Come what may, the history of Islam Ahmadiyyat proves that this Jamaat has consistently been the epitome of positivity and making the best of circumstances even in the most testing times.
Whether it was the patience the Promised Messiahas preached to exercise when opponents spewed hate filled propaganda, the hope Hazrat Musleh-e-Maudra radiated to Ahmadis as they set up new lives in the barren land of Rabwah, the slogan of “we will always be smiling” Hazrat Khalifatul Masih IIIrh taught and practised at the face of anti-Ahmadiyya persecution, the great opportunity Hazrat Khalifatul Masih IVrh saw in England after he was forced to migrate, or the comfort, guidance and prayers of Hazrat Khalifatul Masih Vaa during this pandemic, Jamaat members have been taught to explore new avenues in adversity.
The coronavirus pandemic has been no different. During his message on Friday (27 March 2020), Hazrat Amirul Momineenaa, graciously, referred to an initiative of Al Hakam where we asked Jamaat members how they have been positively spending their time at home. Huzooraa pointed out that most had responded by saying that they were using the opportunity to further expand their religious knowledge; studying the Quran, hadith and writings of the Promised Messiahas etc. Huzooraa encouraged all Jamaat members to focus on offering congregational prayers at home, increasing their religious knowledge and praying for the pandemic to end.
Soon after Huzoor’saa message ended, the influx of comments on our Twitter feed and website dramatically increased; Ahmadis, across the world, sharing their isolation stories while also setting new targets “to complete the Ruhani Khazain” or offer more “voluntary prayers”.
Jamaat members said how they had now taken this opportunity to develop spiritually and intellectually.
Tahir Machengo from Kenya explained how “the mosque is out of bounds, so we just pray at home with our families and loved ones.” Then, the routine his family now follows starts with “tahajjud prayers, Fajr prayers and dars-ul-Quran, after which we make a circle and everyone reads one ruku of the Quran.”
An Arab Ahmadi lady from Canada told us how her children are attending online Jamaat classes and then memorise “three chapters from the Holy Quran.”
From Belgium, Rayan Ecaan, explained how isolation was actually a “golden opportunity” for us:
It certainly is a “golden opportunity” for us, there are no more long commutes, getting packed lunches ready, school runs to drop and pick up kids or the hustle and bustle of modern-day lifestyles. It is a moment to ourselves; to improve wherever we can, both individually and collectively as families.
Following Huzoor’saa address, it is clear that Ahmadi Muslims across the board have set new positive targets for themselves and their families to grow spiritually and increase their religious knowledge. One comment on Twitter said, “Just completed the Ark of Noah [Noah’s Ark] … Now starting Paigham-e-Sulh.” Shahina Noor told us that she is, Insha-Allah, “going to read all volumes of Ruhani Khazain” – a wonderful and praiseworthy target.
A lady from Canada explained how she had now started to teach her “niece to read the Holy Quran and her Nasirat syllabus, reading books of the Promised Messiahas, watching MTA, connecting with my family and finally just taking proper measures and nor panicking at all”. In fact, the education of children has been a constant theme throughout the comments we received.
Students spoke of completing school or university tasks and overcoming their previous procrastinations. Along with workouts, healthy eating, spring cleaning and other ticks on their checklists, they have set targets “to read all those articles of Al Fazl and Al Hakam that have been left due to shortage of time and documentaries from MTA”, as Armaan explained.
As families have had a chance to breathe from their busy schedules and reconnect during this pandemic, Ahmadi Muslims have created positive environments within their homes. Parents are now staying at home with their children, but utilising this “golden opportunity” to set positive examples within their household.
Muhammad Dawood from India explained how “we as a family have set a daily schedule. We offer namaz on time. The kids are memorising portions of the Quran” while the adults read the Promised Messiah’sas books.
One parent noted how there is “more time with kids to learn Quran, salat and Islamic history” while Faraz Rabanni from Ghana explained on Twitter how “it’s more like a family reunion … We have got Tafsir-e-Kabir dars after Fajr, Ruhani Khazain dars after Maghrib” and “MTA, Al Fazl and Al Hakam to fuel the day, Alhamdolillah.”
A father had the following to say about the effects of the pandemic on family life:
Others have taken the wisdom of grandparents to teach grandchildren:
Members of the public, across the internet, are expressing their difficulty to find meaning, purpose and directions whilst sitting at home. By the grace of Allah, Ahmadi Muslims have steered their boats towards the right direction and have begun to sail towards self-improvement, helping humanity and developing their connection with God.
One comment said how “it truly feels like we are living a new life altogether; from homeschooling the kids and devising ways to keep them busy to spending an enormous amount of time in the kitchen preparing 3 meals a day! … Following Huzoor’saa instructions, we are trying our utmost to improve the quality of our ibaadat [worship]; from engaging in zikr-e-Ilahi all day – especially while doing household chores – to reading works of the Promised Messiahas to watching programmes on MTA.”
In his message on Friday, Huzooraa instructed Jamaat members to watch MTA programmes together with the family. Our feedback reflects how Ahmadis have responded and are “catching up” with MTA documentaries, watching MTA through its “YouTube Channel” and listening to their “favourite tilawat recitations” on MTA. Rouba Alzaid explained, “I am spending most of my time listening to MTA 3, especially the (Al-Hiwar al-Mubashar); the last three days from Qadian were amazing!”
On Friday, Hazrat Khalifatul Masih Vaa made it categorically clear that “prayer” is our “strongest weapon”, always. He drew the Jamaat’s attention to continue prayers for the wider world and for the world to be “cleansed” of this virus. Comments show Ahmadi Muslims are listening to this guidance of Huzooraa as well; some praying for the “pandemic to end”, whilst others aiming to offer more “voluntary prayers”.
Other Jamaat members have noted how spending time in isolation has been a “spiritual experience” for them. And that “this time in isolation has definitely opened my eyes and made me realise that we should use our time wisely and fill our day with reading Jamaat material.” Another comment said that there has now been a “focus on more prayers and reading Malfuzat. Doing graphic design from home. Reading the Holy Quran with tafsir and dua [prayer] for all humanity…”
Missionaries of the Jamaat responded as well and explained their adaptations to continue Jamaat tabligh and tarbiyat efforts, taking most things online and offering group classes.
Auxiliaries from Majlis Khuddam-ul-Ahmadiyya joined the conversations and described how they are striving to think of new ideas to continue Jamaat progress and aid members of the public. Majlis Khuddam-ul-Ahmadiyya Australia commented on their scheme of “turning our homes into mosques” and that they are “praying for the world and spending this time in reflection and enhancing our knowledge”.
Overall, Jamaat members have shared very promising and positive responses with us and continue to do so. After all, we are one Jamaat and should stay connected with one another.
Only time will tell how long this tragic pandemic will last. Until then, we urge Jamaat members to continue implementing the advice of Hazrat Khalifatul Masih Vaa of advancing both spiritually and intellectually during this lockdown.
Please do continue to update us on how you’re spending this time at home!
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