Raziullah Noman, Canada
The allegations the opponents raise on Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmadas are the same allegations that were raised against other prophets of Allah.
Allah the Almighty declares to the Holy Prophetsa:
مَا يُقَالُ لَكَ إِلَّا مَا قَدْ قِيْلَ لِلرُّسُلِ مِنْ قَبْلِكَ ۚ إِنَّ رَبَّكَ لَذُوْ مَغْفِرَةٍ وَذُوْ عِقَابٍ أَلِيْمٍ
“Nothing is said to thee but what was said to the Messengers before thee. Thy Lord is indeed the Master of forgiveness; and [also]the Master of painful chastisement.” (Surah Ha Mim al-Sajdah, Ch.41: V.44)
It is a recurrent theme, with all prophets of Allah the Almighty.
An allegation against Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmadas is that he had a slight stammer in his speech. In their blind enmity, these opponents forget the Holy Prophet Muhammadsa prophesied that the Imam Mahdi would have a stammer in his speech and the famous scholars of Islam have also written this. This was a distinct sign which would make it easy to identify the true claimant of Imam Mahdi, as no false claimant can forge such a sign for themselves.
Contradiction of the Sunni ulema
It is interesting that some of the Muslim scholars raise issue and say Hazrat Ahmadas had a slight stammer, while other clerics say they reject Hazrat Ahmadas because he did not have a stammer. The second group have not done their research on the life of the Promised Messiahas, which is why they ask for this sign to be present in him.
The Khatm-e-Nabuwat cleric, Shaikh Abdul Majid said:
“The signs in the ahadith have mentioned the coming of who we refer to as the Mahdi. His description, how he will be, when he speaks he will have a slight stutter and he will hit his leg out of frustration” (www.youtube.com/watch?v=bVtieezD6r8 at 9:42-55)
The Holy Prophetsa made the grand prophecy that the Imam Mahdi would have a slight stammer in his speech. This is a profound prophecy since no false claimant of the Imam Mahdi can himself forge such a sign. It would be a distinct feature of the true claimant.
In the famous book of ahadith, Kitab-ul-Fitn, it is narrated:
حَدَّثَنَا الْوَلِيدُ، وَرِشْدِينُ، عَنِ ابْنِ لَهِيعَةَ، عَنْ إِسْرَائِيلَ بْنِ عَبَّادٍ، عَنْ مَيْمُونٍ الْقَدَّاحِ، عَنْ أَبِي الطُّفَيْلِ، رَضِيَ اللَّهُ عَنْهُ، أَنَّ رَسُولَ اللّٰهِ صَلَّى اللّٰهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ وَصَفَ الْمَهْدِيَّ فَذَكَرَ ثِقلًا فِي لِسَانِهِ، وَضَرَبَ بِفَخِذِهِ الْيُسْرَى بِيَدِهِ الْيُمْنَى إِذَا أَبْطَأَ عَلَيْهِ الْكَلَامُ
“Prophet Muhammadsa mentioned the quality of the coming Imam Mahdi and said that his tongue would have a stammer and when he would face difficulty in speech, he would strike his left thigh with his right hand.” (Kitab-ul-Fitn, p. 375)
The same narration is present in the book of Imam al-Suyuti titled al-Hawi lil-Fatawi under the traditions of the Imam Mahdi.
About the Imam Mahdi, Imam Barzanjeerh said:
في لسانه ثقل و إذا أبطأ عليه الكلام ضرب بِفَخِذِهِ الْيُسْرَى بِيَدِهِ الْيُمْنَى
The Holy Prophetsa said:
“He will be slow in speech (with a slight stammer) and when he stammers, he would strike his left thigh with his right hand”. (Isha‘ah li Ashrat al-Sa‘a, p. 89)
In Ruhul Ma‘ani, it is written:
وقد ذكر أن في لسان المهدي المنتظر رضي الله عنه حبسة وربما يتعذر عليه السلام حتى يضرب بيده اليمني فخذ رجله اليسرى
“It has been stated that the awaited Mahdi would also stammer. And when he would not be able to express himself, he would strike his left thigh with his right hand.” (Tafsir Ruhul Ma‘ani, Part 16, p. 183)
This sign is also mentioned in the Urdu literature of Muslim scholars. For example in Fatawa-e-Haqqaniyyah, about the Imam Mahdi, it is written:
زبان ميں قدرے لكنت ہو گی
“The Imam Mahdi would have a slight stammer in his tongue.” (Fatawa-e-Haqqaniyyah, Vol. 1, p. 304)
In the book Alamaat-e-Qiyamat, Shah Rafi ud-Din writes:
زبان ميں قدرے لكنت ہو گی
“The Imam Mahdi would have a slight stammer in his tongue.” (Alamat-e-Qiyamat)
In the book Tarjuman as-Sunnah by Shaykh Badr-e-Aalam Meerathi, quoting Shah Rafi ud-Din, it is written:
زبان ميں قدرے لكنت ہو گی
“The Imam Mahdi would have a slight stammer in his tongue.” (Tarjuman as-Sunnah, Vol. 4, p. 372)
Professor Muhammad Yusuf Khan also quotes this sign in his book Islam Main Imam Mahdi Ka Tasawwur on page 84.
A Biblical prophecy
We find this prophecy of the Imam Mahdi mentioned in the Bible as well, which speaks of a double prophecy of Prophet Muhammadsa and the Latter-Day Messiah.
It is stated:
“For precept must be upon precept, precept upon precept, line upon line, line upon line, here a little and there a little; For with stammering lips and another tongue will speak to this people” (Isaiah 28:10-11)
Fulfillment of the prophecy in Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmadas
This prophecy was beautifully fulfilled through Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmadas – the Imam Mahdi.
Hazrat Mirza Bashiruddin Mahmud Ahmad, Khalifatul Masih IIra said:
“It was foretold that the promised one would suffer from two maladies, one in the upper part of his body and the other in the lower, that the hair of his head would be straight, that he would be wheat-coloured, that he would suffer from a slight stammer in his speech, that he would belong to a family of farmers, that, while talking, he would occasionally strike his hand against his thigh, that he would appear in a village called Kada, and that he would combine in himself the office of the Messiah and the Mahdi. And so it has turned out to be. Ahmad, the Promised Messiahas, suffered from vertigo and diabetes; he had straight hair, was wheat-coloured, and occasionally stammered in his speech. He had the habit of striking his hand against his thigh while giving a discourse and belonged to a family of landowners.” (Ahmadiyyat or the True Islam, pp. 17-18)
The following incident from the life of the Promised Messiahas is recorded in the book The Afghan Martyrs. A non-Ahmadi Arab said:
“‘You claim that you are eloquent in Arabic but you are unable to pronounce the letters “ain” and “qaaf” like the Arabs and you falter in your speech. These impediments detract from your eloquence.’
“Witnessing the gross arrogance and the harsh manner of his address Sahibzada Abdul Lateef lost his cool and in this disposition was about to strike the Arab with his fist when the Promised Messiahas caught hold of his hand, put it on his thigh, and put his own hand over it. Then the Promised Messiahas said to the Arab, ‘My claim concerning eloquence in the Arabic language relates to written Arabic and I do not claim that I can speak like those whose mother tongue is Arabic. I would therefore suggest that you look through some of my Arabic books which you will find in the guest house. Only then will you be able to assess my proficiency in Arabic.’
“Then he said, ‘Many earlier sages had foretold that Imam Mahdi would stammer somewhat. Therefore a trace of stammering in my speech is a proof of my truth.’” (The Afghan Martyrs, pp. 49-50)
The prophecy also answers the allegation of why the Promised Messiahas did not pronounce Arabic with perfection – the prophecy hinted that he would be a non-Arab and would have some difficulty in speech.
Allegation on Prophet Mosesas and Hazrat Hussainra
Those who try to ridicule the stammer Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmadas had inadvertently attack Prophet Mosesas and Hazrat Imam Hussainra.
Regarding Hazrat Mosesas, Allah says:
قَالَ رَبِّ إِنِّيْ أَخَافُ أَنْ يُكَذِّبُوْنِ وَيَضِيْقُ صَدْرِيْ وَلَا يَنْطَلِقُ لِسَانِيْ فَأَرْسِلْ إِلَىٰ هَارُوْنَ
“He said, ‘My Lord, I fear that they will treat me as a liar; And my breast is straitened and my tongue is not fluent; therefore, send [word]to Aaron.’” (Surah al-Shu‘ara, Ch.26: V.13-14)
Because Prophet Mosesas could not speak fluently, he prayed:
قَالَ رَبِّ اشْرَحْ لِيْ صَدْرِيْ وَيَسِّرْ لِيْ أَمْرِيْ وَاحْلُلْ عُقْدَةً مِنْ لِسَانِيْ يَفْقَهُوْا قَوْلِيْ
“[Moses]said, ‘My Lord, open out for me my breast, And ease for me my task, And loose the knot of my tongue, That they may understand my speech;” (Surah Taha, Ch.20: V.26-29)
If the anti-Ahmadis were living in the time of Hazrat Mosesas, they would have certainly raised allegations against him too!
On the topic of whether a stammer was an issue, Hazrat Mirza Tahir Ahmad, Khalifatul Masih IVrh said:
“If stammering is in fact objectionable, then why did Almighty Allah choose the one who stammered and was less eloquent? In fact, the Holy Quran has recorded that the Prophet Mosesas could not speak eloquently, but despite that, people believe him to be a true Prophet. In addition, people do not believe that the Prophet Mosesas, despite his stammering, was a ‘grave threat’ to his religion. Yet, when they talk about the Promised Messiahas they repeat the same objections raised by the Pharaoh. It is a Divine decree that skeptics repeat the same objections against Prophets that were made by earlier people.” (A Review of the Pakistani Government’s White Paper, p. 5)
Not only do anti-Ahmadis indirectly mock Hazrat Mosesas, but also the grandson of Prophet Muhammadsa, Hazrat Hussainra. In the famous commentary of the Holy Quran, Ruhul Ma‘ani, it is written:
وبما روي أنه كان في لسان الحسين رضي اللّٰه عنه رتة وحبسة فقال النبي صلى اللّٰه عليه وسلم فيه إنه ورثها من عمه موسى عليه السلام
“And it is narrated that Hazrat Hussainra used to stammer. Commenting on this, the Holy Prophetsa said that Hussainra inherited this stammering from his uncle, Mosesas.” (Tafsir Ruhul Ma‘ani, Part 16, p. 183)
The stammer was not a hindrance in preaching
One point which must be clarified is that this slight stammer did not affect the preaching of Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmadas in any way. Those listening to his speeches were always in awe and would wish they could listen to him the entire day without moving from their seats.
It is narrated:
“On one occasion, a friend who was truly absorbed in love for the Promised Messiahas, submitted to him: ‘Why should we not consider you to be greater in status than the Shaykhayn (the Two Chiefs) and closer in rank to the Noble Messenger, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him?’ Goodness gracious! On hearing this, His Holiness became pale and an inexplicable anxiety and restlessness overtook him from head to toe. I swear in the name of God, who is Jealous and Holy, that this particular instance increased my faith in the Promised Messiahas even more. The Promised Messiahas delivered an all-encompassing address continuously for six hours. When he began speaking, I looked at my watch, and when he finished, I looked at my watch again. He spoke for six hours. Not a minute less.” (Malfuzat, Vol. 2, English translation, p. 44)
In Seerat-ul-Mahdi there are many narrations that speak of the Promised Messiahas delivering long speeches and how the listeners would be greatly affected.
There was a Muslim cleric of Ludhiana, who was standing in a market and was advising others with a lot of passion, saying that the Promised Messiahas was a disbeliever and was harming other Muslims. This clericthen said that anyone who killed him, would gain a lot of reward and go straight to Paradise. He continued to repeat this. A Muslim got inspired by this speech and went to the house of the Promised Messiahas. Coincidentally, the Promised Messiahas was giving a speech during this time. There were some followers of his and also others who had not yet accepted Ahmadiyyat.
The man who intended to attack the Promised Messiahas also entered the room and was preparing to fulfil his mission. The Promised Messiahas did not pay attention to him and continued his speech. The man began to listen. The Promised Messiah’s words began to greatly affect the heart of this person and the stick which he brought to attack the Promised Messiahas suddenly fell to the ground.
He continued to listen to the speech until it ended. Then, another person from the meeting said that he had understood the claims of the Promised Messiahas and wanted to accept Ahmadiyyat. At this, the man (who intended to attack) stood up and said he had come there after the advice of a cleric who had influenced him and promised Paradise if he killed the Promised Messiahas. However the man expressed that after hearing the speech of the Promised Messiahas he had recognised he was true and desired to enter Ahmadiyyat – the Promised Messiahas accepted his request to join. (Zikr-e-Habib, pp. 11-12)
Overall, a fair person, taking into account the above prophecy, would hesitate to raise issue with the slight stammer the Promised Messiahas had – as it proves his truthfulness.