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80 YEARS AGO

42 80 YEARS AGO (In the August issue of the Review of Religions, 1908 there appeared an obituary in respect of Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad, The Promised Messiah, which had been reproduced from the Times (London). He died in Lahore, Pakistan in 1908 and was buried in Qadian, India) “The Mirza, who had attained his 70th year, was the Jagirdar. or owner, of the village of Qadian, in the Gurdaspur district, and was of Moghul descent, his family having migrated to the Punjab from Samarkand in the reign of Babar. He was formerly in Government service, but resigned some years ago to. devote himself to vigorous canvassing of his claims. The Rev. Dr. Griswold, of Lahore, carefully studied the Ahmadiyya Movem- ent, and embodied his researches in a book in which he spoke of the Mirza as ‘venerable in appearance, magnetic in personality, and active in intellect.’ Maintaining a printing press and a book dept, this teacher of strange doctrines wrote many theological works and conducted two newspapers, one in urdu and the other in English, in advocacy of his creed. He asserted that Jesus, though crucified in Palestine, did not die there, but travelled East and eventually died in the city of Srinagar, the capital of Kashmir. Adopting the doctrine of the repeated manifestations of the Messiah, he taught that, while Jesus was the Messiah of Moses, he himself was the Messiah of Muhammad, and claimed to have been sent by God to bring back the true faith, corrupted alike by Jews, Christians and Moslems. He professed to have foretold many events and to have wrought even more wonderful works than Jesus. This teaching was regarded as heretical and blasphemous by orthodox Muhammadans, but the followers of the Mirza included not only the unlettered, but also many men of high standing and good education.”