Al Fazl, 6 February 1922
4 December 1921
Hazrat Khalifatul Masih[ra], while announcing a nikah, delivered the following sermon:
The generality of the desire for survival through offspring
“There is a desire within man (and this desire is also present in other creatures) that they want to maintain their existence in the world. Humans, animals and plants, all these creatures want to continue to exist. Even if we set aside mankind due to the evolution that has occurred in the human brain, this [desire] is clearly found in other creatures as well. In animals, we observe that after passing their early years of life, they possess a desire to have offspring. The same is true of plants. They also want to reproduce. The botanists know that [plants] bend and stretch in such a way so that they can produce offspring. Their leaves attach with other leaves and branches to other branches and consequently, strange miracles of nature appear and their species grow. Since the matter regarding non-living organisms has not been fully researched, nothing can be said about them and there is no need to plainly deny that they do not want to increase themselves.
“Hence, there is a desire in plants to reproduce, and this [desire] is manifested in animals even more because they have more power of action than plants. This desire develops in man to the point that some people abduct another’s child and some fulfil their desire by adopting a child. The animals do not fulfil the said desire by snatching offspring of other animals. However, it is observed that some animals who do not have their own offspring show affection towards the offspring of other animals.
“This desire indicates that humans, plants and animals are dependent on this desire to progress. This desire has been instilled in all creatures by God and this is one of the important natural instincts because the more common a desire, the more important it is. This desire is related not only to humans and animals but also to plants, and we do not know for sure about non-living beings.
What does a person do to achieve this goal?
“Even though the said desire is natural and very common, still man has no complete power over it. There are hundreds of rich people and they spend a lot of money on treatment but still their wish is not fulfilled. Moreover, there are many who will give millions of rupees to have their wish fulfilled but it does not happen. The only son of an American man died of tuberculosis. He dedicated 25 million rupees to find the cure for tuberculosis. Behold, this man was so upset by the death of his son that he spent 25 million rupees for him to save others from this suffering. If this person had any hope that he would have been able to have children by spending 25 million rupees or even more, he would have spent them. However, ponder over this fact that the innovators of Europe and America, despite their scientific advances, were incapable of giving offspring to the said man.
Desire for male offspring
“Approaching to the next level of the said desire, there is another wish, which is not known in animals, but in human beings, that male offspring should be born. I think this desire should only be in humans because they are inclined to civilisation. In order to fulfil this desire, people make great efforts, amulets, sorcery, tricks and thus spend thousands of rupees. Many books have been written about it since ancient times. In the case of Hindus, Kok Shastar, etc., some of which are lewd books and some are actually on the subject of how a boy or a girl is born, these books have been introduced into religion to some extent. However, to this day, nobody has achieved absolute power in this regard. These are all speculations and speculations are not reliable. Let alone getting the power over having children [boy or girl] according to one’s intentions, when the child is still in the womb of the mother, it cannot be properly identified whether it is a boy or a girl. [Ultrasound machines were not available at that time. Editor Al Hakam.]
The source of fulfilment of this natural desire
“Thus, it is a human desire that it should be fulfilled. Regarding its fulfilment, provided that divine providence and will do not go against it, attention has been drawn in one of the verses that I have read. [Allah the Almighty] says:
يٰۤاَيُّهَا النَّاسُ اتَّقُوۡا رَبَّكُمُ الَّذِيۡ خَلَقَكُمۡ مِّنۡ نَّفۡسٍ وَّاحِدَةٍ وَّخَلَقَ مِنۡهَا زَوۡجَهَا وَبَثَّ مِنۡهُمَا رِجَالًا كَثِيۡرًا وَّنِسَآءً ۚ وَاتَّقُوا اللّٰهَ الَّذِيۡ تَسَآءَلُوۡنَ بِهٖ وَالۡاَرۡحَامَ
“[‘O ye people! fear your Lord, Who created you from a single soul and created therefrom its mate, and from them twain spread many men and women; and fear Allah, in Whose name you appeal to one another, and fear Him particularly respecting ties of relationship.’ (Surah An-Nisa, Ch.4: V.2)]
“You get married so that your name may live on, you may have children, and your offspring may continue to be born from it. However, none of you have absolute power to succeed in this endeavor.
“Then, there is the desire to have male offspring. For this desire as well, you do not have the required authority to succeed. However, there is a threshold in front of you and an entity that has the power to fulfil the said desires. Who is that? رَبَّكُمُ الَّذِيۡ خَلَقَكُمۡ, ‘Your Lord who created you’. Ponder over Him as to how much he has spread the offspring of one human being. His offspring are not one or two, He filled this world of 25,000 miles with the offspring of that one man. His offspring progressed to such an extent that people now say, ‘The world [population] has increased so much; what will we eat?’
“Thus, […] this desire for having children is a natural desire, but man has no way of succeeding in it, save they fear that God Who alone has raised and spread so many generations from Adam. As you have experienced that this God has the power to increase the offspring of whomsoever He wills, so if one becomes oblivious of this [God], then there is no worldly means that can fulfil the said desire.
The desire for pious children
“Along with this, there is another desire that arises after the birth of a child that the children should be virtuous and pious, and not be the enemy of religion and the cause of humiliation and disgrace of parents. If the son becomes an enemy of religion, it is bad. If he becomes a thief, robber, murderer or gets caught up in other miscreants and the police catch him, then the name of the parents will also be dishonoured. Therefore, [Allah the Almighty] said:
وَاتَّقُوا اللّٰهَ الَّذِيۡ تَسَآءَلُوۡنَ بِهٖ وَالۡاَرۡحَامَ
“‘Fear God, because the relationship you are about to create will result in producing children. If they prove negative, your old age will be ruined and they themselves will be evil.’ Therefore, [God] said that when you adopt piety and fear of Allah, you will produce divine piety, as is the famous couplet:
گندم از گندم برويد جو از جو
“[‘The cultivation of wheat results in wheat, and barley produces barley.’]
“Hence, these are the ways that Allah the Almighty has told us to have children and in fact, to have noble offspring.
Examples of God producing many offspring from one
“There is not a single example of this and in fact, there are many examples that God Almighty has multiplied the offspring of one person. For example, look at Hazrat Abrahamas. Regarding him, Allah the Almighty said: ‘I will give you so many children that they will be as numerous as the stars in the sky.’ Now observe as to how far the descendants of Abrahamas have spread from various nations in different countries of the world. In the same way, look at Sadaat [Sayyids], who are the offspring of the daughter of the Holy Prophetsa, Fatimara and Hazrat Alira, name any country where there are no Sadaat. Then, there are not only one or two people, but large populations of Sadaat are present, due to which some people think that many have become artificial Syed. However, the same is the case here that God willed to grow their progeny, so He multiplied them. There are many people who are very strong but they have no progeny. However, regarding whom God wills, they spread.
“Hazrat Khalifatul Masih Ira used to say that an entire family of Sadaat was killed by the Sikhs, out of whom only one woman who was very rich survived. She intended that, God willing, their family would grow again through her. Thus, she began to find out if any of the descendants of the said family were alive. It was finally found out that there was a person of their progeny in India who was disabled; his arms and legs did not function. The woman went there and married him.
“Hazrat Khalifatul Masih Irh said, ‘Now there is a huge family from their progeny.’ Hence, observe what God did for them. Not only a woman but an influential woman went to marry a disabled person, God willed to preserve their family, so that relationship happened and their wish was fulfilled.
“Thus, whoever relies on Allah in this matter and hopes for the blessings of Allah, then they will get that fruit which will certainly be sweet.”
6 December 1921
The punishment for apostasy is not execution
Regarding the general belief that the shariah [divine law] of Islam commands to execute the apostates, Hazrat Khalifatul Masih [IIra] said:
“According to the shariah [of Islam], the punishment of apostasy is not execution. On the other hand, if a person joins the enemy during the war [and shares the secrets of his state with them], he is commanded to be executed. The said [punishment] is not only prevalent in Islam, but also in other empires if a resident of a country joins the people of an opposing country during a war [and conspires against his homeland], his punishment is execution.”
The origin of the Sikh nation
Huzoor[ra] enquired from Sheikh Sahib about the origin of the Sikh nation. Sheikh Sahib submitted that the Sikh nation comprised of some Rajputs, Chhetris [warriors] and Brahmins, and most of them belonged to Jats, Tarkhans (carpenters) and Lohars [blacksmiths]. The latter nations paid special attention to Gurus.
The Tarkhan nation was seen among the Sikhs with respect and honour. The reason behind it was that one of the servants of Baba Nanak, may Allah have mercy on him, was a Tarkhan (carpenter) named Lalu [also known as Bhai Lalo]. Baba Sahib was pleased with him and remembered him by the name of “Bhai”.
(Translated by Al Hakam from the original Urdu in the 6 February 1922 issue of Al Fazl)