. Ansar, the Muhajirs would have Nothing is more apt for us and gone back to their tribal wars. The the vagabonds of Quaraish message of Islamic unity, which than the ancient saying, ‘Feed a changed these disunited tribes into dog and it will devour you.’ By a mighty Arab nation, would have Allah, when we return to been lost forever. The Holy Madinah the most honourable Prophet(saw) was so upset that he will drive out the meanest.” gave orders to move, although, as Then he went to his people and Ibn Ishaq reports, ‘This was at a said: “This is what you have time when the Prophet(saw) was not done to yourselves. You have used to travelling’11 Referring to let them occupy your country this incident, the Qur’an says: and you have divided your property among them. Had you They [the Munafiqun] say: only kept your property from ‘When we return to Madinah them they would have gone the one most honourable shall elsewhere.” Zayd b. Arqam surely drive out the meanest.’ heard this and, when he had True honour belongs to Allah, disposed of his enemies, went to His Messenger and and told the Prophet(saw). Umar, believers; but the hypocrites who was with him, said: “Tell know it not. Abbad b. Bishr to go and kill (Ch.63.V.9) him.” The Prophet(saw) answered: “What if men When Abdullah, son of Abdullah should say Muhammad kills b. Ubayy, heard of this affair, he his own Companions? No, but went to the Prophet(saw) and said: give orders to set off.”’10

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‘I have heard that you want to publicly and to accept martyrdom. kill Abdullah b. Ubayy for The qadis of Cordova, however, what you heard about him. If refused to oblige them and jailed you must, order me to do it them instead. Will Durant reports and I will bring his head, for one such incident: AlKhazraj know they have no man more dutiful to his father Isaac, a Cordovan monk, went to than I. I am afraid that if you the qadi and professed a desire for order someone else to kill conversion; but when the judge, him, I could not bear to see his well pleased, began to expound executioner walking around Mohammedanism, the monk and might kill him. I would interrupted him: ‘Your Prophet’ ,he therefore be killing a believer said, ‘has lied and deceived you. for an unbeliever and I would May he be cursed, who has certainly be damned. The dragged so many wretches with Prophet(saw) said: ‘No, but let him down to hell’ The qadi us deal kindly with him and reproved him and asked had he make much of his been drinking? The monk replied: companionship while he is ‘I am in my right mind. Condemn with us.’ 12 me to death.’ The qadi had him imprisoned, but asked permission Muslim rulers, who understood of Abd-ur Rahman II to dismiss why the Holy Prophet(saw) treated him as insane. 13 Abdullah b. Ubayy and other hypocrites and Jews as he did, have Shaykhul Islam Ebus’u’ud Effendi, been extremely reluctant to create chief mufti of the Ottoman Empire false martyrs in the process of during the reign of the Sultan protecting the honour of the Suleyman the Magnificent, Prophet(saw) (Namus-i-Rasul). In allowed the death penalty, but only Cordova, between 850 and 859, a for habitual and public defamers of group of Christian zealots was the Holy Prophet(saw). Shaykhul formed under the leadership of Islam went out of his way to insist Eulogius. The members of this that execution should not be group were determined to ordered lightly. He clearly wished denounce the Holy Prophet(saw) to avoid frivolous and malicious

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prosecutions and laid down that an watering-hole of Al-Muraysi, the offender could not be treated as Holy Prophet(saw) did not punish habitual ‘merely on the word of him. one or two persons’. The habitual character of the offender had to be The punishment of these two proved to the authorities by offences is easily exploited by impartial (begharaz) Muslims, politically orientated ullema who who had no axe to grind. But there would debase religious causes by was an important rider to this using them for materialist purposes which showed that though and exploit religious belief for their Shaykhul Islam Ebussuud issued a own ends. 14 fatwa without any Qur’anic or hadith authority, he knew the At the moment, Deobandi Ahli punishment of sabb was Allah’s Hadith ulema are accusing the alone. The fatwa was issued, Ahmadis of disparaging the probably under political pressure, Prophet(saw). Little do they realise because he nullified its entire effect that in doing so they have created by stating that unbelievers were not the means of their own destruction. held guilty for declaring ‘that In comparison with mainstream which constitutes their disbelief: Sunnis, who constitute the majority that is, for rejecting of Muslims in the subcontinent, 15 Muhammad’s(saw) prophetic mis- Turkey, and many other Muslim sion. countries, the Deobandis/Ahli Hadith and the followers of the The quality of a Muslim’s faith and Najdi reformer Abdul Wahhab are the measure of respect he holds for in a minority throughout the the Prophet(saw) cannot be legally Muslim world (except in Nejd). defined. Conversely, an unbeliever They are accused of belittling the can neither be forced to embrace Prophet(saw). The Deobandi/ Islam nor to honour its Prophet(saw) Wahhabi ulema consider the at gunpoint. This is why God has mainstream Sunnis to be kafir for prescribed no punishment for attributing to the Prophet(saw) irtidad or sabb in this world. qualities which, to say the least, are Despite the disparaging words polytheist. For instance, they say uttered by Abdullah b.Ubayy at the that his body did not cast a shadow

22 The Review of Religions – August 2006 MERCY FOR THE UNIVERSE because he was filled with light. Qadri Rizvi Thanwi writes: When Meauud-i-Sherif, popu- larised by the Turkish poet ‘O Muslims! Look how this Suleyman Chelebi of Busra (1410), accursed, unholy, satanic is concluded with ya Nabi Salam assertion has destroyed the Alaika (peace be with you), the very basis of Khatm-i- Prophet’s(saw) soul is present at the nabuwatt . . . . See that event, and, therefore, everyone Maulwi Qasim Nanautwi does attending should stand to show not believe in Khatm-i- respect. In the same manner, nabuwatt, while Maulwi praying at his tomb, kissing the Rashid Ahmad,Maulwi Khalil grillework surrounding it and many Ahmad and other Wahhabi other such beliefs and practices of ulema have declared those the Sunnis/Brelvis are shirk who reject Khatm-i-nabuwatt according to Deobandis. The as kafir.’ 16 Wahhabis, having demolished the historical graveyard of Jannat ul- Barelvi-Deobandi polemics – all in Baqi, wished to destroy even the the name of protecting the Holy dome of the Prophet’s(saw) mosque Prophet(saw), the very paragon of and were prevented from doing so modesty – have reached such only by the strong reaction in the vulgarity that even the mildest Muslim world. For these acts of examples are offensive. Shourish destruction of graves, tombs and Kashmiri, a supporter of the domes, Sunnis all over the world Deobandi school, said in his accuse the Wahhabis of denigrating pamphlet ‘Kafir saz Mulla’ that and belittling the Holy Prophet(saw). anyone who declares the great The Barelvis consider that it was leader of Deoband as kafir the Deoband scholars Maulana (unbeliever) is a liar. In the same Muhammad Qasim Nanautwi and pamphlet he said that the Barelvi Maulana Ashraf Ali Thanwi, who ulema sell religion and the Sharia did not believe in Khatm-i- of the Prophet(saw) to make a living, nabuwatt. In a booklet, Deobandi that they are the born slaves of Maulwiyon Ka Iman, Maulana Lord Clive’s household, the Abdul Mustafa Abu Yahya enemies of the Muslim League and Muhammad Muinuddin Shafi ‘i Qaid-i-Azam Jinnah. In another

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pamphlet, he said that these people ‘How can you appreciate the were even lower than a brick in high status of Ahmad Raza? Maulana Husain Ahmad’s and Go and smell the stinking Syed Ataullah Shah Bukhari’s underpants of Hindus. lavatory16. The Barelvi reply to Gold is your prophet, gold is these abusive charges was your God tasteless. They said that the man You belong to the party of slandering them and the Holy those who show you gold Prophet(saw) had spent his life You have spent all your life wandering the red-light districts. with Kufr ‘The man who called Nehru a How can you, a Khatri Hindu prophet is now accusing us of by caste, join Islam? selling the Shari’a of the O Nimrod, how can you Prophet(saw), they cried. ‘Why glorify Allah? shouldn’t Muhammad Qasim Your place is with Hindus, go Nanautwi be called a kafir and how there and praise can we accept Ashraf Ali Thanwi there the name of Hari, as a Muslim? Aren’t they the men Hari.’18 who said the door of prophet hood was open? Aren’t they the Compare the language, the style pathfinders of the Qadiyanis? Who and the contents of this Barelvi has taught you how to denigrate attack on Deobandi ulema with the Mustafa? Who has taught you tirade of Deobandi scholars against unbelief/ You have taken your Ahmadis: clothes off, have you no sense of decency or modesty? You have 1. Ahmadis deny khatm-i- created disorder under the name of nabuwwat; khatm-i-nabuwwat and spread 2. Ahmadis denigrate the Holy mischief under the name of peace. Prophet(saw) You are collecting money under the 3. Ahmadis created British name of nabuwwat and begging imperialism in India; under the name of the Prophet(saw): 4. Ahmadis opposed the creation of ; Another poet, Sayyad Muhammad 5. Ahmadis are opposed to Tanha, said: jihad;

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6. Ahmadis associate with non- This is an incorrect assessment of Muslims; Muslim temperament. Prof. 7. Ahmadiyat is a racket in Cantwell Smith has generalised. religion’s name. Actually, it is the Mullahs and the politically orientated leadership Both the Ahli-Sunnat wal Jama’at which recognised: ‘that the (Barelvi) and Deobandi ulema feelings of a Musulman are never accuse each other of disparaging more easily aroused and his the Holy Prophet(saw). As we saw indignation awakened than over a earlier, the Jama’ati Islami real or fancied insult to the Holy described the Ahl-i Qur’an as Prophet.’20 being worse than the Ahmadis. But the Shias have not been spared No doubt the rich and the poor, the either – they have been accused of intellectuals, the uneducated, the degrading the status of the Holy pious and impious have always Prophet(saw) by claiming that Ali been united in the love of the shared the prophethood with him. Prophet(saw) and considered Jana fir-rasul (annihilation in the name The Canadian scholar, Wilfred of the Prophet(saw)) to be the peak of Cantwell Smith, who visited the religious experience. But no subcontinent and closely observed Muslim is unmindful that the Holy the Muslim society of India and Prophet’s(saw) highest experience Pakistan, has accused Muslims of was the miraj, when he, sur- ‘a fanaticism of blazing rounded by clouds of angels, vehemence’. In his book, Islam in soared high into the Divine Modem India, he says: Presence, where even the angel Gabriel has no access. The power- ‘Muslims will allow attacks on hungry Muslim leadership forgets Allah: there are atheists and that the exhortation atheistic publications and ‘Muhammad(saw) is the Messenger rationalistic societies, but to of God’ is only the second part of disparage Muhammad will the confession of the Muslim faith. provoke from even the most liberal The first is: ‘There is no God but sections of the community a fanati- Allah.’ cism of blazing vehemence.19

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There is no way to measure love or threshold, repect. Lovers and mystics wrote Then let it be known I am the diwans after diwans and finally first to claim that reward.’23 devoted their lives to trying to express feelings no language could The founder(as) of the Ahmadiyya really convey. The mullahs can Movement in Islam has clearly and scan the poem of love, but cannot honestly declared his faith in the understand it. It is no mere accident supreme authority of the Holy that the founder of the Ahmadiyya Prophet(saw) as the Khatam-un- Movement in Islam was named nabiyyin. He said: Ghulam Ahmad(as). ‘The basis of our religion and What an honour! What a status! the essence of our belief is that What a glory! In the following there is no God but Allah and three couplets he answers those Muhammad(saw) is His Prophet. who accuse him of disparaging the The faith that we follow in this Holy Prophet(saw) and critics, like earthly life and the faith in Cantwell Smith, who accuse which, by the grace of God, we Muslims of being negligent of shall depart from this transitory Allah’s honour: abode, is that of our Lord and great Master, Muhammad – ‘After the love of Allah it is may peace and blessings of Muhammad’s love Allah be upon him.’ 24 which has captivated my heart; If this love be kufr, by God I am And, again: a great kafir. 21 My Love! My Benefactor! Let ‘A superior status, comprising my life be sacrificed in Thy all that is good, belongs to our way, Lord and Master, Seal of the For when hath Thou shown Prophets, Muhammad(saw) indifference in Thy goodness to Mustafasa. It is unique to him, this slave? 22 it is unapproachable’. 25 If it be the custom that claimants of The writer of the four quotations Thy love be beheaded at Thy given above, Mirza Ghulam

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Ahmad(as), and his followers have tempers free to bear; been declared non-Muslims by Muslims described by Sir Tell me now, do you consider that Muhammad Iqbal (1875-1938) in the the following stanzas of a long law of loyalty? Urdu poem: Nations come to birth by faith; let faith expire, and nations die Hands are impotent and nerveless, So, when gravitation ceases, the hearts unfaithful and infidel, thronged stars asunder fly, The Community a heartbreak to Why, you are a people utterly their Prophet and a shame; bereft of every art; Gone are the idol-breakers, in No other nation in the world so their places idol-makers dwell; lightly spurns its native place; Abraham their father was: the children merit Azar’s name.26 You are like a barn where lightnings New and strange the band of nestle, and will not depart; drinkers, and their wine is strange and new, You would sell your fathers’ graveyards, A new shrine to house their And say that such a thing was Ka’aba, right; new and strange the idols too, Making profit out of tombstones Very heavy on your spirits weighs has the charge of morning’s prayer; secured you such renown How much more would you prefer Why not set up shop in idols, if sleeping, than you rising up to worship me, chance to hunt some down? Ramadan is too oppressive for Loud the cry goes up ‘The you Muslims?

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They are vanished, lost to view’, demanding that Ahmadis should be declared a non-Muslim minority. In Were-echo, ‘Are true Muslims to the constitution of secular India the be demand was, of course, ignored. found in any place?’ But for the ulema of Deoband it was a matter of life and death. Christian is your mode of living, Hindus have occupied Babari and your culture is Hindu; Masjid in Ayodhya and converted it under police protection into the Why, such Muslims to the Jews Ram Janma Bhoomi temple. would Another section of Hindus demand be a shame and a disgrace. the conversion of Benares and Kashi mosques into temples. Most Sure enough, you have your Hindus are agitating for the Syeds, abolition of Muslim personal law. Mirzas, Afghans, all the rest; .

But can you claim that you are This is what becomes of people Muslims who reject prophets of God and 27 if the truth must be confessed? men of peace. They stand disunited and bereft of the blessings of the Having claimed that the Muslims peace they sought to disturb. They of the day would shame even Jews, breed violence and terrorism. and that they would even sell their ancestors’ tombstones, the ‘poet, philosopher, political thinker and References altogether most eminent figure in 1. Munir Commission Report, 258. Indian Islam of the twentieth 2 Maxime Rodinson, Mohammad, 28 century’ decided to distinguish trans. Anne Carter (New York, between Muslims and Ahmadis. So 1971), 194. ‘A tribal poet among in 1936 he wrote in an open letter the Bedouin,’ as Joel to Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru, the Carmichael puts it, was ‘no mere leader of the predominantly Hindu versifier, but a kindler of battle’, Indian National Congress and, his poems were ‘thought of as later, first prime minister of India, the serious beginning of real

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warfare’ (The Shaping of the 19. Wilfred Cantwell Smith, Modern Arabs, a Study in Ethnic Islam in India (, 2nd ed., Identity, New York, 1967,38). 1947). 3. Ibn Hisham, Kitab Sirat Rasul 20. Munir Commission Report, 257. Allah, 995. The English 21. Mirza Ghulam Ahmad, lzaln- translation is by Anne Carter, iAwham (Amritsar, 1891), part given in Rodinson’s Mohammed, 1, 176. op.dt., 157. 22. Mirza Ghulam Ahmad, A ‘ina-i- 4. Ali b. Burhan ud Din ud- Kamalnt Islam(Qadian, 1893), Halabi,Insanal-Uyun, vol. n, last page. 23 ibid. 116; cited by Kister, The Joumal 24. Mirza Ghulam Ahmad, op.cit., of the Economic and Social lzaln-i-Awham, 138. History of the Orient, Vol. VIll, 25. Mirza Ghulam Ahmad, Tawdih- 267. i-Maram (Amritsar, 1308 5. Ibn Hisham, op.dt., 459. AH),23. 6. Ibn Hisham, op.cit., 550, this 26. According to the Qur’an, translation by A. Guillaume. Abraham’s(as) father’s name was 7. ibid., 386. Azar, (Adhar) the name given by 8. ibid. the Church historian, Eusebius, 9. ibid., 387. and not Terah as given in 10. ibid., 726. Genesis 11:26; Qur’an, 11. ibid. Ch.6.V.75. 12. ibid. 27. Sir Muhammad Iqbal, Bang-i- 13. Will Durant, The Story of Dara, Jawab-i-Shikwah, stanzas Civilisation, 11 vols. (New VII, IX, X and XVII, trans. A. 1. York: Simon & Shuster, 1950), Arberry. vol. IV, The Age of Faith, 30l. 28. Aziz Ahmad and GE. 14. Munir Commission Report, 259. Grunebaum (eds.) Muslim Self- 15. In the subcontinent they are Statement in India and generally known as Brelvis. Pakistan,1857 – 196B 16. Deobandi Maulwiyon ka Iman Wiesbaden, 1970), 13. (Lyallpur: Shahi Masjid, n.d.). 17. Razakhani Fitna Pardazon ka siyahjhoot. 18. Shah Muhammad Asi and Syed Muhammad Tanha,Shourish ‘uif Bhare ka Tattoo, 7-8.

The Review of Religions – August 2006 29 JALSA SALANA - FIJI Below is thetext of the address delivered by the head of the worldwide Ahmadiyya community Hadhrat Mirza Masroor Ahmad – Khalifatul Masih V, on the occasion of Jalsa Salana in Fiji, April 2006.

An Ahmadi should be an discharged the rights due to his exemplary Muslim. We should wife and children. He looked after always have the excellent example the rights of the poor. He took care of the Holy Prophet(saw) before us. of the rights of the neighbour. He And the command of Allah is: looked after the relations and also discharged the rights due to the Verily you have in the Prophet society. of Allah an excellent model, for him who fears Allah and the This is why when he received the Last Day and who remembers first revelation, he returned home Allah much. full of fear. He mentioned to his (Ch.33:V.22) wife, Hadhrat Khadija, the incident that had shaken him to the core that The Holy Prophet(saw) set excellent day. He said that he did not know examples in his worship of Allah. what God was going to do with He established high examples in him. This incident greatly agitated honouring the rights and him. obligations that man owes to Allah and the rights that are due to other In a state of shock he requested that human beings. The standard of his he be wrapped in something warm. worship existed before he became So after doing what she had been a prophet. told, Hadhrat Khadija asked him what had happened, and he related Carrying food for a few days, he to her the whole incident. used to retire to a cave and sit by himself, worshipping God. He told her how an angel had Nevertheless, his worship had not squeezed him in a tight grip and made him a recluse and cut him off asked him to read the following from the world. He got married. He words:


Recite thou in the name of thy attain nearness to Allah and wants Lord Who created man… that his end should be good. If such (Ch.96:V.2) a person desires the life Hereafter, which is an everlasting life, then he Hadhrat Khadija replied: ‘God has or she should reflect those not sent you that He should then excellent examples that the Holy give you up. Be not afraid because Prophet(saw) had established for us you are kind and considerate to in himself in this earthly life. These your relations, help the poor and examples are about the discharge the forlorn and bear their burdens. of the rights due to the Creator and You are restoring the virtues that the rights due to His creation. had disappeared from our country. You treat guests with honour and We Ahmadis claim that we act in help those who are in distress.’ accordance with everything commanded by the Holy So whereas he was already Prophet(saw). We claim that in worshipping God and abhorred compliance with his command, we associating partners with Allah have believed in the Imam of the long before he became a Prophet, Age and the Promised Messiah(as) he was at the same time who was to appear in accordance discharging all his social with the prophecies of the Holy responsibilities. Then after the call Prophet(saw). He presented the best to prophethood, his noble examples of following the characteristics became all the more footsteps of the Holy Prophet(saw) prominent. and became his prototype in this age. He became an excellent model for the whole of mankind. There was We have renewed our pledge that now no way of attaining nearness we will continue to abide by the to Allah without following in his commands of Allah the Almighty footsteps. This is why after stating and the Messenger of Allah(saw) that that you have in the Prophet of the world of today had somehow Allah(saw) an excellent model, the forgotten. Holy Qur’an says that this exemplar is for him who wishes to We have promised that after this


bai’at, or pledge of allegiance, we Allah’s bounties lay in emulating will not only fulfil the obligations the ways that His beloved Servant, due to Allah and His creation in Muhammad(saw) used to tread? I our lives, but shall try our best to shall give you a few examples of get our children to continue with his precept. these good works. After his prophethood, what were Then above everything else, we the standards of his worship and will try our utmost to spread this the manner in which he discharged beautiful light around us. the rights owed to Allah?

So each Ahmadi should pledge that In this connection, it is narrated having become an Ahmadi, he that when he used to observe the would reflect in his deeds those Tahajjud prayers, his Qiyam or lofty examples that are worthy of standing position used to be for the religion brought by the Holy such a long time that his feet would Prophet(saw) and display to the rest swell. Once, one of his wives, of the world the beauty of his Hadhrat Sauda, who used to character. Only when you mould observe her Prayers very regularly, your lives in this manner, can you joined the Holy Prophet(saw) in ever hope of benefiting from the Tahajjud prayers. He bowed for blessings and beneficence of Allah such a long time that when the and only then can you become the Prayers finished, Hadhrat Sauda inheritors of the everlasting said to the Holy Prophet(saw) that the paradise in the next life. bowing position had stretched for such a long time that her nose What was that excellent example almost bled. of the Holy Prophet(saw) that we have been asked to follow? Then in response to a question, Hadhrat Ayesha summed up the What were those noble examples manner of the Holy Prophet’s(saw) that were so liked by Allah the worship by saying that his tahajjud Almighty that He commanded that prayer used to be so long, adorable the only way to come near to Allah and beautiful that you should not and to become the beneficiaries of ask her about its length and its

32 The Review of Religions – August 2006 JALSA SALANA FIJI – SPEECH BY HADHRAT KHALIFATUL MASIH V beauty. That is to say, she did not and are regular and consistent in have the words to draw an image of their prayers, were, of course, for his worship. So this used to be the his followers and those who standard of his act of worship of believed in him. His prayers were which I have given you one or two because of his concern lest his examples. people should draw away from their Lord because whatever the Once the Holy Prophet(saw) was seen Holy Prophet(saw) wanted for performing his tahajjud prayers so himself, Allah provided without fervently that he was trembling all his asking for it. over and he was heard weeping again and again. Hadrat Ayesha His prayers were an expression of summarised this state by saying his gratitude that Allah the that the sound seemed as if a pot Almighty had made him discharge was boiling, that is to say that the his position as the caretaker for the passion with which he observed his good health of his followers. His prayers sounded like a pot was prayers were in gratitude for the boiling away. When the Holy tidings of His spiritual son through Prophet(saw) finished his prayers, whom Islam was going to triumph Hadhrat Ayesha said: ‘O Prophet of over all other religions. Allah. Allah has forgiven your past and future mistakes and sins. Then So we who call ourselves Ahmadis why do you pray with such passion can be the beneficiaries of these and so fervently.’ He replied, prayers of the Holy Prophet(saw) ‘Should I not then be a grateful only when we observe our prayers servant of Allah.’ in accordance with the model set before us. So these are the standards of the gratitude of our Holy Prophet(saw). Admittedly, we cannot rise 100% to the standard of the Holy These prayers of the Holy Prophet(saw) but we should Prophet(saw) that Allah the Almighty remember that the more effort we should continue to create such spend in following in his footsteps, people who obey the Laws of Allah the better beneficiaries we will


become of the Holy Prophet’s(saw) Therefore, the followers who have prayers that he said in the dark found such an excellent Prophet hours of the night. who has presented such lofty examples of high moral excellence Therefore, the first thing that every can very well imagine the standard Ahmadi should remember is that he of moral excellence to which such must put new life into his prayers. followers must rise. Hence, every Get into the habit of observing all Ahmadi should assess himself by your prayers, then acquire the habit this standard. of saying all your prayers in congregation and then get the habit Now, I shall mention a few moral of observing the voluntary prayers. values that are essential for May Allah enable every Ahmadi to promoting an atmosphere of love do this. Amin. and affection and brotherhood in the world. The second important matter that should exist in every Ahmadi who, An excellent moral value for the by performing the bai’at at the maintenance of peace in the world hands of the spiritual son of the is truth. If the world becomes Holy Prophet(saw), has renewed the steadfast on truth, many troubles pledge that he shall follow the can be removed. model set by the Holy Prophet(saw) is that he should display those We resort to falsehood for personal excellent values and discharge the interest as a result of which rights owed to fellow human dissension begins to spread in beings. society. We rely on lies ranging from domestic issues, to social We are fortunate that we believe in matters and then from national to that Prophet(saw) about whom the international levels. Almighty Allah has given the testimony that: This has begun to be termed a matter of convenience or And thou dost surely possess expedience and it is said that it is high moral excellence. perfectly acceptable to resort to (Ch.68:V.5) falsehood. In today’s society, the

34 The Review of Religions – August 2006 JALSA SALANA FIJI – SPEECH BY HADHRAT KHALIFATUL MASIH V habit of telling lies and spreading trace of any lie. It should not have falsehood has become so prevalent words from which double that any sense of the disliked and meanings should arise but it should profane has all but vanished. be the unadulterated and straightforward word. This is what The husband tells lies to the wife we are taught in the Holy Qur’an. and the wife tells lies to the husband. We can see cracks What is the example and directive appearing in the contract between a of the Holy Prophet(saw) in this husband and wife, a contract that is matter? I will illustrate this by the supposed to be based on a dignified following few examples. and scared trust. It is because of not speaking the truth that there is an The standard of honesty of the absence of trust between the Holy Prophet(saw) was so high that parties. It also has an effect on the well before his prophethood, the children. Then because of not people of Makkah used to call him speaking the truth, the relationship as the Truthful and Trustworthy. with neighbours has begun to This attribute of speaking the truth worsen. The relation between the was so well marked in his character master and servant has begun to that the Holy Qur’an refers to it as deteriorate. The relations amongst proof of the truth of his claim. It business shareholders have begun says: to become bad. … I have indeed lived among Likewise, grievous mis- you a whole lifetime before this. understandings and distances have Will you not then understand? begun to grow between one nation Who is then more unjust than and another. he who forges a lie against Allah or he who treats His All this is because they have Signs as lies? ... stopped using the honest and (Ch.10:V.17-18) straightforward truth. They have gone away from the truth. In other words ‘I have lived such a What is the straightforward word? long time with you. I spent my It is that truth in which there is no youth with you, traded with you


and adjudicated matters for you. person who does not lie about men But you have never found that I will not lie about God.’ have ever indulged in the evil of telling a lie. This was the standard of truth that the Holy Prophet(saw) had So when I have never told a lie established that despite enmity amongst people, then how could it with him, not even an enemy could be that I should forge a lie about a accuse him of telling a lie. matter relating to God?’ The disbelievers could not deny this What expectation does he have and kept saying that as far as the about truth from his followers? He standard of his honesty was admonished that always speak the concerned, they could not deny his truth because truth leads to good honesty but they could not accept works and good works lead to that his teaching was correct. This paradise. He said that the one who testimony was given by his always speaks the truth is written strongest enemy, Abu Jahl. as the Truthful before Allah.

The second biggest opponent was Hadhrat Hasan bin ‘Ali narrates Abu Sufyan. that he remembered the directive of the Holy Prophet(saw) clearly: When Abu Sufyan appeared before ‘Leave alone that which leaves you Heraclius to lodge a complaint in doubt and adhere to that which is against Muslims who had gone free from doubt, for truth is there, he incited the Emperor comforting, falsehood is dis- against the Muslims. After the turbing.’ (Tirmidhi) answers provided by the Muslim envoys, Heraclius asked Abu Now see what expectations he had Sufyan, ‘Did your people ever from his followers that they should charge the Prophet with lying always speak the truth because this before he announced his claim?’ is the means of paradise. Paradise Abu Sufyan had no other answer is attained not merely after death, than to say, ‘No!’ to this question. but by doing good works and Thereafter the Emperor Heraclius obeying the commands of Allah, a said, ‘I inferred from this that a person can begin to build his or her

36 The Review of Religions – August 2006 JALSA SALANA FIJI – SPEECH BY HADHRAT KHALIFATUL MASIH V paradise in this very world. The people of that country would begin to place reliance on the While mentioning truth, I said others. If any mistakes are earlier that there is unrest because committed, then on the basis of of placing too much reliance on truth, a solution would be found in lies in matters ranging from a friendly manner. domestic life – in which husband, wife, children, brother, sister and If we analyse the situation today, it relatives are included – to is because of lies and falsehood international affairs. If by making that there is so much disorder and truth the basis of all our dealings, dissension. An agreement is drawn we resolve matters, then heaven up. Then it is breached in such a will begin to emerge on earth. You way to serve self vested interest will see that as a result of the that although overtly the agreement saying of the Holy Prophet(saw) that is still in place, yet covertly another truth is comforting, falsehood is nation is made to suffer. Today, the disturbing, paradise will begin on powerful nations are doing earth. Your domestic differences precisely that with the smaller would begin to end. Trust upon nations and the rich nations are each other would begin to grow. doing the same with the poorer Because of speaking the truth, nations. suspicions would begin to reduce and once suspicions reduce, then On the pretext of aid, they ensnare differences and disputes would poor nations in their clutches with also end. When disputes and fights a smooth tongue in which there is end, then heaven would begin to absolutely no truth. In this way, appear in this world and the cool they capture the economy of the breeze of paradise would flow less developed nations. When the through each household. people of the effected nation react, then suspicions begin to grow Moreover, if international relations further. begin to strengthen on the basis of truth, then the government of one Quarrels and disorder spread. The nation would begin to trust the ordinary people begin to lose faith government of another country. in the governments. They spill out


on the streets. They begin to break evil that can rid you of your other up their own country and cause evils.’ He said that this was an easy damage that can never be justified. matter and he would Insha Allah As a result, instead of being a act in accordance with it. After heaven, the beautiful country this, he went home and whenever becomes a living hell. the thought of committing an evil crossed his mind, he recalled that if Therefore, lies are severe evils. the Holy Prophet(saw) heard that he The absence of truth from a people, had committed such an evil, and he and today the absence of truth asked him about it, it would be a throughout the world, is the true matter of great shame because he cause of disorder. We Ahmadis could not now tell a lie. He would should save ourselves from this have to speak the truth. Anyhow, and should inculcate the habit of one by one, all his evils ended. speaking the truth. In brief, if you want to save In this way, we at least can make yourself, your peace and quiet and our society a reflection of heaven want to purify your society, then on earth. It is possible that by you will have to stay completely seeing us, the other people within away from lies and tread the path our society can also adopt truth as of truth. their way of life. To establish truth is such a good work that it can be Because the responsibility of the the means of acquiring all other future generation is that of women, good values. if the ladies acquire this attribute then you will be the means of It is narrated in a tradition that a establishing heaven on earth and person came before the Holy being a helper and assistant in this Prophet(saw) and said that it was not task. But remember that the possible for him to leave all evils at reformation of women takes place once. He asked him to tell him one only when the men try to reform evil that he could leave first of all. themselves and make themselves the exemplar. The Holy Prophet(saw) said: ‘Leave telling lies because it is such an There are many other moral values

38 The Review of Religions – August 2006 JALSA SALANA FIJI – SPEECH BY HADHRAT KHALIFATUL MASIH V that are mentioned in the Holy be more diligent and enthusiastic Qur’an and Hadith and it is a duty about his work so that the justice is of each Ahmadi to acquire these done to his work. values. It is not possible to mention them all here because I have to Then in today’s democratic world, keep time in mind. But remember there is the right of a vote. that having believed in the Whether you exercise this right in Promised Messiah(as) when you the election of office bearers for the have renewed the pledge that you Jama’at or the election of would try to obey all the representatives for national commands of Allah the Almighty government, always elect the one and His Messenger, then you you believe is hard-working and should save yourselves from those one who has the knowledge and evils that Allah and His Messenger skills for that task for which he is have mentioned. These include being elected and can discharge the high values in discharging trust and responsibilities entrusted on him. honesty. Remember that trust and honesty have a connection with Do not elect someone because he is honesty. your relative or has some other connection with you. The persons If you have honesty in you, then elected in this manner should you will also be trustworthy and be continue to assess themselves that the one who discharges the rights the people have placed their trust in of people. You will also be able to them and hence all their work discharge the trust reposed in you. should be in the interest of the The place where you work is also a people and the nation. trust that has been placed in you. Another value is the fulfilment of This is why you should discharge promises. If you fulfil your your trust with responsibility and pledges, then the standard of honestly, whether you work in a honesty will rise automatically. farm or in a factory or in the civil The standard of vieing with one service. Wherever you work, another in good works will also discharge the right and obligations increase automatically. of your work. An Ahmadi should


Pledging to act in accordance with Unless the others broke a pact, he the conditions of bai’at of the abided by each promise and each Promised Messiah(as) you Ahmadis condition of every pact. And he set have entered Ahmadiyyat. Then these examples for us so that we there are pledges of Khuddam, act upon them. Ansar and Lajna in which you repeat that you will give preference Another good work is thankfulness to your faith over worldly matters. and gratitude about which I mentioned with reference to the So if you keep thinking seriously Prayers of the Holy Prophet(saw). all the time that you have to give Every Ahmadi should acquire the precedence to your faith over habit of gratitude. When you have worldly pursuits, you will be gratitude, it will cause contentment discharging the obligations and and tranquillity to develop. rights due to God Almighty and also observing the rights of Allah’s When there is contentment, there creation because Allah commands will be little attention paid to the us to fulfil the rights due to people. satisfaction by improper means of one’s desires. Instead, the habit of You will also remain steadfast on hard work and bowing before truth. You will also be doing justice Allah in gratitude will grow. to serving your people and your country which are the duties of Then, another good work is every citizen. Thus there are many forgiveness, that is to say, pardon other ways of good works to which any excesses. The Holy Qur’an Islam commands us and whose states: examples were established by the Holy Prophet(saw) We should act on Let them forgive and pass over these. the offence… (Ch. 24:V.23) The Holy Prophet(saw) faithfully fulfilled the pacts that were drawn The Holy Prophet(saw) showed so up with the disbelievers and the many examples of this quality that Jews. one is amazed at reading or hearing about them. Hadhrat Ayesha(ra)

40 The Review of Religions – August 2006 JALSA SALANA FIJI – SPEECH BY HADHRAT KHALIFATUL MASIH V relates that the Holy Prophet(saw) If having believed in the Imam of never extracted any revenge for the Age, no change has occurred in any excess committed against you, there is no use in your being himself. Once he received a an Ahmadi. Therefore, if you have roasted leg of meat from a Jewish joined Ahmadiyat because you lady. It had been spiced with some believe it to be true, then truth poison. should become manifest from each action of yours. The moment he put it in his mouth, he knew that it contained poison. This manifestation of truth and the The poison was so potent that it pure reformation within you will still left its effect. When this lady serve as the means of silent was presented before him, she propagation. It will draw you admitted that she had mixed poison nearer to the Almighty Allah for in it but the Holy Prophet(saw) which you have accepted forgave her. So, this was the Ahmadiyyat. standard of his forgiveness. The Founder of Jama’at This is why he advised his Ahmadiyya, the Promised followers that a wrestler who Messiah(as) states: throws another on the ground in a wrestling match is not a champion ‘It is incumbent on each person in but the one who overcomes his my Jama’at to adhere to all these anger is the true champion wrestler legacies (that is to say on all these because he has overturned his matters about good works) and it is Satan. necessary that there should be no impiety or laughter and ridicule in So these few examples of good your gatherings. Walk on earth works that I have presented before with a good heart and clean nature you are so that they should become and pure thoughts and remember an integral part of your lives. An that every mischief is not worth Ahmadi should be superior to responding to. others because he has believed in the true servant of the Holy This is why it is essential that you Prophet(saw) in this age. should acquire the habit of


forgiveness and overlook the fault is to remind ourselves about these of others at most times and work good deeds because in this with patience and wisdom. Do not atmosphere when the emotions are attack anyone in an unjust manner a little bit different, attention and suppress your passions and should be drawn towards it so that egos …. and if anyone deals with the pledge that we made with the you in a barbaric manner just say Promised Messiahas), and with the ‘peace’ and leave that gathering.’ Messenger of Allah and Allah the Almighty is renewed. He said: May Allah make everyone an ‘May Allah make us such a exemplary Ahmadi, an exemplary community that you become a citizen and an exemplary human model of good works and being through whom Allah’s guidance for the world… you creation can always return His be identified by the observance grace. Amin of the five daily prayers and moral conditions…. It is necessary that your hearts are free of deceit and your hands are innocent of cruelty and your eyes are pure of all impurities and apart from veracity and kindness for the creation there is nothing within you.’

So remember that it is the work of every Ahmadi to do these good works. You can be called a true Ahmadi only when you act in accordance with this teaching of the Promised Messiahas).

The object of holding these Jalsas

42 The Review of Religions – August 2006 Dangers of the Age and the Safeguarding of Islamic Values (A speech delivered at the 2006 Ahmadiyya community’s UK Jalsa Salana Annual Conference)

By Bilal Atkinson – Teeside, UK (A former policeman and currently Regional Ameer, North-East Region)

Vying with each other for amassing wealth had made you oblivious. Even when you reached the graveyards. Nay! You will soon come to know. Nay again! you will soon come to know. Nay, were you to know the certain knowledge, You will surely see Hell in this very life’. (Ch.102:Vs.2-9) The dangers I have chosen to discuss are materialism, alcohol, The desire to own things and to gambling, the internet, the free fulfil that desire occupies a very social mixing of men and women, prominent place in the struggle to diseases such as Aids that are find contentment for most people. closely related to unchecked and uncontrolled promiscuity, and Newspapers, cinema, television finally deceit and untruthfulness. and radio repeatedly broadcast to lure prospective and often Materialism susceptible customers to buy the The Holy Qur’an refers to this latest accessories or other condition where it states: fashionable luxury items and shopping centres are specifically


designed with images of fashion Any economy whether national or and glamour to entice us as we walk individual which relies on past. A high-paying job, a fully spending unearned income does so furnished modern house, a new car at a very high cost. Most and expensive clothes are high on economies are run on the basis of the priority lists of most people who interest, and banks are ever willing see them as ‘must have’ to lend the money. Thirty years ago commodities rather than asking it was not so easy to borrow money themselves ‘do I really need it?’ or from any financial institution as ‘can I really afford it?’ there were safeguards in place based on personal income and the When material wealth and values ability to repay the loan. However, becomes the goal in life, one can many of those restrictions have become blind to the financial now been removed, so much so nightmare that inevitably accom- that people who are engulfed in panies it. In pursuit of that goal, a debt are encouraged to borrow person often becomes selfish and more. Ultimately they are not loses consideration for the welfare really borrowing from the banks; of others and has no regard for the they are borrowing from their own true values of life at all. personal future.

A superficial glance at some The Promised Messiah, Hadhrat national economies, especially Mirza Ghulam Ahmad(as) has those in the West, gives the false addressed the dangers of pursuing impression that they are rich and the wealth of the world. He stated: flourishing. A superficial look at normal family living standards also ‘Too much indulgence in gives this same false impression. luxurious, easy, irresponsible However, on closer inspection, in living is a curse, as it is ill most cases, all the amassed wealth mannered, and heartless, to be of a nation or a family in the form indifferent to the sufferings of of houses, cars, furniture, clothing others. Every rich man is as and major household items have much answerable over the due been bought on credit or at a discharge of his obligations to hidden price. his Creator and his fellow men,


as a poor man is. In fact a rich much more commendable moral man is more answerable. and spiritual values. Indeed, how unfortunate is he, for the sake of this brief life in The Holy Qur’an states: this world, who completely turns away from God’ O ye who believe! Spend out of (Kashti-e-Nuh, 1902) what We have bestowed on you before the day comes wherein The Egyptian Pharaohs’ tombs there shall be no buying or were filled with all their riches and selling, nor friendship, nor belongings as they expected to take intercession; and it is those it with them into their after-life. who disbelieve that do wrong to They arrogantly thought they could themselves. take their amassed wealth with (Ch.2:V.255) them into to the next world; at least they thought about it, but wrongly A Muslim should always try to concluded about the Hereafter. follow the example of the Holy People in this age seem to have no Prophet(saw). Although he became thoughts of their life after death the undisputed ruler of Arabia, his and this is the main cause of their lifestyle was very simple and this moral and spiritual decline. They simple life is one that is best and remain engrossed in worldly uncomplicated to follow. As far as pursuits and desires until death the material world is concerned, we comes upon them and they find should question the true need for they have wasted all their precious material goods. We should avoid life chasing perishable wealth borrowing money and paying instead of pursuing the Creator of interest for luxury items. We all their wealth. This increasing should eat simply and well and pursuit of materialism has caused should not waste food. and continues to cause a decline in spirituality. Regular fasting promotes a real understanding of the needs of those It is the blind craze for worldly who ‘have not’ and a desire to help things that prevents disbelievers the poor and to eradicate poverty. from acquiring the higher and We should give willingly to


charitable causes and respond to all huge and destructive impact on appeals of the Khalifa of the day. society at large, is the problem of We should encourage an interest in alcohol. sport and other outdoor pursuits as well as personal hobbies rather than The Promised Messiah(as) addressed visiting expensive restaurants, this issue and said: cinemas and other similar establishments. ‘O ye wise. This world will not last forever. Take hold of Islam does not forbid us to seek yourself and be steady. Give up worldly pursuits, that is, to gain every excess, leave all knowledge or wealth, or occupy intoxicants. Alcohol is not ourselves in business and industry. alone in that it destroys man, It only changes our point of view. It but opium, marijuana, cannabis teaches us to give preference to and every intoxicant that divine commands over everything becomes habitual, disrupts the else. In this way, we acquire mind and eventually kills you – spiritual blessings and God’s You must avoid them!’ pleasures as well as worldly (Kashti-e-Nuh, 1902) attractions. Devotion to God does not deprive us of worldly rewards. In many societies, alcohol In fact, these rewards follow us like consumption seems to be the staple a servant. Our goal is our God and diet among an increasing number we must keep this goal in our mind of people, especially the younger every minute of our life. generation. It also seems to be an irreplaceable component of Excessive materialism is at the root socialising and other forms of of many social problems, such as entertainment. No social gathering gambling, narcotics and crime, seems complete without alcohol as which often also lead to family, its soul mate. At weekends, the social and community breakdown. goal in life of some people, mainly from the younger generation is not Alcohol to have a ‘good time’ as was the Likewise, an even greater malaise usual practice some years ago, but which destroys family life and has a to ‘go out and get drunk’. That is,

46 The Review of Religions – August 2006 DANGERS OF THE AGE AND SAFEGUARDING OF ISLAMIC VALUES to lose one’s senses, decorum and violent crime and 60% in cases of modesty. stranger violence occurred where the offender was under the influence According to The Independent of alcohol. newspaper, 2nd November 2005: According to a study by the ‘A large majority of people Institute of Alcohol Studies UK consume alcohol and it is well (2006) entitled ‘Alcohol in known that an increasing Europe’,‘Apparently, one in every number of these become four people in Britain enjoys alcoholics.1.1 million adults in drinking with one single aim – to suffer from alcohol get completely drunk. Binge dependency’. drinking is no longer a male domain either, adolescent girls and young Consumption of alcohol not only women are just as likely to go out destroys the individual, it destroys and get “plastered as males.”’ their family, their economy, their physical and mental health and in To redress the issue of ‘binge the long term, it damages the drinking’ and alcoholism, the community at large. As a direct British Government have, in my outcome of alcohol consumption, it opinion, erroneously, actually has been proved beyond any doubt increased the number of hours a that morality and a sense of licensed premises is allowed to responsibility cease to exert any remain open. In fact, in some areas, influence on those afflicted. alcohol premises are allowed to Criminal activity also pursues a remain open 24 hours per day. relentless advance in terms of thefts, burglaries, violence, The teachings of Islam in this regard domestic violence, child abuse, have given the perfect answer, the rapes, suicides and death by perfect antidote and the perfect dangerous driving to name but a reasoning. The Holy Qur’an states: few. They ask thee concerning wine The British Crime Survey and the game of hazard. Say: 2004/2005 revealed that 48% of all ‘In both there is great sin and



also some advantages for men; Further to this the Holy Prophet of but their sin is greater than Islam(saw) said: their advantage. (Ch.2:V.220) ‘Alcohol is the mother of all evils and it is the most It was reported by Anas(ra) that the shameful of evils.’ Holy Prophet(saw) said: (Sunan Ibn-I-Majah, Vol.3, Book of Intoxicants, Chapter ‘God’s curse falls on ten groups 30 Hadith No. 3371) of people who deal with alcohol. The one who distils it, We should therefore teach our the one for whom it has been children about the bad effects of distilled, the one who drinks it, alcohol and should lead by the one who transports it, the example. We should avoid pubs one to whom it has been and bars even though our non- brought, the one who serves it, Muslim friends may frequent them the one who sells it, the one and we should only ever offer them who utilizes money from it, the non-alcoholic drinks. one who buys it and the one who buys it for someone else.’ Gambling (Sunan Ibn-I-Majah, Vol.3, A recent survey by a UK newspaper Book of Intoxicants, Chapter (The Independent 25th May 2006) 30 Hadith No. 3380) revealed some very interesting but shocking statistics in regard to the


UK as a gambling nation. £50 them more and more penniless and billion was spent on gambling in the frustrated as they are unable to fulfil UK in 2005. Since 2001, there has their dreams. been a 700% increase on the money spent on gambling and more Mark Griffiths, Professor of frightening, since the year 2001 Gambling, Nottingham Trent there has been a 23,000% increase University has commented: in online (Internet) betting. It has also been reported that there are ‘Gambling is a voluntary form 370,000 people addicted to of taxation although people do gambling and it is expected that this not see it as such. By expanding number will increase to 700,000 gambling, the Government can within the next five years. bring in more money. There has been no great public push to In total disregard to the increasing liberalise it. It has all come from number of addicts and the the gaming industry and the destruction of their family lives, the Government. But if you tried to British government, seduced by the reverse it there would be lure of extra revenue from gambling uproar.’ have, this year, introduced the Gambling Act (2006) which will For many, gambling may become allow eight small, eight large and very addictive – and due to the ease one regional or super-casinos to be of betting using the internet, it has built. become a much more accessible idea to certain groups of people. It The whole nation is also is very simple to turn on a encouraged to gamble each week on computer and log on to a website. the National Lottery where Everywhere on the internet are gamblers are enticed by the lure of recollections of users who started instant fortunes. by placing a small bet and eventually ended up losing their As a result, those people who seek homes as they tried to re-coup their to climb out of the depths of poverty losses by spending more and more are usually the ones who waste so on gambling. Even worse, there much money on the Lottery leaving are players who go into major debt


because they use their credit cards and spending for good causes are and bank accounts to gamble. This some of the solutions to benefit the can result in severe financial moral and spiritual health of hardships, bankruptcy, marital and mankind. family strife and unfortunately in some instances, suicide. The Internet We have all heard of the many Islam gives the answer and dangers of the Internet. Although solution to the ever-growing some of these dangers have been maladies of alcohol, drugs, and greatly exaggerated, it does not gambling – it simply commands alter the fact that a computer and ‘Abstain from them that you may be its operator, connected to the saved.’ Internet are susceptible to very real attacks on their conscience both There are no other means and no overtly and covertly. The Internet shortcuts to control this malignant can be a very useful tool for the epidemic. Islam’s social teachings pursuit of knowledge; however, are very important for the there are people who feel protection and survival of the compelled to use their knowledge family system. about computers to access files remotely in illegal and unethical These dangers tempt and attract us ways. Subsequently, they make life to their worldly advantages until difficult for other Internet users. before we realise it we are sucked There is no true and proper into an addictive behaviour, so policing system of the Internet and much so that we justify to it is open to abuse by unscrupulous ourselves no harm in partaking in companies and individuals seeking these vices. This is a very slippery to amass great wealth or slope that we must guard against at knowledge without regard to the an embryonic stage. moral well-being or vulnerability of the people they are targeting. A greater openness of money matters between husband and wife, The Internet is also open to abuse engaging in more existing interests by criminals. For instance, there such as study skills, creative crafts, are paedophiles and other

50 The Review of Religions – August 2006 DANGERS OF THE AGE AND SAFEGUARDING OF ISLAMIC VALUES perverted sexual deviants who try can spend many hours pursuing to ensnare young people by these often addictive and useless pretending to be someone other pastimes which distract from than who they actually are and this healthy normal daily life. Internet can be illustrated in the use of what use, no matter how innocent it may are known to be Chat rooms. seem, can become addictive, and People can enter a chat room push the user beyond a balanced without any verification of who life. they are. The anonymity of the Internet allows chat room It is becoming increasingly chal- participants to feel more lenging to monitor someone’s comfortable to speak without fear activity on the Internet while of being judged. respecting their privacy at the same time. Parents worry that children The majority of Internet users may will have contact with someone be genuinely looking for a person of online who may wish to harm them their own age and interests to talk and there is always the fear that to, but how can they tell? One’s true increased Internet use will lead to identity is never revealed online and children accessing inappropriate as a result one’s inhibitions and content such as pornography, social conscience are lowered. racism and violence.

Therefore, chat room conver- A child’s safety is hard enough to sations and topics of discussion are protect in real life, let alone on the usually vastly different from vast expanse of the Internet. They normal interaction and often should be restricted to using the include topics one would never Internet to access information and speak of to someone’s face. In chat for talking to pre-existing friends rooms, discussions can be violent, only and the computer should be in abusive, and can even promote a room that is under the responsible hatred against others. control of the parents. Children should also be encouraged to read The Internet also gives free access books and other literature as a to shopping, music, games, films, prime source for gaining pornography, etc. where a person knowledge.


Free social mixing between men results and consequences are quite and women. devastating. The so-called ‘permis- In Islam the free mixing of men sive society’ in which we live has and women from the time they proved to be quite destructive in become sexually aware is terms of family unity, human prohibited. On the face of it, this dignity and self-respect. Families may appear rather harsh, but if we are often torn apart, diseases are examine the effects of unrestricted spread and people’s characters contact between the sexes, we will become twisted and distorted. soon see the wisdom behind this restriction. There are many practices in modern society that may slowly Today, in the world, every type of affect the institution and crime that results from free mixing acceptability of purdah for both of the sexes is on the increase with Muslim men and women. If the a parallel degeneration of morals. Islamic concept of purdah is not Whilst morality is on the decline, followed by both men and women, immodesty and licentiousness then it is an institution that will be seem to be more and more lost. acceptable to modern society. In additionto offering prayers in In the West particularly, men and congregation, men, women and women can walk semi-naked in their children should keep public, swim topless, drink and company of the righteous and dance in bars and clubs, and feel regularly attend at Jama’at free to have casual sex with functions. This should be their anybody they choose. priority to avoid segregating themselves from Islamic values. Pornography, prostitution, adul- Islam restricts this free and tery, divorce, one-parent families, unrestrained intermixing of the abortion, co-habiting couples and sexes. same sex couples, as well as immodest dress and speech seem to Umm Salamah reported that she and be much more acceptable now than Maimunah (who were both wives of they were in the past; and the the Holy Prophet(saw)) were with the


Holy Prophet(saw) when the son of themselves in front of men who Umm Makhtum, who was blind, are strangers to them, but they are came to speak with him. The Holy also required to lower their gaze. Prophet(saw) told his wives to observe Men are also required to observe purdah in front of the visitor. Umm purdah, thus preventing them from Salamah said: falling into any moral lapses. Purdah should be observed in a ‘O Messenger of Allah, he is a most appropriate manner but it blind man and will not see us’. should not be restrictive. We The Prophet said, “He may be should never become lax in our blind but you are not, and do values especially as more of us are you not see him?’” now interacting at work and other (Sunan Abu Daud Book 32 social gatherings. We must still Number 4100) maintain the spirit of purdah e.g. we should try to avoid attending In the Qur’an, God explains the office parties and other functions essence of Islamic purdah or especially those where alcohol, covering which embodies the music, singing and dancing is ‘the attitude of both men and women order of the day’. Handshaking and is reflected in dress and between men and women should behaviour. also be avoided.

The Holy Qur’an gives guidance The more frequent the oppor- and teaches: tunities for social interchange between men and women, the more Say to the believing men that likely is the natural attraction they restrain their eyes and which God has placed between guard their private parts. That them; this will result in is purer for them… And say to relationships that are bound to the believing women that they endanger morality in a society. restrain their eyes and guard their private parts... Then there are the diseases, such as (Ch.24:Vs.31-32) Aids, which are partly fuelled by uncontrolled promiscuity and Not only do women have to cover sexuality.


A decline in moral and spiritual made to spread and such other standards almost inevitably leads diseases, the like of which have to a decline in physical health. The never been witnessed by their spread of sexually transmitted forefathers.’ diseases, as well as neurotic, (Sunan Ibn-e-Majah. Kitabul- mental and psychological diseases Fitan, – ‘Uqoobat.Vol.11. Dar- that claim hundreds of thousands ul-Fikr Al-Arabi, p.1333) of lives of people are among the acknowledged effects of sexual Again we should encourage an promiscuity. interest in sport and other outdoor pursuits as well as other interests One of the most dangerous such as design and construction or diseases is Aids which is caused by agriculture and gardening rather the HIV virus. This virus is than watching unsuitable indecent, responsible for damaging the lewd or violent programmes and body’s immunity leaving it films on TV or at the cinema. vulnerable to all factors of decay. AIDS has reached all the Deceit and Untruthfulness continents of the world and Falsehood is the basis, the starting continues more or less unabated point of most sins. Today, lack of despite certain drugs that may truth is found all over the world prolong the life of those infected. without any exception. Of all the Millions of people have moral evils, lying is the worst and succumbed to this menace, a fact has a variety of complex causes. that provides a modern piece of Most people look upon the telling evidence for the words of the of a so-called ‘white lie’ as Prophet Muhammad(saw) who said: socially acceptable. A lie is a lie no matter what colour you paint it ‘It never happens that permis- and no matter how acceptable it is siveness overwhelms a people to society. Many moral, social and to the extent that they display economic problems in the world their acts of sex shamelessly stem from lack of truthfulness, and they are not uniquely honesty and integrity. Without punished by God. Among truth there can be no proper them, invariably, pestilence is justice, and without justice,

54 The Review of Religions – August 2006 DANGERS OF THE AGE AND SAFEGUARDING OF ISLAMIC VALUES bitterness and recrimination is the truth as this would rid him of spawned. In the end, man’s all his evil habits. inhumanity to his fellow man pursues a relentless and most The man soon realised that if damaging course. When we allow someone enquired about his day- materialistic values to enter our to-day activities he would have no daily life and rely on falsehood, choice but to tell the truth. then we surround ourselves with Submission to truth proved to be unscrupulous people and thus get the most appropriate medicine and into a spiral of betrayal of trusts a cure for his evil ways. and treachery. The teachings of the Holy Qur’an Speaking the truth is a great virtue in regard to truthfulness is that should be instilled in every complete and of the highest order: person and every child as if it was The Holy Qur’an states: an actual limb without which the body cannot function. Truthful men and truthful women……Allah has prepared For a truly truthful person it is for all of them forgiveness and essential that he follows the truth a great reward .. without any regard to his own (Ch.33:V.36) personal desires or interests. Only those people who stick to the truth, In this verse, the nature and even at the risk of loss of life, philosophy of the truth is described honour or property, are really and all aspects are fully covered. truthful. The Holy Qur’an says that truth should be for the sake of God Once, a man approached the Holy alone. We know we cannot hide Prophet(saw) and explained to him anything from Him. Also, if we that he had many evil habits which really believe that God is included lying. He asked how he Omniscient, then we cannot hide could free himself from such a behind a lie or falsehood to save sinful way of life. The Holy our skins. Prophet(saw) gave a very simple answer – he told him to always tell We should therefore self-reflect


every day about our own actions encompasses the complete course and their consequences and strive of moral and spiritual evolution to reform in accordance with and growth of man and by Islamic teaching. following such Divine guidance, a true believer is ensured delivery A verse of the Holy Qur’an from all conceivable vices. summarises the requirements mankind needs to fulfil in order to As Ahmadi Muslims we should maintain and preserve high moral remain as close as possible to the standards and to shield it from evil Khalifa of the day and his influences. It states: instruction as they will safeguard us from the ills of the age. Khilafat Verily Allah requires you to is a blessed institution, a gift from abide by justice, and to treat Allah the Almighty, which we with grace and give like the should cherish and use to help us giving of kin to kin; and forbids maintain our Islamic values. If we indecency and manifest evil, ignore his guidance then we have and transgression. He no excuse for our moral decline. admonishes you that you may take heed. Avoiding vices of the modern age (Ch. 16:V:91) is indeed the fundamental way of fighting our modern day jihad – the The words of this verse are quite upward struggle for self- plain and simple and can be easily improvement, achieving closeness understood by persons of all to Allah and vying in the doing of intellectual abilities. In a nutshell, good deeds. Unless we remove this verse has enjoined justice, the these vices from ourselves we doing of good to others, kindness cannot reach Allah and we cannot as between brothers and has convey the beauties of our perfect forbidden indecency, manifest evil religion to others unless we are and wrongful transgression. practising it.

This particular verse of the Holy In his pursuit of theoretical worldly Qur’an combines all the essential happiness and contentment and by qualities of a perfect teaching and developing selfish ways, man

56 The Review of Religions – August 2006 DANGERS OF THE AGE AND SAFEGUARDING OF ISLAMIC VALUES disregards the true purpose of his In conclusion, I have only life, which is to attain closeness to highlighted a small number of the God and the road to true happiness many dangers and obstacles facing and contentment. mankind today especially the unity and stability of our family life. It is The Holy Qur’an states: only by faithfully and sincerely adopting the injunctions of the Those who believe, and whose Holy Qur’an and the practice of the hearts find comfort in the Holy Prophet, Muhammad remembrance of Allah. Aye! It Mustafa(saw), that Muslims, can is in the remembrance of Allah preserve and safeguard their moral that hearts can find comfort. Islamic values. Faithful practice of (Ch13:V.29) Islamic values will safeguard them for the next generation. Muslims ‘This beautiful verse embodies and especially Ahmadi Muslims a profound truth. The more the should be easily recognisable in people of the world gain the modern society as torchbearers for paltry goods of this life, the strong moral values contributing to greater becomes the hunger and a moral and just society for now the consequent burning of their and for the future of our children. heart. But as for those who seek God, the more they turn to Him, the greater is their peace of mind. This shows that the search for God is the innermost yearning of human nature and the real goal of man’s life and when that goal is attained man begins to enjoy perfect peace of mind.’ (P.1212, Commentary 1640, Holy Qur’an edited by Malik Ghulam Farid, Islam International Publications Ltd. 1994)

The Review of Religions – August 2006 57 Abdus Salam and the International Centre for By Sameen Ahmed Khan – Middle East College of Information Technology (MECIT), Muscat, Sultanate of Oman

The Abdus Salam International founder and long-time director of Centre for Theoretical Physics ICTP. Salam was born in 1926 in has turned forty. We shall Jhang, then part of India. Jhang briefly review its origins and became part of Pakistan after the achievements. division of the subcontinent in 1947. Salam returned to Pakistan 40 Years of ICTP in 1951 after a brilliant start to a On 4-5th October 2004, ICTP research carrier in Britain. In (Abdus Salam International Pakistan he experienced the Centre for Theoretical Physics, in dilemma of trying to perform , Italy) celebrated its 40th scientific research and advanced anniversary with an international studies in the relative isolation of a conference, Legacy of the Future. developing country. Without The conference attracted more access to conferences, journals than three hundred scientists and and other forms of support, Salam policy makers around the world. made the very difficult decision to Significantly, the conference held leave his home country to continue a roundtable discussion on the his work in physics. He joined the future of in the developing Imperial College in London and world. It is this concern for the established a research group with developing world, since its extraordinary distinction. Salam’s inception in 1964, which makes first hand experience in coping ICTP unique. with scarce resources and the remote location of his country The name of ICTP is forever prompted him to create ICTP with linked to its founder, Abdus the aim to foster the growth of Salam, a co-winner of the 1979 advanced scientific studies and in Physics, the research in developing countries.


Salam’s vision has been fulfilled. programmes at existing centres of theoretical physics could prove Abdus Salam decided to create an more cost-effective and easier-to- international centre dedicated to implement, than creating a new theoretical physics, which would Centre from scratch. Committee pay special attention to the needs members also expressed concerns of scientists from the developing that a centre in theoretical physics world. In 1960, Salam outlined a would have no practical proposal for the Centre, at the applications for developing Tenth Annual International countries struggling to improve Conference on High Energy their living standards (see Page Physics, in Rochester, USA. The No.7 in (1)). It is very glaring that same year he presented the Rabi who had drafted the Florence proposal before the delegates resolution of 1950, urging attending the General Conference UNESCO (United Nations of the IAEA (International Atomic Educational, Scientific and Energy Commission), in Vienna, Cultural Organisation) to create Austria. regional science centres, had opposed the creation of ICTP. It is Salam’s brainchild met with to be recalled that the Florence enthusiastic support from eminent resolution had played an important including the Nobel role leading to the establishment Laureate and later his of the European Organisation for son Age Bohr (who later received Nuclear Research(2). It is widely the in known by the French acronym 1975). But Salam’s ongoing CERN (Conseil Européen pour la efforts to secure support for the Recherche Nucléaire). CERN, creation of the Centre encountered located in Geneva, Switzerland a series of obstacles set in place by was founded in 1954 by a group of the IAEA’s Scientific Advisory twelve countries from Europe. Committee (SAC). The Committee Now it has twenty Member (which included Nobel Laureate Countries. CERN has developed ) suggested that into the largest accelerator the creation of the fellowship laboratory in the world(3). In the


prehistory of CERN, Niels Bohr newly-created International had expressed some reservations Centre for Theoretical Physics of creating CERN(4). (ICTP). A seminar on physics served as a platform from Sigvard Eklund, a strong believer which ICTP was officially in Abdus Salam’s vision, was launched. Abdus Salam, who appointed the Director-General of spearheaded the drive for the IAEA in 1961. This was the creation of ICTP by working turning point as Salam’s idea through IAEA, became the triumphed. The IAEA soon Centre’s director. , realised that the new Centre could who worked tirelessly to bring the not be created solely from its own Centre to Trieste, became ICTP’s funds. Financial offers came from deputy director. After residing for the governments of Italy with four years in downtown Trieste, Trieste as the candidate site; from ICTP moved to its permanent Denmark for Copenhagen; from location near the Miramare Park in Pakistan for Lahore; and from 1968. UNESCO joined in Turkey for Ankara. The most extending support to the new generous offer came from Italy Centre in 1970. Over the four and the man behind this was decades ICTP has accomplished its Professor Paolo Budinich, a goals. famous theoretical in Italy. Budinich argued that the Since its birth four decades ago, Centre would help ease East-West several scientific bodies have tensions due to the Cold War. spawned with headquarters in and around ICTP. Collectively, they are After a slow but clear sailing for known as the ‘Trieste Science four years in the corridors of System’, which include SISSA policymakers, Salam’s proposal (International School of Advanced became a reality. On 5 October Study) and TWAS (Third World 1964, a group of high officials, Academy of ). TWAS was mostly from Italy, joined eminent recently renamed as The Academy physicists from around the world of Sciences for the Developing for the inaugural meeting of the World, but the acronym will remain

60 The Review of Religions – August 2006 ABDUS SALAM AND THE INTERNATIONAL CENTRE FOR THEORETICAL PHYSICS the same as before(5). ICTP is scientists have given lectures at encouraging science in the ICTP. developing countries through its various visiting programmes. It is In 2004, ICTP had 7134 also recognising their talent participants in about fifty meetings through the prizes and medals it totaling to 4327 person-months. has instituted. This is reflected as 69% came from developing follows: countries. In all 124 countries were represented. ICTP has • Around two thousand scientific successfully evolved from a vision activities (from introductory to a system(6). ICTP was renamed schools to advanced as Abdus Salam ICTP on the workshops) have been occasion of Salam’s first death organised on the ICTP’s anniversary in November 1997. premises. ICTP held a Conference on Physics • Around a hundred thousand of Tsunamis in March 2005, which scientific visitors have been to was another evidence of its deep ICTP. About half of them came involvement in the developing from developing countries and countries. With all the visiting and many of them regard ICTP as a international coordination pro- scientific home away from grammes the annual budget of home. ICTP is about US$23 million. This is the range of budget that can be • Thousands of research papers afforded by the many developing have resulted from the work of countries. Centres modeled after the ICTP community. ICTP have been set up in South Korea and Latin America, though • Almost every physics Ph.D in on a reduced scale. They have been the continent of Africa has successful not only in curbing some link with ICTP. brain-drain but also in attracting back those scientists who had • Over eighty Nobel Laureates, migrated to the developed as well as many prestigious countries. ICTP provides a viable


model for implementing science synchrotron facility, hosted by programmes in the developing Jordan, has been a significant countries. development(10). Regional Synchrotron Radiation Facilities Concluding Remarks (RSRF) in the continents of The anniversary of the ICTP was Africa, and South America celebrated not only by physicists can be a step towards that but by the global scientific dream(11). Will the decision-makers community. They drew attention in the developing countries take of the media and the public at heed(12)? large. The generous support by the Italian government for ICTP has set a unique example in the North- South cooperation. From the very REFERENCES: beginning, ICTP has been addressing the problems being 1. André-Marie Hamende, The faced by the developing countries. Birth of the Centre, News Salam had dreamt of creating from ICTP, No. 107, pp. 6-7 twenty ICTPs around the world. (Winter 2003-2004). As part of that vision, he actively promoted the idea of advancing 2. Herwig Schopper, Sameen the cause of science and Ahmed Khan and John Krige, technology in the developing CERN’s Early History countries, not only by having Revisited, Letters in Physics researchers from the region work Today, 58 (4), 87-89 (April with their colleagues in the 2005). developed world, but also by having the region develop its own 3. CERN Website: facilities. For the Middle East http://www.cern.ch/ region, he had suggested facilities including a synchrotron labor- 4. , Edoardo atory(7-9). SESAME (Synchrotron- Amaldi: Scientific Statesman, light for Experimental Science and CERN Report, CERN-91-09 Applications in the Middle East) (1991), pp. 12.


5. TWAS Website: to Create Regional http://www.twas.org/ Synchrotron Radiation Facilities’ (RSRF), IRPS 6. Abdus Salam ICTP Website: Bulletin, 17 (2), 7-13 (July http://www.ictp.it/ 2003).

7. Sameen Ahmed Khan, 12. Sameen Ahmed Khan, Need Professor Abdus Salam and to Create Regional Science the Middle-East Synchrotron, Centres in the Developing The Review of Religions, 98 Countries, In proceedings of (3), pp. 54-66 (March 2003). Higher Education in Developing Countries: With a 8. Abdus Salam, in Renaissance Focus on Muslim Contexts, of Sciences in Islamic The Aga Khan University Countries, Editors: H. R. Institute for the Study of Dalafi and M. H, A. Hassan, Muslim Civilisations (AKU- (World Scientific, Singapore, ISMC), (24-25 February, 1994). London, UK). 10 pages.

9. Abdus Salam, in Ideals and Realities, third edition, Editors: C. H. Lai and Azim Kidwai, (World Scientific, Singapore, 1989).

10. Sameen Ahmed Khan, The Middle East Synchrotron Facility can bring Regional Cooperation, DOMES, 11 (2), pp. 57-71 (Winter/December 2002). (DOMES: Digest of Middle East Studies).

11. Sameen Ahmed Khan, ‘Need

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