This entry is taken from the Lahori-Ahmadi website. It contains Mirza Basheer ud Din Mahmud Ahmad’s first speech after becoming the 2nd Khalifa in March of 1914, it can also be found in this book.
In March 1914, Mirza Mahmud Ahmad was successful in his long-standing plans to gain the headship of the movement upon the death of Hazrat Maulana Nur-ud-Din. Immediately thereafter, having first ensured that no opposition could be voiced against him in Qadian, he had the following resolution of the Anjuman passed by his supporters:
“By Resolution 198 of the Majlis-i Mu‘timidin (Council of Trustees) held in April 1914 it was resolved that in Rule no. 18 of the rules of the Sadr Anjuman Ahmadiyya Qadian, in place of the words ‘Promised Messiah’ the words ‘Hazrat Khalifat-ul-Masih Mirza Bashir-ud-Din Mahmud Ahmad the second Khalifa’ shall be entered. Therefore, Rule no. 18 shall now be as follows: In every matter, for the Majlis-i Mu‘timidin and its subordinate branches if any, and for the Sadr Anjuman and all its branches, the order of Hazrat Khalifat-ul-Masih Mirza Bashir-ud-Din Mahmud Ahmad the second Khalifa shall be absolute and final.”
— Review of Religions, Urdu edition, the issues for April 1914 and May 1914, inside of the front cover.
By this resolution, Mirza Mahmud Ahmad removed from the Anjuman its position of supreme authority given to it by the Promised Messiah, and raised himself to the Divinely-appointed status of the Promised Messiah by writing his own name in Rule no. 18, giving his orders supremacy over the Anjuman’s decisions. He thus destroyed the system created by Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad, and replaced it by personal, autocratic rule by a khalifa, the concept of which is in complete violation of the principles of Islam as well as the teachings of the Promised Messiah.
It will be seen that when Maulana Nur-ud-Din became head, he did not substitute his name for that of the Promised Messiah in this Rule. On the contrary, he followed the regulations laid down by the Promised Messiah regarding the powers of the Anjuman.
Therefore, the sense in which M. Mahmud Ahmad made himself khalifa was entirely different from, and quite opposed to, the sense in which Maulana Nur-ud-Din was khalifa. This is one of the main reasons why those, like Maulana Muhammad Ali, who accepted Maulana Nur-ud-Din as khalifa could not accept M. Mahmud Ahmad as khalifa.
By means of the change in the rules referred to above, Mirza Mahmud Ahmad arrogated himself to the position of an absolute leader whose orders had to be obeyed unquestioningly by everyone in the movement. Despite this amendment and despite the fact that the Anjuman now consisted entirely of his own supporters, he still felt insecure that the Anjuman might seek to regain its authority some time in the future.
In a speech in October 1925, therefore, he laid down a new system of administration, reducing the Council of Trustees to an entirely subservient body. In this speech, published under the title Jama‘at Ahmadiyya ka jadid nizam ‘amal (‘A new system of working for the Ahmadiyya Movement’), at the very outset he attacked the principles upon which the Anjuman was founded, and declared:
“As I have said again and again, the name Sadr Anjuman Ahmadiyya and its method of working were devised by others and not by the Promised Messiah. But since the approval of the Promised Messiah had been given in respect of it, I have decided that all those names which were established during the time of the Promised Messiah should be retained.”
— Al-Fazl, 31 October 1925, p. 3, col. 1. (See original text.)
He then announced his decision that the names Sadr Anjuman Ahmadiyya and Majlis-i Mu‘timidin (Council of Trustees) would be transferred to certain other bodies, so that their names would be retained but the institutions themselves would cease to exist!
Mirza Mahmud Ahmad’s statement given above is self-contradictory and indeed plainly absurd. Firstly, he admits that the Promised Messiah had given his approval of the name and the rules of the Anjuman, but he says that these were “devised by others” and then attacks the rules. This amounts to alleging that the Promised Messiah approved these rules merely at the behest of “others”, without himself knowing or caring that these would be harmful to the Movement, and now Mirza Mahmud Ahmad was going to rectify the Promised Messiah’s error!
Secondly, since in his view the names as well as the rules were “devised by others” and merely approved by the Promised Messiah, it is entirely illogical for him to retain the names because of their association with the Promised Messiah’s time but destroy the rules. The rules were also from the Promised Messiah’s time. Therefore, the names and the rules should both be eliminated or both be retained!
M. Mahmud Ahmad’s admissions in his speech
There are several very interesting and revealing admissions made by Mirza Mahmud Ahmad in this speech. He said:
“The founding principle of the Council of Trustees (Majlis-i Mu‘timidin) did not include the existence of the khalifa of the time, which is the very fundamental issue in Islam. A resolution has been passed during the second khilafat to the effect that the Council must accept whatever the khalifa says. But this is not a matter of principle. What it means is that a body of members says that it would do so. However, the body which is entitled to say this, can also say that it shall not do so. For, the Anjuman which can pass the resolution that it shall obey the khalifa in everything, if ten years later it says that it shall not obey him, it is entitled to do so according to the rules of the Anjuman. Or if the Anjuman says that it will obey this khalifa in everything but will not obey another one, it has the right to do so according to its rules, as happened in the time of the first khalifa.”
— Al-Fazl, 3 November 1925, p. 3, col. 1. (See original text.)
Here Mirza Mahmud Ahmad has made the following two admissions:
- There is no mention of the concept or the institution of a personal khilafat in the basic principles of the Anjuman, upon which it was created by the Promised Messiah.
- It is within the Anjuman’s powers to revoke at any time its resolution, which he got it to pass in 1914, to follow the khalifa’s orders. This shows that the Anjuman was not originally created to be subservient to any individual leader, but was the supreme and sovereign executive of the Movement. He is, in fact, expressing his fear that the Anjuman may at some time in future decide to re-assert its original authority and cease to be subservient to an individual khalifa.
“For the sake of the khilafat we had to make an unparalleled sacrifice. And that was that we sacrificed for its sake the old followers of the Promised Messiah, those who were called his friends, those who had a very close relationship with him. If this religious difference had not arisen between them and ourselves, they would be dearer to us than our own children because they included those who knew the Promised Messiah and those who were his companions, and had worked with him. … But because a difference arose regarding a teaching which was from God, and which had to be accepted for the sake of our faith and the Jama‘at, we sacrificed those who were dearer to us than our children. So, over this question, we have made such a magnificent sacrifice that no other sacrifice can equal it. This is far greater than sacrificing one’s life because in that case a man sacrifices only himself. But here we had to sacrifice a part of our Movement.
“If even after so much sacrifice the movement still remains insecure, that is, it is at the mercy of a few men who can, if they so wish, allow the system of khilafat to continue in existence, and if they do not so wish, it cannot remain in existence, this cannot be tolerated under any circumstances. Because the institution of khilafat was not included in the basic principles of the Jama‘at, the movement lives in the constant danger which can turn pledged members into non-pledged members, and by the stroke of the pen of ten or eleven men Qadian can at once become Lahore.“Therefore, the works of the Jama‘at relating to propagation and training cannot be entrusted to such an Anjuman, even though that Anjuman may consist of pledged members, and even though they may be men of the highest sincerity.”
— Al-Fazl, 3 November 1925, p. 3, cols. 1–2. (See original text.)
(Translator’s Note: The word translated as “pledged members” is muba‘een, referring to “those who have taken the bai‘at” of the Qadiani khalifa.)
Here Mirza Mahmud Ahmad has made the following interesting admissions:
- He and his supporters forced the “old followers, friends and companions of the Promised Messiah” out of the Ahmadiyya Movement, which he describes as “an unparalleled sacrifice” made by the Qadianis, in order to establish an autocratic khilafat. This clearly disproves the allegation made commonly by the present-day Qadianis that the separation in the Movement in 1914 came about because Maulana Muhammad Ali was trying to become the head, and having failed in that attempt he left and formed his own separate group. Mirza Mahmud Ahmad says here, on the contrary, that “we had to sacrifice a part of our Movement” for the sake of the system of khilafat. In other words, Maulana Muhammad Ali and his associates were opposing the system of khilafat which Mirza Mahmud Ahmad was striving to introduce, and this opposition was thus purged, or “sacrificed”, out of the Movement.
- Mirza Mahmud Ahmad’s words that “by the stroke of the pen of ten or eleven men Qadian can at once become Lahore” are highly note-worthy. He is admitting that what makes Lahore different from Qadian is that the Lahore Ahmadis hold the Anjuman to be supreme, and if this supremacy was again accepted in Qadian then Qadian would become Lahore. Since that is the difference, as admitted here, then it is false to allege that the Lahore Ahmadis separated from Qadian because Maulana Muhammad Ali failed to become the khalifa there. If that had been the reason for the split, then the only way Qadian could become Lahore would be by accepting the Maulana as their leader!
Mirza Mahmud Ahmad makes Anjuman totally powerless
Mirza Mahmud Ahmad then went on to announce in this speech that in his new system the term Sadr Anjuman Ahmadiyya would refer to “the khalifa and his advisors”, the advisors would advise and the khalifa would decide, and this would be known as the decision of the Sadr Anjuman. The Majlis-i Mu‘timidin (Council of Trustees) would merely carry out the decision without question.
It can be seen that these institutions, which had been created by Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad, were demolished by Mirza Mahmud Ahmad in order to create a system of absolute, autocratic, personal rule, and establish a family succession.
اَشْھَدُ اَنْ لَّآ اِلٰہَ اِلَّا اللہُ وَحْدَہُ لَا شَرِیْکَ لَہُ وَ اَشْھَدُ اَنَّ مُحَمَّدًا عَبْدُہُ وَ رَسُوْلُہُ
My dear friends! It is my absolute conviction that God is One and has no partner.
My dear ones! Thereafter, I firmly believe that the Prophet Muhammad(sa) is the Messenger of Allah and Khatam-ul-Anbiya[the Seal of the Prophets]. I believe that no one can now appear after him who can abrogate or change even an iota from the Shariah [Islamic Law] he has given us.
My dear ones! The grandeur of my beloved Master, the Chief of the Prophets(sa), is so lofty that a person who shows complete obedience and devotion in his servitude to him can attain the rank of prophethood. It is the truth that the Holy Prophet(sa) alone has the stature and honour whereby a person can attain prophethood through perfect subservience to him. This is my faith, and I say it with complete certainty.
This is followed by my firm belief that the Holy Qur’an is that beautiful book which was revealed to the Holy Prophet(sa), and that it is the Khatam-ul-Kutub[the Seal of the Books] and contains the Khatam-ul-Shariah[the final and perfect Shariah].
I then firmly believe that the Promised Messiah(as) is that very prophet whose advent was foretold in [the tradition of Sahih] Muslim and he is the Imam who was prophesied in [Sahih] Bukhari. I say once again that not a single part of the Shariah of Islam can be abrogated.
Emulate the example of the noble companions(ra), may Allah be pleased with them all, for they were an embodiment of the Holy Prophet’s(sa) prayers and perfect training. The second Ijma’[unanimous agreement] of the companions(ra) after the demise of the Holy Prophet(sa) was in regards to Khilafat-e-Haqqa-Rashidah[the rightly guided caliphate]. Ponder carefully and study the history of Islam to see that the progress Islam made during the era of Khilafat-e-Rashidah declined when it became a mere [worldly] government, to the extent that you can witness the state of Islam and its followers today. After 1300 years, Allah the Almighty sent the Promised Messiah(as) on the same path of prophethood, in fulfilment of the prophecies of the Holy Prophet(sa) , and after his demise, God Almighty has once again established the institution of Khilafat-e-Rashida.
Hazrat Khalifatul Masih I(ra), Maulana Maulvi Nooruddin Sahib, was the first Khalifah of this Community (may he be granted the highest rank in heaven and may Allah the Almighty bestow millions and millions of blessings upon him just as the love for the Holy Prophet(sa) and the Promised Messiah(as) was infused in his heart and permeated through every fibre of his being. May Allah the Almighty raise him among these pure souls in heaven). We pledged allegiance at his hands with this very belief. Thus, so long as this institution remains established, Islam will continue to progress, both materially and spiritually. Since you have proclaimedthat I should shoulder this burden and have expressed this through your pledge of allegiance, I have thus deemed it appropriate to present my beliefs before you.
I tell you truly that my heart is filled with fear and trepidation and I consider myself to be extremely weak. It has been recorded in a tradition of the Holy Prophet(sa) that one should not ask a servant to do something which the servant is incapable of doing. You have chosen to make me a servant, so do not ask me to do that which I cannot do. I am well-aware that I am weak and sinful; how then could I possibly claim to guide and reform the world and spread the truth? We are few in number, whilst the opponents of Islam are far greater in number, but we have immense trust in Allah the Almighty’s grace and blessings and compassion. Since you have placed this burden upon my shoulders, listen to what I say. Assist me in order to fulfil this responsibility and that is by seeking blessings and strength from God Almighty. Moreover, show obedience to me, whilst seeking the pleasure of Allah the Almighty and demonstrating your servitude to Him.
I am only a human being, a weak human being. I will have many weaknesses, but I ask you to overlook them. You also will err, but I swear by the Omniscient God that I will also overlook and ignore your errors. You and I share a common objective and that is to help this Community progress and to practically fulfil the fundamental purpose and goal of this Community. Thus, now that you have forged a bond with me, you must fulfil this relationship with the utmost loyalty. With the grace of God, I will overlook your faults and you will overlook mine. You must obey and follow me in every maruf decision. But if, God forbid, I say that God is not One, then by God, in Whose hands lie all of our lives, Who is One and has no partner and لَیۡسَ کَمِثۡلِہٖ شَیۡءٌ‘ There is nothing whatever like unto Him’, you absolutely must not obey me.
If, God forbid, I claim there is any defect in prophethood, do not believe me. If I state that there is any flaw in the Holy Qur’an, then by God, do not believe me. If I say anything against the divinely-revealed teachings of the Promised Messiah(as) which he received from God Almighty, then you absolutely must not obey me. But I say again, and I repeat, do not disobey me in matters concerning maruf decisions. If you show obedience and complete subservience and strengthen this bond with me then remember that the grace of Allah the Almighty shall support us.
Our Collective Prayers Will Succeed
I have an immense level of trust in my Benevolent Lord and I have absolute conviction that I will be granted divine succour. The day before yesterday, on Friday, I related a dream of mine in which I saw that I became ill and was experiencing pain in my thigh. I feared that perhaps I was about to contract the plague. I thus closed my door and began to worry about what was going to happen. I recalled the divine promise of God Almighty which He had vouchsafed to the Promised Messiah(as):
اِنِّیْٓ اُحَافِظُ کُلَّ مَنْ فِی الدَّارِ
‘I shall safeguard all those who dwell within the four walls of your house from plague’.
This promise was indeed fulfilled during his lifetime. [However, I thought that] perhaps this promise no longer stood since the Messiah(as) of God was no longer among us. I was still anxious when I saw – and this was not a dream; in fact, I was awake and could see the door and the walls of the room and even the things inside the room – it was in this very state that I saw God Almighty in the form of a white and extremely radiant spiritual light. It appeared from below and rose above; it had no beginning and no end. A hand then appeared from the light holding a white porcelain bowl of milk, which I was made to drink. Immediately after this my condition improved and I no longer felt any pain.
I had narrated the aforementioned vision up to this point but did not relate the remaining part, which I will present now. Upon being given this bowl of milk to drink, I immediately stated:
میری امت بھی کبھی گمراہ نہ ہو گی
‘My ummah also shall never go astray’
I, however, do not have an ummah, for you are my brothers, but these words were spoken in reference to the relationship between the Promised Messiah(as) has with the Holy Prophet(sa). The mission which the Promised Messiah(as) started in his lifetime has now been entrusted to me. Thus, keep praying, strengthen this relationship and try to visit Qadian regularly. I have heard the Promised Messiah(as) say again and again, that he fears there may be weaknesses in the faith of those who do not frequently visit Qadian. Our foremost objective is to propagate the faith of Islam and we must strive collectively to achieve this, so that God Almighty showers us with His grace and blessings. I say it again, and again, and yet again, that now that you have pledged allegiance to me after the Promised Messiah(as) and have thus established a bond with me, you should show the utmost obedience in this relationship. Remember me in your prayers and I will also certainly remember you in mine; in fact, I have always done so. There is not a single prayer of mine wherein I have not prayed for the members of this community. However now I shall pray for you all profusely even more. Even before, there had not been a single prayer of mine in which I had not prayed for the members of this community with heartfelt passion.
Listen once again! Do not do anything that those who violate the covenant of God Almighty would do. We should pray that we live as Muslims and die as Muslims. Ameen!
Words of the Pledge of Allegiance:
Just as it was the practise of the Promised Messiah(as) and Hazrat Khalifatul Masih I(ra) to extend their hand and recite [the words of the Bai’at] and the devotees would repeat after them, I shall now also take the pledge of allegiance in the same manner:
(3 times) اَشْھَدُ اَنْ لَّآ اِلٰہَ اِلَّا اللہُ وَحْدَہُ لَا شَرِیْکَ لَہُ وَ اَشْھَدُ اَنَّ مُحَمَّدًا عَبْدُہُ وَ رَسُوْلُہُ
[I bear witness that there is none worthy of worship except Allah. He is one and has no partner. I bear witness that Muhammadsais His servant and messenger.]
This day I enter the fold of the Ahmadiyya Community, at the hands of Mahmud. I repent for all my sins which I was previously immersed in. I sincerely pledge that I will strive my utmost with all my strength and understanding – and with the help of God Almighty – to safeguard myself from sins in future as well. I will give precedence to my faith over all worldly pursuits. I will not commit shirk[associate partners with God]. I will strive to adhere to all the commandments of Islam. I profess my absolute belief in the Holy Prophet(as) as the Seal of the Prophets [Khatam-ul-Anbiya]. I firmly believe in all the claims of the Promised Messiah(as). I will demonstrate obedience in every virtuous act you guide us towards. I will strive to read, understand and act upon the Holy Qur’an and the hadith [oral traditions of the Holy Prophet(sa)]. I will make every effort to read, listen and understand the books of the Promised Messiahasand to always be mindful of its teachings and act upon them.
(3 times) اَسْتَغْفِرُ اللہَ رَبِّیْ مِنْ کُلِّ ذَنْبٍ وَ اَتُوْبُ اِلَیْہِ
‘I beg pardon from Allah, my Lord, for all my sins and turn to Him.’
رَبِّ اِنِّیْ ظَلَمْتُ نَفْسِیْ ظُلْماً کَثِیْراً وَ اعْتَرَفْتُ بِذَنْبِیْ فَاغْفِرْلِیْ ذُنُوْبِیْ فَاِنَّہُ لَا یَغْفِرُ الذُّنُوْبَ اِلَّا اَنْتَ
‘O my Lord, my Allah, I have greatly wronged my soul and confess all my sins, pray forgive me and my sins for there is none else except Thee Who forgives.’
Everything that is in line with the commandments of the Holy Qur’an and the instruction of the Shariah.
The Holy Qur’an, 42:12
Tadhkirah, p. 576
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