Qadianism is the name of a sect which came into the existence at the outset of the twentieth century in the northern part of India with the help and connivance of Britain. The founder of this sect was a descendant of Mughal lineage – Ghulam Ahmed Qadiani (exp. 1908). He was an ordinary person from the Ahle Sunnah who took undue advantage of the turmoil and chaotic conditions prevalent in the country and in the year 1891, he claimed that he himself is the promised Mahdi (as) and Hazrat Isa (as). Later in 1900 he also claimed prophethood.
The Muslim scholars and intellectuals have successfully exposed and unearthed the falsehood of Qadianism and particularly the claim of prophethood because since the inception of Islam, all Muslims firmly believe that Holy Prophet, Hazrat Mohammed Mustafa (sawa) is the last prophet and messenger of Allah in Islam.
As a result, in 1336 AH, scholars of 25 cities in a reply to a question declared that this sect is infidel (kafir) and out of the realm of Islam. Similarly in the international conference of Rabita-al-Alam-al-Islami which was held in Rabi-ul-Awwal of 1394 (April 1974) in Makkah and which was attended by the learned scholars of 144 countries, passed an unanimous verdict that Qadianism is not an Islamic sect and undoubtedly termed it as infidel.
Since a lot of books have been written in refutation of the claim of prophethood and which are also easily available hence in this article, we will confine our discussion to his false claim of being Imam Mahdi.
The baseless claim of Ghulam Ahmed regarding Imam Mahdi (as) can be summarized in three points.
- Imam Mahdi (as) and Hazrat Isa (as) are one and the same person.
- It has been stated in the traditions that Imam Mahdi (as) will reappear in the fourteenth century.
- Ghulam Ahmed Qadiani himself is Imam Mahdi (as) and he is himself Hazrat Isa (as).
These beliefs are not only against Quran and reliable traditions but are also contrary to the proven beliefs of all the sects and branches of the Ahle Sunnah. These points shall be scrutinized in the following paragraphs and their hollowness will be explained in due course.
Is Imam Mahdi (as) himself Hazrat Isa (as)?
The belief Imam Mahdi (as) and Hazrat Isa (as) being the same person is absolutely against the unanimous consensus of all Muslims. If any person studies traditions regarding Imam Mahdi (as) that are recorded by the great scholars of the Ahle Sunnah in their books like:
- Abdur Rehman Suyuti in ‘Arful Wardi Fee Akhbaril Mahdi’
- Allamah Muttaqi Hindi’ in ‘Al Burhan Fee Alamaat Mahdi Akheruz Zaman’
- Hafiz Ganji Shafei in ‘Al Bayan Fee Akhbare Saheb Zaman’
- Hafiz Yusuf Salmi Shafei’ in Iqdud Durar Fee Akhbaril-Al-Muntazar’
- Allamah Ahmed ibn Hajar Asqalani in ‘Al Qaulul Muktasar Fee Alamaatil Mahdi Al Muntazar’
similar such scores of books can be quoted, wherein hundreds of traditions could be found which explicitly mentions that Imam Mahdi (as) and Hazrat Isa (as) are two entirely different persons because:
Imam Mahdi (as) possesses the same name and same kuniyat as that of the Holy Prophet (sawa). There are authentic traditions in this regard, for instance, Abdullah ibn Masud narrates this tradition from the Holy Prophet (sawa) that, The Hour (Qiyamat) will not arrive unless a man from my Ahle Bayt achieves rulership, whose name will be same as mine. (Musnad Ahmed volume 1 page 386, Sunane Tirmizi chapter 52 tradition no. 2231).
Hence the name of Imam Mahdi (as) is Mohammed and not Isa.
Imam Mahdi (as) is an Arab and from the clan of Quraysh. He is from the progeny of the Holy Prophet (sawa) and a descendant of Hazrat Ali (as) and Hazrat Fatemah Zahra (sa). There are numerous authentic traditions even in this context. This narration is so widely known that a great Tabei, Qatada inquired from Janab Saeed ibn Musayyab, the companion of the Holy Prophet (sawa), that, Is belief in Mahdi a factual truth? When the reply was in affirmative, he further inquired: From which tribe he will be? The reply came from Quraish. He again asked, From which branch of Quraish? The reply was from Bani Hashim. Again he asked: From which branch of Bani Hashim.? He replied: From Abdul Muttalib. Yet again he inquired: From which branch of Abdul Muttalib? The reply was: From the offspring of Fatemah. (Iqdud Durar chapter 1 page 23)
Thus due to these characteristics Imam Mahdi (as) can never be regarded as Hazrat Isa (as) because the later belonged to Bani Israel and preceded the Holy Prophet (sawa) and Hazrat Fatema Zahra (sawa) by hundreds of years. Imam Mahdi (as) descended from Hazrat Zahra (sa) while Hazrat Isa (as) was the son of Janabe Maryam (Mary).
The reappearance of Imam Mahdi (as) will be initiated from the Holy Kabah, in the sacred city of Makkah. There are plenty of traditions in this regard too. While Hazrat Isa (as) will descend from the sky in Eastern Damascus, Syria. (Sahih Muslim chapter 20 tradition no. 2138; Sunan Ibne Majah volume 33 tradition no. 4075)
After the descension from the sky Hazrat Isa (as) will pledge allegiance on the hands of Imam Mahdi (as) and will pray namaz behind him. They will converse with each other. Even here traditions are in abundance. The Holy Prophet (sawa) expressed pride over Imam Mahdi (as) on his being from his progeny in these words – The man behind whom Isa, the son of Maryam, will pray is from my progeny. (Al Burhan Fee Alamaat Mahdi Akheruz Zaman chapter 9 tradition 1; Al-Munar al-Muruf, section 50 tradition 337).
Keeping all these arguments and proofs in view which are accepted by all Muslims it becomes crystal clear that Imam Mahdi (as) and Hazrat Isa (as) are two different personalities and considering them as one is an abjectly illogical conclusion.
The followers of Ghulam Ahmed instead of referring to such firm testimonies and reliable traditions are going after the ambiguous verses and fabricated traditions proving themselves to be among the condemned lot by Quran thus, “whose hearts are deviated”. (Holy Quran chapter 3 verse 7)
False tradition quoted by Qadianis
Qadianis quote a tradition from Ibn Majah, Mahdi is none but Isa.
This is regarded as pure fabrication by all the traditionalists of Ahle Sunnah and hence it is ignored by all. The expert in the science of narrators, Hafiz Zahabi has declared it as ‘ dislikeable’. (Mizanul Etedaal volume 3 page 535).
- Ibn Khaldun in his Muqaddamah page 255, has named it ‘weak’ and ‘uncomfortable’.
- The famous traditionalist Mohammed Siddiq Qanauji opined about the tradition that – the traditionalists have regarded it as a weak tradition because its draft is unclear and the chain of narrators is not reliable. (Al-Izaah page 135)
- The contemporary Sunni scholar Shafei states that this tradition is not only weak but it is false, fabricated, mendacious and baseless. It is not such a tradition which can be ascribed to the Holy Prophet (sawa) or to any of his veteran companions. Then he discusses this tradition in detail and examines the narrators of this tradition. (Ihraaz-Al Wahn Al Maknun page 583-589).
Is The Hour Of Reappearance Appointed?
The Qadiani’s have deceptively tried to prove that the reappearance of Imam Mahdi (as) will take place in the fourteenth century. Whereas no such date is stipulated regarding the reappearance in the traditions. Only this much is mentioned that he will reappear in the last era before Qiyamat, when this world would be fraught with injustice and oppression. A simile has been struck in the traditions between his advent and the arrival of doomsday referring to the abrupt nature of both. Also all those are declared to be vehement liars who stipulate the hour of his reappearance.
An eminent Shafei traditionalist, Shaikh Al-Islam Hamuiee (exp. 730 A. H.) quotes Debal al-Khuzaiee who asked from Imam Ali Reza (as) about the time of reappearance of Imam Mahdi (as); Imam Reza (as) replied: This question pertains to the stipulation of a certain hour of his reappearance. While my father has narrated from the Holy Prophet (sawa) that the reappearance of Imam Mahdi (as) is exactly like Qiyamat which will come at once and all of a sudden. (Faraedus Simtain volume 2 page 237-338 tradition no. 591).
In another tradition the Holy Prophet (sawa) stated that, the advent of Mahdi (as) is like Qiyamat, no one knows about its time. Its occurrence will be very difficult and calamitous for the heavens and the earth, it will strike suddenly. (Faraedus Simtain volume 2 page 237-338).
A narrator asked from Imam Baqir (as), Is the time of the reappearance ordained? He remarked: Those who ordain a time for his reappearance are liars. (Al Kafi volume 1 page 368 tradition no. 5; Al-Ghaybah of Nomani page 294 tradition no. 13)
Imam Sadiq (as) said, Whosoever determines a time of Imam Mahdi’ s (as) reappearance then belie him and do not be afraid of believing him because we have never determined the time of his reappearance. (Al-Ghaybah of Nomani page 289 tradition no. 3; Al-Ghaybah of Shaykh Tusi page 326 tradition no. 414).
Imam Jafar Sadiq (as) spoke on another occasion that, those who appoint a particular time for his reappearance are nasty liars. Neither did we appoint a time in the past nor shall we do the same in the future. (Al-Ghaybah of Shaykh Tusi page 426 tradition no. 412).
The conclusion drawn from the above mentioned traditions is that no one is aware of the time of the reappearance of Imam Mahdi (as). Also Imams (as) never determined a particular time for his reappearance. Moreover whoever fixes a time is but a liar. His reappearance will be abrupt just like the occurrence of Qiyamat.
Is Ghulam Ahmed the Mahdi And Isa Too?
Keeping the foregone discussion in view it becomes clear that Imam Mahdi (as) and Hazrat Isa (as) are two separate and different persons. Hazrat Isa (as) will pray namaz behind Imam Mahdi (as) and swear allegiance to him Hence it is definitely impossible that Mahdi and Isa could be one and the same person. At the most, for the sake of supposition, he may either be Mahdi or Isa and not both. While Ghulam Ahmed is none of them. He is neither the promised Mahdi of Islam nor the son of Maryam, Isa, which is more evident because he never claimed that like Hazrat Isa he was born without a father. He cannot be Mahdi even because:-
- Mahdi would be an Arab, Quraishi, Muttalibi, Fatemi and his name will be Mohammed. While Ghulam Ahmed is none of these, he was a Moghul and not a Quraishi, an Indian and not an Arab. His name was Ghulam Ahmed and not Mohammed.
- Imam Mahdi (as) will reappear from Masjidul Haram in Makkah, between Hajar-e-Aswad and Maqam-e-Ibrahim. While Ghulam Ahmed rose from Qadian (presently in Punjab, a province in Pakistan).
- Imam Mahdi (as) will not be under the sway of anybody, he will combat with all the tyrants and oppressors, eliminating them in the process. He will avenge the blood of the oppressed and the helpless. While Ghulam Ahmed was extremely faithful to the Britishers and prohibited to fight with the tyrants.
- Imam Mahdi (as) will rule over the whole world, will obviate injustice and inequity from each and every nook and corner of the world, while Ghulam Ahmed did not rule over even the entire Qadian and since his appearance, injustice and tyranny have increased in this world day by day.
- When Imam Mahdi (as) will reappear then earth and skies will shower all their blessings, bounties will increase manifold, poverty and want will perish, no one will accept alms. While since the birth of Ghulam Ahmed Qadiani blessings have haply reduced and poverty has multiplied to an immeasurable extent.
- When Imam Mahdi (as) will come then whole world will become monotheistic and infidelity and polytheism will be doomed. The false religions will meet their end. The religion of Islam and its laws will reign supreme while with the coming of Ghulam Ahmed nothing as such has happened. Infidelity, polytheism and false religion are ruling the roost as ever and in fact have intensified their onslaughts.
- The era of Imam Mahdi (as) will be an era of prestige for the Muslims. Muslims will remove their mutual differences and live like brethren among themselves. Peace and tranquility will prevail everywhere, law and order will be established in the world while since Ghulam Ahmed has appeared Muslims are mercilessly massacred, their differences are scaling new heights.
These firm reasons make it absolutely evident that Ghulam Ahmed could never be the promised Mahdi of Islam.
Now the obvious question is that, Then what was he? The answer to this question could be provided by the following tradition of the Holy Prophet (sawa):
Such liars will appear in my nation who will narrate new (fabricated) traditions to you. Such novel traditions which you may not have heard of, even your forefathers would not have heard of those traditions. Beware of such fabricators lest they may mislead you. (Tafsir Durr al-Mansur volume 6 page 51; Sahih Muslim volume 1 page 12 tradition no. 7)
Read More: False Claimants of Imam Mahdi (as)