Al Fazl, 22 August 1921
Hazrat Khalifatul Masih in Kashmir
On 1 August , Huzoor[ra] was a bit unwell. After the Asr prayer, Hazrat Khalifatul Masih II[ra] along with his family visited the tomb of Prophet Jesusas of Nazareth located in Mohalla Khanyar [Srinagar, Kashmir]. There, Huzoor[ra] spent a significant amount of time praying and then gave five rupees to the guard of the shrine for its repairment.
On his return, Huzoor[ra] said that it would be very good if the people of our Jamaat, when they come to visit this tomb, donate something for its repair and protection. This practice would increase its greatness in the hearts of the people and thus it will be protected.
Thereafter, Huzoor[ra] visited the Jami‘ Masjid. It is a very large and spacious mosque and some parts of it are still under construction. This mosque is built in the style of the Ka‘bah. The mosque covers all four sides and in the middle there is a hujra [small room] instead of the Baitullah [the house of Allah]. Hazrat Khalifatul Masih II[ra] expressed his displeasure over this replication.
On 2 [August 1921], Huzoor[ra] went to Naseem Bagh and Hazratbal on a boat at 3 o’clock and returned from there at 10:30pm. Huzoor’s[ra] health remained well by the grace of Allah the Almighty.
On 3 [August 1921], Huzoor[ra] suffered from weakness. After the Maghrib prayer, Hafiz Nuruddin Sahib continued to deliberate over the issue of prophethood for a long time.
On 4 [August 1921], Hazrat Khalifatul Masih II[ra] left for Islamabad in two big boats with his family and companions. Huzoor’s[ra] health was not well throughout the day.
On 5 and 6 [August 1921], Huzoor[ra] continued to travel. He was well by the grace of Allah the Almighty.
On 7 [August 1921], at around 3 o’clock, Huzoor[ra] reached Islamabad with his caravan. At a distance of four miles from Islamabad, there is a Mauza Bijbehara. There, some Ahmadi friends had come to pay a visit to Hazrat Khalifatul Masih. Huzoor[ra] stayed there for about an hour and four men performed bai‘at.
On the morning of 8 [August 1921], another three friends performed bai‘at at Huzoor’s[ra] hand. At around eight o’clock, along with his family, Huzoor[ra] went on a tour of Chashma Achabal. It rained all day. This place is very pleasant and scenic. By the grace of God Almighty, Huzoor’s[ra] health remained good.
On 9 [August 1921], Huzoor[ra], along with his family and other companions, went to Verinag. This place is a long way from Islamabad, so we reached there around four o’clock. Consequently, we had to spend the night at that place. Huzoor[ra] had fever because of fatigue and tiredness.
On 10 [August 1921], Huzoor[ra] visited Chashma Verinag and [adjacent] garden, and returning at 8 o’clock, reached Islamabad at around 2 o’clock.
After Maghrib prayer, another person took bai‘at at the blessed hand of Hazrat Khalifatul Masih II[ra]. Huzoor[ra] kept advising this person for about half an hour. Huzoor[ra] explained the reality of bai‘at and its in-depth meaning. He said that one should take bai‘at after fully understanding [its true concept] and immense praying because bai‘at was not a trivial pledge. It means the complete submission of oneself to someone else. After taking bai‘at, the one who swears allegiance has no control over their life, wealth or anything else, as they sell everything for the sake of God Almighty in return for which they are granted Paradise.
Then Huzoor[ra] said that some people invalidate their bai‘at over time after listening to the words of opponents and then after realising their mistake they take bai‘at again. Such people always remain in doubt and their condition is in danger at all times. At the end, they are deprived of faith and continue to grow in disbelief. Then Huzoor[ra] recited the following verse and gave its interpretation:
اِنَّ الَّذِيۡنَ اٰمَنُوۡا ثُمَّ كَفَرُوۡا ثُمَّ اٰمَنُوۡا ثُمَّ كَفَرُوۡا ثُمَّ ازۡدَادُوۡا كُفۡرًا لَّمۡ يَكُنِ اللّٰهُ لِيَغۡفِرَ لَهُمۡ وَ لَا لِيَهۡدِيَهُمۡ سَبِيۡلًا
[“Those who believe, then disbelieve, then again believe, then disbelieve, and then increase in disbelief, Allah will never forgive them nor will He guide them to the way.” (Surah al-Nisa, Ch.4: V.138)]
After the Fajr prayer on 11 [August 1921], a friend took bai‘at at the blessed hand of Huzoor[ra] and at around 8:30am, riding on horses and carriages, Hazrat Khalifatul Masih II[ra] left for Asnoor along with the whole caravan.
Huzoor’s[ra] meals and the arrangements for the speech were overseen by Ahmadi friends of Mauza Kunjpura, so Huzoor[ra] stopped for around two and a half hours on the way. Huzoor[ra] spoke for more than an hour after the meal. A significant number of non-Ahmadis were gathered there. Hazrat Khalifatul Masih II[ra] explained the purpose and reality of man’s creation and laid out a sketch of the plight of the Muslims and explained the reasons behind their pitiable state. Huzoor[ra] said that since the Muslims had neglected Islam and the shariah [divine law], they had started to fall into a pit of humiliation. God Alimghty Himself has taken the responsibility of protecting the Holy Quran and Islam and has said very clearly:
وَ اِنَّا لَهٗ لَحٰفِظُوۡنَ
[“And most surely We will be its Guardian.” (Surah al-Hijr, Ch.15: V.10)], He thus sent the Promised Messiahas in this age to revive the faith and guide the Muslims.
Then, addressing the members of Jamaat, Huzoor[ra] said that the people of Kashmir were very neglectful with respect to coming to Qadian. He said, if they could not come after one year, they should try to come after at least two or three years. He added that they should make a significant change in their state so that there was a clear difference between them and others. It was not enough to just offer regular prayers and fast; rather, all of their actions, character and speech should be proof that they are true and real Ahmadis. Hence, Huzoor[ra] guided them about their duties in a very clear manner. This entire speech will be sent for publication in a few days, insha-Allah.
The Ahmadi friends from Asnoor had come with daandian [a type of sedan chair swung on poles and borne on the shoulders and are used in the mountains] around eight miles out of [Asnoor]. Abdul Qadir Sahib Butt Zeldar, a respected non-Ahmadi friend of Mauza Kaapran which is about six miles from Asnoor, arranged sumptuous tea for Huzoor[ra] and all of his companions. After tea, he requested Huzoor[ra] to pray for him and so, Huzoor[ra] prayed for him.
From there, Huzoor[ra] left on horses at around eight o’clock in the evening. Asnoor Jamaat welcomed Huzoor[ra] with great enthusiasm, sincerity and love. A short distance away, Ahmadis had gathered in groups and eagerly awaited him. Many friends were standing with lamps and expressing their love and devotion. About two miles from Asnoor, in Mauza Deshi Nagri, there was a two-way line of Ahmadi children and youths and each of them presented the gift of salaam to Huzoor[ra].
In terms of apparent beauty, Asnoor is one of the best areas of Kashmir and God Almighty has blessed it with the ability to manifest itself and respond to the voice of its prophet by endowing it with inner beauty as well. Huzoor[ra] had started praying at a distance of two or three miles from Asnoor, but at the time of entrance, along with all others, he carried out a long prayer with such humility and submission that a state of deep emotions prevailed over all and tears flowed from their eyes. After around 11 o’clock, Hazrat Khalifatul Masih II[ra] entered safely in the house with the entire caravan.
On 12 August , Huzoor[ra] led the Jumuah prayer in the Ahmadiyya Mosque and gave some advice to the Jamaat. The health of Huzoor[ra] remained well by the grace of God Almighty.
The letters written to Hazrat Khalifatul Masih II[ra] should be sent through Postmaster Srinagar. The letters will reach Huzoor[ra] wherever he will be staying.
Humbly yours, Syed Mahmood, Asnoor.
(Translated by Al Hakam from the original Urdu in the 22 August 1921 issue of Al Fazl)