Ibn Rashid, UK
Gaining influence and a following in the age of social media has become commonplace. But it also operates in an echo chamber where you’re more likely to follow those you already agree with and so those same beliefs are reinforced and amplified.
Influencers might think they’re preaching to the masses, but in reality, they’re talking to the already converted. Getting your message out may be easier than ever, but changing hearts and minds and creating a revolution requires something else; especially when speaking from a religious or spiritual standpoint. Debates and arguments alone are not a means of convincing the heart.
The biggest external threat to face the Muslims – the world rather – centuries after the Holy Prophetsa would be the Dajjal and Gog and Magog, according to the ahadith. (Sahih Muslim, The book of tribulations and portents of the last hour)
“Dajjal” and “Gog and Magog” are words used to denote nations who would use their power and influence to cause chaos in the world. Their influence will be widespread, will lead to irreligiousness and no power will be able to stop them but the power of God.
The ahadith that detail the coming of the Dajjal and Gog and Magog talk about the antithesis, Jesusas, who will counteract these forces. As Ahmadis know, this will not be a physical battle but a spiritual one.
Interestingly, in one hadith of Sahih Muslim, the Holy Prophetsa says that when Gog and Magog would be in full force, Allah would tell the Messiah to take his companions to “Tur”, a mountain. There, being besieged by Gog and Magog, they would begin to pray to Allah against it – as a result of their prayers, Allah would kill Gog and Magog. Then, the hadith mentions that as the Messiah and his companions come down the mountain, all they find are corpses, to which they pray to Allah again and the earth is restored and fruit and sustenance is found in abundance. (Sahih Muslim, The book of tribulations and portents of the last hour, Hadith 134)
Commenting on this hadith, Hazrat Khalifatul Masih IVrh said:
“Gog and Magog will rule the world and they will rise wave after wave and the whole world will be overwhelmed by the waves of their power. At that time, the Messiah will be raised in the world and the Messiah, with his followers, will try to fight them and will attempt to counter them. Allah will then speak to the Messiah saying that no man in the world has been granted the power to fight these two nations which We have Created – not even you! There is only one way, that you seek shelter on a mountain and pray to God. It is only the weapon of prayer that can subjugate these nations.”
“What is meant by the mountain in this context? I believe that the Holy Prophetsa is that mountain which has been mentioned here because, while speaking about the Holy Quran, Allah says:
“‘If We had sent down this Quran on a mountain, thou wouldst certainly have seen it humbled and rent asunder for fear of Allah. And these are similitudes that We set forth for mankind that they may reflect.’ (Ch.59: V.22)
“So what it means is that you should revert to the lofty principles of the Holy Prophetsa and seek refuge and gain fortitude in the teaching of this great Prophet. If you return to the lofty ideals of the Holy Prophetsa and after taking shelter in them, you supplicate before God, then the prayers that are thus nourished will never go to waste. Then with your prayers, you will also share in his greatness.
“And the other message in this prophecy is that apart from all other Muslim sects, instructions by Allah to offer prayers has been given to only to the Jamaat of the Messiah.” (The Gulf Crisis and The New World Order, pp. 68-70)
This is the weapon that was given to the Promised Messiahas; following the Prophetsa and the use of prayers. No other means can bring about faith and establish Islam in the hearts of people other than this. As Ahmadis, prayers and following the path paved out by Prophet Muhammadsa will give the victory we seek – reliance on any other means will prove detrimental. This is the path our khulafa have shown and instructed us to follow for success.
In this regard, the Promised Messiah and Imam Mahdi, Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmadas said:
“I categorically forbid members of my Jamaat, wherever they may be, from participating in debates, disputes and confrontations. If they happen to hear something disagreeable, they should overlook it.
“I say with confidence and full faith that a great preparation is afoot in Heaven in our support. We have conveyed the message to the people in full measure and from every point of view. Now, God Almighty will carry out His design, which He always does after the message has been fully conveyed. I fear that if members of our Jamaat should not refrain from harsh language and purposeless discussions, the heavenly design might be delayed or obstructed, for it has ever been the way of God Almighty that His chastisement overtakes those upon whom He has bestowed innumerable favours and bounties and to whom He has exhibited His signs. He pays no attention by way of chastisement or admonition or reproach to those against whom His final decree is yet to issue.
“Hearing abuse and impostures and vilifications of all kinds directed against this truthful Jamaat, some of its members might become impatient and might desire the hasty chastisement of the enemy, but they should always keep in mind the way of God Almighty which He adopted with regard to the Holy Prophetsa. Therefore, I direct you repeatedly and emphatically to keep away from all occasions of disorder and dissent, because the task that you desire to accomplish—i.e., to fully convey the message to your opponents—has now been taken by God Almighty in His Own hand. Your task now should be to occupy yourselves with prayers, seeking forgiveness, worshipping God, and the purification and cleansing of your souls. Thus make yourselves deserving of the favours and attention of God Almighty which He has promised.
“Though God Almighty has made me great promises, and there are many great prophecies which I am sure will be fulfilled, yet you should take no pride in them. Avoid every kind of jealousy, envy, rancour, backbiting, arrogance, pride, all overt and covert ways of evil and vice, sloth and heedlessness. Remember well that the good end is always for the righteous, as God Almighty has said: And the end is for the God-fearing (Surah al-A‘raf, 7:129). Therefore, be concerned to become righteous.” (Malfuzat, Vol. 3, pp. 282-283, taken from Essence of Islam, Vol. IV, pp. 309-311)