Moving impressions of the Bai’at [pledge allegiance] – A human chain like no other, connecting man to God at the hands of the Caliph in Germany.
Sunday is considered a supremely momentous and emotional day for the tens of thousands of Ahmadi Muslims that attend the Annual Convention of the community, as it marks the life-changing Bai’at [pledge allegiance] Ceremony where devoted lovers and disciples of the Caliph pledge their devoted allegiance to him, pledging to fulfil the ten conditions of Bai’at.
It is a spectacular sight, with perfectly organized streams of loving Ahmadis lined up sitting on their knees. Each faces the Imam while holding on to the shoulder of the person in front, forming a chain of people which carries the spiritual current of the Caliph through to the thousands present, and indeed to the millions joining in around the globe via live satellite. The ensuing emotion is electric, as the passionate proclamations of thousands echo in unison, repeating after their Beloved Imam the divinely inspired words of the pledge.
This year, the same feelings, the same moments, the same atmosphere was witnessed. The hall which catered for the guests attending the convention for 3 days lit up with joy and jubilation as His Holiness entered it.
The arrival of His Holiness transformed the excited exchanges among the ocean of Ahmadis into a pin-drop silence that spoke to the awe of this man of God. Every eye became transfixed upon the sheer majesty of His Holiness, as he arrived at the spot where he was going to sit. He announced that the words of the Bai’at would now be read out, bit-by-bit, and that the members should repeat each word after him.
To describe the perfect peace and spiritual energy that reverberates through the arena where more than 40,000 people are spiritually born again at the hands of their Imam is beyond expression.
Before the Ba’it ceremony, Zaid Al-Eessa, (from Syria), who was going to pledge allegiance for the first time, said:
‘I feel really different. Today is not an ordinary day, it is the day of the Ba’it. The Ba’it ceremony will, God willing, start in an hour and the feelings I have cannot be described. As you can see, the atmosphere is spiritual – full of love and brotherhood. All the feelings that run through your mind and heart (at this time)– nothing can describe them.’
Tahir Ahmad from Pakistan, who had come to the convention for the first time in his life and had seen His Holiness for the first time, said before the Bai’at:
‘My life’s purpose has been fulfilled today. I am overwhelmed with so many feelings that I cannot narrate them. I am extremely happy, and the objective of my life has been fulfilled.’
Muhammad Masuli, a brother from an Arab country, said:
‘It is only the blessings of God that I am able to witness this day. I cannot describe the love, the atmosphere and the brotherhood that is present.’
About the Author: Syed Adeel Ahmad Shah is a recent graduate of Jamia Ahmadiyya United Kingdom (The Ahmadiyya Muslim Community’s training seminary for missionaries).