Most African-born-Ahmadi’s have no idea of Ahmadiyya beliefs. In fact, one of the pioneers of West African Islam (Agusto) quit Ahmadiyya in 1924 after he learned from Lahori-Ahmadi’s how the Qadiani-Ahmadi’s see MGA as a prophet, not a Mahdi. Fisher told us the same in 1963. Recently, in 2018, Haron told us the same, this was quoted by Rana Tanveer via his recent write-up on Ahmadiyya and secularism. Tanveer says:
“”Muhammad Haron’s (2018) point of view seems to have some weight who claims that most of the African Ahmadi converts were Muslims who were not so much concerned with the internal theological disagreements and were more worried about the colonial rulers’ oppressive system and the trained Christian missionaries. Ahmadis came into Africa at an opportune period and their preachers “rescued” them from Africa’s expansive Christian campaigners.””
Paul Freston (2010) rightfully pointed out “experience of discrimination” as a hurdle for immigrant missionaries and said that “willingness to Europeanize or Americanize oneself” can discourage that experience. Most of the Ahmadi missionaries and Jamaat high-ups are from Pakistan, and their style is very Pakistani and are religiously unwilling to Americanize or Europeanize. For example, in the case of Canada religiously Ahmadis are not allowed to eat Tim Horton’s products. Though they accept this culture and do not openly criticize it but it is entirely different from adopting it, let alone assimilation or integration. Next-generation of missionaries might overcome the language barrier, as religiously they have Urdu medium at their seminaries, but there are fewer chances of their fully adopting Western culture. The need to have the ability to unlearn for an effective cross-cultural mission cannot be ignored.
Mirza Tahir Ahmad asked Ahmadi’s to do anything for converts
Rana Tanveer tells us that on 7 November 1986, a statement of their fourth leader is important in this regard. He said, “We have experiences of many natives joining us but (they) left after few days after being disappointed by Pakistani Ahmadis. They felt as if they are in a strange society having no values of local culture”. There can be various reasons behind the reconversion of the natives or no conversion at all.
Links and Related Essay’s
Haron, Muhammed. 2018. “Africa’s Muslim Authorities and Ahmadis: Curbed Freedoms, Circumvented Legalities.” The Review of Faith & International Affairs 16 (4): 60–74.
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