Friday Sermon – Khalifatul Masih V – Mirza Masroor Ahmad – Year 2016
Peace be upon you. I bear witness that there is none worthy of worship except Allah and I bear witness that Muhammad (saw) is His Servant and Messenger After this I seek refuge with Allah from Satan the accursed. In the name of Allah, the Gracious, the Merciful.
All praise belongs to Allah, Lord of all the worlds. The Gracious, the Merciful. Master of the Day of Judgment. Thee alone do we worship and Thee alone do we implore for help. Guide us in the right path – The path of those on whom Thou hast bestowed Thy blessings,
Those who have not incurred Thy displeasure, and those who have not gone astray. On one occasion the Holy Prophet (saw), explaining the hallmark of a Momin [true believer], said: A true Momin is he who desires for his brothers (or others) what he desires for himself. This is a guiding principle which,
If adopted at every level of society in the world from the home to international relations, lays the foundation for love, compassion and reconciliation. It draws ones attention to fulfilling the rights of others. Non-Ahmadis are always greatly impressed by this principle on the many occasions I have related it
To them. However our aim is not to tell others of these good principles to merely impress them, rather our aim is to also demonstrate these principles through our practice and thus establish the beauty of the teachings of Islam. Non-Ahmadis can question us that: What you are saying is excellent
However tell us how many among you actually implement it? The beauty of any point being conveyed is exhibited when one themselves adopts what he is explaining to others. People will only come to know of our distinguishing qualities when we actually practice what we preach, because people are not satisfied with mere words alone
Rather they will look to our actions as well. In Germany perhaps in the last Friday Sermon I delivered during my tour, I mentioned that at a mosque opening the district commissioner of the area objected that we mistreat women by not shaking hands with them.
After I gave a detailed response, one person said that it is completely correct that everyone is free and has the right to implement the teachings and traditions of their religion when it is not harming the country and the public. He said that although the Khalifah has now given this explanation
We will discover the reality of this by whether the majority of the Ahmadi youth implement this or not. In short, when we convey to non-Ahmadis any of the commands of Islam and its teachings relating to high moral standards, they also look to see whether we practically demonstrate them in our practice.
Nobody will deny the statement of the Holy Prophet (saw) regarding establishing the high morals of a true believer, when he said that one will truly be deemed a Momin, possessing high morals and a high standard of feeling compassion and sympathy for others, when he wishes for others what he wishes for himself.
It should not be the case that when advocating for ones own rights, he emphasises justice and fairness yet when it comes to giving others their rights, he displays a negative attitude. Thus, the way in which we are restless to gain our rights, we must also be that restless
And show the same standards when fulfilling the rights of others. If we make a mistake, we do not want to be punished. In the same way, if someone else makes a mistake which impacts us then we should also wish the same for him, if he is not repeating this mistake continuously.
Thus, we should adopt this attitude of forgiving him. However, if loss is incurring to the jamaat or wider community then this is not an occasional mistake and becomes a criminal offence and then governments decide the fate of such people, not a person. Anyways, what I am saying relates to the everyday issues
Common in our society. In such situations where we want our rights to be fulfilled, we should also think about whether we are fulfilling the rights of others. This includes our family, friends, brothers and sisters, and
Other relatives. We must start to think like that at a local level in order to spread this thought in the wider community and society. One will become selfless, talk about giving rights to one another, forgive more, punish less and Allah the Almighty has also mentioned the importance of
Giving rights and providing and taking care of each others needs alongside drawing our attention to granting forgiveness. Thus, Allah the Almighty states in the Holy Quran, [Arabic] Meaning, those who spend in ease and adversity, these are they who suppress their anger and forgive each other. And Allah loves those who do good.
In this verse, drawing attention towards giving rights to others, first of all, Allah the Almighty draws our attention to those in need. A Mohsin is one who is of use and benefit to others, and who adopts piety and righteousness.
Thus one who is firm on piety and extends benefit to others based on righteousness and for the sake of Allah the Almighty, will certainly do so selflessly and will spend in this way in secret and openly only to please God the Almighty. When an individual develops this approach, he refrains from displaying selfishness
And does not wish for anything bad for his brother. Such people progress spiritually and are counted among those whom Allah the Almighty loves. Further, Allah the Almighty states that another hallmark of a Mohsin (one who benefits others) is that he keeps control over his emotions.
This not only means to keep check over ones emotions when he is becoming angry out of a natural impulse, rather he is tested when after suppressing his rage he develops forgiveness for the other person. It is not a small matter for one to eliminate all forms of anger and feelings
Of revenge from ones heart – in fact this is a huge undertaking. It is an immense endeavor if one removes feelings of resentment and even starts feeling sympathetic towards the other who committed the error. Allah the Almighty desires for true believers to inculcate such qualities.
We find in the traditions an account relating to Hazrat Hassan (may Allah be pleased with him). One of his slaves committed a mistake upon which Hazrat Hassan became furious and intended to punish him. Upon this the slave recited this part of the verse [of the Holy Quran]: [Arabic]
And he who suppresses his anger. Hazrat Hassan lowered his hand which he had raised to reprimand the slave. The slave was emboldened to further say: And they are those who forgive others. Thus Hazrat Hassan, according to the command of Allah the Almighty said to the slave that he is forgiven.
The slave was further encouraged and thus said: Allah the Almighty loves those who are kind and compassionate to others. Hazrat Hassan then said to the slave that he had been freed and could now go wherever he pleased. Thus the approach of those who seek the love of Allah the Almighty and adopt righteousness
Is not only to forgive the fault of others, in fact they show compassion and kindness to them. The Promised Messiah (peace be upon him) says at one place regarding this verse: Remember that a person who is harsh and becomes enraged, cannot utter wise and meaningful words.
“The heart that flies into a rage and quickly gets out control “is deprived of wisdom and understanding. “The lips of the unrestrained and foul mouthed become unfortunate and “kept away from the spring of perceptiveness”. One who hurls curses and swears at others and does not hold back his tongue is deprived of
Wisdom, understanding matters in depth and from that which Allah the Almighty loves. He further says “Rage and wisdom cannot coexist. “The one who rages in a fit of fury, has a dull mind and brain. “He is never given victory or success in any field. “Anger is half insanity.
“When anger becomes full fury, it can become complete insanity.” He further says, “Remember that rage and intellect have a dangerous enmity for each other. “An intelligent person cannot be unreasonably angry”. He said, “When emotion and anger emerge, ones intellect becomes redundant; but the one who is
“patient and becomes a role model of perseverance, “receives a light in his faculties of thinking and perception. “Because the heart and mind are darkened in the state of anger and temper; “thus darkness creates darkness.” Thus, the teachings of Islam are full of wisdom wherein even in punitive cases if one is against
Someone however he/she should give careful consideration in matters of adjudication and should not come into rage. At times, one has to be strict but this should never be done while one is in a state of rage or anger.
The concept of punishment does exist in Islam but it comes with certain rules and conditions. Meting out punishment while in a state of anger leads one away from wisdom and justice that is why the Promised Messiah stated that if one hands out punishment while in a state of
Anger, then it results in the toughing of ones heart, and once the heart toughens then one can no longer utter words of wisdom and insight, in fact one loses their mind. It is for this reason that God Almighty has instructed to suppress anger and be cool headed
And only after that should one decide whether or not to mete out punishment but providing that one has the authority for handing out punishment also as not everyone has the right to punish. In order for one to suppress their anger, it is essential to possess a degree of patience,
Therefore there is a need to increase ones level of patience. The Promised Messiah states that mental and intellectual faculties of those who show patience are enlightened, the level of their thoughts increase and are illuminated and they receive guidance from God Almighty.
A Momin [believer] who is mindful in regards to the decisions he makes, even if they are regarding matters he dislikes, then such decisions of his shall never be done in haste, in fact the decisions are made while showing patience and careful consideration.
Moreover, such decisions are made after delving deep into the matter and whilst taking all its positive and negative aspects into consideration. As I have mentioned, it should be made clear that the right to hand out punishment is not for all.
One cannot just say that they he/she has deliberated over the matter and according to them punishment should be given, therefore they will be handing out the punishment. In this day and age, there are appropriate departments who have the responsibility for handing out punishment.
Indeed, one can forgive the offender himself but in regards to handing out punishment, then one must seek help from the relevant department. If one is mindful of this, then fights which break out over minor and trivial issues
Would never occur, and nor would money and time be wastefully spent in the pursuit of court trials. If one court trial forgives the offender, the other party becomes enraged with even more anger as to why he/she was forgiven or why was the punishment so lenient.
Subsequently, the case is then taken to another court, however the case is not even one that is concerning serious or grave issues. The cases brought forward are very minor and small. Similar matters are brought before the Qazaa [jurisprudential board of the Ahmadiyya Jamaat]
And also there are some Ahmadis who say that they do not want their case to be settled by the Qazaa and proceed to the courts, even though the issues are not that serious and need not to be taken to the courts and they also waste their own money.
When God Almighty instructs us to suppress our anger and thereafter forgive, He does not simply state this without any wisdom. In fact, He tells us to give our verdict after having told us about the wisdom behind forgiveness and punishment. Thus, God Almighty states: [Arabic]
“Remember that the recompense of an injury is an injury the like thereof; “but whoso forgives and thereby brings about an improvement, his reward is with Allah. “Surely, He loves not the wrongdoers.” [The Holy Quran, 42:41] Thus, the real purpose is to make the offender realise his/her crime and to bring about a
Reformation instead of simply seeking retribution and going to the courts which causes a financial loss to both parties and similarly a wastage of time for both and in the case of bringing the matter to the Jamaat department then thinking ill of the Jamaat.
If improvement can be brought about through forgiving, then it is better to forgive. However, if handing out punishment is necessary in order to bring about reformation, then wisdom demands that punishment should be given, then of course the case should be taken to the relevant department/authorities. The Promised Messiah has written about this injunction
Which is full of wisdom on numerous occasions. In his book, Tiryaqal Quloob, he states: “In light of the laws pertaining to justice, the recompense “of an injury is an injury the like thereof. “However, if one forgives his offender, providing that by forgiving him it will serve as a source
“of reformation for the offender and not that he becomes even more brazen and bold, then such a “person shall receive a huge reward from Allah the Almighty.” Thus, one who forgives, receives a reward from God Almighty. The Promised Messiah writes in Brahin-e-Ahmadiyya:
“According the rule of justice, the wrongdoer is only punishable according to the crime committed. “However, if one brings about a reformation through forgiveness i.e. “the forgiveness should not be one that has harmful results, then “such a person shall receive his reward from God.”
In other words, it is an excellent thing to forgive which leads to ones reformation and this has been explained in the words, the forgiveness should not be one that has harmful results. If it does not bear any harmful consequences then God Almighty states that the reward of the one
Who forgives is with God Almighty and He can give however much He wills. Thus, one should forgive when they can see from the attitude of the offender that he will commit any wrong in the future. There are some who habitually commit wrong and ask for forgiveness after each time they do a
Wrong, and so it is essential to hand out a punishment to such people. However, the punishment should be such that brings about a reformation. In another place, the Promised Messiah (as) states: “The punishment for a wrong deed is equal to the wrong deed itself.
“However, one who forbears and forgives and as a result of ones forgiveness it brings about a “reformation and does not worsen the matter, then God Almighty is well pleased “with such a person and will reward him.
“Thus, in light of the Holy Quran, it is not commendable to always punish and nor is it always “a commendable act to forgive, rather one should “take the situation and circumstances into consideration.” One should assess the situation and see that out of punishment and forgiveness what would prove more beneficial.
“Moreover, both the act of punishing and forgiveness should take the situation and “reasoning into consideration and not simply be done without any thought. “This is the purport of the Holy Quran.” One should not be punished without any rules or guidelines and similarly one should not be just forgiven.
Thus, there are some boundaries set and one should remain within these boundaries and identify what is more beneficial. Thus, this is the wisdom behind the concept of punishment and forgiveness in Islam which is that bringing about reformation should be the ultimate objective.
In these days, we observe in the worldly laws that every crime is punished and people are imprisoned so that they can be reformed. However, the experts belonging to these developed nations have now begun to note themselves that after sending the offenders to prison and after having served their time,
They come out being even more bold in their crimes. This is because those handing out the punishment and also the offenders are just simply following the law and do not have the fear of God Almighty. In any case, the general guidance for believers is that they should inculcate the habit to show
Forgiveness but they should take into consideration the nature of the offence, the circumstances of the offender and his previous behaviour and then according to that make their decision. God Almighty does not just simply want them to blindly forgive everyone and neither to just blindly hand out punishment.
If one always forgives that can also cause deterioration of society and similarly by always handing out punishment can lead to increased malice and hate in society and disorder continues to prevail in society. If we assess ourselves and observe our surroundings, we will note that those who have
Been offended make every effort and demand for the offender to be punished, so that others may draw a lesson from it and no one then has the courage to commit such a crime in future. While on the other hand, the offender seeks for forgiveness.
Presently, a number of human rights organisations have been formed and though they are doing some good works but they are also going to the extreme lengths when it comes to matters of forgiveness and try to get every offender forgiven. Similarly, those offenders who have some
Knowledge of faith and the commandments of God Almighty, they also say that God Almighty has commanded that one should forgive because God Himself also forgives people, therefore they should also fulfil the rights of others and forgive them. Individually as well as a community, they say they should be forgiven, irrespective of whether
It benefits or is harmful for the community but as long as the rights of others are being fulfilled. The people who are excessively engaged in these matters, are either repeat offenders and criminals or the ones who want the decisions in their favor unjustly.
They commit crimes on one hand and on the other hand want to escape punishment by inappropriately citing God’s commandments. Such people never forgive others when an offence is committed against them. They are selfish because they bend the rules and forget the principle to like for others what they like for themselves.
Those who do not forgive and are determined for the offender to be punished, would themselves beg for forgiveness if they were in the same situation and would state that it is better to pardon. Islam rejects what these selfish people say and decides on the basis of ultimate justice that if
Reformation will come out of pardon, then, forgiving is better and if it is clear that there is no way forward without punishment, then, the punishment becomes necessary. This is the philosophy of the Islamic teaching. Now, we observe how far the Holy Prophet (saw) went in forgiving and how he advised
His companions (may Allah be pleased with them) regarding this. I already gave the example of Imam Hassan (peace be upon him) who forgave his servants mistake. However that was only a small mistake. We observe the pinnacle of forgiving in the life of the Holy Prophet (saw).
He forgave the people even after the decision had been taken to punish them. He did not pardon others’ offenders but pardoned those who wronged him and even murdered his children because they reformed. It is related that a man named Habbar Bin Aswad attacked Holy Prophet’s (saw)
Daughter Hazrat Zainab (may Allah be pleased with her) with a spear during her journey from Makkah to Medina while she was pregnant. She was injured, suffered a miscarriage and eventually she died of her wounds. For that crime, Habbar was sentenced to death.
At the conquest of Makkah, he fled and later returned to Madinah. He came to the Holy Prophet (saw) and begged for his mercy. He said, I ran away in fear of you, but your forgiveness and mercy have brought me back. O prophet of God! We were ignorant and idol worshippers.
Through you, God saved us from chastisement, I feel guilty of my excesses, forgive me, overlooking my ignorance. The Holy Prophet (saw) forgave this murderer of his daughter and said, Go Habbar, I forgive you, this is Allah’s favour on you that you accepted Islam.
Thus when he saw that reformation has taken place, the Holy Prophet (saw) forgave even his daughter’s murderer. Hazrat Ayesha (ra) says that he (saw) never avenged any of the excesses done to him personally. He forgave the Jewish lady who fed him poisoned food despite the effect of the poison on the companions.
Hind, the wife of Abu Sufiyan, who was guilty of mutilating the dead body (including his nose and ear) and chewing the liver of Hazrat Hamza, the Holy Prophet’s uncle, did the Bai’at along with other ladies at the occasion of the conquest of Makkah. Because of her asking certain questions, the Holy Prophet (saw)
Recognised her and asked if she was Hind, wife of Abu Sufiyan. She answered that she had accepted Islam from her heart, and asked for forgiveness for her past. The Holy Prophet (saw) forgave Hind. She was so moved by his forgiveness that she had a complete change of her nature and became very faithful.
She invited the Holy Prophet (saw) to a feast the same evening and presented two roasted lambs saying that there was a shortage of animals those days and she could do only that much. The Holy Prophet prayed to Allah for blessing her herds and as a result, her herds became immensely
Large to the extent that she couldn’t even handle them all. Abdullah bin Abi Salool, who is known to everybody as the leader of the hypocrites, was forgiven by the Holy Prophet (saw) despite his mischiefs and insults and offered his
Funeral prayers despite Hazrat Umar’s multiple requests to not to say the funeral prayers for him Ka’ab Bin Zair, who was a famous poet and had been sentenced for certain offences. His brother wrote to him that he should ask for forgiveness from the Holy Prophet (saw).
After the conquest of Makkah, he came to Madinah and said the Fajr prayers behind the Holy Prophet. After the prayers, he said that Ka’ab is repenting and is asking for forgiveness. Since the Holy Prophet (saw) did not recognize him by face, Ka’ab asked if he
Could be presented if permitted? On permission being granted, he came forward and said that he was Ka’ab bin Zaheer. At that moment, one of the Ansars got up (as Ka’ab had been sentenced to death) to slay him, but the Holy Prophet (saw) asked to leave him alone because he had come for forgiveness.
Ka’ab said a Qaseedah for the Holy Prophet (saw), which he liked and gave his own Chaadar (outer garment) to Ka’ab to wear. Therefore, this was his standard of pardoning. Not only did he forgive, but after doing so he would reward the person and pray for them. There are countless examples of his forgiveness.
He had such an unparalleled virtue of forgiveness that humans are astonished. The Promised Messiah (as) said: “Gods near ones have been cursed at and tried in the past “but they were given the title of avoiding the ignorant. !Our Prophet (saw), the perfect man, was subjected to immense hardships
“and suffering and he was cursed, abused and ridiculed. “But what did this embodiment of excellent morals do in return? He prayed for them and since Allah “the Almighty promised that if you will turn away from the ignorant, I will safeguard your honour
“and life and these worldly men will not be able to attack you. So this is what happened. The opponents of the Holy Prophet (saw) were not able to harm his honour and they were disgraced and ruined themselves. They either submitted entirely to the Holy Prophet (saw) or they were ruined before him.
There are many incidents narrated about obtaining the standards of forgiveness and pardon that the Holy Prophet (saw) instructed the companions to obtain. I will narrate a few incidents. Once a person came to the Holy Prophet (saw) and said, O Messenger of Allah (saw)! I have a servant who makes mistakes.
Can I give him physical punishment? The Holy Prophet (saw) said You should forgive him 70 times a day. Meaning, you should forgive him a lot. Therefore, such was the standard of excellent treatment towards servants and subordinates that the Holy Prophet (saw) established.
I would like to make it clear here that now there is no slavery and it is expected from a servant who is a believer that he should fulfil the due rights of his duties. The commandment to forgive is there but it would also be wrong if he [the servant]
Would do everything in an incorrect manner. As in other places there is a commandment that whatever task someone has been made responsible to do, they should fulfil the due right of completing it. Hence, this commandment is for both sides.
Where master has been commanded not to get upset over petty matters, there the servant has also been instructed to fulfil the due rights of his responsibilities. Whilst instructing us about forgiveness and pardon the Promised Messiah (as) says that The “purpose of creating the Jamaat is that righteousness penetrates
“through the tongue, ear and eyes. It penetrates from every limb. “The light of righteousness should be both inside and outside. “There should be a high standard of excellent morals and there should not be any unnecessary
Anger and rage at all. He says that I have seen that the defect of getting angry is present “even now amongst majority of the Jamaat members. “Enmity and animosity generated over petty matters and they start fighting each other.
“Such people have no part in the Jamaat.” He says that “I think that what is the problem if someone “curses [at someone] and the other [person] keeps quiet and does not respond to it. “The reformation of every Jamaat begins with good morals first that one “progresses in moral training with patience.
“And the best plan is that if someone uses abusive language towards someone, “they should pray for that person earnestly. “Do your moral training first and train others as well and the way to do that is through prayers.
“Pray that may Allah the Almighty reform that person and the enmity in his heart does not increase. He says that Allah the Almighty does not at all like if tolerance, patience “and forbearance are replaced with barbarism. If you progress in good attributes then you will reach God very quickly. He says that
It is true that not every person has the same disposition, everyones temperament is different. He says that For this reason the Holy Quran says that: [Arabic] “everyone acts according to his instinct.” However, he says that if some men who are excellent in certain types of morals,
“then they are weak in the other types [of morals]. “If the aspect of one moral is good, then that of the other is bad. “However, this does not mean that reformation is impossible. “Allah the Almighty has created everyones temperament. “Certain morals of some people are very good and there is progress in it.
“However, there is weakness in other morals.” He said But this does not mean that reformation becomes impossible “and all good morals are not adopted. “Despite the fact that mans temperaments differ, some who have weaknesses also have some
Goodness. It is not the case that everyone has faults only and they do not have any virtues. Everyone has virtues and weaknesses as well. However, the Promised Messiah (as) desires that we strive to reform ourselves whilst obeying the commandments of Allah the Almighty and we should adopt those high morals
That are a standard of a true believer. We should always strive to overcome our weaknesses. And there should be a struggle that we are always trying to make our environment peaceful and the principle which the Holy Prophet (saw) has shared in this regard is that whatever you like for your
Self, or would like to have for yourself, you should desire the same for your brother. May Allah the Almighty enable us to obtain these standards. All praise is due to Allah. We laud Him, we beseech help from Him and ask His protection; we confide in Him, we trust Him alone
And we seek protection against the evils and mischief of our souls and from the bad results of our deeds. Whomsoever He guides on the right path, none can misguide him; and whosoever He declares misled, none can guide him onto the right path.
And we bear witness that none deserves to be worshipped except Allah. We bear witness that Muhammad is His servant and Messenger. O servants of Allah! May Allah be merciful to you. Verily, Allah commands you to act with justice, to confer benefits upon each other
And to do good to others as one does to one ‘s kindred and forbids evil which pertain to your own selves and evils which affect others and prohibits revolts against a lawful authority. He warns you against being unmindful. You remember Allah; He too will remember you;
Call Him and He will make a response to your call. And verily divine remembrance is the highest virtue.