Europe seeks Islam: Hazrat Musleh-e-Maud’s lecture at a reception held in Karachi, 1955

Ata-ul-Haye Nasir, Al Hakam
Hazrat Musleh-e-Maudra at a reception held in his honour in Karachi, Pakistan, 1955

On 21 September 1955, Hazrat Musleh-e-Maud, Mirza Bashiruddin Mahmud Ahmadra delivered a lecture at a reception held in his honour after his tour of Europe. The event was organised by Jamaat-e-Ahmadiyya Karachi at the Beach Luxury Hotel, Karachi, Pakistan. 

The reception was attended by various ambassadors, high government officials, notable locals, press correspondents and other dignitaries. 

In this lecture, Huzoorra called on the Muslim world to leave aside their internal disagreements and unite to carry out the important task of propagating Islam. 

Huzoorra said Muslims needed to refute the allegations that were raised by the people of Europe and other countries against the teachings of Islam and the blessed character of the Holy Prophet Muhammadsa

Huzoorra quoted the following verse of the Holy Quran:

قُلۡ يٰۤاَهۡلَ الۡكِتٰبِ تَعَالَوۡا اِلٰي كَلِمَةٍ سَوَآءٍۢ بَيۡنَنَا وَبَيۡنَكُمۡ اَلَّا نَعۡبُدَ اِلَّا اللّٰهَ وَلَا نُشۡرِكَ بِهٖ شَيۡئًا وَّلَا يَتَّخِذَ بَعۡضُنَا بَعۡضًا اَرۡبَابًا مِّنۡ دُوۡنِ اللّٰهِ ؕ فَاِنۡ تَوَلَّوۡا فَقُوۡلُوا اشۡهَدُوۡا بِاَنَّا مُسۡلِمُوۡنَ

“Say, ‘O People of the Book! come to a word equal between us and you—that we worship none but Allah, and that we associate no partner with Him, and that some of us take not others for Lords beside Allah.’ But if they turn away, then say, ‘Bear witness that we have submitted [to God].’” (Surah Aal-e-Imran, Ch.3: V.65)

Commenting on this verse, Huzoorra said that if the staunch opponents of the Holy Prophetsa – Jews and Christians – could be invited to “come to a word equal between us and you”, then what was the excuse for the Muslims not to leave aside their internal disputes in order to strive with mutual cooperation for spreading the truthfulness of the Holy Prophetsa and Islam. 

Huzoorra mentioned his recent tour of Europe and said it was his observation that Europe was inclining towards Islam and the Europeans were beginning to acknowledge the greatness of Islam and the Holy Prophet Muhammadsa

Hazrat Musleh-e-Maudra delivering Friday Sermon at the Fazl Mosque, London, 1955

Huzoorra said the need of the time was to propagate Islam in those countries by offering sacrifices of wealth and devotion of lives so that we could witness the time when those people who had uttered disrespectful views about the Holy Prophet Muhammadsa in the past, began to send salutations and durood on him.

He expressed that it was unfortunate to see various sects of Muslims disputing over trivial matters, whereas, the most crucial issue was to find ways to eradicate the vile attacks carried out against Islam and the blessed character of the Holy Prophetsa.

Huzoorra hoped that if the Muslim organisations and sects made efforts to establish missions to propagate Islam in the West, then within a few years, a huge number of Europeans would certainly gather under the flag of the Holy Prophet Muhammadsa

Huzoorra continued by saying that it was a dire need of the time for the Muslims to realise what Islam required of them in this day and age and that they needed to eradicate their laziness and shortcomings. (Tarikh-e-Ahmadiyyat, Vol. 17, pp. 29-34)

Hazrat Musleh-e-Maud’s lecture was published by various Urdu and English newspapers, such as The Civil and Military Gazette, Roznama Inqilab of Karachi, Roznama Jang of Karachi, The Daily Evening Star of Karachi, The Daily Pakistan Standard of Karachi, Roznama Imroze of Karachi, Roznama Millat of Lahore, Roznama Nawa-i-Kashmir of Lahore, and Roznama Pasbaan of Dhaka. 

Beach Luxury Hotel1 scaled
Beach Luxury Hotel, Karachi

The Civil and Military Gazette wrote:


“KARACHI, Sept 22: Mirza Bashiruddin Mahmood Ahmed, Head of the Ahmadia Community yesterday laid stress on sending Islamic missions to the European countries.

“Mirza Bashiruddin Mahmood who has returned from a tour of Europe was giving his impressions at a function held in his honour at the Beach Luxury Hotel.

“He said that the people in Europe were anxious to know a lot about Islam. Wherever he went he said people asked him to send missions to their countries so that they could know about Islam.

“He added that a large number of people in Europe were ready to embrace Islam provided the teachings of Islam were brought to them.

“In London, he said, he found a number of people in favour of purdah and polygamy.

“Mirza Bashiruddin Mahmood appealed for funds and said that this could help in sending missions abroad.” (The Civil and Military Gazette, 23 September 1955, p. 3)

Screenshot 20230211 171327 Samsung Internet
The Civil and Military Gazette, 23 September 1955

The Australasian Record and Advent World Survey of Warburton, Victoria, reported:

“Missions in Reverse

“A familiar plea was voted recently in Karachi, Pakistan – a plea for missionaries. Here’s the switch: the pleader was a Muslim leader. The mission field he named was America.

“Said Hazrat Khalifatul Masih II at a large gathering of the Ahmadiyya Community: ‘The world seems to be thirsty to know more about the teachings of Islam. We need men to take it upon themselves to spread the message of Islam everywhere. Do you think that if you give contributions (to the community) here the people of America will become Muslims themselves?’

“He called upon every Ahmadi family to dedicate one of its members as a propagator (missionary) of Islam. – Christian Life, January, 1956.” (The Australasian Record and Advent World Survey, 2 April 1956, p. 9)

The Australasian Record and Advent World Survey, 2 April 1956

Roznama Inqilab of Karachi reported on 23 September 1955:

“The Imam of Jamaat-e-Ahmadiyya Mirza Bashiruddin Mahmud Ahmad said that today Europe is starving for Islam, since they are unable to find peace anywhere else. Therefore, we just need to carry out tabligh and convey to them the message of Islam, and they will be ready to accept it. He said that a time will come when America and Europe will accept Islam [in large numbers]. He appealed to the Muslims telling them to leave aside their internal disputes and unite to preach the Unity of God. He proposed that if every citizen of Karachi donated five rupees each, two million people could raise an amount of ten million rupees, which could be utilised to carry out tabligh in Europe on a large scale. While narrating his tour of Europe, he told:

“‘In every European country where I visited, the people would meet me and inquire about Islam with great interest. I delivered a speech at a college in Switzerland that was translated into various languages. A student expressed that “if there are such great features of Islam, then why can’t the Muslims and Christians jointly preach the message of Unity of God in those areas where people do not believe in God?”’

Hazrat Musleh-e-Maudra in Zurich with some newly converted Ahmadis, 1955

“Mirza Sahib continued by saying that ‘We are required to send tablighi missions [to Europe] as much as possible, which may not necessarily be sent by Ahmadis, rather by Sunnis, Shias, Ahl-e-Hadith, and Aga Khanis as well. […] Our Jamaat is a small community, thus, if we send 10 [tablighi] missions, the others should send 10,000 missions, creating a spirit of competition in tabligh, which will surely be beneficial [for the cause of Islam].’”

The Roznama Millat of Lahore reported on 24 September 1955:

“While speaking at a reception held at the Beach Luxury Hotel, Head of the Ahmadiyya Jamaat, Mirza Bashiruddin Mahmud emphasised the need to send Muslim delegations to the European countries [for tabligh]. Mirza Sahib, who just recently returned from his tour of Europe, was narrating his impressions about the tour. He said that the Europeans are very eager to learn about Islam since wherever he visited, the people insisted that Muslim delegations be sent there in order to teach them about Islam. He stated that a huge number of people are ready to accept Islam, provided arrangements are made to convey to them the true teachings of Islam. He found there were many who favoured [the Islamic teachings of] purdah and polygamy. Towards the end of his speech, Mirza Sahib emphasised the need to raise funds for sending Muslim delegations to foreign countries.” 

Hazrat Musleh-e-Maudra with some English guests, 1955

Roznama Jang of Karachi reported on 24 September 1955:

“While speaking at a private gathering, Mirza Bashiruddin Mahmud stated there is a need to send tablighi [preaching] delegations to the European countries to propagate Islam. […] He said that amongst those who met with him in London, many were in favour of the [Islamic teachings of] purdah and polygamy. He also advised raising funds for sending tablighi delegations to foreign countries.”     

Roznama Pasbaan of Dhaka wrote on 24 September 1955:

“While speaking at a gathering in Karachi, the Imam of the Ahmadiyya Community, Mirza Bashiruddin Mahmud Ahmad, said there are many opportunities for propagating Islam in Europe, particularly in Germany, where the people desire to learn a lot about Islam. He further said that those people are continuing to come closer to Islam, since they have an eagerness and quest for searching the truth, and it is only Islam which can satisfy them. Therefore, this is the time to show them the true and correct pathway towards Islam.” 

اِک ‬وقت‭ ‬آئے‭ ‬گا‭ ‬كہ‭ ‬كہيں‭ ‬گے‭ ‬تمام‭ ‬لوگ

ملّت‭ ‬كے‭ ‬اس‭ ‬فدائی ‬پہ‭ ‬رحمت‭ ‬خدا‭ ‬كرے

“The time will come when everyone will say, ‘May God have mercy on this devotee of the nation.’”

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