Mirza Ghulam Ahmad

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Mirza Ghulam Ahmad (around 1898)
Signature of Mirza Ghulam Ahmad: مرزا غلام احمد
Hadhrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad (1907)

Mirza Ghulam Ahmad ( Urdu مرزا غلام احمد DMG Mirzā Ġulām Aḥmad ; * February 13, 1835 in Qadian ; † May 26, 1908 in Lahore ) was a British-Indian preacher and founder of the Ahmadiyya movement . He claimed to be the “ mujaddid (innovator) of the 14th Islamic century”, the “Promised Messiah ” ( Second Presence of Christ ), the Mahdi of the end times expected by Muslims and a “ prophet ( subordinate to Mohammed )”. He announced that Jesus ( Isa ibn Maryam ) survived his crucifixion , immigrated to India and later died a natural death in Srinagar , Kashmir , and claimed to appear in the spirit and authority of Jesus. He also announced that Guru Nanak Dev , the founder of Sikhism , was a Muslim. He also took the view that Messiah and Imam Mahdi are two titles for the same person.

Preaching the new religious ideas and ideals, he traveled extensively in the Indian subcontinent and gained about 400,000 followers by the time of his death. He participated in numerous debates and dialogues with Christian missionaries as well as Muslim and Hindu leaders and priests. Ghulam Ahmad founded the Ahmadiyya movement in 1889. According to him, the task of the Ahmadiyya was to spread Islam in its "original" form.

Mirza Ghulam Ahmad wrote 82 religious books, mostly in Urdu , some in Arabic and Persian . His main work was Barahin-e-Ahmadiyya. They contain the presentation and explanation of the teachings which he claimed to have received from God.


Mirza Hadi Beg immigrated to India from Persia at the time of the Mughal Emperor Babur . He settled in Punjab and founded a village called Islampur, now Qadian . The Mirza family held influential state offices under the rule of the Mughals. At the height of their power, their holdings comprised Qadian and 85 other villages, totaling 12,840 hectares .

With the fall of the Mughal rule, the family's sphere of influence and power also decreased. By the middle of the 19th century, Qadian real estate had dwindled. Mirza Ghulam Murtaza joined the Maharaja's army . After the consolidation of the Sikh -Herrschaft were from the Sikh ruler Maharaja Ranjit Singh five villages returned to the tribe. In 1839 the Sikh ruler died and the Sikh empire began to disintegrate. At the same time, the British expanded their sphere of influence into the Punjab. Mirza Ghulam Murtaza served the British government as much as he had served the Sikh government. He later received a pension of 200 rupees for his services.


Mirza Ghulam Ahmad was born on February 13, 1835, the second son of Mirza Ghulam Murtaza (d. 1876) and Chiragh Bibi (d. 1868). His twin sister died a few days after they were born. His father was a chief and the largest landowner in Qadian Village. Though he had no wealth, he did have some servants and a recognized position and authority. Mirza Ghulam Ahmad received private lessons from various teachers.

His first marriage to Hurmat Bibi (1852 / 53-1891) resulted in two sons, Mirza Sultan Ahmad (1853-1931) and Mirza Fazal Ahmad (1855-1904). In his second marriage he married Nusrat Jehan Begum on November 17, 1884, the daughter of Nawab Nasir from Delhi. This marriage resulted in ten children, five of whom died at an early age:

  • Asmat (1886-1891)
  • Bashir (1887-1888)
  • Mirza Bashir ud-Din Mahmud Ahmad (1889–1965)
  • Shokat (1891-1892)
  • Mirza Bashir Ahmad (1893–1963)
  • Mirza Sharif Ahmad (1895–1961)
  • Nawab Mubarka Begum (1897–1977)
  • Mirza Mubarak Ahmad (1899–1907)
  • Amtul-Nasir (1903-1903)
  • Amtul-Hafiz Begum (1904–1987)


Mirza Ghulam Ahmad wrote a total of 82 religious books, some of them in Arabic. His main work was Barahin-e-Ahmadiyya. In the first two volumes in 1880 he stated his view that all verses of the Koran were still valid. With this he turned against the doctrine of abrogation, which is still recognized today under Islamic law . He also stated that God would still speak to those he liked.

In 1882 he claimed to be one of God chosen, in 1885 to be a mujaddid (innovator) of the 14th Islamic century. On February 20, 1886, Allah revealed to him “I will carry your message to the end of the world”. Allah asked him to set up a community to reform Islam. The Ahmadiyya was founded on March 23, 1889.

In 1890 he announced that he was also the "Promised Messiah and Mahdi" predicted in the Islamic and Christian sources, with which he provoked further violent opposition and rejection from Orthodox Muslims. The controversy intensified when he refused to declare jihad among his supporters and otherwise positioned himself against the Indian struggle for independence. This on the grounds that as long as England respects and guarantees religious freedom, there is no religious justification for armed struggle.

He held the first Jalsa Salana on December 27, 1891 in Qadian. These meetings have been organized annually since then.

In July 1895 Allah informed him that Jesus survived the crucifixion and died a natural death. He believed to have found out later that Jesus was buried in Srinagar / Kashmir. At the “Conference of the Great Religions” 26. – 29. December 1896 in Lahore Mirza Ghulam Ahmad's book The Philosophy of the Teachings of Islam was read out. In April 1899 he wrote the book of Jesus in India . On March 13, 1903, he laid the foundation stone for the " White Minaret " in Qadian.

Mirza Ghulam Ahmad firmly believed in the impending domination of Islam. The only difference to other Islamic currents should be the efforts of the Ahmadiyya movement to restore "the original beauty and simplicity of Islam" and the absolute renunciation of violence in the pursuit of its goals. The missionary zeal of the Ahmadiyya is based on the vision of its founder of the "conquest of Europe for Islam".

Foundations of belief

His followers believe that in a spiritual sense the return of Isa ibn Maryams ( Jesus of Nazareth ) came through the work of Mirza Ghulam Ahmad . They are also convinced that Mirza Ghulam Ahmad is the end-time embodiment of the qualities of Krishna , who was an avatar of the Aryan people and a prophet of God and who received revelations from God.

Mirza Ghulam Ahmad emphasized Islam's claim to truth and at the same time recognized all religions as true in their origins. Buddha , Confucius , Krishna and Zarathustra are viewed as messengers of God, but not as embodiments of God.

Mirza Ghulam Ahmad declared the religiously legitimized war canceled, referring to the hadith :

“Mohammed said: 'I swear by Allah, in whose hand my life is, that the son of Mary will soon come down to you. He will be a righteous judge and he will break the crosses, he will kill the pig and abolish the war tax (jizya). He will distribute wealth to such an extent that no one will accept it again; and a prostration (sajda) will be better than the world and what it contains. '"

- (Hadith: Bukhari, Muslim, Tirmidhi)

With this he justified his strict rejection of an armed uprising against British colonial rule. In his opinion, a Muslim should not fight or behave disloyally towards a government which does not interfere in any way in the religious affairs of Muslims and guarantees them the free exercise of their religion in this regard. For this, Mirza Ghulam Ahmad was insulted by the scholars of India as a traitor and co-conspirator of the British government. Since then it has been a widespread opinion that the Ahmadiyya movement was a creation of the British in order to divide and weaken Muslims in this way.


The teachings of Mirza Ghulam Ahmad have sparked great controversy with Muslim scholars. First, against the background of the Christianization of India by English missionaries and a resurgent Hinduism (due to the collapse of the Mughal Empire) , Mirza Ghulam Ahmad was soon able to acquire the reputation of an advocate for Islam through his writings and disputations with Christian missionaries and Hindu scholars. His main work "Barahin-e Ahmadiyya" was considered a very successful attempt at this "defense". From 1890 he gradually abandoned the consensus of Islamic scholars with his "Jesus-in-India teaching" and his claim to prophethood . The number of fatwas declaring Ahmadi Muslims non-Muslims skyrocketed. Mirza Ghulam Ahmad had such a bitter argument with his arch-rival Muhammad Hussain Batalvi that both had to answer before the criminal court. The case was closed with the condition that both parties signed an agreement stating that they would end their dispute and distance themselves from each other. In Pakistan , Orthodox imams obtained a parliamentary resolution officially declaring Ahmadis non-Muslims in 1974. As a result, many discriminatory laws against the Ahmadiyya were passed in 1984. In contrast to the Islamic majority opinion, Mirza Ghulam Ahmad taught

  • his claim to be a prophet
  • his claim to be the Messiah and the Mahdi in one person
  • that with the return of the Messiah, the religiously motivated war - jihad  - would be over
  • the validity of all Ayat of the Koran, d. This means that the verses of the Qur'an were not abrogated (canceled)
  • that Isa ibn Maryam (Jesus Christ) emigrated to Kashmir and was buried in Srinagar

According to the conviction of the "Ahmadiyya Muslim Jamaat" (AMJ), Seal of the Prophets (Koran 33:40) only means that all subsequent prophets do not establish a new religion and do not bring a new religious book like the Koran . In this sense, Mirza Ghulam Ahmad was a renewer of Islam, but is also considered a prophet because he is said to have received many prophecies from Allah.

The "Ahmadiyya Anjuman Isha'at-i-Islam Lahore" (AAIIL) deviates from the opinion that Mirza Ghulam Ahmad was only a reformer ( mujaddid ) and messiah, not a prophet . The controversy over this question led to the division of the Ahmadiyya movement.

"The scholar's ink is more valuable than the blood of a martyr." (Hadith). Therefore, according to the Ahmadis, the breaking of the cross (that is, the refutation of Christian beliefs) will be done through the jihad of the pen and the jihad of the argument.

The Ahmadiyya - like the vast majority of Muslims - understands the greatest jihad to be the improvement of one's own character, morals and spirituality. The Prophet Mohammed said to his men when he returned from a campaign: "Behind us lies the little jihad (jihaad saghir) and before us lies the greatest jihad (jihaad akbar)." (Hadith) (cf. Jihad ).

Mirza Ghulam Ahmad believed that the conditions of jihad in his century and his country (India) were not fulfilled. He urged Muslims to cultivate a "jihad of virtues".

Mirza Ghulam Ahmad rejected the conviction of orthodox Muslims that a Quranic verse another pick could. He believed that the Qur'an was a revelation of the Word of God and, as such, according to its self-statement, it contained no contradictions (see Quran 2: 2, 4:82, 11: 1). He attributed every contradiction in the Koran to misunderstandings and misinterpretations: "No verse, not a word and not an iota of the Koran was canceled."

Jesus in India
Some Muslims have adopted the Christians' view that Isâ (Jesus Christ) was raised to heaven (bodily) by God ( Christology ). According to Mirza Ghulam Ahmad , Isâ survived the crucifixion unconscious, appeared to the disciples after his recovery and emigrated to Kashmir , where he died very old . Mirza Ghulam Ahmad explains in his writings that Isâ is also called Yuz Asaf (the assembler) in Indian scriptures .

Other Controversies
These types of aggressive and provocative disputes were common in India in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, and Mirza Ghulam Ahmad made extensive use of them. He believed that such spectacular disputes could prove the superiority of Islam and restore the self-confidence to the Muslims of India.

The most prominent opponent was the Hindu scholar Pandit Lekh Ram . Mirza Ghulam Ahmad also directed his apologetics against Christian missions in India. In 1893 there is said to have been a spectacular two-week discussion with Pastor Abdullah Athim, who had converted from Islam to Christianity.


His main work, Barahin-e-Ahmadiyya [Barāhīn-i aḥmadiyyah] (Ahmedan Evidence) was written by Mirza Ghulam Ahmad in Urdu, and it appeared in four volumes between 1880 and 1884. A fifth volume appeared in 1905. The purpose was, on the one hand, the truth of Islam and the Koran with rational arguments and on the other hand to refute the teachings of Christianity , Sangha Dharma , Arya Samaj and Brahmo Samaj .

He expressed his belief that divine inspiration or revelation (Ilham) has not stopped and will never stop. He also stated that Allah would continue to raise up prophets who would be inspired to understand Islam with a view to illuminating beliefs and knowledge. In his book he has repeatedly affirmed his claim to be a mujaddid (reformer) of Islam and commissioned by God to reform the world and to spread Islam. To underline his claim, Mirza Ghulam Ahmad has widely advertised his work in English and Urdu and called on scholars around the world to write a work that would refute his theses and publicly offered a bonus of 10,000 rupees for it.


  • [Barāhīn-i aḥmadiyyah] Barahin-e-Ahmadiyya ("Ahmad'sche Evidence", main work)
  • [Taḏkirah] Tazkirah (dreams, visions and literal revelations); Verlag der Islam
  • [Kaštī-yi Nūḥ] Kashti-e-Nuh (Noah's Ark)
  • Jesus in India; Verlag Der Islam; 2nd edition, ISBN 978-3-932244-11-7 .
  • The philosophy of the teachings of Islam; Verlag Der Islam, ISBN 978-3-921458-97-6 .
  • One misunderstanding cleared up; Verlag Der Islam, ISBN 978-3-921458-53-2 .
  • Deliverance from sin; Verlag Der Islam, ISBN 978-3-921458-40-2 .
  • [Fatḥ-i islām] Fateh Islam (victory of Islam); Verlag Der Islam, ISBN 978-3-921458-62-4 .
  • [al-Waṣiyyat] Al-Wasiyyat (The Testament); Verlag Der Islam, ISBN 978-3-932244-14-8 .
  • [Hamārī taʿlīm] Hamaree Taleem (Our Teaching, short version of Kashti-e-Nuh); Verlag Der Islam, ISBN 978-3-921458-25-9 .

See also


Web links

Commons : Mirza Ghulam Ahmad  - Collection of images, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. ^ Yohanan Friedmann: Prophecy Continuous: Aspects of Ahmadi Religious Thought and Its Medieval Background. Oxford University Press, New Delhi 2003 (2nd edition), p. 111.
  2. Simon Ross Valentine: Islam and the Ahmadiyya Jama'at: History, Belief, Practice . Columbia University Press, New York 2008, pp. 135-138. The latter is, however, controversial: The Lahore branch of the Ahmadiyya, the Ahmadiyya Anjuman Isha'at-i-Islam Lahore, understands the self-designation of Mirza Ghulam Ahmad as a “prophet” (nabī) metaphorically; so he did not really claim to be a prophet after Muhammad .
  3. ^ Yohanan Friedmann: Prophecy Continuous: Aspects of Ahmadi Religious Thought and Its Medieval Background. 2nd Edition. Oxford University Press, New Delhi 2003, p. 114.
  4. Werner Ende, Udo Steinbach , Renate Laut: Islam in the Present. CHBeck Verlag, Munich 2005, p. 356.
  5. Simon Ross Valentine: Islam and the Ahmadiyya Jama'at: History, Belief, Practice . Columbia University Press, New York 2008, p. 53.
  6. ^ Yohanan Friedmann: Prophecy Continuous: Aspects of Ahmadi Religious Thought and Its Medieval Background. Oxford University Press, New Delhi 2003 (2nd edition), pp. 2-10.
  7. Marc Gaborieau, Gudrun Kramer, John Nawas, Everett K. Rowson: Encyclopaedia of Islam Three -1, Brill, Boston 2007, p. 85
  8. ^ Yohanan Friedmann: Prophecy Continuous: Aspects of Ahmadi Religious Thought and Its Medieval Background. 2nd Edition. Oxford University Press, New Delhi 2003, p. 10.
  9. Simon Ross Valentine: Islam and the Ahmadiyya Jama'at: History, Belief, Practice . Columbia University Press, New York 2008, pp. 45-47.
  10. a b Idara Dawat-O-Irshad: Qadianism - A Critical Study .
  11. AMJ: Message on the centenary of Hazrat Mirza Tahir Ahmad ( Memento of March 13, 2007 in the Internet Archive ), An Islamic Speech to Germany ( Memento of March 15, 2007 in the Internet Archive )
  12. Muniruddin Ahmed : Exclusion of the Ahmadiyya from Islam ( Memento of March 14, 2008 in the Internet Archive ) published in: ORIENT. Opladen. 16 (1975) 1, pp. 112-143.
  13. The advent of the promised Mahdi
  14. "Truth about Ahmadiyya", Chapter 9: "Suspension of Jihad"
  15. ^ AAIIL: True Conception of the Ahmadiyya Movement (PDF; 79 kB), p. 26.
  16. ^ AAIIL: True Conception of the Ahmadiyya Movement (PDF; 62 kB), p. 49.
  17. Mirza Ghulam Ahmad: “Now listen, you Muslims! And listen carefully! Hear that, in order to thwart the pure influences of Islam, Christianity has made extensive use of distorted accusations and utter falsehoods, and that they went to great lengths to spread them and made money flow like water to do so. […] Such a campaign cannot be repulsed by ordinary measures. [...] He taught me the ways to God by which we can reach Him so that I can defeat the enemies of Islam. " In: “Sieg des Islam”, Verlag der Islam 1994, p. 12 f.
    see. Mirza Nasir Ahmad on July 28, 1967 in the “Wandsworth Town Hall” in London: “The signs of the revival of Islam are already visible. They may not be very clear yet, but they are easy to see. The sun of Islam will finally rise in its full splendor and illuminate the world. ”, Printed in:“ A message of peace and a warning to the world at the same time ”, Verlag der Islam 1994, p. 11.
  18. AMJ: A Brief History of Ahmadiyya Movement in Islam , p. 13
    Muniruddin Ahmed: The Christology of Ahmadiyya ( Memento of March 15, 2008 in the Internet Archive ) XXII. German Orientalist Day, 21. – 25. March 1983 in Tübingen
  19. Muniruddin Ahmed: Exclusion of Ahmadiyya from Islam ( Memento of March 14, 2008 in the Internet Archive ), History and Teaching of Ahmadiyya ( Memento of March 15, 2008 in the Internet Archive ), The Sociology of Ahmadiyya ( Memento of March 15, 2008 in the Internet Archive )