Migration and Refugees


Human immigration is becoming an increasing phenomena world wide. This is in part, due to better transport and communication systems. However wars also contribute to this human traffic. Europe has seen a large number of refugees as a result of the European conflicts of the last century. Once immigrants have settled in a new society, what should be expected of them in terms of their degree of integration with their hosts? This is an issue which arouses considerable debate and has become the focus of intense political concern in re c e n t months. In his article, Naseer Qamar points out that there are some who want immigrants to become a complete part of their new culture, even if this means abandoning their customs, language and traditions. He explains that this view misses out the importance of the richness which immigrants can bring to a society. However, the opposite scenario is just as problematic. When immigrants refuse to assimilate into the host c u l t u re and cling on to native languages and traditions, they effectively create a sub culture apart from the one in which they live. This in turn creates difficulties for them and leads to isolation. The solution lies in following the guidance contained in the Holy Qur’an. The Head of the Ahmadiyya Community has given clear advice as to how immigrants should conduct them- selves in a new country and the author refers to this. This month’s edition also contains an article discussing the fulfilment of the p rophecy granted to the Pro m i s e d Messiah(as) concerning the birth of a son. It was on February 20th 1886, that the Promised Messiah(as) made an historic announcement disclosing details of this revelation. The achievements of Hadhrat Khalifatul Masih II(ra) are outlined by the author, Tommy Bockarie. It is interesting to note that one of the pioneering schemes developed during his Khilafat, was the establishment of the Ahmadiyya Community into groups of men women and children for the purposes of moral and spiritual training. These Ansar (men over 40), Lajna (ladies), Khuddam (men between 15 and 40), Atfal (boys between 7 and 15) and Nasirat (young girls) groups also serve their local communities in a variety of ways. This means that wherever they migrate, Ahmadis will integrate with their host culture. However they will be doing so in an Islamic manner and with the motto ‘Love for all, hatred for none.’. Sarah Waseem – UK 2 The Review of Religions – February 2003 Editorial