100 Years Ago… – Satiate the world’s spiritual thirst: Hazrat Musleh Maud’s call for tabligh


Al Fazl, 7 March 1924

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In his Friday Sermon on 29 February 1924, Hazrat Mirza Bashir-ud-Din Mahmud Ahmad, Khalifatul Masih IIra explained that the world was searching for the truth as the true spirit of religion had faded. Even the true teachings of Islam had been masked by erroneous beliefs. In this grave hour, Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmadas of Qadian, the Promised Messiah and Mahdi, was sent by Allah the Almighty with divine water to satiate the spiritual thirst of the world.

Hazrat Musleh-e-Maudra then called upon members of the Jamaat to spread the message of Islam to every corner of the world, emphasising the readiness to make significant sacrifices. – Editor, Al Hakam

After reciting the tashahhudta‘awwuz and Surah al-Fatihah, Hazrat Khalifatul Masih IIaa expressed that though he was unwell, he would still deliver the Friday sermon. Huzoorra then gave the following sermon.

The world is thirsty for the truth

I have repeatedly drawn the attention of my friends that the present-day world is thirsty for the truth. Its example is exactly like a person who is extremely thirsty, with a parched throat and tongue, and all his strength is lost due to thirstiness, eventually nearing the brink of death. In such a state, sweet and cool water is placed in front of him. Just as this person will try his level best to get hold of that water with a protruding tongue, and in fact, his whole body will become an invocation, in the same way, today’s world is thirsty for spirituality.

Divine water of this age

Many centuries have passed since the true religion disappeared from the face of the earth. In this age, Islam itself was masked, rendering Muslims to express, ‘Where is Islam?’ Likewise, the Christians started to question, ‘Where is the god who appeared in the form of Christ?’ The Hindus also cried out, ‘Why does the loving god no longer speak to his servants?’

When the condition of people from every religion and nation reached such a state, after many centuries, a voice came from God Almighty, and a person rose from Qadian, declaring that Allah has sent him in this age with divine water [of guidance]. God Himself recognised the loss of spirituality among mankind and extended His hand to us. This divine call brought immense delight to a nation [thirsting for spirituality].


Perhaps, someone will question why people opposed the Promised Messiahas. The reason is simple; people could not believe their eyes that such a person could really bring divine water in this age from God Almighty. To illustrate this point, consider a situation in which a person and his friends are extremely hungry. From somewhere, the said person gets hold of food and suddenly tells others that he found bread. Initially, his companions will consider him a ridiculer and resent him. In the same way, people opposed the Promised Messiahas as many among them became hopeless and thought they could not find God.

At that time, the Promised Messiahas announced, “God can still be found, and I have certainly found Him. Allah has sent me to reunite those people with Him, who have wandered away from Him, but still want to meet Him.” Hearing this, people thought that the Promised Messiahas was ridiculing them. Hence, this was the primary reason for the opposition to the Promised Messiahas; otherwise, how come people from all parts of the world are now flocking towards Islam Ahmadiyyat?


Some time ago, a Turk wrote an interesting fact in his book about Ahmadiyyat in China. He stated, “I went to a city [in China]. There, I heard an ongoing dispute about a mosque. Certain people were being prevented from praying in it. I enquired and was told that, ‘They are the Ahmadi people who consider a man from India to be the Promised Messiah. We do not allow these people to pray in the mosque.’”

From this, we learned that Ahmadis are present in China as well. However, to date [i.e., 29 February 1924], not a single Ahmadi missionary has gone there, but this Turk, who is a member of the Turkish Parliament, has explicitly recorded the above incident [in his book].

Now imagine, this is a country where no missionary of ours has yet gone, nor has any of our literature reached there, and a person who has nothing to do with us gives news about Ahmadiyyat. It shows that people are thirsting for the truth.

Beyond boarders

Then, a few days ago, I received a letter while travelling from a person who is a senior political member of the government. He has written astonishing accounts of incidents.

Since this official was appointed to set up boundaries, he had to visit the Russian border, sometimes the Iranian frontier, and at times, the Chinese border. There is no reason for such a person to tell lies. He writes, “I have been to various parts of the world. Wherever I went, people used to ask me about Ahmadiyyat.”

He further states, “In 1905-06, I was sent to China for setting up the border. During this journey, I boarded a Chinese ship. The captain of the ship asked me, ‘A prophet [named] Ahmad[as] appeared in India. Can you give me some information about him?’ I told him that he was an infidel and an apostate. All the clerics have issued fatwas of disbelief against him. Hearing this, the captain got very upset and replied, ‘He is a very noble person and a great man. Why would you call him an infidel?’ He became so angry that he did not talk to me for several days.

Arab world

The same officer further writes, “I once went to Okan, a locality in Arabia. There, an Arab scholar met me. From his appearance, it seemed he was going insane and fanatical. He expressed to me that, ‘There was a person named Ahmad[as] in the land of India. I have read one of his Arabic books. I have pondered over the [Arabic] works of so many eloquent scholars, but I have never felt such delight in a book as I found in the work [of Ahmadas]. This shows that he is a chosen one of God, and he surely wrote that book with the special succour of Allah the Almighty.’ He then asked me, ‘Do you have any other book of his?’ I said no, I don’t have any of his books.”

The official writes, “I used to call Mirza Sahib an infidel and an apostate in all my travels. However, when I met some Ahmadis in Shimla and found a lot of goodness in them, my prejudice subsided. Though I did not convert to Ahmadiyyat, and as of now, I am not an Ahmadi, my enmity has diminished. Thereafter, whenever I was asked about Mirza Sahib, I would reply that he is a good man and Ahmadis are good people.”

Turk’s admiration

He then states, “During the war, I went to a region to set up a boundary [near] Russia. There I had a conversation with [a Turk], Arsalan Pasha, who was regarded as a king. He met me with great enthusiasm. During the exchange of views, he asked me, ‘What do you know about the Messiah, Ahmad[as]? He claimed to be the [Promised] Messiah in India. Do you have any of his books?’ I said no, I don’t have any of his written works. He said, ‘When you pay us a visit again, please bring one of his books as a gift.’ He and his friends talked for several hours about Mirza Sahib.”

Then he writes, “After some time, when I went there and met him again, the first thing he asked was, ‘Did you bring any book?’ I replied that I couldn’t bring it as I had not returned to India yet. Hearing this, his eyes turned red. Sometime later, I met him again and he asked the same question, ‘What gift have you brought for us?’ I had forgotten our conversation, so I replied, ‘I brought the musk [fragrance] as a gift.’ He regretfully said, ‘What will I do with this? I wanted the other gift, i.e., Ahmad’s book.’”

The aforementioned incidents manifest a growing thirst for Ahmadiyyat in foreign countries.

Awaiting Ahmadas in Abyssinia

The officer then writes, “I was once sent to Abyssinia. There I met a person who was the brother of the king of Abyssinia. Since those people do not adhere to any religion, I asked him, ‘Why don’t you adopt any religion?’ He replied, ‘A great saint emerged in our nation. He wrote a book and our people used to follow it. This book was accidentally eaten by a cow. Consequently, we still have this custom as a superstition that when someone sells a cow, they sell it on the condition that when the cow is slaughtered at some point, the buyer will cut out its stomach and look for the book.’ [The king’s brother] shared another interesting piece of information that the saint also foretold them, ‘When the book will be lost from you and you will not be able to follow its instructions, there will appear a man in “Qudi” located to the east across the sea. You must obey his commands and follow his instructions.’”

The official states, “At the time, I was not aware that Qadian was being alluded to in the word ‘Qudi’, but later, my mind was drawn to the fact that ‘Qudi’ corresponded to Qadian.”

How to satiate the thirst for truth

The above-mentioned incidents clearly manifest the growing thirst of the world to accept the truth. This desire of mankind cannot be fulfilled unless the existing approach is abandoned and the same zealous method is adopted that was deployed 1300 years ago by the Companions [of the Holy Prophetsa] and then by countless saints after them. The said method is simple, that we spread out like nomads. For this reason, many prophets made it a prerequisite for preachers to live on provisions presented to them. Jesus Christ also made a condition that the preacher should subsist on offered food [Luke 10:7]. However, Islam does not approve of such a lifestyle, but it enjoins simplicity, which is close and similar to the state of a nomad.

Hence, in such a time when the whole world is fervently seeking the truth, if our missionaries gather courage and go out preaching and conveying the message of God Almighty, they will surely cause a huge stir across the globe within a few days. We will witness many people emerging and expressing that they believed these things [to be true] for so many years. However, as most people in the world are afraid and do not dare to express their faith, many of them are waiting for the opportunity to reveal themselves in their like-minded environment. There will be hundreds of thousands of people who already possess faith in their hearts but are waiting for the right time, though at present they seem to oppose us.

Thus, I call on members [of the Jamaat] to go out empty-handed and carry out tabligh [preaching] across all continents. By any means possible, reach out to the world and preach Islam so that the days of the glory of Islam may return. If such individuals are born within us, I believe Islam will spread rapidly throughout the globe. All it needs is courage to go out and preach in this manner. Once a person gathers courage, they do not find it difficult to perform any kind of task.

Behold, most of the religions in the world spread in this manner. This is how Christianity grew, and then Islam also spread in the same way. Now, Islam Ahmadiyyat has also been established in the same vein, and many friends of our Jamaat have presented great sacrifices.

The earlier people were able to present many sacrifices and many from our Jamaat have already done so. Hence, there is no reason why our other friends cannot make similar sacrifices. These sacrifices not only promise rewards but also ensure a bright name in the annals of history. The attainment of both spiritual and worldly honours requires sacrifices.

Thus, I call on my brethren to quickly get ready so that we can dispatch them to the areas with the greatest need and [where people] possess the greatest desire [for the truth]. May Allah the Almighty grant us the strength to spread Islam across the globe and convey the message of truth to all and sundry.

(Translated by Al Hakam from the original Urdu, published in the 7 March 1924 issue of Al Fazl)

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