On 20 November 2022, members of Majlis Atfal-ul-Ahmadiyya Sweden had the blessed opportunity to meet Hazrat Mirza Masroor Ahmad, Khalifatul Masih Vaa in a virtual mulaqat. The 75 atfal were seated in the Nasir Mosque in Gothenburg.
The mulaqat commenced with a recitation from the Holy Quran by Abeer Ahmad followed by its Urdu translation, presented by Khaqan Mahmood. Next, Sharim Afzal presented a hadith of the Holy Prophet Muhammadsa and its Urdu translation. Then, Khaqan Yusuf recited an Urdu poem composed by the Promised Messiahas. Faran Rashid, then, had the opportunity to present an extract from the Malfuzat of the Promised Messiahas.
Hazrat Khalifatul Masih Vaa then turned to Kashif Virk Sahib, Sadr Majlis Khuddam-ul-Ahmadiyya Sweden, and asked him what the programme was. Sadr Sahib replied that there were some atfal who had questions they wished to ask Huzooraa.
The first question was asked by Amaan Salaam. He said the prophets’ duty was to guide people while Satan misled people. He asked, while Allah the Exalted sent thousands of prophets, were there also numerous Satans?
Hazrat Khalifatul Masih Vaa smiled and said, Satan had also put together a big team for himself. Allah had sent prophets to every nation, but wherever prophets were sent, Satan would also go there to do his work.
Elaborating on the nature of Satan, Huzooraa said, Satan was not a physical entity like prophets, who were human beings. Thoughts that arose in a person’s heart could also be Satanic. When a prophet admonished people to do good deeds, the angels also urged the pious people to follow the prophet, while Satan whispered to them, not to obey the prophet’s exhortation.
Giving the example of Hazrat Adamas and how Satan refused to obey him, Huzooraa said, “When Allah the Exalted created Hazrat Adamas, He ordered the angels to prostrate, which meant to obey and convey his exhortations to people.” At that time, Satan refused to submit to Adamas and rebelled against conveying his exhortations to people. Huzooraa further said, “Upon this, Allah said, I will punish all those who believe in you and follow you.’ Satan said, ‘Very well, but give me respite until the Day of Resurrection so that I may mislead people.’ Allah said, ‘Fine, I grant you permission to try to misguide them.’ Its conclusion is that whenever prophets will appear and will preach and teach good things to people, Satan will always teach them evil things at the same time.” Huzooraa said, Allah would then punish Satan and those who obeyed him. Hence, it was mentioned in the Holy Quran that when such individuals or nations would die and be presented before God Almighty, at that time, Satan would say that Allah had fulfilled His promise, but my [Satan’s] promise was based on a lie in order to mislead people. Hence, they would have to endure punishment for rejecting God’s message and obeying him instead.
Huzooraa further stated, “The Holy Prophetsa states that, ‘Satan runs through every human being like blood does […] but my Satan has become Muslim,’ meaning, I have subdued it and it cannot harm me. Thus, there is a Satan in every human being. When one is assailed with evil thoughts, they are in fact from Satan. Good thoughts or urges stem from angels. Thus, there are not one but hundreds of thousands or millions of Satans. There are as many Satans as there are humans.”
The next question was asked by Salman Hafeez, who wanted to know how he could see God.
Huzooraa replied that Allah had taught us, “If you want to see me, look at My power. You will see what a beautiful world I have created.” Then, addressing the questioner. Huzooraa said, “You live in Sweden, don’t you? Norway is your neighbouring country. The northern lights that appear there and the snow that falls, are all manifestations of God’s powers. Sweden is a beautiful country. God made it beautiful; there are also high mountains, there are trees, there are valleys below and there are plains too. All these things manifest God’s powers. If you want to see Allah the Exalted, then recognise Him by observing the manifestation of His powers. Moreover, Allah the Exalted does not have a physical body, to be seen. When you pray, if you pray to Allah with great fervour and Allah accepts your supplication, then that amounts to His showing Himself. Allah’s manifesting His powers and accepting your supplications is His revealing Himself.”
Nurul Haq asked whether one could offer nawafil after having offered witr after the Isha prayer.
Huzooraa replied, “Nawafil should not be performed after the witr of Isha prayer. You should first go to sleep, get up after sleeping and perform the nawafil of tahajjud. One should sleep for a while, then get up after midnight and perform nawafil. Otherwise, whatever nawafil you wish to offer, offer them before witr.
“This is what we have been taught and this is the sunnah. We have to follow whatever practical example the Holy Prophetsa or the Promised Messiahas have shown us. That [what I have described] was their example.”
Affan Ahmad asked why we offered salat facing the Kaaba if God was everywhere.
Huzooraa said, Allah was indeed everywhere, but in order to concentrate and focus attention, there had to be one designated place. Thus, Allah the Exalted created this symbol, that is the Kaaba. Highlighting the significance of the Kaaba, Huzooraa said it was the first House of Allah, which was later rebuilt or expanded by various prophets. Muslims used to pray facing Bayt al-Maqdis but this was later changed to the Kaaba in Mecca.
Huzooraa added, “Allah has said that the Muslim ummah should become one united ummah. In this age, the Promised Messiahas was sent by Allah to fulfil this objective and it was also revealed to him that, ‘Gather together all the Muslims who are on the earth on one religion.’ [Tadhkirah, p. 793] And this is also a symbol. Allah made a symbol and told you to turn toward it so that it would become known that Muslims are one. It is unfortunate that the world’s Muslims choose the Kaaba as the qibla, pray facing it, but still fight among themselves, whereas, Allah the Exalted made this symbol so that you should pray facing it and live as one united ummah, instead of dividing into sects. However, since this was also destined to happen, Allah the Exalted knew that this is the nature of man and man acts like this, therefore, Allah Almighty also informed the Holy Prophetsa that in the Latter Days He shall send the Promised Messiah and Mahdi who shall unite his ummah. And the purpose of the coming of the Promised Messiahas was to gather all the Muslims and all the other people of the world and make one united ummah so that they all come together and pray while facing the Kaaba and express that we are all one and we all worship the One God. And the symbol of that Oneness of God that is in the world at this time, towards which we have to pray, is the Kaaba, so that our unity can be maintained.”
Muhibb-ur-Rahman was next to ask a question. He asked why there were various postures and movements in salat, the Islamic prayer.
Huzooraa replied, “Allah the Exalted has taught Muslims the perfect way to worship; First, you stand up and fold your hands like this […] Then another state arises in the heart to ask Him, then you move like this and bow down, thus the state of ruku‘ comes, then you stand up anxiously and say, ‘O Allah, listen to my supplication’, then, just as a man is sometimes very desperate and very anxious, he stands up and asks someone [in the same way you] then stand up and say sami‘Allahu li man hamidah [Allah listens to the one, who praises Him]. Then you are overcome by a state of anxiety again and you suddenly go into sajdah and pray to Allah Almighty again, crying fervently. Then you sit up and then you go into sajdah, then you stand up once again and pray, then you sit down for at-tahiyyat and offer supplications; and then you say the salaam. Allah the Exalted has taught us the different postures for salat because they are different expressions of a person’s humility.”
Giving the example of how small children, behaved and acted with persistence before their parents if they wanted something from them, Huzooraa said, “When you want to persistently ask for something from your parents, sometimes you cry, at other times you move your hands and legs, sometimes you sit down on the floor, then you stand up. Do small children not show their persistence like this?” Huzooraa further said, “It is human nature to have the habit of persuading someone of one’s point of view by adopting various postures or methods. Allah the Exalted has also taught Muslims different postures for prayer, saying, ‘When you come to Me, adopt different postures, adopt different expressions, and then also supplicate to Me,’ for which Allah the Exalted has also taught different words of prayer and then said to cry and supplicate fervently. Consequently, Allah accepts the supplications. So, our mode of worship is quite perfect, not just a sit-back-and-relax method. It is natural. It is the natural way to ask for anything.”
Faraz Ahmad asked whether the Langar Khana that was founded by the Promised Messiahas and all the Langar Khanas around the world had similar kinds of significance and blessings.
Huzooraa replied, “When the Promised Messiahas established the Langar Khana [i.e. the free public kitchen for the hospitality of guests], he said that that was also one of the objectives of his advent, and he said that one of the many duties entrusted to him was the Langar Khana. Langar Khana was established for those who come for tabligh, those who are needy and those who come to learn religion. The Langar Khana that was established during the time of the Promised Messiahas had its own great blessings. After all, that was the Langar Khana of a prophet’s time. However, it continues till today. For example there is a Langar Khana operating here in London or in Islamabad, where the Khalifa-e-Waqt resides. This Langar Khana is also operating because people come here for religious purposes or to learn religion. Some Langar Khanas that are operating in the world, do not operate permanently but they operate on the days of gatherings such as jalsas, or ijtemas or other Jamaat functions. They also operate for a religious purpose and that religious purpose is that people come to learn that Islamic teaching which Allah sent the Promised Messiahas to propagate in the world again in its original correct way. And those who come to learn also need food etc. They need to be provided with food. So now, whatever Langar Khanas will be established for religious purposes, for spreading the teachings of the Faith and for feeding those who come to learn religion, they will be fulfilling the objectives of the Langar Khana that was founded by the Promised Messiahas. Hence, all of them will become one [institution].”
Khaqan Yusuf asked, what methods of preaching [tabligh] he should use in Sweden to convert people to Ahmadiyyat.
Huzooraa smiled and asked Khaqan how old he was, to which he said that he was ten years old. Huzooraa appreciated his high noble aims and said, “Firstly, you have now turned ten years old, so the five daily prayers have become obligatory on you. You should perform the five daily prayers regularly. In your prayers, pray to Allah Almighty to grant you the opportunity to preach and bless your tabligh efforts.
“Secondly, acquire religious knowledge: You should know why you are a Muslim, why you believe in the Holy Prophetsa, why you believe in the Promised Messiahas, why you have pledged allegiance to the Khalifa, why you are an Ahmadi, and what is Ahmadiyyat. You should know all these things well. Once you know why you are an Ahmadi, why you are a Muslim, and once you know that the teaching which the Holy Prophetsa brought was the perfect teaching as is mentioned in the Holy Quran, then you will understand that you have to act upon it.
“Then, you will act upon that [teaching]. When you act upon it, your worship and your prayers will become better and your morals will improve. People will be able to recognise a difference between you and the rest of the students. The other students will see that this boy is smart in his studies, he worships Allah Almighty, prays on time whenever it is time for prayer, has good morals, does not quarrel with anyone, does not say a bad word, does not use foul language, then [upon seeing all this] your peers and even those who are a few years older than you, will start paying attention to you. […] Then they will ask you who you are. Then you can tell them who you are and what kind of a Muslim you are; that is, you are an Ahmadi Muslim. [You will inform them] why you are an Ahmadi Muslim and who Ahmadi Muslims are, and that you believe Allah the Exalted had sent the Promised Messiahas in this age to teach and propagate the true teachings of Islam. This is how you will be able to do tabligh. Our duty is to convey the message.
“This will then have a positive effect on them. Then those among them who will be pious people, good-natured people, will listen to your preaching and accept Ahmadiyyat, if Allah so wills for them. Those who are children, will develop positive sentiments in their hearts and if they remain attached to you, they will grow up, contemplate for themselves and then become Ahmadis. When you grow up and preach to the grown-ups, then those who are good-natured among them [will accept.] Allah says that your duty is just to preach, so you convey the message. Other than that, it is His job to guide someone. So, for whoever Allah wishes, those who have any goodness in them, who want to be freed from the clutches of Satan, then Allah will guide them and they will become Ahmadis.
“Our duty is to be good ourselves, observe prayers properly, uphold good moral standards, say good things, and if you are in school, be good students, then, God willing, people will pay attention to us and once they do, the preaching will be done, and when the preaching is done, Allah will also bring forth positive results.”
Nauman Zafar asked if Ahmadi children were permitted to attend Halloween, Easter or Christmas parties held at school. With regard to school parties, Huzooraa said Ahmadi children should not go to any event where there was any kind of shirk – associating partners with Allah. Huzooraa said Ahmadi children should also not recite hymns or poems that referred to Jesusas as being the son of God. If the school had made Christmas parties etc., compulsory then Ahmadi children could attend but sit there without actively participating in the shirk. Huzooraa said, “We believe in One God. Apart from this, if it is not compulsory to attend the parties, then it is better not to go. You can remain at home and do more productive things.”
Concerning Ahmadi children giving presents to Christian friends during Easter or Christmas, Huzooraa said:
“As far as giving presents to your friends during Christmas or Easter, you can give them gifts to maintain a spirit of friendship with them and you show good morals. There is no harm in giving presents, but you are not to sing hymns that have shirk in them. Do not do anything that is against Allah or that holds others to the same level as Allah.”
If such parties were mandatory, then Ahmadi children could sit and observe what was going on; however, “Do not be influenced by them, do not be impressed”, Huzooraa emphasised.
Speaking about Halloween, Huzooraa said Ahmadi children should not go door-to-door during Halloween asking people for sweets, etc. However, if other children came knocking at their houses, then there was no harm in the Ahmadis giving them chocolates, sweets, etc.
Hizqeel Ahmad asked how one could become a bodyguard for Huzooraa. In reply, Huzooraa said it was better for Ahmadi children to gain a good education and serve humanity and the world, by choosing productive professions like engineering, medicine and teaching, etc. Huzooraa said to Hizqeel that for now, he should focus on his studies and when he completed secondary school, he could decide what he wanted to be. If Hizqeel was passionate about being a security guard or was not good at studying, then if he wanted to be a security guard, taking professional training was important.
Huzooraa emphasised that “Ahmadi children should be good at studies” and “become people who served humanity”.
Safwan Mahmud asked how Ahmadi children who were not part of the Waqf-e-Nau scheme could serve the Jamaat. Hazrat Khalifatul Masih Vaa said:
“The Waqf-e-Nau scheme was started in 1987, did people not serve the Jamaat prior to it? I am not a waqif-e-nau but Allah is giving me the opportunity, right? There are lots of people who are not waqf-e-nau and are serving the Jamaat – people did waqf before 1987 as well. […]
“You can go to Jamia and become a murabbi; even if you are not waqif-e-nau you can still go to Jamia. By becoming a doctor, you can serve the Jamaat’s hospitals, you can serve by becoming a lawyer or another profession like being a teacher. And if you are working in the world [without being a life-devotee], then you can serve by spreading the message of the Jamaat, possessing good morals and telling people that you are an Ahmadi and sacrificing a few days a week for the Jamaat. You can take part in other activities of the Jamaat too. There is a lot to do.
“All the waqf-e-nau are not working for the Jamaat full-time. They are working in their respective professions, as are other Ahmadi boys. You can do this too. If waqifeen-e-nau can become murabbis, so can you, if they can serve the Jamaat by becoming doctors, so can you, if they serve by becoming engineers, so can you, if they serve by becoming lawyers, then so can you, if they are serve by becoming teachers, so can you, and if they can give their time to the Jamaat on weekends or at other times, then so can you.
“There is no difference. The only difference is that in Waqf-e-Nau there is a bond – they say, ‘We will most definitely do waqf’. However, if someone does not fulfil that bond, then there is no difference between them and a normal Ahmadi boy.”
“You can do everything, even if you are not a waqf-e-nau”, Huzooraa stressed.
Zain-ul-Haq asked if one could give sadaqah on behalf of a deceased person. Huzooraa said it was permissible to give chanda and sadaqah as well. Further, Huzooraa said charities or trusts could be formed on behalf of the deceased too from which the needy would be helped.
Abeer Ahmad – a young tifl – asked Huzooraa how one could develop a friendship with Allah at a young age. Hazrat Amirul Momineenaa said:
“Whatever you should do at an older age, you should do at a younger age too. Offer salat, pray to Allah that ‘O, Allah, make me Your friend’, follow Allah’s commandments, do good deeds and avoid bad ones, then Allah befriends such a person.” Huzooraa advised Abeer to pray in salat that, “O, Allah, make me Your friend’.
Faran Ahmad asked if Ahmadis would be able to shake Huzoor’s hand again. With a smile, Huzooraa said that during a virtual meeting it was not possible to shake hands with the atfal however, in person, when Covid-19 ended handshakes would be possible again, Huzooraa said.
Adeen Afan Zafar, aged seven, asked at what age Ahmadi children could have a phone. Huzooraa said it was not appropriate to possess a phone at such a young age. If children needed to make a call from school to their parents, they could ask the school’s administration. Huzooraa said if Ahmadi children wanted to play good games on a phone or tablet, they could do so if their parents allowed and under parental supervision so they don’t go on inappropriate sites or click on malicious links.
“You must only go on [these devices] when your parents are present and under their supervision so they know what you are viewing”, Huzooraa said. Further, Huzooraa said children should not view screens for more than half an hour or up to an hour because it could strain their eyes and also lead to addiction.
Huzooraa said to Adeen that when he got older, his parents would get him a phone themselves.
Safwan Ahmad asked how he could know if he was becoming a good tifl. Hazrat Khalifatul Masihaa said if he was offering his prayers, praying to Allah to make him a better person, focusing and doing well in his studies, obeying and being good to his parents, avoiding quarrels and fights with other children and was nice and moral to them instead, then he was a good tifl.
Hisar Ahmad Zafar said it was mandatory to believe in all prophets, however, non-Ahmadi Muslims rejected the Promised Messiahas. Hisar asked if Allah would forgive them. Huzooraa said:
“You see, to forgive or not is solely Allah’s decision. Allah the Almighty has said to believe in all prophets and, in the Holy Quran, has instructed Muslims to believe in all prophets. And the Holy Prophetsa prophesied too that in the latter days, the Messiah and Mahdi will arrive. […] Whoever was to come was to be a prophet, other Muslims also believe that when Jesus physically returns, he will be a prophet and we too believe that the Messiahwas to be a prophet when he was to appear – therefore we have accepted him, but they have not.
“The Promised Messiahas has said the issue of not accepting will be dealt with by Allah in the Hereafter; who He will punish, who He will forgive, which good deed He will accept or reject, who He will punish more and who He will punish less.
“Allah punishes in this world and in the Hereafter those who create disorder (fasad) and are cruel (zalim). The destruction of nations does not merely occur because they reject a prophet, it happens because they then oppose and persecute him too. Ultimately, forgiveness and punishment was in the hands of God, Huzooraa said.
Huzooraa said it was all well and good that we accepted the Promised Messiahas, however, without good deeds and action, this mere acceptance was not enough. In fact, we had more responsibility to follow the commandments of Allah and gain His closeness.
Exhorting Ahmadi Muslims, Huzooraa said:
“We should worry about ourselves too – instead of worrying about others – because if we have accepted [the Promised Messiahas] we should also undergo righteous and positive moral transformations. If, after accepting, we fail to develop positive moral transformations within ourselves and do good deeds and our standards of prayer and worship have not improved, then we should worry about ourselves rather than others.”
The final question was by Faris Khaqan who asked why Muslims offered prayers when there was an eclipse. Huzooraa said it was because Allah had created a significant change in the everyday occurrences of the solar system and therefore we should fear Him. Huzooraa said it was also an opportunity to pray that Allah protected us from any negative effects of an eclipse and so that we can take advantage of any goodness.
Huzooraa said, “Whenever there is a significant change in the everyday routine of nature, Allah’s fear should be instilled in our hearts. The Holy Prophetsa would even seek forgiveness from Allah and pray when it rained and dark clouds gathered or during lightning and thunder; that Allah may protect them from their negative effects, because nations were punished through storms and clouds as well. For this reason, while fearing Allah, we should always pray whenever there is a significant change in nature.”
Hazrat Amirul Momineenaa conveyed his salaam and the meeting then came to a successful end.
(Report prepared by Al Hakam)