(Note: Addition on 20 August. I have added an extra quotation to this article from Kitab-ul-Bariyya about the previous auliya.)
Dawood Majoka, a member of the Ahmadiyya Movement in Islam (the Qadiani Jamaat), who is very prominent in representing the Qadiani Jamaat beliefs on Internet discussion forums, recently sent me an e-mail asking me to comment on certain references from the book Haqiqat-ul-Wahy by Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad. These references had been posted in an Internet discussion forum which is maintained by some Qadiani Jamaat members, three of these references being posted by Dawood Majoka himself, and a further twelve extracts by another Qadiani contributor posting under the name Haziq. Our Qadiani critics argue that these quotations show that Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad claimed to be a prophet. I replied to Mr. Majoka that I would give my response by means of a comprehensive article which would be a publication of a permanent nature, rather than responding within the discussion forum.
Click here to read the posts by Dawood Majoka and Haziq.
Our response is divided into two parts. Firstly, we show the beliefs of the Promised Messiah, in this same book Haqiqat-ul-Wahy, about the finality of prophethood, the coming of mujaddids among Muslims, and the metaphorical use of the words nabi (prophet) and rasul (messenger) for him. Secondly, we deal in order with each of the extracts that Mr Majoka and Haziq have cited.
Note on references: In references to the writings of the Promised Messiah that we have given, usually the page number as in the original book is given first, followed by the reference to the Ruhani Khazain collection (indicated by RK); otherwise only the RK reference is given. We have underlined any text within an extract that we wish to emphasize.
In Haqiqat-ul-Wahy Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad has clearly stated that it is a fundamental doctrine of Islam that no prophet can come after the Holy Prophet Muhammad.
1. Discussing what it means to believe in Allah, he writes:
“God the Most High has defined the name Allah in the Holy Quran as follows. Allah is the Being Who is Rabb-ul-‘alamin, Rahman and Rahim,Who created the earth and the heaven in six days, and made Adam, and sent messengers, and sent scriptures, and at the end of all of them sent Muhammad, may peace and the blessings of Allah be upon him, who is the Khatam-ul-anbiya and the best of messengers.” (Haqiqat-ul-Wahy, p. 141; RK, vol. 22, p. 145)
Therefore, believing in Allah, as He is represented in the Quran, includes believing that the Holy Prophet Muhammad came at the end of all the prophets.
2. While referring to some of his own prophecies about severe weather conditions and storms in various countries of the world, he writes:
“This news was given only by that God Who sent our Holy Prophet, may peace and the blessings of Allah be upon him, at the end of all the prophets, in order to gather all the nations under his banner.” (Haqiqat-ul-Wahy, Titma, p. 44; RK, vol. 22, p. 477)
3. According to the Promised Messiah, the Kalima of Islam itself includes the fact that no prophet can come after the Holy Prophet Muhammad. He writes:
“If all the books of God the Most High are looked into closely, it will be found that all prophets have been teaching: believe God the Most High to be One without partner and along with it also believe in our risalat (messengership). It was for this reason that the summary of the teachings of Islam was taught to the entire Umma in these two sentences: La ilaha ill-Allah Muhammad-ur Rasul-ullah (There is no god but Allah, Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah).” (Haqiqat-ul-Wahy, p. 111; RK, vol. 22, p. 114)
The words given in bold above (all prophets and summary) are bold in the original Urdu book. According to this statement, no prophet can come after the Holy Prophet Muhammad because any such prophet would have to teach people that There is only one God, and I am His messenger, i.e. he would be introducing a Kalima in his own name. But this cannot be done, because the entire Muslim Umma, for all time to come, has already been taught There is no god but Allah, Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah as the summary of Islam.
It is important to note that the above is the definition of a prophet in Islamic law: one who requires people to acknowledge belief in God and belief in his own prophethood as the basis of his teaching. This is why Mirza Mahmud Ahmad, the second khalifa of the Qadiani Jamaat, when he argued that the Promised Messiah was a prophet, wrote:
such people as failed to recognise the Promised Messiah as a Rasul, even if they called him a righteous person with their tongues, were yet veritable Kafirs. (The Truth about the Split, p. 140. This book can be viewed online on the official Qadiani website www.alislam.org).
If the Promised Messiah is a nabi and rasul in Islamic law then every person remains a kafir and non-Muslim until he acknowledges that: Mirza Ghulam Ahmad is the Messenger of Allah. This is the position clearly laid down by Mirza Mahmud Ahmad.
4. The above extract from Haqiqat-ul-Wahy occurs in a lengthy section where Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad establishes the absolute need to believe in the Holy Prophet Muhammad. He refutes, with detailed arguments, the idea put forward by a Dr. Abdul Hakim Khan, that to attain salvation it is only necessary, according to the Quran, to believe in the oneness of God (tauheed) and in the Last Day, and that belief in any prophet including the Holy Prophet Muhammad is not required. So in this section Hazrat Mirza sahib explains what essential functions a prophet comes to perform, which make it imperative to believe in the Holy Prophet Muhammad. Throughout this section he lays stress on, and mentions, only belief in the Holy Prophet Muhammad and its utmost necessity. If he himself had claimed to be a prophet, he would mention the need to believe in him.
He argues that the existence and oneness of God can only be known through the prophets. For example, he writes:
Only prophets show that God actually exists It is impossible that oneness of God (tauheed) can be known except through a prophet When God wants to manifest Himself to the world, He sends a prophet, who is a manifestation of His powers, and gives him His revelation, and displays the powers of His providence through him. Then the world finds out that God exists. the fountain of the oneness of God (tauheed) and the perfect manifestation of the oneness of God is only the prophet, through whom the hidden face of God is seen and it is discovered that God exists. (pages 112 to 113; RK, vol. 22, pages 115, 116)
Having stated this fact repeatedly about prophets, he writes referring to the Holy Prophet Muhammad:
I would be ungrateful if I do not acknowledge that I found true oneness of God (tauheed) through this Prophet, and the recognition of the Living God I found through this Perfect Prophet and his light (p. 116; RK, vol. 22, p. 119)
All that Hazrat Mirza sahib has said above about the basic and essential functions of a prophet, and the very purpose of a prophets coming, he applies to the Holy Prophet Muhammad, not to himself. If Hazrat Mirza sahib had himself been raised as a prophet, then it would be through him that God would be showing Himself and His oneness to the world, not that Hazrat Mirza sahib himself would be seeking God through someone else.
He writes later on in the same discussion:
I have explained that what is called tauheed, which is the basis of salvation and is different from the oneness of God that the devil believes in, cannot be attained except through belief in the prophet of the time (waqt kay nabi), that is the Holy Prophet Muhammad, and obedience to him. (p. 124; RK, vol. 22, p. 127128)
Here he says that the prophet of the present time, the person through whom the oneness of God can be realized, is the Holy Prophet Muhammad. If Hazrat Mirza sahib was claiming to be a prophet then he himself would be the prophet of the time.
The claim of Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad is clearly given in Haqiqat-ul-Wahy as that of being Mujaddid. Enumerating the signs that he has fulfilled, he begins the first such sign by quoting the Holy Prophet Muhammads hadith of the coming of Mujaddids (RK, v. 22, pages 200201). He goes on to say in it:
I am the only man who made the claim before the beginning of this century and I am the only one over whose claim 25 years have passed and I am still living So until, as against my claim, another claimant can be presented fulfilling the same characteristics, my claim stands proved that the Promised Messiah who is the Mujaddid of the Last Days is none other than myself. (Haqiqat-ul-Wahy, p. 194; RK, vol. 22, p. 201)
The Promised Messiah also says earlier in the same discussion:
If someone says that if this hadith is authentic then tell us the names of the mujaddids of (the previous) twelve centuries, the answer is that this hadith has been accepted by the ulama of the Umma, It is not necessary for us to know the names of all the mujaddids. Can you tell us how many prophets have come in every nation from Adam to the Holy Prophet Muhammad? If you can tell us that, we will also name the mujaddids. (Ibid., p. 193; RK, vol. 22, pages 200201)
It is also plain from this that he is speaking of two categories: (1) prophets from Adam to the Holy Prophet Muhammad, and (2) mujaddids who appeared in Islamic history. The Promised Messiah is claiming to be in the category of mujaddids and saying to his critics if you want me to name all the other mujaddids, in order to prove this hadith to be true, then you should name all the prophets.
Regarding the application of the word nabi to him, he writes in Arabic:
Prophethood (nubuwwat) has been terminated after our Prophet And Allah does not mean anything by my prophethood except the abundance of Divine communication Our Messenger is the Khatam-un-Nabiyyin, with whom the series of messengers has been terminated. I have been named by Allah as nabi by way of metaphor, not by way of reality (haqiqat). (Haqiqat-ul-Wahy, Zameema, pages 64, 65; RK, vol. 22, pages 688, 689)
He has explained several times in previous books that the reality (haqiqat) is that no prophet can come after the Holy Prophet Muhammad, and so the words nabi or rasul are used for him in a metaphorical sense because of being a saint who receives revelation. For example:
Do not level false allegations against me that I have claimed to be a prophet in the real (haqiqi) sense. Have you not read that a muhaddas too is a mursal (messenger)? We believe and acknowledge that, according to the real (haqiqi) meaning of nubuwwat (prophethood), after the Holy Prophet Muhammad no new or former prophet can come. The Holy Quran forbids the appearance of any such prophets. But in a metaphorical sense God can call any recipient of revelation as nabi or mursal (prophet or messenger). I say it repeatedly that these words rasul and mursal and nabi undoubtedly occur about me in my revelation from God, but they do not bear their real meanings. And just as these do not, similarly the Promised Messiah being called nabi in Hadith is not meant in a real sense. This is the knowledge which God has given me. Let him understand, who will. (Siraj Munir, pages 2, 3; RK, vol. 12, pages 4, 5)
I have never, at any time, made a claim of nubuwwat or risalat in the real (haqiqi) sense. To use a word in a non-real (ghair haqiqi) sense, and to employ it in speech according to its broad, root meaning, does not imply heresy (kufr). However, I do not like even this much, for there is the possibility that ordinary Muslims may misunderstand it. The actual reality (haqiqat), to which I testify with the highest testimony, is that our Holy Prophet is the Khatam-ul-anbiya, and after him no prophet will come, neither any old one nor any new one
The name nabi-ullah (prophet of God) for the Promised Messiah, which is to be found in Sahih Muslim etc. from the blessed tongue of the Holy Prophet, is meant in the same metaphorical sense as that in which it occurs in Sufi literature as an accepted and common term for the recipient of Divine communication. Otherwise, how can there be a prophet after the Khatam-ul-anbiya? (Anjam Atham, pages 27, 28; RK, vol. 11, pages 27, 28)
These words [nabi, rasul] are used by way of metaphor, just as in Hadith also the word prophet has been used for the Promised Messiah. It is obvious that he who is sent by God is His envoy, and an envoy is called rasul in Arabic. And he who discloses news of the unseen, having received it from God, is known as nabi in Arabic. The meanings in Islamic terminology are different. Here only the linguistic meaning is intended. (Arbain, No. 2, p. 18, footnote; RK, vol. 17, p. 366)
By rusul [plural of rasul] are meant those who are sent, whether such a one is a rasul or a nabi or a muhaddas. As our Master and Messenger, the Holy Prophet Muhammad, is the Khatam-ul-anbiya, and after him no prophet can come, for this reason saints (muhaddas) have been substituted for prophets in this Shariah. (Shahadat-ul-Quran, RK, vol. 6, pages 323324)
Therefore wherever, in the quotations that our Qadiani critics have given from Haqiqat-ul-Wahy, the Promised Messiah has referred to himself as nabi or rasul it is only in the metaphorical way in which these titles can be applied to a mujaddid or muhaddas. This is our general answer to them.
I now deal specifically, in turn, with each of the quotes presented by the Qadianis from Haqiqat-ul-Wahy. I quote the translations supplied by them and where necessary point out any corrections.
In connection with his first two quotes, Dawood Majoka writes:
These quotes show that there was to date only one person who was both ummati and nabi. Whereas Lahories call Masih Mauood a.s. a mujaddid and explain his nubuwwat on the pattern of previous auliya and mujaddideen. Thus making MM a.s. simply one of many auliya and mujaddids of ummah, albeit a greater one. In clear contradiction to this Lahori belief, MM a.s. says that he is the only one to be given this status.
We note his words there was to date only one person and wonder whether the Qadianis are expecting that a person could come at any time in the future who is both ummati and nabi, after whom a new khilafat system would be established, replacing their present khilafat.
In this ummah, there were thousands of auliya and a one, who was ummati as well as nabi. (p. 30)
(What is translated as and a one is more accurately and also a one). This statement does not exclude the one who was ummati as well as nabi from the category of auliya. He is here comparing the followers of Moses with the followers of the Holy Prophet Muhammad, and saying that while a large number of prophets arose among the Israelites it was not a result of their following Moses but they were directly chosen by God; however among Muslims thousands of auliya and also a one, who was ummati as well as nabi arose as a result of following the Holy Prophet Muhammad.
So the question is, in what lies the superiority of the Muslim umma over the Israelites? If it is in having just one person who became a prophet by following the Holy Prophet Muhammad, as compared to the Israelites among whom no one became a prophet by following Moses, then it does not seem much of a superiority (one against none)! The superiority lies, of course, in having thousands of auliya. Only two lines further down he repeats this statement as follows:
As to [Israelite] prophets, we have explained that they did not gain anything because of following Moses but rather they were made prophets directly. But in the umma Muhammadiyya thousands of persons were made wali merely by following the Holy Prophet. (Haqiqat-ul-Wahy, p.28; RK, vol. 22, p. 30)
This time he only mentions the thousands of auliya. Therefore it is clear that in the first mention the one who was ummati as well as nabi is included among these thousands of auliya. And of course nabi here is used metaphorically (as made clear by the quotations we gave earlier).
Previously Hazrat Mirza sahib had explained that it is only a muhaddas (a saint among Muslims who is a non-prophet) who can be called ummati as well as a nabi:
“A muhaddas, who is a ‘sent one’, is an ummati and also, in an imperfect sense, a nabi. He is an ummati because he fully follows the Shari‘ah of the Holy Prophet Muhammad and receives benefit from the light of his [the Holy Prophet’s] prophethood. And he is a nabi because God makes his affairs like those of prophets. God has made the position of muhaddas as an intermediate one between prophets and followers. Although he is an ummati in the fullest sense, he is also a nabi in one sense. And a muhaddas must be the like of some prophet, and receive from God the very name which is the name of that prophet.” (Izala Auham, p. 569; RK, vol. 3, p. 407)
“So the fact that he [the Messiah to come] has been called an ummati as well as a nabi indicates that the qualities of both discipleship and prophethood will be found in him, as it is essential for both of these to be found in a muhaddas. The possessor of full prophethood, however, has only the quality of prophethood. To conclude, sainthood (muhaddasiyyat) is coloured with both colours. For this reason, in Barahin Ahmadiyya too, God named this humble one as ummati and as nabi.” (Izala Auham, p. 533; RK, vol. 3, p. 386)
Why he mentions himself as one who was ummati as well as nabi is further explained by us later under the heading Quote 2: Why were previous auliya not given the title ‘prophet’?
In Haqiqat-ul-Wahy, from the beginning of the book up to the page referenced by our critic (RK, vol. 22, p. 30), Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad discusses what kinds of people receive true revelation and dreams from God, and divides such people into three categories. The title of the book itself, meaning The truth about revelation, refers to this subject. We quote below from the headings that he has given to each of these categories:
The Promised Messiah claims to belong to the third category, and it is also quite obvious from these headings that the auliya too belong to the third category. Speaking of people of this third category, he writes:
Those doors of the unseen are opened through his prophecies that are not opened for others. The word of God descends upon him as it descends upon the holy prophets and messengers of God, being free from doubt and absolutely certain. (p. 15; RK, vol. 22, p. 18)
All such qualities that he mentions at length under this third category are his own qualities as well as being the qualities possessed by the other auliya. He refers to people of this third category a number of times as the maqbul (chosen ones).
One quality of such a person is stated by Hazrat Mirza sahib as follows:
Just as God has power over everything, similarly he [that person] always prevails over every adversary and opponent: Allah has written: I shall certainly prevail, I and My messengers. (p. 15, footnote; RK, vol. 22, p. 17)
Here Hazrat Mirza sahib has applied the word rasul in this verse of the Quran (ch. 58, v. 21; occurring here in the plural form messengers) to a person of the third category. This is another instance in which the word rasul or nabi is used to include a saint (wali), because the quality being described is common to prophets and saints.
It may be noted here that in a well-known letter that the Promised Messiah wrote three days before his death, on 23 May 1908, to the Muslim newspaper Akhbar Aam, he stated:
In view of the fact that people generally have dreams, and some receive revelation and are informed of knowledge of the unseen but mixed with impurities reason requires that the one whose revelation and knowledge of the unseen is free from this murkiness and damage should not be confused with other ordinary men but should be called by some special name to distinguish between him and others. Therefore, merely to give me a distinctive position, God has called me nabi, and this is a title of honour bestowed upon me to make clear the difference between them and myself.
This shows that the title nabi, applied by God to Hazrat Mirza sahib, is to distinguish him from people generally and ordinary men who also may have true dreams (namely, the people of the second category mentioned above), not to distinguish him from auliya and mujaddids.
Continuing his discussion of the people of the third category, the Promised Messiah writes as follows on the very page from which our Qadiani critic has taken his quotation
The door of Divine communication and revelation will never close for his Umma till the Day of Judgment. Except for the Holy Prophet Muhammad there is no prophet possessing the seal (sahib-i khatam). He is the only one by whose seal such prophethood can be attained for which it is necessary to be a follower (ummati). Zilli prophethood, which means receiving revelation merely through the grace of the Holy Prophet, will remain till the Day of Judgment so that the door of the perfection of human beings is never closed and this sign does not vanish from the world that the power of the Holy Prophet Muhammad required that till the Day of Judgment the doors of Divine communication and revelation remain open. (p. 28; RK, vol. 22, p. 30)
The context of the previous, almost 30, pages shows that the prophethood that can be attained for which it is necessary to be an ummati and zilli prophethood is what was attained by the auliya of this Umma. It is also plainly obvious that if the door of Divine revelation, described here as prophethood for which it is necessary to be a follower and as zilli prophethood, is open in this Umma forever, from the departure of the Holy Prophet till the Day of Judgment, then there cannot have been just one person who attained this prophethood but many more.
Zill has been explained elsewhere by him as follows:
I firmly believe that our Holy Prophet Muhammad is the Khatam-ul-anbiya, and after him no prophet shall come for this Umma, neither new nor old. Not a jot or iota of the Holy Quran shall be abrogated. Of course, muhaddases will come who will be spoken to by God, and possess some attributes of full prophethood by way of reflection (zill), and in some ways be coloured with the colour of prophethood. I am one of these. (Nishan Asmani, p. 28)
spiritual teachers are sent who are the heirs of the messengers (plural of rasul) and who attain the qualities of the messengers by way of zill. And the mujaddid whose work bears striking similarity to the appointed task of one of the messengers, is called by the name of that messenger (rasul) in the sight of Allah. (Shahadat-ul-Quran, RK, vol. 6, p. 348)
God Almighty says: Whatever thing benefits mankind, it remains in the world [the Quran, 13:17]. So, when applied to prophets, the meaning of this verse would be that they continue to exist in terms of zill, and at every time of need God raises some servant of His in their likeness and similitude, as a reflection (zill), who causes them to have perpetual life by being in their mould. So this verse too proves openly that God has made this Umma the heir to the prophets, in the sense of zill, so that the prophets continue to exist forever by way of zill, and the world is never deprived of their presence. khalifa is in reality the zill of the Messenger. (Shahadat-ul-Quran, RK, vol. 6, p. 351, 352, 353)
He has spoken of Hazrat Umar, the second Khalifa of Islam, as zill of the Holy Prophet in the following words:
the person of Hazrat Umar was, as it were, the person of the Holy Prophet Muhammad by way of zill, therefore in the realm of revelation the hand of Hazrat Umar was considered to be the hand of the Messenger of God, the Holy Prophet. (Ayyam as-Sulh, p. 35; RK, vol. 14, p. 265)
Zill of a prophet therefore means one who is a muhaddas, mujaddid or khalifa, who is not a prophet.
The second quote presented by Dawood Majoka is a small part of the eighth quote in the extracts given by the other poster Haziq. So here I propose to deal with that longer version from Haziq. Below is the first of the two paragraphs of this quote from his post:
In Ahadith of the Holy Prophet it has been foretold that in the Ummat of the Holy Prophet, there shall appear one who will be called Issa and Ibne Maryam and will be called Nabi which means that he will be getting the excellence of communion and communication and the matters of unseen disclosed to him with such abundance that cannot be done except to a Prophet as Allah says, Allah does not grant anyone a full power and dominance on matters pertaining to the unknown obtainable on the basis of amplitude and clarity except in the case of His own chosen Apostle. And it is a thing well established that the amplitude and abundance of communion and the volume of knowledge in regard to the unknown bestowed on me by Allah, in the last thirteen hundred years, has not been granted to anyone else. If there be anyone who desires to deny this, the burden of proof lies on him. (page 406)
There is no mention anywhere here of the Promised Messiah becoming a prophet but being given the name prophet. As shown above, he repeatedly stated, even in this very book later on (RK, vol. 22, p. 689), that he has been called nabi metaphorically, and not by way of reality. The above quotation begins by saying that a man will appear who will be called Jesus and the son of Mary and be given the name nabi. Just as Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad is not actually Jesus, and not actually the son of Mary, he is also not actually nabi. Elsewhere he has written:
And in the hadith The ulama of my Umma are like the prophets of the Israelites, the news is implicitly given regarding the like of the Messiah. Therefore, according to this, the coming Messiah, due to being a muhaddas, is also metaphorically a prophet. (Izala Auham, p. 349; RK, vol. 3, p. 278)
Therefore this statement in Haqiqat-ul-Wahy does not take him outside and above the category of a muhaddas, wali and mujaddid.
Continuing with our critics quote, we read:
and will be called Nabi which means that he will be getting the excellence of communion and communication.
Compare this with the following explanation given by the Promised Messiah and it becomes obvious that nabi here means muhaddas:
A sign of the coming Promised Messiah, which is written, is that he shall be a prophet (nabi) of God, meaning one who receives revelation from God. However, full and complete prophethood is not meant here because that has been sealed. Rather, that prophethood is meant which is limited to the significance of muhaddasiyya, which obtains light from the lamp of the prophethood of Muhammad. (Izala Auham, p. 701; RK, vol. 3, p. 478)Continuing further with the quote presented by our critic:
and the matters of unseen disclosed to him with such abundance that cannot be done except to a Prophet as Allah says, Allah does not grant anyone a full power and dominance on matters pertaining to the unknown obtainable on the basis of amplitude and clarity except in the case of His own chosen Apostle.
The Promised Messiah has elsewhere referred to this verse as follows:
So the application of this verse to the Promised Messiah does not make him a prophet, as the word rasul here includes a muhaddas and mujaddid.
God says: He does not make His unseen known to anyone except a rasul whom He chooses [Holy Quran, 72:2627]. The word rasul is general, and included within it are rasul, nabi and muhaddas. (Ainah Kamalat Islam, p. 322; RK, vol. 5, p. 322)
The Holy Quran says: He [God] does not make His unseen known to anyone except a rasul whom He chooses, i.e. to disclose unseen matters perfectly is only the work of those who are rasul; others are not given this status. By rasul are meant those persons who are sent from Almighty God, whether it is a nabi, or a rasul, or a muhaddas and mujaddid. (Ayyam as-Sulh, p. 171, footnote; RK, vol. 14, p. 419)
The second paragraph of the quote from Haziqs post, containing within it Dawood Majokas quote, is as follows:
In short, in point of abundance and matters pertaining to the unknown, in this ummat, I am the only specific individual and out of the Auliyya, Abdaals and Aqtaabs, as have gone before my time, such amplitude of the great blessing has not been given to anyone at all. Because of this reason I am the only person specified to get the name of prophet while everyone else held as not deserving this name for amplitude of wahi and an abundance of knowledge in respect of matters unknown is an indispensable condition and this condition is not found in them. (page 406-407)
[I omit the rest of this quote from Haziq as it covers same ground.]
As to previous saints not being given this name nabi, and Hazrat Mirza sahib being the only one accorded this title, he is referring to the word nabi in the Hadith reports about the coming of the Messiah, which are mentioned right at the beginning of the quote supplied by our critic. While the auliya, including Hazrat Mirza sahib, are mentioned by Hadith reports in general terms, such as The ulama of my Umma are like the prophets of the Israelites, the Promised Messiah is the only one about whom there are Hadith reports identifying him specifically. While the auliya and khalifas (including Hazrat Mirza sahib) are described in Hadith reports as being like prophets, the Promised Messiah is also directly called Jesus, son of Mary, and prophet of God, without saying like due to extreme similarity. That is his exclusivity discussed by him here. But of course these terms still do not apply to him in the actual sense, and he remains in the category of auliya, bearing likeness to Jesus, likeness to a prophet of God.
The Promised Messiah has, however, also given another reason for why the previous saints in Islam were not called as nabi in Hadith while he has been so called. He gave the following explanation to Sahibzada Abdul Latif Shaheed in 1903:
Once I explained to him [Sahibzada Abdul Latif Shaheed] the answer to an objection, which pleased him very greatly, and this was that as the Holy Prophet Muhammad is the like of Moses and his khalifas are the likes of the Israelite prophets, why then has the Promised Messiah been called nabi in Hadith reports but all other khalifas have not been called by this title. I gave him the reply that as the Holy Prophet Muhammad was the Khatam-ul-anbiya and after him no prophet was to come, so if all the khalifas had been called by the title nabi then the finality of prophethood would have become doubtful. But if not even one person had been called by the title nabi, the objection would remain as to the lack of similarity, as the khalifas of Moses were prophets. Therefore Divine wisdom required that, first, many khalifas be sent, having regard for the finality of prophethood, and they not be called nabi and given this rank so that it would be a proof of the finality of prophethood. Then the last khalifa, that is to say the Promised Messiah, would be called by the title nabi so that in the matter of khilafat the similarity of the two systems is established. And we have explained many times that the prophethood of the Promised Messiah is by way of zill. (Tazkirat-ush-Shahadatain, RK, vol. 20, p. 45)
So the reason why the previous auliya were not called nabi by the Holy Prophet in Hadith is that since no prophet was to come after the Holy Prophet, this would have compromised the belief in the finality of his prophethood! But after the finality became firmly established in peoples minds, then to call the Promised Messiah as nabi metaphorically does not undermine that finality.
In the above volume of Ruhani Khazain (vol. 20), the Qadiani compiler has, in his own Introduction, himself noted that Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad gave this reason. The compiler says:
Huzoor says that the reason for the khalifas not being given the title nabi is that the fact of the finality of prophethood may not become doubtful to people. However, after a long time passed over the prophethood of the Holy Prophet Muhammad, then in order to show complete similarity between the Muhammadi system and the Mosaic system Allah sent the Promised Messiah bearing the title nabi. (3rd page of Introduction)
The compiler then actually gives a different reference (page 87 of volume 20), which is another place where the Promised Messiah has expressed this view, this time in Arabic.
In a talk in April 1903, the Promised Messiah also explained the same point:
Thousands in this Umma received the privilege of Divine communications and they possessed the characteristics of the prophets. There have been hundreds of very great saints who made such claims. Just look at the one book Futuh-ul-Ghaib of Hazrat Abdul Qadir Jilani
Thousands of persons in the Umma of the Holy Prophet Muhammad received the rank of prophethood, and the effects and blessings of prophethood were found in them, but they were not openly given the title nabi only because of the dignity of the prophethood of the Holy Prophet Muhammad and because of the ending of prophethood For thirteen hundred years the word prophet was not applied because of respect for the dignity of the Holy Prophets prophethood, and after this, because a long time had now passed and people were firmly established on the belief that the Holy Prophet Muhammad is the Khatam-ul-anbiya, so if someone is given the title prophet it does not go against the dignity of the Holy Prophet. Although the attribute of prophethood and the lights of prophethood existed, and it was right that these persons should be called prophet but that title was not given to them out of respect for the greatness of the prophethood of the Khatam-ul-anbiya. But now, in the last days, this fear did not remain, so the Promised Messiah was called nabi-ullah. (Promised Messiahs talk on evening of 14th April and morning of 15th April 1903. Ruhani Khazain No. 2, vol. 5, pages 344345, 349, 350, 351; bolding is ours for emphasis.)
That previous auliya were called nabi in their revelation from God has been clearly stated by the Promised Messiah. He writes:
Sometimes the revelation from God contains such words about some of His auliya in a metaphorical and figurative sense; they are not meant by way of reality. This is the whole controversy which the foolish, prejudiced people have dragged in a different direction. The name nabi-ullah for the Promised Messiah, which is to be found in Sahih Muslim etc. from the blessed tongue of the Holy Prophet, is meant in the same metaphorical sense as that in which it occurs in Sufi literature as an accepted and common term for the recipient of Divine communication. Otherwise, how can there be a prophet after the Khatam-ul-anbiya? (Anjam Atham, p. 28; RK, vol. 11, p. 28)
In his Will, he wrote:
“God bestowed the honour of His full, perfect, pure and holy, communication and revelation to some such persons as had reached the stage of fana fir-rasul to the highest degree, so that there remained no separation. The concept of ummati and the meaning of following was found in them to completion and perfection, so that their very being did not remain their own selves, but rather, the person of the Holy Prophet Muhammad was reflected in the mirror of their state of engrossment. On the other hand, they received Divine communication and revelation in the fullest and most perfect sense like prophets. So in this way, some persons, despite being ummati, received the title of nabi.” (Al-Wasiyyat, pages 1112; RK, vol. 20, p. 312)
The Promised Messiah has spoken of some of the great figures of Islam before him as being in the likeness of prophets, just as he himself claimed to be in the likeness of Jesus. In his book Tuhfah Golarwiya, the first argument he puts forward in support of his claim of being Promised Messiah is again that:
the khalifas of the Muhammadiyya prophetic system definitely and absolutely bear resemblance and likeness to the khalifas of the Mosaic prophetic system The first khalifa who is Hazrat Abu Bakr corresponds to, and is the like of, Hazrat Joshua bin Nun (p. 57; RK, vol. 17, p. 183)
After this the Promised Messiah devotes the next five pages to listing various points of similarity between Hazrat Abu Bakr and Joshua (the prophet and first successor to Moses). Within this section he writes:
The similarity of events shows that it is as if Abu Bakr and Joshua are the same person. In their case, the likeness between the khilafats asserted itself very strongly. The similarity that exists between Joshua Bin Nun and Abu Bakr, these two being at the beginning of the series of khalifas of the two systems, and the similarity that exists between Jesus son of Mary and the Promised Messiah of this Umma, these two being at the end of the series of the two systems, God made this similarity openly manifest and self-evident. For example, the similarity between Joshua and Abu Bakr was such that they appear to be one and the same person, or two parts of the same essence. (p. 58, 59; RK, vol. 17, p. 186)
From every angle, the resemblance between Hazrat Abu Bakr and Joshua is established. Just as God showed Joshua the same assistance as He previously showed to Moses, similarly God blessed the works of Hazrat Abu Bakr in front of all the Companions, and his glory shone like that of prophets. (Ibid.)
Like the prophet Joshua, Abu Bakr was strengthened by the holy word of God (p. 60; RK, vol. 17, p. 188).
Then moving to the mujaddid who appeared immediately prior to Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad, namely, Sayyid Ahmad Barelvi, he writes:
The twelfth khalifa of Islam, who should have come at the head of the thirteenth century, corresponds to the prophet Yahya Sayyid Ahmad Barelvi is the twelfth khalifa of the system of Muhammadiyya khilafat, and is the like of Hazrat Yahya and is a Sayyid. (p. 63; RK, vol. 17, p. 193194)
So Hazrat Abu Bakr bore intense similarity to the prophet Joshua, and Sayyid Ahmad Barelvi was the like of the prophet Yahya, just as Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad was the like of Jesus.
Elsewhere he wrote:
Of all the leaders of Tasawwuf that there have been till the present day, not even one has disagreed with the point that in this religion the path to become the likes of prophets is open, as the Holy Prophet Muhammad has given the glad tidings for spiritual and godly learned persons that ‘the ulama of my Umma are like the prophets of the Israelites’. The words of Abu Yazid Bustami given below, which are recorded in Tazkirat-ul-Auliya by Farid-ud-Din Attar, and are also found in other reliable works, are on this basis, as he says: ‘I am Adam, I am Seth, I am Noah, I am Abraham, I am Moses, I am Jesus, I am Muhammad, peace be upon him and upon all these brothers of his’.” (Izala Auham, pages 258–259; RK, vol. 3, p. 230)
The conclusion is that Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad has written, both generally as well as by naming specific auliya, mujaddids and khalifas of Islam before him, that his own resemblance to prophets is exactly like the resemblance they bore to prophets. He also wrote:
We can prove to every seeker-after-truth, conclusively and definitely, that from the time of our master and leader, the Holy Prophet Muhammad, till the present day there have been, in every century, godly persons through whom God has shown heavenly signs to other communities to guide them [towards Islam]. There have been in Islam persons such as Sayyid Abdul Qadir Jilani, Abul Hasan Kharqani, Abu Yazid Bustami, Junaid of Baghdad, Muhy-ud-Din Ibn Arabi, Zul-Noon of Egypt, Muin-ud-Din Chishti of Ajmer, Qutub-ud-Din Bukhtiar of Kaki, Farid-ud-Din of Pak Patan, Nizam-ud-Din of Delhi, Shah Waliullah of Delhi, and Shaikh Ahmad of Sirhind — may Allah be pleased with them, and they were pleased with Him! The number of such persons runs into thousands, and so many miracles of these people are recorded in the books of the scholarly and the learned that even a prejudiced opponent, despite his great bias, has to concede finally that these people showed miracles and extraordinary signs. the heavenly signs that have appeared and are appearing in Islam through the auliya of this Umma in support of Islam and in witness of the truthfulness of the Holy Prophet, on whom be peace and the blessings of Allah, have no parallel at all in other religions. (Kitab-ul-Bariyya; RK, vol. 13, pages 9192)
We may also note that in Haqiqat-ul-Wahy itself the Promised Messiah gives an example of a great Muslim saint, Imam Jafar Sadiq (great-grandson of Hazrat Imam Husain), to show that the auliya reached the highest spiritual level:
Verses of the Holy Quran appeared in the revelation received by Imam Jafar Sadiq, just as such verses appear in the revelation received by Hazrat Mirza sahib. As an additional point we note that in the Promised Messiahs words above, if someone has faith in His Book and His Messenger, by the Messenger (rasul) is meant, of course, the Holy Prophet Muhammad. But according to the Qadiani belief Messenger here could mean Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad! The Qadianis should clarify whether, wherever the Promised Messiah uses the word rasul without specification, as here, it refers to himself or to the Holy Prophet Muhammad!
In the verse A guide to those who keep their duty [Holy Quran, 2:2], God has promised that if someone has faith in His Book and His Messenger, he will be deservant of receiving further guidance. God will open his eyes and grant him the privilege of His revelation and communication, and show him great signs, so much so that he will see God in this very world, that his God exists, and will receive full satisfaction. The word of God says: if you have perfect faith in me [i.e. in the word of God] then I will be revealed to you also. It is on this basis that Hazrat Imam Jafar Sadiq, may Allah be pleased with him, says: I read the word of God will such sincerity, love and zeal that it descended upon my tongue in the form of revelation also. (Haqiqat-ul-Wahy, p. 138; RK, vol. 22, p. 141)
Hazrat Mirza sahib has also emphasised in the strongest terms that certain qualities and excellences of the Companions of the Holy Prophet Muhammad cannot be attained by any persons after their time (including the Promised Messiah himself) because they have not had direct contact with the Holy Prophet Muhammad. On the Urdu home page of the Qadiani website (www.alislam.org/urdu/) there is an extract from Izala Auham at the head of the webpage, where the Promised Messiah has summarised his basic beliefs (beginning: The summary and gist of our faith is La ilaha ill-Allah, Muhammad-ur Rasul-ullah). After the end of the extract displayed on this webpage, he goes on to write some five lines further on:
We also believe that those righteous and perfect persons who, by having the privilege of the company of the Holy Prophet, reached the completion of their spiritual path, if we have any accomplishments like their accomplishments then we have them by way of reflection (zill). And included in those are certain partial excellences which we certainly can never attain now. (Izala Auham, p. 138; RK, vol. 3, p. 170)
Apart from his belief expressed above, Hazrat Mirza sahib also once delivered a powerful, passionate talk on the qualities of the Companions, as reported by Maulvi Abdul Karim in the Ahmadiyya newspaper Al-Hakam. An Ahmadi had asked the Promised Messiah:
Should we not consider you to be superior in spiritual status to the Shaikhain (Hazrat Abu Bakr and Umar), and close to the Holy Prophet?
At this, says Maulvi Abdul Karim, the Promised Messiah became very angry, agitated and charged. He spoke with great passion for six hours on the qualities of the Holy Prophet Muhammad, about himself as being his slave and devotee, and about the virtues of the Companions. He said about the Shaikhain:
It is a matter of sufficient pride for me that I am their eulogist and the dust of their feet. The aspects of excellence that God bestowed upon them cannot be attained by any person till the end of the world. The Holy Prophet Muhammad cannot be born again into the world so that anyone could get the opportunity of service that the Shaikhain had. (Al-Hakam, August 1899; Ruhani Khazain No. 2, vol. 1, p. 326)
So the Promised Messiah, despite being called prophet, could not attain some qualities of these great Companions who were not called prophets.
The third reference given by Dawood Majoka is to a letter quoted by the Promised Messiah, written to him by his follower Hakim Karamdad, which near the end addresses him as: Khuda kay payaray rasul or O you beloved Messenger of God. Dawood Majoka concludes from this that the companions of the Promised Messiah held Masih Mauud to be rasul.
Let us examine the whole letter. The first half relates the incident of an opponent who made a challenge to Ahmadis in his village regarding the claims of Hazrat Mirza sahib and then boldly published a sworn declaration announcing his prophecy that Hazrat Mirza sahib would be destroyed soon because of his false claim. So what was that claim? Hakim Karamdad writes that an argument took place between him and the opponent, which began as follows:
Opponent: Do you believe Mirza Ghulam Ahmad Qadiani to be
Mahdi and Promised Messiah?
Opponent: He is false in making this claim.
(Haqiqat-ul-Wahy, p. 367; RK, vol. 22, p. 381)
The claim that they then go on to argue about is that of being Mahdi, as to whether Hazrat Mirza sahib fulfils the signs of the Mahdi. There is no mention in this discussion whatsoever of a claim by Hazrat Mirza sahib of being a prophet.
In the sworn declaration of the opponent it is stated:
It has been disclosed to me [by revelation] that Mirza Ghulam Ahmad Qadiani is false in his claim (Haqiqat-ul-Wahy, p. 368; RK, vol. 22, p. 382)
In any argument with an opponent, and especially in case of a sworn statement such as this, the claim which is the basis of disagreement must be known absolutely clearly and correctly. The only claim mentioned is that of being Promised Messiah and Mahdi.
In the second half of the letter, Hakim Karamdad mentions the acceptance of his prayer for his fatally sick son. The prayer contains the following plea:
O Merciful God, You know that today my opponents are rejoicing because I believe your faristada and mursal Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad to be the Promised Messiah and Mahdi [the writer means that his sons death will prove these claims to be false]. O my God, grant recovery to this boy so that by rising to life from the dead he is a sign of the truthfulness of the Muhammadi Messiah. (p. 371; RK, vol. 22, p. 385)
The words faristada and mursal mean any envoy or messenger. Nowhere is any claim of being a prophet mentioned in this prayer. It is also said here that the acceptance of the prayer would prove the truth of the claim of being Messiah.
Therefore the words near the end of the letter that are quoted by Dawood Majoka, O you beloved Messenger (rasul) of God, do not at all show that he believed Hazrat Mirza sahib to be a rasul who is out of the category of auliya. This word is applied to mujaddids, as Hazrat Mirza sahib writes, referring to the word rasul in a certain verse of the Holy Quran:
By rasul are meant those persons who are sent by God, whether it is a nabi, or rasul, or muhaddas or mujaddid. (Ayyam-us-Sulh, footnote, p. 171; RK, vol. 14, p. 419)
Regarding the use of the word rasul about himself in the literal sense of anyone who is sent, the Promised Messiah had also written:
Have you not read those Sayings of the Holy Prophet in which occur the words: rasulu rasul-illah (messenger of the Messenger of God)? The Arabs to this day call even the message-bearer of a man as a rasul (Siraj Munir, pages 2 - 3, RK, vol. 12, pages 4, 5).
Dawood Majokas conclusion, from the use of the word rasul by Hakim Karamdad, that this shows that the Promised Messiahs companions held him to be a prophet, can be refuted by numerous examples. We may refer to just two here:
If, till the Day of Judgment, there remains even one person who believes that a man claimed to be the mujaddid at the beginning of the 14th century hijra and he was true in that claim, and moreover his claims to be the Promised Messiah and Mahdi were true, and that person possesses writings of Hazrat Mirza sahib and he believes in them fully — and Allah willing there will be many such persons till the Day of Judgment — then the eternal life of Hazrat Mirza sahib will stand proved.
I now turn to the second set of references, posted by someone under the name Haziq, which Dawood Majoka has also asked me to respond to. Introducing these references, Haziq writes:
Twelve references from the book Haqiqat-ul-Wahi to prove that he was not among the saints of this Ummah, rather he was more than that, a prophet, as written and proved by him. If any Lahori would like to comment on these references then I would explain with detail how they conclusively refute the beliefs of Lahoris.
Purely and quite exclusively, from the grace of God, not by any dexterity on my part, I have received a full measure of the blessings, before my time, conferred on the earlier Prophets, Apostles, and the righteous servants of Allah. (p. 64)
Here, in addition to prophets and messengers, he mentions the righteous servants of Allah. Obviously he is talking about qualities that could also be acquired by the righteous other than the prophets and messengers. Note that the word earlier is an addition in this translation, and does not occur in the original. It could create the misimpression that he is claiming to be a prophet, saying that before him there were earlier Prophets.
In this quotation, commenting on the Quranic verse And others from among them who have not yet joined them (62:3), he writes:
included among the Companions of the Holy Prophet Mohamrnad, is another body of men, which has not yet appeared. Evidently, Companions are only those present at the time of the advent of a Prophet, who come to believe in him, and receive the teaching, and training, directly from him. So it stands proved from this verse, that among the people spoken of here, a Prophet would be raised, who would be a buruz of the Holy Prophet, which fact would qualify his followers, his companions, for being reckoned as Companions of the Holy Prophet Mohammad himself. (p. 502)
He speaks of himself here as: a prophet who would be a buruz of the Holy Prophet. As to what is a buruz, the Promised Messiah writes:
The entire Umma is agreed that a non-prophet (ghair nabi) takes the place of a prophet by way of buruz. This is the meaning of the hadith report: The ulama of my Umma are like the prophets of the Israelites. Look, the Holy Prophet has declared the ulama to be like prophets. One hadith says that the ulama are the heirs of the prophets. Another hadith says: Among my followers, there will always be forty men who take after the heart of Abraham. In this hadith, the Holy Prophet has declared them to be the likes of Abraham. (Ayyam as-Sulh, p. 163; RK, vol. 14, p. 411)
So the buruz of the Holy Prophet Muhammad is a non-prophet (ghair nabi).
Also it is stated in the quotation given by our Qadiani critic from Haqiqat-ul-Wahy that: included among the Companions of the Holy Prophet Mohammad, is another body of men, which has not yet appeared and which fact would qualify his followers, his companions, for being reckoned as Companions of the Holy Prophet Mohammad himself. But if Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad had been a prophet, his followers would be companions of the prophet Mirza Ghulam Ahmad, not companions of the Holy Prophet Muhammad! So there is no such person as the prophet Mirza Ghulam Ahmad. And, in fact, this is what the Promised Messiah wrote in Ayk Ghalati Ka Izala, a pamphlet which the Qadiani Jamaat regards as the most authentic explanation of his claims. In that pamphlet, explaining the same verse of the Quran (62:3), he writes:
One subtlety of expression in this verse is that that group has been mentioned here which is considered as being included among the Companions of the Holy Prophet. But there is no explicit mention here of the buruz, i.e., the Promised Messiah, through whom these people came to be considered as the Companions and regarded, like them, as being under the guidance of the Holy Prophet himself. This omission of reference is meant to indicate that the buruz does not have an existence of his own, and hence the seal of finality is not broken by his buruzi prophethood and messengership. Therefore, in this verse he is treated as a non-existent being, and the Holy Prophet is mentioned in his stead. (Ayk Ghalati Ka Izala; RK, vol. 18, p. 216)
And a little further on, at the end of this pamphlet:
It is the form of buruz which has made me a prophet and a messenger, and it is on this basis that God has called me nabi and rasul again and again, but in the sense of buruz. My own self does not come into it, but that of the Holy Prophet Muhammad, may peace and the blessings of God be upon him. It was on this account that I was called Muhammad and Ahmad. So prophethood and messengership did not go to another person. What belonged to Muhammad remained with Muhammad, peace and blessings be upon him. (Ayk Ghalati Ka Izala; RK, vol. 18, p. 216)
He says: No other person became a prophet after the Holy Prophet Muhammad. The Promised Messiah appeared as a spiritual mirror, receiving the light of the Holy Prophet Muhammad and reflecting it to the world. The mirror in itself is not a prophet or messenger, but only reflects his light. As he says, he is not only given the titles nabi and rasul but also Muhammad and Ahmad. Without being called Muhammad and Ahmad he is not a buruzi nabi and rasul. If the Qadianis wish to regard him actually as nabi and rasul then they have also to regard him as being actually Muhammad and Ahmad!
He also writes in Ayk Ghalati Ka Izala:
However, it is possible that the Holy Prophet Muhammad, not only once but a thousand times, come into the world in the sense of buruz and express his prophethood in the manner of buruz along with his other qualities. And this particular buruz was a confirmed promise from God, as He says: Others from among them who have not yet joined them. (Ayk Ghalati Ka Izala; RK, vol. 18, p. 215)
Who are those thousand buruz, out of which the Promised Messiah is one particular buruz? They are the saints (auliya) of the Muslim Umma. This is what he wrote elsewhere:
the spirituality of our Holy Prophet has always manifested itself at times when the internal crises of Islam became overwhelming, and the essence of Muhammad (haqiqat-i Muhammadiyya) has always made its appearance through some perfect follower. There have been hundreds of persons in whom the essence of Muhammad was established, and with God they had the names Muhammad and Ahmad by way of reflection (zill). (Ainah Kamalat Islam, p. 346; RK, vol. 5, p. 346)
To conclude, as a buruz Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad is not a prophet, but one of the auliya, one particular buruz out of the numerous auliya who were also buruz.
The third quotation is as follows:
Some thoughtless people say that, generally speaking, those in Europe and America are not aware even of my name; why then have they perished in earthquakes, and volcanic outbursts? The reply is that they were ripe for punishment, on account of excesses and misdeeds. So, in accordance with his normal, usual manner, He held His hand till a Prophet had been raised, to warn them. But when that Prophet came, and those people had been given a call, by means of thousands upon thousands of pamphlets and leaflets, the moment had come when they were to get in this world what they had come to deserve. So the truth is what has been stated in the Holy Quran: We could not, properly, have punished these people, until we had raised an Apostle among them. This is the manner and method of the Lord God; and, evidently, no Prophet, no Apostle from the Lord has appeared at the time, anywhere in Europe or America. Therefore the punishment that has fallen on them, it has fallen only after my claim had gone out. (pages 486, 487)
The fourth quotation is similar in content, from which we quote the following words:
as Allah Himself has said: It is not Our way that We send a chastisement, until We have sent an Apostle. how is it possible that on the occasion of the great chastisement of the later days, which was to overwhelm the whole world, a chastisement foretold by all the Prophets of old, that chastisement should descend on the people, without the advent of the Prophet destined and ordained to appear at the juncture? Any idea that such a thing is possible, involves an evident falsification of the Word of God. Now this same Apostle is the Promised Messiah. (page 499)
However, the Promised Messiah has taken this verse (We chastise not until We raise a rasul, the Quran, 17:15) to refer to the mujaddids and auliya of the Muslims who are successors of the Holy Prophet. He writes:
Then there are some other verses which show that God has most certainly intended that spiritual teachers (ruhani muallim) who are heirs of the prophets continue to come forever. These verses are: We chastise not until We raise a rasul We do not send punishment on a people until We send a rasul. (Shahadat-ul-Quran, RK, vol. 6, pages 352, 353)
And what exactly does he mean by spiritual teachers? Just read this in the same discussion:
Corresponding to the issues of every age, for the resolving of those issues spiritual teachers are sent who are the heirs of the messengers (plural of rasul) and who attain the qualities of the messengers by way of reflection (zill). And the mujaddid whose work bears striking similarity to the appointed task of one of the messengers (rasul), is called by the name of that messenger (rasul) in the sight of Allah. (Shahadat-ul-Quran, RK, vol. 6, p. 348)
Thus, according to the Promised Messiah, the word rasul in this verse (We chastise not until We raise a rasul), after the passing away of all the prophets, applies to the spiritual teachers who arise among the Muslims, including of course the mujaddids.
In another book the Promised Messiah writes:
Severe chastisement does not at all come without a nabi being raised, as Allah says in the Holy Quran: We chastise not until We raise a rasul O negligent ones! search to see that a nabi from God may have been raised among you.
Here he adds a footnote at the word nabi in nabi from God, which begins as follows:
By the word nabi, what God the Most High only means for this age is a man who attains Divine communication and revelation perfectly and who is appointed for the renewal (tajdid) of the religion. (Tajalliyyat Ilahiyya, RK, vol. 20, pages 400, 401)
So the word nabi used by God for this age is only in the sense of a wali, mulham, muhaddas and mujaddid. The word tajdid used here clearly denotes a mujaddid, as it is the verbal noun of mujaddid. Thus the verse 17:15 applies to the Promised Messiah in his capacity as a mujaddid.
Almighty God made the Holy Prophet into a seal in the sense that for extending the benefits and excellence he was given a seal which had never been given to anyone before. This is the basis why he has been called Khatam-un-Nabiyeen, i.e., loyalty and obedience rendered to him brings down on one excellence of Nabuwwat and his spiritual concentration is capable of carving out a prophet. This holy power has not been extended to any other Prophet. (p. 100)
When putting forward this quotation, the Qadianis always omit the words that follow immediately after, which are:
This is exactly the meaning of the hadith: the ulama of my Umma will be like the prophets of the Israelites.
So by carving out prophets is meant the coming of the auliya and mujaddids among the Muslims, bearing likeness to the Israelite prophets.
If this seal was for making prophets then it was not very effective because, according to the Qadianis, it has created only one prophet in the 1400 year history of Islam!
After the above quotation, Hazrat Mirza sahib goes on, in the same discussion, to compare the disobedience and lack of courage of the companions of Moses and of Jesus with the bravery, devotion and sacrifices of the Companions of the Holy Prophet Muhammad, and writes about the latter as follows:
What was it that breathed such a spirit of devotion into them and which hand was it that brought about such a transformation in them that by following this Prophet they were so drawn towards God that it was as if God came to dwell in them. I say truly that it was that same concentration of this holy Prophet which took them from a degraded life towards a noble life (Haqiqat-ul-Wahy, p. 99, footnote; RK, vol. 22, p. 102).
Thus the Companions of the Holy Prophet Muhammad are described here as a prime example of the result of following the Holy Prophet and the consequence of his spiritual concentration. But they still did not become prophets, even though God came to dwell in them. Nor did Hazrat Mirza sahib become a prophet in the real sense.
This quotation is the same as the first one presented by Dawood Majoka (from RK, vol. 22, page 30) and has been dealt with above.
Themselves, they (the Muslims) read in Ahadith reports which prove, in the Ummat of the Holy Prophet, there would be people like the prophets among the Israelites, and there would be one, who from one angle would be a nabi while from another angle he would be an ummati and he would be the one called the Promised Messiah. (p. 104)
The Promised Messiah is not separate from, or outside, the group described as people who would be like the prophets among the Israelites. It is common, elementary knowledge that Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad claimed again and again to be in the likeness of Jesus. He wrote:
The mujaddid of this century came in the likeness of Jesus, and was called the Promised Messiah because of intense similarity. This title is not a fabrication, but was required because it was so appropriate in the prevailing circumstances. (Shahadat-ul-Quran, RK, vol. 6, p. 361)
Therefore the Promised Messiah is within the group described by the Holy Prophet Muhammad in the words: The ulama of my Umma are like the prophets of the Israelites. As to being a prophet from one angle and an ummati from another, this is synonymous with muhaddas, as shown by the quotations from Izala Auham given earlier.
This quotation is a longer version of Dawood Majokas second quotation from pages 406407, and has been dealt with earlier.
Apart from him, to no other prophet has this seal bean extended. He is the only one under whose seal a prophethood can be obtained, for which a binding condition is that he should be his Ummati. (Page 30)
As to what that prophethood is, he writes in the same paragraph on the same page:
But prophethood by way of reflection (zilli nubuwwat), which means receiving revelation only through the grace of Muhammad, will remain till the Day of Judgment. (Haqiqat-ul-Wahy, p. 28; RK, vol. 22, p. 30)
In the same book Haqiqat-ul-Wahy he writes elsewhere about zill:
My prophethood is the zill of the Holy Prophet Muhammad, not asli (real or actual) prophethood. (p. 150, footnote; RK, vol. 22, page 154)
The zill prophethood mentioned here refers to what a wali or saint possesses. Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad wrote in this respect:
The prophet is the real thing (asl), and the wali is the zill. (Karamat-us-Sadiqeen, p. 85; RK, vol. 7, p. 127)
Just compare the preceding quotation from Karamat-us-Sadiqeen with the one above it from Haqiqat-ul-Wahy, both using the words zill and asl, and it is absolutely clear that his claim in Haqiqat-ul-Wahy is that of being a wali.
The content, which you call communion and communication, amplitude and abundance of the same, under mandate from the Lord God, I designate as Nabuwwat. wa likullin an yastaliha. (Page 503)
I quote below the words which occur immediately before this extract, and also retranslate the above extract more clearly:
My prophethood only means abundance of Divine communication which is attained by following the Holy Prophet Muhammad. You people also believe in the existence of Divine communication. So this is merely a difference of words. What you people call communication, I, by Divine order, call its abundance as prophethood. For each the terms that he uses (wa likullin an yastaliha). (Haqiqat-ul-Wahy, Titma, p. 68; RK, vol. 22, p. 503)
It is plainly stated here by the Promised Messiah that the Divine communication that he is claiming to receive is exactly the same phenomenon as that which the other Muslims believe as continuing in this Umma. The difference between him and them is merely one of using different words and terms. He terms it as prophethood metaphorically, but they do not, and hence they mistakenly accuse him of claiming real prophethood. Let us look at another place where the Promised Messiah has mentioned the same expression wa likullin an yastaliha (meaning: For each the terms that he uses) in regard to each one using his own terms:
Do not level false allegations against me that I have claimed to be a prophet in the real sense. Have you not read that a muhaddas too is a mursal (messenger)? O foolish ones! tell us whether one who has been sent will be called mursal or rasul in Arabic or something else? It is true that, in the revelation which God has sent upon this servant, the words nabi, rasul and mursal occur about myself quite frequently. However, they do not bear their real sense. For each the terms that he uses (wa likullin an yastaliha). It is the terminology of God that He has used such words.
We believe and acknowledge that, according to the real meaning of nubuwwat (prophethood), after the Holy Prophet Muhammad no new or former prophet can come. The Holy Quran forbids the appearance of any such prophets. But in a metaphorical sense God can call any recipient of revelation as nabi or mursal The Arabs to this day call even the message-bearer of a man as a rasul, so why is it forbidden for God to use the word mursal in a metaphorical sense too? (Siraj Munir, pages 2, 3; RK, vol. 12, pages 4, 5).
So the words nabi, rasul or mursal about him in the revelation of the Promised Messiah are being used by God metaphorically, as they can be used about one who is sent and one who is a muhaddas. It is no more than a difference of words with his opponent Muslims.
Similarly, in the beginning this was my belief that in no way was I comparable with reference to Jesus son of Mary. He was a prophet, great among those chosen by the Lord. Even when something occurred, which seemed to establish my superiority over him, always I took it to imply some partial preference. Later on, however, the revelation sent down on me by the Lord, like pouring rain, it did not allow me to remain clinging to this belief and I found the title of Nabi clearly conferred on me, in a manner that I was a Nabi from one angle, an ummati from another. (Pages 153-154)
It is exactly at this point that Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad adds a footnote from which we have already quoted earlier:
My prophethood is the zill of the Holy Prophet Muhammad, not asli (real or actual) prophethood. (Haqiqat-ul-Wahy, p. 150; RK, vol. 22, p. 154)
Even when the title of nabi was clearly conferred on him, in revelation pouring down like rain, it was still metaphorically and not in a real sense. Later in this same book he writes:
I have been named by Allah as nabi by way of metaphor, not by way of reality. (Haqiqat-ul-Wahy, Zameema, p. 65; RK, vol. 22, p. 689)
When a title is used metaphorically, then no matter how frequently or for how long or how clearly it is used, it remains metaphorical and does not become real. If I call a friend as my brother metaphorically, then even if I call him by this title everyday for years and years, he does not become my real brother.
As to the length of time for which he was constantly called nabi, he writes on the same page as our critics quotation, two lines further on:
How can I reject the revelation of God that has come continuously for twenty-three years?(Haqiqat-ul-Wahy, p. 150; RK, vol. 22, p. 154)
But the following is what he wrote in a letter which was published a short time previously:
The situation is that, although for twenty years I have been constantly receiving Divine revelation, often the word rasul or nabi has occurred in it. There are many such revelations in which the word nabi or rasul has occurred regarding myself. However, that person is mistaken who thinks that by this prophethood and messengership is meant real prophethood and messengership As these words, which are only in a metaphorical sense, cause trouble (fitna) in Islam, leading to very bad consequences, these terms should not be used in our communitys ordinary talk and everyday language. It should be believed from the bottom of the heart that prophethood has terminated with the Holy Prophet Muhammad, may peace and the blessings of God be upon him, as God Almighty says: He is the Messenger of God and the Khatam-un-nabiyyin. (Al-Hakam, 17 August 1899, page 6)
So even after being called nabi and rasul for twenty years, he was still instructing his followers that the use of these words would cause trouble and discord in Islam, that they should refrain from using them in ordinary, everyday talk, and that prophethood had terminated with the Holy Prophet Muhammad because God had called him Khatam-un-nabiyyin. This has a number of implications for the beliefs of the Qadianis, as follows:
These are some of the absurdities that arise by misinterpreting the above passage of Haqiqat-ul-Wahy and taking it as a claim to prophethood.
A nabi from one angle and an ummati from another is an ummati (member of the Muslim Umma) who is spoken to by Allah as a wali or muhaddas is spoken to by Allah, as explained earlier.
My dear people, when I have proved that Messiah the son of Mary is dead and the Messiah to come is I, myself, now, in this position, whosoever holds that the first Messiah was superior, he should, on the basis of conclusive Reports from the Hadith and verses of Holy Quran prove that the Messiah to come is nothing at all, being neither a Nabi, nor an arbitor, the first being everything there was need for him to be. (page 159)
We strongly dispute the translation:
being neither a Nabi, nor an arbitor, the first being everything there was need for him to be.
What is translated as being neither a Nabi actually reads: neither can he be called nabi. The Promised Messiah has repeatedly referred to himself as receiving the name nabi, or being called nabi, because it is a title being conferred on him metaphorically, as he writes later on in this same book:
I have been named by Allah as nabi by way of metaphor, not by way of reality. (Haqiqat-ul-Wahy, Zameema, p. 65; RK, vol. 22, p. 689)
But the translation the first being everything there was need for him to be is absolutely wrong and highly misleading. It creates the false impression that first refers back to the word nabi occurring just before, so that the meaning is that nabi is everything that there was need for the coming Messiah to be.
In fact these words in the original are: jo kuchh hai pehla hai, where pehla or first refers to the first Messiah Jesus. An accurate translation is:
he should prove that the Messiah to come is nothing at all, neither can he be called nabi, nor arbiter, the first (Messiah) being everything.
The correct meaning is: the Messiah to come is nothing at all the first (Messiah) being everything.
As to the superiority over Jesus mentioned here, the Promised Messiah explains in the same discussion:
It must also be remembered here that as I was charged with the service of the reform of the whole world, for the reason that our master and leader (Holy Prophet Muhammad) came for the whole world, so in accordance with that great service I was granted the powers and faculties necessary for bearing this burden, and I was granted the knowledge and the signs which were necessary to conclusively establish the argument for this age. But it was not necessary that Jesus should be granted that knowledge and those signs because they were not required at that time. So he was granted only those powers and faculties that were necessary for the reform of a small sect of the Jews. Also, we are inheritors of the Holy Quran, whose teaching is a collection of all perfections and is for the whole world but Jesus was inheritor of only the Torah whose teaching was incomplete and meant for a particular nation. (p. 151; RK, vol. 22, p. 155)
The summary is that as I am the follower of a prophet who combined in himself all the excellences of mankind, and his Shariah was perfect and complete and was meant for the reform of the whole world, so I have been granted those faculties that were necessary for the reform of the whole world. There is no doubt that Jesus was not granted those faculties which have been granted to me because he came for a particular nation, and if he were in my place he would not, by his nature, be able to accomplish the work that the grace of God has granted me the strength to do this is by way of expression of gratitude for a bounty of Allah, not by way of pride. (p. 153; RK, vol. 22, p. 157)
As stated here, it is in fact the Holy Prophet Muhammad who has superiority over Jesus because of having come with the final and perfect religion, and been sent with a mission for all mankind. Hazrat Mirza sahib is spreading and preaching those superior, universal teachings of the Holy Prophet to bring about reform of the world, and this reformation is a task which Jesus could not perform if he were to return to this world, if he were in my place, since he had been sent with teachings limited in scope for a particular people for a particular time. The Promised Messiahs superiority is not due to himself being a prophet, but is only a representation of the superiority of the Holy Prophet Muhammad over Jesus. The being called a prophet is again meant metaphorically, as made clear by him in this same book Haqiqat-ul-Wahy.
In the section from his book Tuhfah Golarwiya where the Promised Messiah has likened Hazrat Abu Bakr to the prophet Joshua, from which we quoted earlier, he also likens the storm in the river Jordan that Joshua had to face along with his army to the storm of rebellion and apostasy that Hazrat Abu Bakr had to face, and writes:
A storm like this [one faced by Joshua], rather, more severe than it, was faced by Hazrat Abu Bakr with all the Companions numbering one hundred thousand, this storm was much worse than the storm of water that Joshua had to face this storm was no less than the storm of Joshua, in fact it was of greater magnitude. Then just as the word of God gave strength to Joshua so did Hazrat Abu Bakr receive strength from God at the time of the storm of rebellion. (pages 5960; RK, vol. 17, pages 187188)
This is an example in which a non-prophet, Hazrat Abu Bakr, excelled a prophet, Joshua, because he faced and overcame a much greater obstacle. In exactly the same way, Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad, while being the like of Jesus, and being a non-prophet, surpassed Jesus in the scope and breadth of his reform mission, and was granted by God the extra powers he needed to carry out that mission, powers that Jesus did not require because of his more limited mission.
In another book the Promised Messiah raises and answers the following objection:
Jesus came as a nabi of Allah to testify to the truth of the Torah. As compared to him, what value does your testimony [in support of Islam] have? In this case too, a nabi should have been required to newly testify to the truth. (Ayyam-us-Sulh, p. 74; RK, vol. 14, p. 308)
In answer the Promised Messiah begins as follows:
The answer is that in Islam the door of that prophethood which establishes its own authority is closed. Allah says: He is the Messenger of Allah and the Khatam-un-nabiyyin, and it is in Hadith: There is no nabi after me. Along with that, the death of Jesus has been proved from clear texts, so there is no hope of his return to the world. And if some other nabi, new or old, were to come then our Holy Prophet Muhammad cannot remain the Khatam-ul-anbiya. However, the door of revelation to saints (wahy wilayat) and Divine communication is not closed. (Ayyam-us-Sulh, p. 74; RK, vol. 14, p. 308, 309)
Since the purpose is only to testify to the truth of the true religion by means of signs, the signs sent by God, whether through a nabi or through a wali, are of the same rank because the Sender is the same. It is utter ignorance and folly to think that if God sends some Divine assistance at the hands of and through a nabi, then it is greater in power and grandeur, but if it is sent through a wali it is less in power and grandeur. It is admitted that the miracle of a wali is the miracle of the prophet whom he follows, so when this is the case then it is not the work of the honest to draw a distinction between the miracles. (Ayyam-us-Sulh, p. 74; RK, vol. 14, p. 309)
Since the grandeur of a sign does not depend on whether it is shown by a wali or a nabi, it means that when Hazrat Mirza sahib speaks of great, unprecedented signs shown by him that make him excel Jesus (as he does in the section from which our Qadiani critic has given his quotation), this does not make him a nabi. As he says here, these are really the miracles of the Holy Prophet Muhammad.
Below we continue the last quotation from Ayyam-us-Sulh as it clearly shows the claim of Hazrat Mirza sahib:
Apart from this, it is established from authentic Hadith that a muhaddas too, like prophets and messengers (nabi, rasul), is included among those sent by God. Read and ponder over the [alternative Quranic] reading in Bukhari: And We sent no rasul, and no nabi, and no muhaddas but . Another hadith says: The ulama of my Umma are like the prophets of the Israelites. The Sufis, by means of their visions, have confirmed from the Holy Prophet Muhammad the authenticity of this report. It should also be remembered that in Sahih Muslim the word nabi has occurred in regard to the Promised Messiah, that is to say, metaphorically and figuratively. It is for this reason that in Barahin Ahmadiyya such words have occurred about me from God. For example . In this revelation I have been named as rasul and as nabi. So when a person has been given these names by God Himself, it is the height of insolence to take him to be an ordinary member of the public. The testimonies of the signs of God are never weak, whether those signs are shown through a nabi or through a muhaddas. The fact is that the prophethood of our Holy Prophet Muhammad itself, and grace (faiz) from him, by producing a man who is its manifestation, testifies to its own truth. The wali attains these names for free. In reality, the wali who testifies [to the truth of the Holy Prophet] receives adornment from the Holy Prophet, and it is not the Holy Prophet who becomes adorned because of the wali. (Ayyam-us-Sulh, p. 7475; RK, vol. 14, p. 309310)
Just compare the last sentences of the above quotation with some of the passages from Haqiqat-ul-Wahy occurring on the very same pages from which our Qadiani critics have presented their quotations. There he writes:
Zilli prophethood, which means receiving revelation merely through the grace (faiz) of the Holy Prophet, will remain till the Day of Judgment till the Day of Judgment the doors of Divine communication and revelation remain open. (Haqiqat-ul-Wahy, p. 28; RK, vol. 22, p. 30)
My claim is merely that from one angle I am an ummati and from one angle I am, due to grace (faiz) of the prophethood of the Holy Prophet Muhammad, a nabi, and by nabi is meant only that I receive the privilege of abundant communication and revelation from God. (Haqiqat-ul-Wahy, p. 390; RK, vol. 22, p. 406)
While in Ayyam-us-Sulh, in the above extract he writes the words:
However, the door of revelation to saints (wahy wilayat) and Divine communication is not closed. the prophethood of our Holy Prophet Muhammad itself, and grace (faiz) from him, by producing a man who is its manifestation, testifies to its own truth. The wali attains these names for free.
So the grace of the Holy Prophet Muhammad produces a wali.
In Haqiqat-ul-Wahy he writes:
his spiritual concentration is capable of carving out a prophet. This holy power has not been extended to any other Prophet. This is exactly the meaning of the hadith: the ulama of my Umma will be like the prophets of the Israelites. (Haqiqat-ul-Wahy, p. 97, footnote; RK, vol. 22, p. 100)
In Ayyam-us-Sulh, in the above extract this carving out a prophet is described as:
Another hadith report says: The ulama of my Umma are like the prophets of the Israelites. the prophethood of our Holy Prophet Muhammad itself, and grace (faiz) from him, by producing a man who is its manifestation, testifies to its own truth. The wali attains these names for free. In reality, the wali who testifies [to the truth of the Holy Prophet] receives adornment from the Holy Prophet, and it is not the Holy Prophet who becomes adorned because of the wali.
Thus carving out a prophet refers to producing auliya.
Our Qadiani critics allege that in his book Haqiqat-ul-Wahy Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad has claimed to be a prophet and messenger (nabi and rasul), who is above and beyond the category of the auliya and mujaddids of the Muslim Umma. We have refuted this allegation here by showing that in this same book Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad has clearly expressed his belief that it is a fundamental doctrine of Islam that no prophet can come after the Holy Prophet Muhammad, and further that his claim in this book also is that of being Mujaddid, muhaddas and wali, or a Reformer and Divinely-inspired saint of Islam who is not a prophet. As regards the quotes presented by our Qadiani critics, we have shown that the use of the words prophet or messenger for the Promised Messiah in those quotes is in a metaphorical or linguistic sense, the sense in which these terms have been applied to the saints and reformers who arise among the Muslims. The Promised Messiah recognised that previous eminent figures in the Muslim Umma had attained the same Divine experience and closeness to God as he himself attained, and indeed that the great Companions of the Holy Prophet, notably Hazrat Abu Bakr and Hazrat Umar, possessed certain excellences that cannot be attained by any Muslim after the time of the Holy Prophet Muhammad.