Ahmadiyya (Urdu: احمدِیہ) is an Islamic religious movement founded in India near the end of the 19th century, originating with the life and teachings of Mirza Ghulam Ahmad (1835–1908), who claimed to have fulfilled the prophecies about the world reformer of the end times, who was to herald the Eschaton as predicted in the traditions of various world religions and bring about the final triumph of Islam as per Islamic prophecy. He claimed that he was the Mujaddid (divine reformer) of the 14th Islamic century, the promised Messiah and Mahdi awaited by Muslims. The adherents of the Ahmadiyya sect are referred to as Ahmadis or Ahmadi Muslims. Ahmadi emphasis lay in the belief that Islam is the final law for humanity as revealed to Muhammad and his prophecy of restoring to it its true essence and pristine form, which had been lost through the centuries. Thus, Ahmadis view themselves as leading the revival and peaceful propagation of Islam.
Mirza Ghulam Ahmad founded the movement on 23 March 1889 and termed it the Ahmadiyya Muslim Jama'at (community), envisioning it to be a revitalisation of Islam. Ahmadis consider themselves Muslims and claim to practice Islam in its pristine form; however, Ahmadiyya views on certain beliefs in Islam have been controversial to mainstream Muslims since the movement’s birth. Many mainstream Muslims do not consider Ahmadis to be Muslims, citing in particular the Ahmadiyya viewpoint on the death and return of Jesus (see Jesus in Islam), the Ahmadiyya concept of Jihad as peaceful and the community’s view of the finality of prophethood with particular reference to the interpretation of Quran 33:40. In several Islamic countries today Ahmadis have been marginalised by the majority religious community; severe persecution and often systematic oppression have led many Ahmadis to emigrate and settle elsewhere.
The view on the Prophets of God (Arabic: نبي) in Ahmadiyya Islam differs with that of Christianity, Orthodox Islam, Zoroastrianism and Judaism. Unlike Orthodox Islam, the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community considers the term Messenger (rasul) and Prophet (nabi) as being different aspects of the same office of a Khalifatullah [Representative of God on earth]. According to Ahmadiyya belief, the terms encountered in the Qur’an to signify divinely appointed individuals, namely, Warner (Nazir), Prophet (Nabi), Messenger (Rasul), are generally synonymous. Ahmadis however categorise prophets as law-bearing ones and non-lawbearing ones.
Ahmadis believe that when the world is filled with unrighteousness and immorality, or rather, when a specific part of the world displays these attributes, or when the followers of a certain law (religion) become corrupt or incorporate innovative and corrupted teachings into the faith (Bid‘ah), thus making the faith obsolete or in need of a Divine Sustainer, then a Prophet of God is sent to Earth by God to re-establish His Divine Will, that is, for humans to worship Him and to observe the rights of his creation.
The Prophets, according to Ahmadiyya belief, establish a living relationship with God among humans and project a strong message of monotheism. They also tell humans to be in service to each other and to humanity at a larger level. Thus, it is only natural that a Prophet’s teaching would include virtues of sympathy, affability, kindness etc. to human beings and in some cases, also to forms of life other than that of humans (animals, the environment etc.)
Selected Religious Figure
Mīrzā Ghulām Aḥmad (Urdu: مرزا غلام احمد; February 13, 1835 – May 26, 1908 CE, or Shawal 14, 1250 – Rabi' al-thani 24, 1326 AH) was a religious figure from India, and the founder of the Ahmadiyya movement. He claimed to be the Mujaddid (divine reformer) of the 14th Islamic century, the promised Messiah (“Second Coming of Christ”), and the Mahdi awaited by the Muslims in the end days. He declared that Jesus (Isa) had in fact survived the crucifixion and later died a natural death, after having migrated towards Kashmir and that he had appeared in the spirit and power of Jesus.
He traveled extensively across the subcontinent of India preaching his religious ideas and ideals and won a sizable following within his lifetime. He is known to have engaged in numerous debates and dialogues with the Muslim, Christian and Hindu priesthood and leadership. Ghulam Ahmad founded the Ahmadiyya movement on March 23, 1889. The mission of the movement, according to him, was the propagation of Islam in its pristine form.
Ghulam Ahmad authored around 80 books on various religious, spiritual and theological issues. He advocated a peaceful propagation of Islam and emphatically argued against the necessity of Jihad in its military (physical fighting) form in the present age.
Barāhīn-e-Ahmadiyya alā haqīqati Kitabilla hil Qur'an wannabuwatil Mohammadiyya (Proofs of the truth of the book of Allah - the Qur'an, and the prophethood of Muhammad) is a five part book written by Mirza Ghulam Ahmad The founder of the Ahmadiyya Movement. The first 2 parts were published in 1880 CE, the third volume was published in 1882, the fourth volume in 1884 and the fifth volume in 1905. Written and published against the backdrop of an intense anti-Islamic atmosphere in the Indian sub-continent, a significant portion of the subject matter of the book is dedicated to the defence of Islam and substantiating the truth of Islam, the 'excellence of the Quran' and argues against the criticism of Muhammad, the Qur'an and Islam that was raised in the 19th century predominantly by Christian missionaries.
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Detailed information about the Ahmadiyya Islam can be found under these sub-categories: