The very first International Ahmadiyya Muslims Research Association (AMRA) conference was held today in Islamabad, Tilford.
The day saw a plethora of speakers from across the world, including university professors, missionaries, scientists, economists, doctors and researchers, who came and delivered their academic findings and research. The conference was well attended, by the grace and blessings of Allah.
Some of the topics included the following:
– From morning to night: How plants behave
– Gratitude: Islam and science – Conflict or concordance
– New advancements in breast conserving surgery for breast cancer
– Islam, Ahmadiyyat and scientific research: The perspective of an Ahmadi woman
– The promise of economic research
– Government inaction: Corruption and conflict in the mining industry
– The shaping of an Ahmadi Muslim scientist
The final session started with the arrival of Hazrat Khalifatul Masih V, may Allah be his Helper, at approximately 8:30pm, after the Isha prayer.
Noorudin Jahangeer Sahib was called to the stage for tilawat, who recited Surah al-Anbiya, verse 31-32 of the Holy Quran. Anas Rana Sahib then presented the English translation.
Sadr Khuddam-ul-Ahmadiyya UK, Abdul Quddus Arif Sahib presented a brief summary report of AMRA. This was the 10-year anniversary of AMRA and the first ever international conference was held. Hazrat Khalifatul Masih Vaa approved AMRA with the aim to “advance national and social scientific learning“ with the view of serving God and His creation.
Nine countries were represented at the conference, including Canada, USA, Germany, Switzerland, Russia, Ghana, Nigeria and Malta. A number of research talks were given, including three by Lajna members. Speakers included international speakers as well.
AMRA has over 60 researchers who continue to contribute to scientific and academic papers, by the grace of Allah. The total attendance of the event was 255, including 19 international guests.
Hazrat Amirul Momineenaa then addressed the gathering. After Tashahud and Ta‘awuz, Huzooraa recited Surah Al-e-Imran, verses 191-192, followed by their English translation.
Huzooraa said that today, by the grace of Allah, the first ever international AMRA conference was taking place. Huzooraa expressed that the Holy Quran mentions the creation of the heavens and the earth and instructs mankind to reflect upon it.
“He has encouraged us to use our brains” and reflect upon the earth to find new findings. Huzooraa said that man has been given the ability “to think and comprehend” and to decipher between right and wrong.
The Holy Quran has encouraged scientific research and the pursuit of knowledge. Huzooraa referred to the Promised Messiahas who said that when one reflects upon the creation of the heavens and the earth, enlightenment occurs and the belief upon Allah is strengthened.
Huzooraa went on to say that a righteous person and true believer continuously strives and struggles to observe and understand nature and the world around us. When they see this perfection, they are “inevitably” drawn to their Creator and the purpose of their creation.
Huzooraa explained that when an intelligent person reflects upon the universe, earth and night and day, they behold the majesty of God and seek His grace. This is to “understand and unlock the mysteries of the universe”.
In order to gain these blessings, “they remember Him” whilst “standing, sitting and lying on their sides”. Huzooraa said that when such believers pray to Allah for guidance, He grants them clarity of thought. Such people are bestowed the belief that this universe could never have come about by chance.
Such people bow down before their Creator and pray that they are saved from His wrath.
The Promised Messiahas has stated that the continued study of physics, astronomy and the sciences should always lead a righteous person towards God Almighty. The more they learn, the more they “appreciate the beauty of Allah”. Once a believer gains such insight, they not only guide others with the latest scientific research, but also are granted the ability to prove the existence of God. This is the symbol of a true believer.
Hazrat Amirul Momineenaa stressed that “all Ahmadi researchers and academics” should always seek the guidance and help from Allah the Almighty “before, during and after” their works. They should pray that they are given the understanding to prove the existence of Allah. In this manner, “at every junction”, Allah will be their guiding light.
Others use their intellect for the sake of material progress, but the research of a believer not only leads to scientific progress and the development of technology, but also serves to offer the truth of the existence of God Almighty.
Ahmadi Muslims researchers, especially those who pursue the sciences, should not only research but try and find proofs the existence of God. This was how Dr Abdus Salam Sahib carried out his work and was able to prove the existence of God.
Scientists and researchers must always “safeguard their faith” and the rights of Allah the Almighty. They must search for additional evidence proving the existence of God.
Huzooraa said that there should always be a “clear distinction” between Ahmadi researchers as compared to other researchers. The love and majesty of Allah the Almighty must always be engrained “in your hearts”.
Hazrat Amirul Momineenaa shared the incident with Professor Clement Wragge and his meeting with the Promised Messiahas. The Promised Messiahas confirmed to the professor that there was no contradiction between science and religion. No matter how much science progresses, it would never disprove the words of the Holy Quran, the Promised Messiahas said.
The Holy Quran does not shy away from science in the slightest, in fact it instructs believers to explore and investigate and further better their human intellect. However, the Holy Quran has also warned humans in interfering with the laws of nature.
Huzooraa spoke about the boundaries of ethics within science, especially in terms of genetic engineering and cloning. The results of such works would surely be “catastrophic” and responsible for creating a “living hell on earth”.
Scientists and researchers must only pursue that which is within the confines of the Holy Quran. Huzooraa spoke of the great Muslim scientists, academics and philosophers of the Middle Ages who brought about a “remarkable revolution” in the world. They realised their God given talents and faculties while also the existence of Allah. These Muslim scientists are still respected today.
An article on the contribution of Muslim scientists published in The National Geographic (published in 2016) was discussed in depth by Huzooraa. Another article principally on the same topic, was mentioned by Huzooraa that was published by The New York Times.
Though the Muslims contributed in remarkable manners in the Middle Ages, today, the situation is that Muslim nations are severely lacking in intellectual knowledge. They no longer have the drive or motivation to pursue such science and learning.
Huzooraa referred to an article that encapsulated why the Arab world has turned away from science. In the article, the author referred to the great contribution the Arab world once provided, such as algebra. However, the article goes on to note that now, the situation is dire. The author noted that there have only been two Muslim scientists who won the Nobel Prize.
Huzooraa detailed different aspects of the article that showed that Muslims nations have now completely declined in academia and contributions to science and research.
Huzooraa said that it is a “challenge” for Ahmadi researchers to revive the honour of Islam in this regard.
Hazrat Amirul Momineenaa said that in the past 13-14 years, he has instructed Ahmadi students to reach the very pinnacles of their works. However, Huzooraa noted that hardly any Ahmadi has reached the level he desired for or expected.
Huzooraa said that the audience must all consider it “your mission to pursue excellence”. “You must leave here”, Huzooraa said, to follow the footsteps of people like Dr Abdus Salam.
Contact with one another, especially those working in similar areas of research, is vital. Huzooraa explained that mutual help would assist in progress. However, the majesty of God should be at the forefront.
Hazrat Khalitfatul Masihaa prayed for the researchers and the dawn of a new intellectual Islamic world.
Huzooraa then led the congregation in silent prayers, which was then followed by dinner.