11The Review of Religions – February 2005 In accord with this basic divineprinciple Allah, the Exalted, sent a Warner in this age also and assured him that He would make his truth manifest through powerful assaults. Out of a deeply moved and disturbed heart this Divine Warner (Hadhrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad of Qadian, the Promised Messiah(as)) admonished humanity in the light of the knowledge vouchsafed to him by Allah, the All-Knowing and All- Aware, and in prose and verse set forth in advance that which was approaching. I shall now proceed to present to you a few instances of his warnings in his own words. In the course of a lengthy poem published in April 1905 he warned: A mighty sign is due to appear in a short while which will shake cities and villages and meadows. A sudden manifestation of divine wrath will overt a k e h u m a n i t y, which will not afford respite to a naked one so that he may be able to cover himself. In a moment the earth will be turned upside down and streams of blood shall flow in channels. A speech delivered in 1982 by Hadhrat Khalifatul Masih IV(ru) in Zurich where he admonishes that by carrying out a change in ourselves we can save ourselves from destruction. A Message HOPEof (Part 2) 12 The Review of Religions – February 2005 All those who travel will find themselves in great distress at that hour and in their confusion will not be able to find their way. All men, high and low, will be terrified with fear, and even the mighty Czar will experience great misery. That divine sign will be a sample of heavenly wrath; heaven will deliver its attacks with its drawn sword. Such destruction will overtake cities and towns, of which there has never been the like ever before. In a single movement dwellings shall become mounds of rubble, the loss of life will be incalculable. He says further: My friends, the days of e a rthquakes are again a p p roaching; days not merely of an earthquake but of the passing away of multitudes. He will demonstrate the brilliance of His Sign five times. This is God’s word which you will appreciate only when it is fulfilled. (Haqeeqatul Wahi) This great Warner was addressed by Allah, the Glorious, in the following terms: I shall show thee the earthquake of the last day. Allah will show you the earthquake of the last day. On that day it will be asked Whose is the kingdom today? Is it not the kingdom of Allah the One, the Most Supreme? I shall manifest this sign to you five times. If I so willed the world would end that day. (Haqeeqatul Wahi, p.93) As the Warner of the age has himself explained, the expression ‘earthquakes’ which occurs in these prophecies could mean such severe afflictions the like of which may not have been witnessed ever before. I now proceed to set forth the words in which this great Warner admonished the peoples of the world: A MESSAGE OF HOPE 13The Review of Religions – February 2005 ‘God Almighty has conveyed to me intimations of approaching earthquakes. Be sure then that as, in accord with these prophecies, there have been severe earthquakes in America and in Europe, they will occur in different parts of Asia also. Some of them will be a sample of the Judgement Day. There will be such loss of life that blood will run in streams. Even birds and animals will not be spared. Such destruction will overtake the earth as will not have occurred ever before since the creation of man. Most habitations will be turned upside down, as if they had never been dwelt in. In addition there will be other afflictions both on the earth and in the heaven in terrifying shapes, so much so that they will appear most extraordinary in the esti- mation of every sensible person. No mention of them will be discovered in the books of philosophy and astronomy. Mankind will be severely disturbed and will wonder what was about to happen. Many will be delivered and many will be destroyed. ‘The days are near, indeed they are at the door, when the world will witness a Judgement Day. Not only will earthquakes happen but other frightening aff l i c t i o n s will also be manifested, some of them from heaven and some from the earth. All this will come about because man has given up the worship of the True God and m e n ’s hearts and designs and fancies have all concentrated on the world. Had I not appeared these a fflictions may have been delayed somewhat but by my coming God’s secret wrathful designs have become manifest after a long period, as God has said: We never punish a people until after We have sent a Messenger. (Ch.17:V.16) ‘Those who repent will be secure and those who fear A MESSAGE OF HOPE 14 The Review of Religions – February 2005 God before an aff l i c t i o n overtakes them will be shown mercy. Do you imagine that you will be secure against these earth- quakes or that you can safe- guard yourselves through your own designs? Certainly not. Think not that America and other regions have experienced severe earth- quakes and that your country is secure. I apprehend that you may perhaps suffer even greater torments. ‘Thou art not secure, O Europe, nor thou, O Asia. O dwellers of the islands, no self-made deity of yours will be able to help you. I behold cities falling and habitations in ruins. That One and Unique Being remained silent for a time. Untoward deeds were done within His sight, and He forbore. But now He will display His countenance in a terrifying shape. Let him who has ears hear that the time is not far. I have tried to gather all under God’s s e c u r i t y, but the divine decrees are bound to be executed. You will witness the time of Noah and your eyes will behold that which happened in the land of Lot. But God is slow in being roused. Repent that you may be shown mercy. He who abandons God is an insect and not human, and he who does not fear Him is dead and not alive.’ (Haqeeqatul Wahi, pp.256-7) These prophecies considered together make it clear that the Warner of the age has alerted humanity against five widespread calamities. The world has already witnessed two of them in the shape of the two World Wars. I need not dwell upon them as you are better acquainted with the ruin that they wrought than I am. The prophecies had indicated that the affliction that had been presaged in them would have no equal in human history. It would appear suddenly and overwhelm man- kind. Many would lose their mental balance under its impact. Travellers would be specially confronted with diff i c u l t i e s . There would be enormous loss of A MESSAGE OF HOPE 15The Review of Religions – February 2005 A MESSAGE OF HOPE human lives. The earth would assume a new aspect and human thinking and outlook would be revolutionised. We find that all of this has been fulfilled in the most surprising manner. For instance, this great Wa r n e r predicted the miserable end of the Czar at a time when the latter was at the height of his power and a u t h o r i t y, when he was literally one who ruled over all and was not ruled over by any. At such a time the Divine Messenger informed the world that the time was approaching when the great Czar would suffer a painful and exemplary end. Within a few months of the publication of this prophecy a political party emerg e d which, after a brief period of twelve or thirteen years, over- turned the Russian Imperial house and the Czarist regime and laid the foundation of a new political, social and economic system. When this great Warner foretold in 1905 heavenly attacks and destructive fire descending from the sky there was yet no indication of any such possibility or of the availability of the means therefor. It was the time when the Wright Brothers were still occupied with elementary exper- iments aimed at the production of a flying machine. Three years after the publication of this prophecy, when this great Warner had already departed this life in May 1908, the Wright Brothers carried out their second experimental flight in September 1908, and it was not till several ‘But it should be remembered that up to 1908 no conception whatsoever could have been entertained of atomic weapons and not the farthest flight of a fiction-writer’s imagination could have conceived the possibility of nuclear armaments and of the ruin and destruction which could thereby be wrought. Yet this Warner of the latter days depicted such a holocaust’ 16 The Review of Religions – February 2005 A MESSAGE OF HOPE years later that in human history aircrafts were first employed for bombardment from the skies. It may, however, be said that these predictions related to the pre- atomic era and that it was not difficult for a person of fertile imagination to conceive of them. But it should be remembered that up to 1908 no conception what- soever could have been entertained of atomic weapons and not the farthest flight of a fiction-writer’s imagination could have conceived the possibility of nuclear armaments and of the ruin and destruction which could thereby be wrought. Yet this Warner of the latter days depicted such a holocaust in the following words: ‘I behold cities falling and habitations in ruin.’ ‘Such destruction will over- take the earth as would not have been witnessed at any time since the creation of of man. Most places would be overturned, as if they had never been dwelt in.’ In due course his prediction was completely fulfilled. Thirty-nine years after the publication of these prophecies the dreadful ruins of Hiroshima and Nagasaki and the blood of their pitiable inhabitants became the first witnesses of their truth. The great Warner who set forth these astonishing predictions, the divinely Commissioned One of the latter days, was Hadhrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad of Qadian(as) who appeared in accord with the prophecies set out in the ancient scriptures and were given expression to by the Holy Prophet of Islam(sa). He was known by the Divinely bestowed titles of Messiah and Mahdi. He was born in 1835 at Qadian, a little known town of India. In 1889, he claimed that he was the Promised One whose advent had been foretold in ancient scriptures and had been prophesied by the Holy Prophet of Islam ( s a ). In support of the truth of his claim he set forth every type of argument and heavenly sign and his own prophecies, many of which were fulfilled during his lifetime. With 17The Review of Religions – February 2005 A MESSAGE OF HOPE his powerful reasoning, supported by heavenly signs, he established that the God of Muhammad, the Messenger of Allah(sa), the Lord of the universe is the Master of Greatness, Glory and Power. For establishing communion between God and His creatures and for establishing the truth and righteousness of Muhammad( s a ), he initiated under Divine direction, a Movement which is known as the Ahmadiyya Movement in Islam. It may be asked how it can be determined whether Hadhrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad( a s ) o f Qadian was truly the Wa r n e r whose advent had been foretold by the Holy Prophet of Islam(sa). The Holy Qur’an furnishes abundant proof of this. For instance, it says: On the day when the trumpet will be blown, We shall gather the sinful ones together, blue- eyed. They will commiserate with each other in low tones: Your period of domination lasted but ten centuries. ( C h . 2 0 : V s . 1 0 3 – 1 0 4 ) Blue-eyed is the sign that identifies the people to whom this warning of the Holy Qur’an is directed. The specification of the period of their domination as ten centuries makes it plain and identifies with a certainty those western people who dominate the world today. In the prophecy of Hadhrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad( a s ), mentioned e a r l i e r, the regions occupied by these blue-eyed peoples have been specified. He said: ‘Thou art not secure, O E u rope, nor art thou safeguarded, O Asia. O dwellers of the islands, no self-made deity of yours will be able to come to your h e l p . ’ The warning conveyed in the verses of Chapter 20 of the Holy Qur’an set out above read along with the admonitions of Hadhrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad(as), makes it clear that the subjects of these prophecies are peoples who: (a) are blue-eyed, (b) have dominated the world for centuries, 18 The Review of Religions – February 2005 A MESSAGE OF HOPE (c) are connected with America, Europe, Asia and the islands, and (d) abandoning their Creator and Master, they worship a self- made deity of their own. These particulars leave no doubt in the identification of those peoples. Another factor which emerg e s from this study is that both these prophecies have proceeded from the same source. This furnishes the answer to the question raised above. The specification in the wording of two distinct pro- phecies made at an interval of fourteen centuries of the same peoples and of the same regions inhabited by them proves that the two prophecies are inter- connected. This is sure testimony that Hadhrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad(as), a devoted servant of the Holy Prophet of Islam(sa), was raised as the Divinely commissioned spiritual Guide of the latter days. F u r t h e r, the Holy Qur’an pro- ceeds: They ask thee concerning the mountains. Tell them: My Lord will uproot them and scatter them as dust, leaving them as a barren level plain, in which there is no depression or elevation. (Ch.20:Vs.106-108) In exact accord with this description set out in the Holy Qur’an is the description which Hadhrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad(as) has delineated of the ruin that would overtake the world in the latter days which we have set out above. This is the ruin which may overwhelm the world in con- sequence of associating a partner with God, disobedience of His Commandments and turning away from the guidance furnished by Him. Yet, it should be remem- bered that these prophecies are warnings and such prophecies may be averted through sincere repentance and earnest suppli- cations for forgiveness. If man was to abandon all forms of association of others with God, establish true communion with Him, discard all vice and 19The Review of Religions – February 2005 A MESSAGE OF HOPE wrongdoing, become diligent in performing all his obligations to God and to his fellow beings, and was to cultivate true sympathy for the whole of mankind, this threatened torment could be averted. This aspect of Divine grace is indicated both in Chapter 20 of the Holy Qur’an and in the prophecies of Hadhrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad(as). In Ch.20:V.108, there is a clear indication that the dominant peoples of this age would be a fflicted with arrogance on account of their power and greatness and their wealth and the multiplicity of their resources, in consequence of which they would suffer from a perversion which would lead them away from the straight path and alienate them from their Creator and Lord. As a result, Allah Almighty would deprive them of their greatness and domination and thus stamp out their pride and arrogance. Their individuals would then incline towards humility, meek- ness and selflessness, whereby they would win the grace and mercy of Allah and would thus find deliverance. In other words, these peoples would not be physically destroyed but would suffer the ruin of their greatness and power and would cease to be great powers. The same indication is disclosed in the prophecies of Hadhrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad(as), the Spiritual Leader of the latter days. For instance, he has said: ‘I have been shown that my followers will abound in different regions of Russia like the grains of sand.’ Thus it would seem that after the great ruin the two contending blocks will be destroyed and their pride and arrogance would be rubbed into the dust. Their condition would be like a barren level plain in which there would be neither depression nor elevation. So far as numbers are concerned, Russia would be comparatively better safeguarded. Its population would again grow rapidly and its inhabitants will confess their transgressions and misguidance and will turn in large numbers to faith and will recognise and submit to the Spiritual Leader of 20 The Review of Religions – February 2005 A MESSAGE OF HOPE the latter days. They would establish a cultural pattern which would not be afflicted with the perversions of arrogance and injustice, nor suffer from a false sense of dignity and honour which is generated by a denial of God. It must be remembered, however, that in order to achieve the deliverance presaged in what has just been said, it is essential that t o d a y ’s man should turn to his Lord and Maker with true remorse, sincere heart and pure intent. He should prostrate himself at the threshold of God with running eyes and a sincerely repentant heart and supplicate for Divine mercy seeking forg i v e n e s s for his sins and defaults. He should lay aside all pride, arrogance and deviation, and, purifying his heart of every vice and self-indulgence, should seek Divine help to be guided along the straight path. It is then that Divine mercy would be stirred and every seeker after truth would be guided to the straight path which is the path of the Holy Prophet( s a ) i n whose teaching there is no deviation. That path is the true and straight path of Islam. So long as man does not discard every type of deviation and so long as human culture is not rid of every type of i n e q u a l i t y, man will not be able to follow in the footsteps of the Holy P r o p h e t( s a ) whose teaching, according to the Holy Qur’an, is subject to no deviation ( C h . 2 0 : V. 1 0 9 ) . This is a brief outline of the warning and glad tidings which are directed towards today’s man. If he does not reform himself and continues inebriated with his fancied power and authority he is bound to encounter such ruin as would be a sample of the Judgement Day and there would be such loss of human lives as is beyond imagination. But if he takes himself in hand and carries out the needed change in his life, and, discarding worldly comfort and luxury, becomes a sincere seeker of spiritual joy and delight, there is the great news for him that he would be redeemed and would become deserving of his Lord’s m e r c y, pleasure and love. In the Holy Qur’an, God Almighty has set forth a fundamental principle which 21The Review of Religions – February 2005 A MESSAGE OF HOPE regulates His chastisement and His mercy, which is: I will inflict my chastisement on (those concerning) whom I do determine; but My merc y encompasseth all. ( C h . 7 : V. 1 5 7 ) Basing myself on this Qur’ a n i c fundamental, I, Fourth Successor of Hadhrat Mirza Ghulam A h m a d( a s ) of Qadian, Head of the Ahmadiyya Movement, call all of you to my Lord and your Lord and convey to you the good news that these grave prophecies of ruin and destruction can be averted and man can become heir to God’s mercy instead of earning His chastisement. A society patterned on injustice and wrong can be moulded into a pattern of equality and mutual sympathy. The only condition is that man should turn to his Master and Maker and repenting sincerely should establish a true relationship with H i m . Witnessing man’s miserable con- dition in the present age, my heart sheds tears of blood and the love of humanity and sympathy with my fellow beings compels me to invite you to the following of M u h a m m a d( s a ), the Chosen Messenger of Allah, who was raised as a mercy for the Universe. As a humble servant of his, it is my sincere desire that you should pay attention to this invitation of mine and should reflect on it with unprejudiced minds. May Allah enable today’s man to carry out a change in his condition, mend his ways and discarding the worship of false gods, to prostrate himself at the threshold of his Creator like the followers of the Prophet Jonas( a s ) and that the same scene of turning to the only True God may be witnessed in every city and town as was witnessed in the case of the people of the Prophet Jonas( a s ). A m i n .
The essential requirements for a peaceful society are love, affection and respect for human dignity. The innate beautiful teachings of Islam helped spread its message and not the sword as opponents would have us believe.