Hazrat Mufti Muhammad Sadiqra (1872-1957)
Making his return journey from America to India by way of France, Hazrat Mufti Muhammad Sadiqra arrived in Mumbai on 23 November 1923. Following his arrival, he delivered two lectures in Mumbai and one in Delhi. On 4 December 1923, he reached Qadian. A grand reception was organised in Qadian, and Hazrat Mirza Bashir-ud-Din Mahmud Ahmad, Khalifatul Masih IIra personally went out for some distance on the road of Batala to receive this ardent missionary of Islam Ahmadiyyat, Dr Mufti Muhammad Sadiqra. The assembled multitude of people to receive him was not less than a mile in length.
On 27 December 1923, Hazrat Mufti Muhammad Sadiqra gave a speech at the Jalsa Salana Qadian on the importance of preaching and his tabligh endeavours in America. Below is the English translation of this speech, originally published in Urdu in the 11 January 1924 issue of Al Fazl newspaper. – Editor, Al Hakam
Hazrat Mufti Muhammad Sadiqra said:
My dear brother Chaudhary Fateh Muhammad Khan Sahib said earlier in his speech that: “The work of defending and propagating Islam is not limited to converting the Malkana Rajputs back to Islam because we have to save not only the Malkanas but the whole of India.” He has also said, “The work of tabligh [preaching] is not the responsibility of a single individual but of the whole Community.”
However, I humbly express that our tabligh is not limited to India, England, America, or any specific country; in fact, the responsibility of preaching work lies on the shoulders of each and every one of us. Our Imam, [Hazrat Khalifatul Masih IIra] is very resolute and it is his work as well. In fact, it is not his work but that of the Promised Messiahas. And not even the Promised Messiahas, but the work of Prophet Muhammadsa, the Messenger of Allah. And I say that it is not the work of the Messengersa of Allah, but the work of Almighty God Himself.
Divine succour for servants of religion
Every one of us who works for Allah the Almighty does no favour to anyone because this is God’s grace and favour upon them that they get the opportunity to serve the faith [of Islam]. Consequently, whoever serves the religion of Allah the Almighty, God helps them.
When I was journeying from India to England, I encountered adverse conditions at one point and there was extreme turbulence in the ship. A person should not forget humility under any circumstances, but when they continuously experience divine favours, they should be thankful and highlight those blessings. Accordingly, when the ship began to toss and turn and I experienced nausea and dizziness, I addressed the ocean and said:
“O ocean! Do you not realise who is travelling on you? He is a servant of the Promised Messiahas who is not journeying for his own sake but only to serve God’s religion. Will you bring harm to this humble one?”
Soon after, by the grace of Allah the Almighty, it calmed down and I reached my destination in peace and safety.
England to America
When I received an instruction in England from Hazrat Khalifatul Masih [IIra] to go to America, I sought the goodness and blessings of God Almighty. I prayed to Allah the Almighty that, “O God! If it is beneficial for me to go to America, then provide the means for it.” Thereafter, I dreamed that I was giving a lecture in New York, America, and when my lecture was over, all the participants left, except for one young lady. I enquired of her, and she replied: “I admire the religion of Islam. Can you convert me to Islam?” I said to her, “Yes, I can convert you to Islam.” I thus helped her recitethe shahadah, and named this lady Fatima Mustafa.
Soon after, I woke up. I understood from this dream that I would certainly go to America and God Almighty would grant me success. I thus left for America. When our ship reached the shores of America, a doctor came on board to examine the passengers. There is a strict medical examination [before you are allowed to enter]. I had contracted trachoma or I thought I had it. Patients with trachoma are prohibited from entering America. Every passenger stood in a row. Seeing the green turban on my head, the doctor asked:
“Are you from India?” I replied, “Yes, I am from India.” He said, “Where is this green cloth made?” I told him it was made in India.
The doctor said, “This turban must be adored by the ladies.” I immediately took it off, presented it to him and said, “Please, give it [as a gift] to your lady [i.e., his wife]. I will get another one.” He said, “Please keep it, as you will need it.” I replied, “I have many turbans in my possession.” However, he did not take the turban and told me that, “You are in good health, so you may enter America.” This too was a favour of Allah the Almighty that he did not even examine me.
Tabligh during days of detention
After completing the medical inspection, I encountered the officers of the Immigration Department. They asked me, “Who are you, where do you come from, and what will you do here?” I told them that I had come to preach Islam. One of them enquired, “Which book do you believe in?” I replied, “I believe in the Holy Quran.” He said, “There is a teaching of having four wives in it, and you might teach this in this country.” I told him that it was not compulsory [for a Muslim] to have four wives, and that “[the teaching] is only a permission [that one can have four wives at a time]. If a person does not have four wives, he can still remain a Muslim, nay, he remains a Muslim, just as one who has four wives.”
However, they said, “You should go back.” I replied that I would not return. Eventually, one of them said that they had written to the higher authorities about me, so they would decide my fate.
Then, they detained me in a house which was opened only twice a day and that too for food, etc. It was allowed to take a stroll on its rooftop. Some other people were also detained there. They were young people from European countries who did not have passports, etc., and had run away from their homes without permission. They behaved in a very respectful manner towards me. They even allocated a separate place for me to pray and they used to help me in every way. I started preaching to them. By the grace of Allah the Almighty, they started accepting Islam one by one. Eventually, 15 of them converted to Islam.
Observing this situation, the immigration officer was perturbed that if I stayed there for long, I would convert everyone to Islam, and if that happened, the priests would be upset and turn the public against him. Consequently, the officer would not succeed in the upcoming elections.
Hence, the officer himself sent a telegram [to the authorities] and a decision was quickly made about me. By the grace of God Almighty, I entered America.
Islam Ahmadiyyat’s first victory in New York
In New York, I delivered a lecture. After the lecture, everyone left, except for a young lady. I enquired as to why was she sitting there. She gave me the same answer as I had been told in the dream. At that very moment, I remembered my dream and named her Fatima Mustafa. I then told her that I already knew her, and said, “You were shown to me in a dream.”
Divine experiences in detention
I was detained in a house for six weeks. During this period, God Almighty blessed me with the divine visitation of the Holy Prophetsa, the Promised Messiahas, and the first and second Khalifa. All of them comforted me and gave instructions regarding my work. Moreover, I was granted new insights and knowledge. All praise belongs to Allah, the Lord of all the Worlds.
Opponents in America
Those who oppose us in America are not Christians but people from India. Their newspaper is published under the name Ghadar [lit. Rebellion]. They came to me and desired that I participate in their work, but I refused to join or take any part in such movements, and they were very unhappy about it.
Ahmadi missionary in a gathering of 300 bishops
Once, a meeting was held in a city in America and 300 bishops were gathered there. I was also present in that city and was staying there with Arabs who had come from Syria, etc. At their house, I was requested through the telephone to deliver a lecture [in the aforementioned meeting]. I was not present at the house at that time, so the owner of the house told them, “I will ask him upon his return and then inform you.” When I came back, he told me [about the request] and also said that it was not suitable for me to go to their meeting, as they might bring harm to me. However, I got ready to go and informed them on the telephone. Many of these Arabs also went to the meeting with me. Contrary to expectations, the bishops were very decent people and they presented their questions in the best possible manner. They also got all the answers from me.
Success of lone Ahmadi missionary in a brief span
In America, it is the norm that when a society invites someone for a lecture, they also pay their expenses. Once, I was called for a lecture at a place. They made arrangements for my stay on the 22nd floor of a hotel. 30 rupees were given for my daily expenses. When I lectured in this society, a priest asked, “What will a lone missionary [of Islam] do in America? We have sent hundreds of missionaries to India.” The president said, “There is no need to answer this type of question,” but I expressed that it was a very important question and I would definitely answer it. I replied to the priest, “What you have said is indeed true. However, this in a way proves the truthfulness of Islam and you have confessed to the truth of Islam in your own words.” He asked me, “How have I confessed to it?” I explained to him:
“Analyse what your scores of priests have done in 100 years by spending billions of rupees and then look at my two years of work. According to the number of your priests, not even one person per missionary came into their hands. But I am a lone [missionary of Islam in America] and the work I have done in just two years has been much more successful, and this is only the impact of the truthfulness of Islam.”
Ahmadiyya Mosque in America
In America, the priests have spread many misconceptions about Islam. For their rectification, it was necessary to establish a markaz [centre] and build a mosque. I thought that this work should be done immediately […].
I thus put my trust in God Almighty and started working. I met a real estate agent, and on very easy terms, he gave me a house situated in a very good location. I then bought furniture, and it is of very high quality. Now that I have returned, I have not left any debt. A large sum of what was spent on the construction of the mosque was collected through the donations of the new converts there.
Monetary sacrifices of new converts
Apart from presenting donations, some of the new converts there personally worked in the construction of the mosque, and one of them, who normally took 20 rupees per day, worked [in the building of the Ahmadiyya Muslim mosque] for only 5 rupees.
Method of teaching Arabic wording of Salat to new converts
To help them memorise the Arabic wording of the prayer, this method was adopted so that everything that was recited in the prayer was read out to them again and again. They used to repeat the words after me.
Several of them observed fasts even when the days were up to 18 hours long. The women there also made monetary sacrifices for the Berlin Mosque. It is hoped that, God willing, chanda [financial sacrifice in the way of Allah the Almighty] will also be received from America and it will surely come in large sums. For now, there is an opportunity for the people here [in India] to extend their help.
Marriage and correspondence
Now I want to express one more thing to the youth of my Jamaat that in order to spread Islam in America, they may marry there.
Moreover, they should exchange letters with the new converts there, so that they may know that there is a whole community of theirs in India as well.
Significance of Moslem Sunrise and financial support
Members of the Jamaat need to pay attention to the magazine, The Moslem Sunrise. Due to a lack of funds, the missionary there, Maulvi Muhammad Din Sahib[ra], reports that the latest issue of The Moslem Sunrise could not be sent for publication.
There is a positive impact of this magazine not only in America and Europe but also in Turkey and Iran. Many prominent people [from Turkey and Iran] have personally liked it and expressed their happiness at its launch.
From all the aforementioned information, friends can understand how much financial support is required and the extent to which one should go to help the Jamaat.
Like Maulvi Abdul Ghani Khan Sahib, I cannot present exact numbers and figures, nor do I possess this skill.
However, we have observed the Promised Messiahas. Late Hafiz Hamid Ali Sahibra, who was a companion of the Promised Messiahas, used to come to him and request, “Huzooras, money is required for such and such purpose.” The Promised Messiahas would say, “Please, take it from my sadri [waistcoat pocket].”
(At the end, people started presenting chanda. Then, Hazrat Mufti Sahibra also requested a monetary contribution of one rupee per person. Upon this, an additional sum of 2000 rupees was collected and the [first] session [of the second day at Jalsa Salana Qadian 1923] was adjourned for prayer.)
(Translated by Al Hakam from the original Urdu, published in the 11 January 1924 issue of Al Fazl)