On Sunday, 14 May 2023, Lajna Imaillah Italy were blessed with the opportunity of meeting Hazrat Mirza Masroor Ahmad, Khalifatul Masih V, may Allah be his Helper, in a virtual mulaqat.
After conveying salaam, Hazrat Amirul Momineenaa called Aneeka Saba Sahiba to recite a portion of the Holy Quran, followed by its Italian translation presented by Siham Samoodi Sahiba.
Huzooraa then addressed Sadr Lajna Imaillah Italy, who informed him that the members had some questions they wanted to ask. Hazrat Amirul Momineenaa graciously accepted the request.
As the first Lajna member came forward to ask her question, Hazrat Khalifatul Masihaa enquired if she was from Ghana. She clarified that she was from The Gambia. The Lajna member enquired whether, in a marriage, where both spouses prioritise their individual desires over each other’s rights, the upbringing of their children could be negatively affected.
Hazrat Amirul Momineenaa said:
“Marriage is a bond between husband and wife, so they should both respect each other and also try to respect each other’s sentiments. Both, the husband and the wife, should live amicably. It is their duty to set their example before their children. If any of the party – either the husband or the wife – is not behaving properly, according to the tradition and the teaching of Islam, then they are not discharging their duty properly as they should.”
Hazrat Khalifatul Masihaa added:
“So, one should always realise that now their life [responsibilities] is not their own; now there is a responsibility of some other lives on their shoulders, and they have to bring them [their children] up in a way that is according to the teachings of Islam; and if they are not showing respect to each other, they are not following the teachings of Islam, they are not discharging the duties they owe to Allah the Almighty, they are not following the commandment of Allah the Almighty, they are not showing morals, then that means they are going to spoil their future generation.
“Instead of prioritising themselves [over the other], they should solve their problems amicably so that their children could also learn lessons from them that ‘this is how we should behave with each other.’ And they will be brought up in a way that is purely Islamic.
“It is not a matter of prioritising each other; it is a matter of showing respect to each other. So, if husband and wife both realise their duties, then it will never happen that [one will think] ‘I am superior to you, or you are inferior to me,’ or ‘I am superior to you and you are inferior to me.’ No.”
Huzooraa added that in some cultures, “sometimes men try to suppress their women and impose their orders, but it is not right; it is un-Islamic. Both should discharge their duties according to the teachings of Islam.”
The next question asked was regarding individuals who, although they may be Ahmadis, display a lack of respect towards the Jamaat and its founder. They engage in nonsensical talk and express doubts about the truth of the Jamaat, and their speech gives the impression that they are unsure and indecisive. Furthermore, they lacked the courage to leave the Jamaat. The question raised was whether it was our responsibility to file a complaint against such individuals or leave their matter to Allah.
Hazrat Amirul Momineenaa responded, “Hypocrites have existed in every era.” Even during the time of the Holy Prophetsa there were hypocrites and the prominent leader among them was Abdullah ibn Ubayy ibn Salul. Despite being aware of this, the Holy Prophetsa chose to overlook the matter. Allah informed him about Abdullah ibn Ubayy ibn Salul’s hypocrisy and stated that hypocrites occupy the lowest level of Hell. Hazrat Khalifatul Masihaa defined a hypocrite as someone who lacks the courage to express their true intentions, someone who says one thing in the presence of Jamaat members or office bearers but, when among like-minded friends, engages in various conversations.
Hazrat Khalifatul Masihaa stated that if such individuals exist and their actions are overlooked by the Jamaat, it is done with the hope that they may reform or receive proper guidance. However, Hazrat Amirul Momineenaa emphasised that if it becomes evident that their distorted behaviour is causing disorder and unrest within the Jamaat, then such individuals are subject to expulsion from the Jamaat.
Hazrat Khalifatul Masihaa mentioned that if there is someone within the Jamaat who is engaged in inappropriate discussions and the Jamaat is unaware of it, it is the responsibility of individuals, out of their sincerity towards the Jamaat, to bring such matters to the Jamaat’s attention for investigation. If the person persists in such behaviour, then necessary action is taken by the system of the Jamaat. The questioner sought Huzoor’saa perspective on individuals who exhibit cruelty towards women, whether they are their daughters or wives, without showing any mercy.
Hazrat Amirul Momineenaa said:
“Those who commit injustice are indeed unjust,” and they will be subject to God’s wrath. While Allah has designated men as protectors and maintainers of women, He has also placed responsibilities on them. Allah has explicitly instructed men to treat women with kindness and gentleness. Hazrat Khalifatul Masihaa stated that some individuals selectively extract one section from the Holy Quran to support their own views, claiming that God has permitted men to harm their wives physically. However, Huzooraa emphatically declared that this is not permissible.
Huzooraa then said that the true purport of the verse, as explained by him, has been published in various places in Al Hakam. Hazrat Amirul Momineenaa said that Lajna members could undertake the task of translating these interpretations into Italian and presenting them to concerned individuals.
Hazrat Amirul Momineenaa remarked that regarding those who exhibit cruelty, injustice, and resort to physical abuse against their wives, the Promised Messiahas has made it clear that they have no connection or relationship with him. Furthermore, Huzooraa reiterated, “Those who commit injustice are indeed unjust,” emphasising that if they are not held accountable in this worldly life, they will undoubtedly face punishment from God in the Hereafter.
Next, a Lajna member shared that she had heard that Hazrat Khalifatul Masihaa, before going to sleep, remembers various Jamaats and different countries around the world. She specifically enquired about Huzoor’saa thoughts when Italy came to mind.
Huzooraa responded by expressing that he would pray that Allah keeps the Jamaat in Italy under His protection, safeguarding them from all difficulties. Hazrat Khalifatul Masihaa also said that he prays for their peaceful sleep, and early awakening to remember Allah and that they excel at performing good deeds.
Next, a Ghanaian Lanja member asked Hazrat Amirul Momineenaa if it was permissible for a parent who has converted to Ahmadiyyat, to reach out to members of the Jamaat and request them to offer the funeral prayer for their child who did not identify as an Ahmadi or belong to any specific Islamic sect or religious denomination.
Hazrat Amirul Momineenaa said:
“If you are an Ahmadi and your child is not an Ahmadi, or if a person accepts Ahmadiyyat and his or her parents are not Ahmadis, then, if you want to offer janazah prayer – if they are Muslims – you yourself can offer their janazah prayer behind an Ahmadi imam, not a non-Ahmadi imam. You can seek permission from the centre, from the Jamaat, that ‘although my child, or my parents, were not Ahmadi, I feel sympathy for them and I will feel comfortable if I offer their janazah prayer.’ Then you will be permitted to offer the janazah prayer. If they are not Muslims, then, obviously, their funeral will take place according to their tradition or teaching, and the deceased himself would not like that you offer his janazah prayer or her janazah prayer according to the Islamic way.”
Hazrat Khalifatul Masihaa explained that if a person does not believe in any religion, he is considered an atheist, or someone who does not believe in God. Additionally, if someone worships idols or beings other than Allah, they are regarded as a mushrik, and Allah the Almighty states that prayers for such individuals will not be accepted. However, apart from those who engage in idol worship, one can pray for others and seek Allah’s mercy for them.
A member of Lajna said that she was not a Waqifa-e-Nau, but wanted to seek clarification on whether she could still dedicate her life to serving the Jamaat. Being a married woman, she also enquired about how she could contribute to the Jamaat and be the delight of the Khalifa’s eyes.
Hearing this, Hazrat Amirul Momineenaa said:
“Masha-Allah! With such lofty aspirations, one can indeed become a source of delight for the Khalifa’s eyes.” Hazrat Khalifatul Masihaa said that even before the establishment of the Waqf-e-Nau scheme, people had already dedicated their lives in order to serve the Jamaat. Hazrat Amirul Momineenaa cited his own example, stating, “When I devoted my life, there was no Waqf-e-Nau scheme in place.” He further mentioned the numerous women who had devoted their lives to the Jamaat before the Waqf-e-Nau scheme, working in schools in Africa and in various other positions within the Jamaat.
Huzooraa explained that when Lajna members actively engage in various fields within the Jamaat, participate in tabligh activities, adhere to the teachings of the Promised Messiahas, and acquire knowledge of the Holy Quran, Hadith, and Islam, they are actively serving Islam. Hazrat Amirul Momineenaa also mentioned that as a married woman, it is possible to allocate some time for Lajna work and engage in tabligh activities while fulfilling responsibilities at home, including taking care of the children and the husband. By effectively managing their time, they can contribute to the Jamaat while also attending to their household duties.
“When the Khalifa of the time,” Hazrat Amirul Momineenaa explained, “learns about these aspects of your character, it brings delight and he also includes you in his prayers. This is what is meant by ‘being the delight of the eyes.’”
Sakeena Sahiba had the opportunity to put a question to Hazrat Amirul Momineenaa. Upon recognising her name, Hazrat Khalifatul Masihaa enquired whether she was from the Ashanti region of Ghana, to which she responded that she was actually from the Eastern region.
She asked Huzooraa whether a boy could wear a necklace. Hazrat Amirul Momineenaa smiled and answered:
“If it is for the sake of fashion, or if it is a gold necklace, then one should not. If the necklace is a symbol of any idol worshipper, or if there is a cross at the end of the necklace, then one should not wear [it]. Otherwise, one can just tell them that girls should wear the necklace, not boys; but, we cannot say that if a person wears it, they will not be a Muslim or ‘you are doing something wrong’, but if one is wearing a necklace with a symbol of the cross, then it is wrong.”
Next, someone asked Huzooraa whether it was acceptable to have friends who were not Ahmadis and how she could motivate them to learn more about religion.
Hazrat Amirul Momineenaa said that if one does not make friends with non-Muslims, how would they engage in tabligh.
“Obviously, you will have to make friends from among non-Muslims and different religions, together. And, if you are a practising Muslim, you are following the teachings of Islam, you are offering your five daily prayers, and during the discussion, you tell them what the Quran says about women, about your religion, about the rights of women, and about the rights of other fellow beings, then, in this way, you will open the avenues of tabligh and preaching. So, you can make friends with others and then do tabligh. This is how you will spread the message of Islam.”
Next, a Lajna member asked whether parents were accountable to their children, especially when they wronged them. She enquired whether children have the right to ask their parents why they made certain decisions that directly affect them. She mentioned that in some cases, parents choose to separate, and as a result, children become curious about the reasons behind this decision. Should parents be obligated to explain their motives? Furthermore, she emphasised that such a decision directly affects children, leading to a significant impact on their lives.
Hazrat Amirul Momineenaa said:
“Children are very clever. They already know that ‘there is a conflict between my mother and father.’ So, if one makes any decision to get divorced, then if the children ask why, then one should explain to them that ‘this is the reason.’ There is no harm in telling them. They are sensible and they understand it; but, at the same time, both parents – father and mother – should tell them that ‘although we are going to separate, we are going to get divorced, but it is the commandment of Allah the Almighty, that one should behave well to each of your parents.’”
The questioner then asked whether it was right for a woman to consider herself an equal partner in marriage. Additionally, she asked how one could maintain a good balance in this regard, as in some cases, men assume superiority over women and expect certain tasks to be fulfilled exclusively by women.
Hazrat Amirul Momineenaa, in light of being equal, said:
“Yes, of course. Definitely. Allah the Almighty says, ‘Both of you [husband and wife] have equal rights.’ I have spoken on this issue in my Lajna addresses on many occasions. Ask your Sadr Lajna to get those passages; they will help you. It is quite right that you are equal partners, as long as your rights are concerned, your freedom is concerned, and your liberty is concerned. Yes, you have equal rights; but, at the same time, Islam has allocated some assignments to both the husband and the wife. The husband is responsible for running the household affairs and he should be the breadbasket of the house. He should earn money. If the woman is working, then the husband should not say, ‘Now that you are working, you should also share the day-to-day expenses of the house as I spend’. No, this is the responsibility of the husband; but the money a woman earns, if she wants to spend the money on the household, on the children, on the utilities, that is at her own discretion.”
In terms of keeping a good balance, Huzooraa said:
“It is the duty of the woman; as the man is responsible for outside work, and meeting the expenses of the house, and meeting the expenses of the children, day-to-day expenses, at the same time the wife’s expenses, the woman is also responsible for keeping her household affairs in line with the teachings of Islam and that is that one respects their husband, when he comes back from work one should prepare food for him, one should look after their children, train their children in the best way, when they come from the school, then they should know that ‘my mother is at home, she will receive me, she will welcome me, and she will prepare food for me, and she will do all those things which are necessary for my upbringing.’ If both realise their duties – the husband has a duty and the wife has a duty – then there should not be any conflict. One’s household affairs will run smoothly and amicably.”
A Lajna member expressed her concern about the current condition of the world and asked how Lajna could prepare themselves, both individually and collectively, for what is to come.
Huzooraa said, “One should pray that Allah the Almighty saves you from this situation.” In light of morality and the situation of the world, Huzooraa emphasised that it is important for Lajna members to maintain a nice and pure environment in their homes. Hazrat Khalifatul Masihaa added, “Both, the husband and the wife should set a good example and elevate their standard of worship. They should pray for themselves and their children,” and teach them about Islamic traditions, manners, morality, and Allah the Almighty’s commandments.
In light of the prevailing war conditions in the world, Huzooraa said, “Allah knows best what is to come.” Hazrat Amirul Momineenaa further added that, currently, the world is increasingly moving towards warfare. He emphasised the necessity of encouraging people to live in peace and harmony and to remember Allah. Otherwise, the world is heading towards disaster.
Huzooraa said, “If war is inevitable and it is Allah’s decision, then at least those who survive will know that ‘there were those who called us to God.’” Huzooraa said that in such circumstances, the fields of preaching will open up.
While answering a question by Aiman Rehman Sahiba, about the tarbiyat of children, Huzooraa said, that all children should be treated fairly. He said, “This is the responsibility of parents that they should treat their children with respect; give due respect to each of the children from the very childhood and keep on advising them about the religious teachings.”
Next, when asked if a husband should give his wife money to spend, Huzooraa answered in the affirmative and said, “Indeed, he should give.” He further explained that once the money is handed over to the wife, the husband has no right over it.
Fozia Rehman Sahiba expressed that in the present era, influenced by Western ideas, marriage is often seen as outdated. She mentioned that such thinking has also influenced many, including some Muslims. She asked Hazrat Amirul Momineenaa how one could address and counter this perspective.
In response, Hazrat Khalifatul Masihaa stated that such disorders are spread through the influence of Dajjal. Those who distance themselves from religion will perceive religious teachings and traditions as backward. Huzooraa mentioned that the lifestyle they adopt will have negative consequences, although they may not recognise them currently. Due to immorality, humanity is heading towards destruction, and eventually, these individuals will come to realise their mistakes, be it 10 or 20 years from now.
Thus, Huzooraa said, it is important to inform them, through the teachings of Islam, that the beliefs and lifestyle they adopt are incorrect and can have harmful consequences for future generations. “It is our duty to explain and we must continue to do so,” Hazrat Amirul Momineenaa added.
Hazrat Khalifatul Masihaa explained that God did not create mankind solely for the purpose of indulging in luxury; mankind has a far greater purpose. Huzooraa provided an example of Italy and referred to a news report in which even the Pope acknowledged a birth rate crisis in Italy. It was suggested that in such a scenario, the Italian nation would decline while Asians, Africans, and immigrants would become dominant in the country.
“We are not backward; we are on the right path,” Hazrat Amirul Momineenaa affirmed. Life is not solely about luxury, indulgence, and sexual relations. There is no need to be fearful, as our religion is based on truth.
Huzooraa then conveyed his salaam and the meeting came to a successful conclusion.
(Report prepared by Al Hakam)