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Saturday, June 30, 2012


          Islam is the last of the world’s great religions and contains within it the essential truths of all earlier beliefs. The scripture of Islam was revealed by God to His greatest and final law-bearing messenger, the Holy Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings of God be upon him) over a period of 23 years more than fourteen centuries ago. This scripture -- the Holy Quran -- was memorized by thousands of Muslims in the lifetime of the Holy Prophet and represents a continuation of God's guidance to earlier messengers such as Abraham, Moses, Noah, David and Jesus (peace be upon them all).

In fact, Islam is the only religion that requires its followers to believe in and respect all of God’s earlier messengers and their scriptures, thus laying the foundation for interfaith understanding and friendship. This universalist quality of Islamic teachings is unique, allowing Muslims to transcend the usual barriers between members of different religions caused by adherence to ethnic or cultural biases. The Holy Quran not only endorses the holy status of all earlier messengers and revealed books, but acknowledges and incorporates their timeless truths which have lasting value for all mankind. But Islam does much more than simply repeat the divine laws of God from the past. What Islam says it does is bring completion, perfection and protection to God’s guidance for humanity until the Day of Judgment.

To non-Muslims, this is a tall claim, one that would require not only a universal messenger for all mankind, but a scripture that provides complete, just and applicable solutions to every kind of social and moral evil. This scripture should also prove successful in transforming man from an animalistic state to that of a highly compassionate, spiritual being wholly devoted and submitted to his Creator. This is exactly what God states in the Quran about the purpose and teachings of Islam and the example set by the Holy Prophet Muhammad (pbuh).

As proof, the religion of Islam offers far greater insight than previous beliefs about the nature of God, His divine qualities, His purpose in creating man and sending divinely-guided messengers, the reality of the Day of Judgment, and the fulfillment of man's relationship with his Lord. Islam also expressly states that it is not confined to any particular ethnic group (as with Judaism), but is described by God in the Holy Quran as being the lasting and perfected religion for all mankind.

The way this is brought about is foreshadowed in the word “Islam” itself, which means "peace" attained through "willful obedience" to God, and is achieved through free-willed submission to God in the form of daily acts of worship and service to humanity, both of which are designed to increase one’s humility before God and mankind. Islam also requires moral courage in undertaking (in accordance with God's teachings) what one knows to be right and in abstaining from what one knows to be wrong. This inculcates righteousness in one’s self and in society. These are the core values which elevate the status of mankind and it is these qualities which are essential for the spread of peace, justice and love in the world.

The teachings of Islam on religion are very clear. Muslims are commanded that every person’s religion (and their faithfulness to it) is a matter strictly between him and God Almighty, and that no one has the right to judge another’s sincerity or devotion to their Faith. Islam’s holy book, the Quran, is very clear that there is no compulsion allowed in joining the religion and no worldly punishment for leaving it. God alone is the master of the Day of Judgment and the awarder of punishment or mercy on the Day of Judgment as He sees fit. He is the knower of all hearts and He is a just Judge.

And regardless of how well one personally fulfills his spiritual duties to God, it is absolutely essential for each of us to fulfill the rights and obligations owed to our fellow beings for the good of us all because this is the only way that an atmosphere of peace, reconciliation and harmony can be created and maintained. We are all in this life together and the purpose of a religion is to make our worldly as well as our spiritual life a success. Islam provides codes of conduct and a workable wisdom to achieve both these objectives so that we may experience internal and external peace in our personal and public lives.

Islam accomplishes this through its many spiritual disciplines and rituals like the five daily prayers, remembrance of God and the doing of good to others. All these aspects of the religion of Islam focus our attention on God and the goal of complete submission to Him and the embodiment of His divine attributes. Therefore, we should love God and each other so that we may become godly people and win His Pleasure. 

Ghosted with Imam Shamshad A. Nasir -- ran as Guest Columnist in the Inland Valley Daily Bulletin
Religion section, March 10th, 2012, and online at at this link: 
An abridged version ran March 12th at at this link:


I am very sad to see the state of Islam today, where once again the beautiful message of Islam and the example of the Holy Prophet Muhammad, peace and blessings of God be upon him (pbuh), are totally absent in the verdict by Saudi Arabia’s Grand Mufti Abdul Aziz bin Abdullah calling for the destruction of all Christian churches in the region. Such an ignorant ruling is totally against the teachings of Islam, which clearly support freedom of religion (2:256 There shall be no compulsion in religion.). Not only that, but Islam mandates -- by military force if necessary -- the prevention of the destruction of places of worship, specifically mentioning those belonging to Christians, Jews and Muslims: (22:41 …And if Allah had not repelled some people by means of others, cloisters and churches and synagogues and mosques, wherein the name of Allah is oft remembered, would surely have been destroyed...).

Even a child can see that if God commands Muslims to save Christian churches and other places of worship from being torn down, how could God (or His Prophet) then sanction the very thing Muslims are forbidden to do? And to further invalidate the fatwa of the Saudi Grand Mufti, we have as evidence the “Charter of Religious Freedom for Christians” granted to St. Catherine’s monastery in the Sinai by the Holy Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) in 628 AD, which reads:

“This is a message from Muhammad, son of Abdullah, and is a covenant with those who adopt Christianity, be they near and far, that we [the Muslims] are with them. Verily I, my servants, my helpers, and my followers will defend them because Christians are my citizens; and by Allah! I am against anything that displeases them. No compulsion [to convert] is to be put on them. Neither are their judges to be removed from their posts, nor their monks from their monasteries. No one is to destroy a house of their religion, nor damage it, or carry anything from it to the houses of the Muslims. Should anyone do any of these, he would spoil God's covenant and disobey His Prophet. Verily, they are my allies and have my secure charter [of protection]. No one can force them to migrate or oblige them to fight during wartime. The Muslims are to fight for them. If a female Christian is married to a Muslim, it must not take place without her approval. She is not to be prevented from visiting her church to pray. Their churches are to be respected. Christians are not to be prevented from repairing them. . . No one of the nation [of Muslims] is to disobey this covenant until the Day of Judgment.”

The Saudi Grand Mufti’s extremist and un-Islamic edict fosters radicalism and animosity towards Christians. Any resulting destruction of property or loss of life suffered by Christians at the hands of Muslims will be on his hands as well for instigating such reprehensible hatred and evil.

Ironically, at the same time the Saudi Grand Mufti was inciting intolerance, destruction and potential murder, the Saudi King Abdallah was in Spain attending a Christian interfaith conference where he was extolling the peace, love and tolerance of Islam. It’s too bad these admirable qualities are so noticeably absent in the Saudi Kingdom. It would be admirable if the King hosted an interfaith conference in Mecca or Medina, and allowed Christians and other “religious minorities” in his country to build and inhabit their places of worship in peace and security. He would then be following the example of the greatest Grand Mufti in Islam, the Holy Prophet Muhammad (pbuh).

The Holy Prophet (pbuh), by a way of example, left a tradition for Muslims to host people of other faith in the Muslim sacred cities. Let us not forget that the Holy Prophet (pbuh) hosted several delegations from other faiths in Muslim Mosques, including the famous event of allowing the Christians of Najran to worship in the Prophet's Mosque in Medina. How can the Kingdom prohibit the entry of non-Muslim into Mecca or Medina? It runs contrary to the practice of the Holy Prophet (pbuh).

Extremism is running high in the Kingdom towards Muslims and non-Muslims alike. Mufti Abdul Aziz bin Abdallah bin Baz, who was the Grand Mufti of Saudi Arabia from 1993 until his death in 1999, had issued a verdict proposing killing Muslims who would not adopt the Islamic practice of offering the five daily prayers. In his book of edicts, 'Fata'wa' published in 1995, the Grand Mufti explicitly asks the authorities to force Muslims into repentance and, in case of resistance, "Kill them."

This is why the edict by the current Saudi Grand Mufti is also such a disgrace – worse, an insult -- to Islam. Can he truly be ignorant of the many verses in the Quran and the examples of the Holy Prophet (pbuh) that contravene and outright prohibit the intolerance, violence and destruction his edict will generate?

Doesn’t the Grand Mufti remember that the Holy Prophet (pbuh) sent his persecuted Muslim followers to seek asylum in Abyssinia (now Ethiopia) -- a Christian-ruled country? And doesn’t the Grand Mufti know about the Charter of Medina which Muhammad, as the elected chief executive, signed along with all other leaders from the town’s religious and tribal groups? In that charter of religious freedom and mutual protection, they pledged that all the residents of Medina, regardless of their faith or tribe, would live peacefully together and defend each other and their city against attack. Everyone would be free to worship as they pleased, with no forced conversion to Islam or any other religion.

At the time of the Holy Prophet (pbuh), the Muslims, Jews, Christians and pagans in Medina were all allowed to pray according to their own beliefs and rituals without fear of persecution or violence against them or their places of worship. This is the true example of Islam set by Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) which the Saudi Grand Mufti and all those who agree with his edict against the Christians are disobeying. They all seem to have forgotten that the Holy Prophet (pbuh) was and remains the best and final word for the Muslims. Their amnesia will cost them dearly.

[ Ghosted with Imam Shamshad A. Nasir; addit'l input from Imran Jattala. Ran on March 28th, 2012 in the Inland Valley Daily Bulletin and San Bernardino Sun under the headline: "Edict against churches goes against Islam." It also appeared online at here: ]


The death of the most hunted terrorist in modern history marks not just the death of a man, but the end of an iconic symbol of anti-Western and specifically anti-American sentiment in the hearts and minds of Jihadist Muslims. It is certainly bankable that Al-Qaida and the Taliban (in all their forms) won’t be dissuaded or prevented by the death of Osama Bin Laden from committing future acts of terrorism. In fact, just the opposite will inevitably occur. We are bound to see revenge attacks frequently and soon.
What has been dealt a death-blow is the extremist Muslims’ fervent belief that Bin Laden was and always would be protected by God from the wrath and retribution of the “infidel” West. On May 1st in the dead of night, in Bin Laden’s high-security compound in Pakistan, justice was decisively served by U.S. Navy SEALs.
Some say Bin Laden has been dead for years now, based on the fact that the most recent photo of him dates from 2000, while some don’t believe he was killed May 1st because his body was buried at sea, so there’s no way to prove that it was, in fact, Bin Laden.
In answer to these two “scenarios,” if the first were true, then the Al-Qaida leadership would be guilty of a massive fraud to bolster recruitment and their followers’ morale by not telling the faithful that Bin Laden was already dead. And since “Uncle Osama Wants You!” doesn’t work very well without the Uncle, it would serve Al-Qaida to keep him alive.
In answer to the question “Is Osama really dead?” there are only three plausible possibilities regarding the fate of Osama Bin Laden: 1. He died years ago and an imposter look-alike was killed May 1st in Pakistan; 2. the real Osama was killed May 1st and buried at sea to prevent his land-based grave from becoming a shrine for future Jihadists; or 3. the real Osama was captured alive on May 1st and is being secretly interrogated by the CIA for useful intelligence data, in which case he will never see the light of day or publicity anyway, so he’s still “dead” as far as his followers are concerned. And whichever scenario is true, in the end, Bin Laden is out of the picture.
And what is equally undeniable is that these misguided extremists have lost their celebrity Poster Boy for violent Jihad and no one will ever be able to replace him. No Taliban or Al-Qaida member can ignore the fact that God did not protect Osama Bin Laden from the “infidels.” He is no longer leading the faithful in a Jihad against the West to restore the lost glory and worldly empire of Islam through war and political caliphate. That dream is dead and will never be a reality anyway. Why? Because Islam forbids everything that Osama Bin Laden represents.
In the Holy Quran, God says that those who are the aggressors in a war are the wrongdoers, and that those who kill the innocent or create disorder – terrorism -- in the land deserve capital punishment; that the murder of one innocent person is akin to the murder of all mankind.
Muslims are even commanded to be the first to police their own law-breakers, and should they fear or fail to do so, as is definitely the case in Pakistan where terrorism and the protection of terrorists goes hand-in-hand unchecked, that duty will fall to others.
In the Quran, God repeatedly warns Muslims to be righteous, humble, compassionate, forgiving, peaceful and tolerant; to not knowingly commit evil and immorality or else they will suffer the evil consequences of their actions.
The Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) also warned the Muslims similarly, promising that if they forget God and reject righteousness and turn instead to Satan and choose a life of selfish pleasures and evils, they will be given the punishments of ignorance, poverty, debasement and the tyranny of evil, corrupt spiritual and worldly leaders. Is this not the sad condition of the majority of Muslims today? What then is the solution?
The solution lies in the adoption of an Islam that is enlightened, peaceful, tolerant, non-violent, rational and committed to love of God and humanity, education, human rights, justice and the freedom of religious expression for all, whether they are Muslim or not. The Quran clearly states there shall be no compulsion to accept the faith of Islam, nor shall there be any worldly punishment for leaving it.
The Islam that proclaims and strives to live by these truths does exist in the world today, and has existed for over 120 years. That Islam is the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community, established in 1889 with 40 members, now has tens of millions of “Muslims for Peace” in nearly 200 countries who believe in the Messiah, Mirza Ghulam Ahmad of Qadian. Their motto is “Love for All – Hatred for None.” This is the Islam that will defeat the “Islam” of Al-Qaida and the Taliban. Ahmadiyya Islam is the only Islam that can rescue the religion from its Jihadist abductors.
[ Ghosted with Imam Shamshad A. Nasir -- ran May 19th, 2011 as “Jihadist lost their poster boy in Osama bin Laden” in the Inland Valley Daily Bulletin and the San Bernardino Sun and at at ]


Why isn't Allah protecting the Muslim world against the violence and occupation of the Western Christian powers?

There is a Hadith, a saying of the Holy Prophet of Islam, Muhammad (Peace & Blessings be upon him) that states: "God will institute the Rightly-Guided Khilafat [successor-ship to a prophet] after the time of Holy Prophet Muhammad, which will last 30 years [it did], then there will be monarchial dictatorship and despotism for as long as Allah wills [there was]. Then, when the Imam Mahdi comes [Imam Mahdi means a guided spiritual leader, not a military leader; and who is guiding him? Allah, of course], Allah will re-institute the Divinely-Guided Khilafat on the precept of prophet-hood, which will remain until the Day of Judgment."

Allah promises to “seize by the life artery” anyone claiming they speak a word in the name of God when, in fact, they do not -- yet Mirza Ghulam Ahmad, the Holy Founder of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community, claimed to be a recipient of divine revelation for nearly 30 years and he was never assassinated, never “seized by his life artery,” even though he openly called on his opponents to try and kill him, and if they succeeded in doing so, it would prove him false.

Instead, he lived a long and full life and died of natural causes resulting from a stomach condition called dysentery, which was one of the three leading causes of death during the 19th-20th centuries in the subcontinent. When Prophet Muhammad got sick in his final days, he too died of that ailment. Medically speaking, when someone gets sick and dies from their illness, it's called "natural causes" and no one attributes their death to divine punishment.

What is the only Muslim community whose founder claimed to be the Promised Messiah and Imam Mahdi and that has a successor-ship of Khalifas, all proclaiming they were made Khalifas by Allah -- none ever being assassinated -- now lasting over 100 years? Only

Would Allah allow a false Khilafat to continue to exist for over a century? Look up the survival rates of past claimants to being the Imam Mahdi or a Khalifa of God? Rashad Khalifa is the latest -- he claimed he was raised along with Prophet Abraham and the Holy Prophet Muhammad for the reformation of mankind. (Visit their website
and read for yourself.) Rashad Khalifa expounds on this by saying he manifests in his person the awaited coming of the Jewish Messiah, the Christian Messiah and the Imam Mahdi for the Muslims because none of these persons is actually coming.

Coincidently, Rashad Khalifa also said the last two verses of chapter 9 (128 & 129) were false and were not part of the revelation of the Quran, and that he fixed the problem by removing them from his “official” translation. One wonders how this could be true if 15:10 is true: “Verily, We Ourself have sent down this Exhortation, and most surely We will be its Guardian.” So one is left with believing in what Allah says in chapter 15 about protecting the Quran, and what Rashad Khalifa says about verse 128 and 129 of chapter 9 being falsely inserted into the Quran. But since Rashad Khalifa was assassinated in Tucson, AZ in 1990, I think it’s safe to say that God has given His judgment on that issue.

Some believe even General Zia-ul Haq of Pakistan was setting himself up to be pronounced as Khalifatul Muslemeen [Khalifa of the Muslims] when he started instituting the so-called Shariah laws all over Pakistan and made constitutional changes to make lives miserable for those whom he regarded as non-Muslim minorities. He had the support of most of the mullahs of Pakistan and even the Muslim World. Ever wonder what became of him? He also met one of the most violent ends imaginable when his plane exploded in mid-air. All that could be found to identify him were his false teeth.

So the question becomes: is not God consistent with previous claimants to prophet-hood or khalifa-ship in regards to whether they were really from God? Why make an exception for Mirza Ghulam Ahmad and let him live to a ripe old age, and allowing him to proclaim himself to be the Imam Mahdi and Promised Messiah with no divine rebuke? Because Allah does not make exceptions, that's why; otherwise, we could have no faith in the promise of God.

Mirza Ghulam Ahmad claimed repeatedly in many of his writings and to all of his enemies that he was divinely-appointed by God as the Promised Messiah and Imam Mahdi, and that if he were a liar, a “dajjal” as his opponents so vocally charged, then, Allah would not allow him to keep on living, claiming he was from God if he were not. Ahmad proclaimed that if he were false, then God would cause his end to be swift and disgraceful and this would be a clear Sign that he was a false claimant. But look what happened: it was his opponents who suffered disgrace, and even murder at the hands of others, not Mirza Ghulam Ahmad. So who was Allah protecting and why?

And why isn't Allah protecting the Muslim world today against the violence and occupation of the Western Christian powers? Could it be because the Muslims believe Jesus Christ (as) is alive bodily in the second heaven and is coming down to kill all the Christians who don’t accept Islam (when he's not breaking all their crosses personally, of course) in order to save the Muslims?

Allah tells us that He lets the disobedient wander blindly in their transgression. And look at how the Muslims of the world transgress; against God, against His commandments and against His creation in the form of terrorism and suicide bombings and the like.

And where is the knowledge and spiritual wisdom in the Muslim world? If we look at translations of the Holy Quran for examples we are left in a desert of ignorance and superstition. Why is it that no Quran translations except the Ahmadiyya translations first explained what Alif Lam Meem and other abbreviations mean at the beginnings of a quarter of the surahs? Virtually all translations except the Ahmadi's say "These are a mystery and only Allah knows what they mean." And those non-Ahmadi translations that now give some explanation along our lines can be shown to have been directly influenced by our translations.

Then just look at explanation of Surah Fatiha. All Muslim scholars say this is the most important chapter of the Quran, yet virtually all Qurans have no or very little explanation for the meanings of the Arabic in this surah. One translation just had about a paragraph that basically said this was a "prayer' to God that was "answered" by the revelation of the Quran. While this is true, it doesn't tell you anything about what the surah actually means.

But look at the writings of the Promised Messiah on surah Fatiha -- it's been collected in a book almost 400 pages long. Then there's the detailed Quran commentary by the Promised Messiah (8-vol.), and the Urdu and English commentary Qurans. In total there are thousands and thousands of pages of explanation of the Quran, the Sunnah and the Hadith. And of course, there are the 80+ books of the Promised Messiah.

If all you do is look at the few books he wrote in Arabic (one being the revealed sermon) you can easily prove he's false by just finding one mistake in the Arabic -- just one -- and if you think all the anti-Ahmadi Arabs out there who are scholars of Arabic haven't been trying to do just that for the last 110 years, then you haven't looked. In fact, many a sincere, God-fearing and open-hearted Arab has converted to Ahmadiyyat because of the Promised Messiah's books -- and his Qaseeda in praise of the Holy Prophet -- in Arabic.

The challenges by the Promised Messiah to his opponents on how to prove him false are legendary and numerous; the "find one mistake in my Arabic" -- when he never knew Arabic until Allah taught him 40,000 root words of Arabic in one night -- being just one example.

Quranic verses like:
16:3  He [Allah] sends down the angels with revelation by His command on whomsoever of His servants He pleases saying, “Warn people that there is no God but I, so take Me alone for your Protector.”

11:18  - Can he [Prophet Muhammad], then, who possesses a clear proof from his Lord, and to testify to whose truth a witness from Him shall follow him [who is this? scholars say it is the Imam Mahdi], and who was preceded by the Book of Moses, a guide and a mercy, be an impostor? Those who consider these matters believe therein, and whoever of the opposing parties disbelieves in it, Fire shall be his promised place. So be not thou in doubt about it. Surely, it is the truth from thy Lord; but most men do not believe.

7:36 - O children of Adam! if Messengers come to you from among yourselves, rehearsing My Signs unto you, then whoso shall fear God and do good deeds, on them shall come no fear nor shall they grieve.

Now, considering that the Holy Prophet himself received and recited this verse and never once said it was not true because he was the last prophet in sequence of time, and since it is in the future tense of "If" as in sometime in the future it may happen, and if it does, Muslims must pay heed to these messengers.
Then there are the numerous -- dozens upon dozens -- of references where Allah says He Guides whomsoever He pleases. And to say that Allah no longer speaks to devout Muslims who have submitted themselves to Him in emulation of the life and teachings of the Holy Prophet (saw) is to say that Islam is a dead religion, where it profits a Muslim nothing to be obedient to God and serve Him and His creation.

And why then was surah Ikhlaus revealed in response to the derision of the Arabs, who said Prophet Muhammad had no male progeny to carry on his line? Don't Muslims know that surah Ikhlaus says very clearly that the followers of Prophet Muhammad would be his spiritual children and the Meccans would be issue-less. Are there any idol worshipers in Arabia? Are there followers of Prophet Muhammad all over the globe?

Have not the recognized spiritual "saints" -- the Mujaddids of each century -- been blessed with divine guidance from Allah? Were not every one of these now-recognized "saints" and scholars like Rumi, Ghazzali, Rushdie, Hanbal, Hanafi, etc. all denounced as heretics and/or kafirs by the ulema of their time? Yes, every one of them. But now we know different.

As so too will the Muslim ummah and ulema come to the same conclusion about Mirza Ghulam Ahmad in about 200 more years -- when by that time the Muslim world will have gotten it's worldly and spiritual backside kicked into a bloody pulp by the powers-that-be -- all except for one community of Muslims: the Ahmadiyya Jama’at. They alone will be left standing when all else in the Islamic world has crumbled and been reduced to dust.

Ahmadiyyat is Noah's Ark. All those who are wise enough to get on the boat will be saved from the ongoing deluge of wrath and punishment by Allah. Everyone else -- especially the opponents of Ahmadiyyat -- will be drowned.
(Originally appeared March 5th, 2010 on at this link:)


I am a convert to the religion of Islam. I am proud to be a Muslim but I am not proud of some Muslims. I am appalled and angered by the frequent acts of violence against other Muslims and members of other faiths at the hands of these so-called Muslims zealously eager to “defend” the honor of Islam and the Holy Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) by extinguishing the lives of others. Their unspeakable atrocities are the very defamation they claim to remove.

I reject their contention that they are being “true” Muslims by mercilessly butchering the innocent in the name of God. And I am saddened and dismayed beyond words when a great number of those innocents belong to the same Islamic community as I.

On Sunday, Feb.6th, 2011, in yet another heinous act of evil in the name of Allah, more than 1,000 angry Muslims armed with bamboo poles, spears, knives and machetes viciously attacked 20 unarmed members of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community in a rural village in south Banten province, Indonesia.

Three Ahmadi Muslims were brutally killed and five seriously injured at the scene while dozens of policemen stood by impotently and watched, unable to stop the mob violence. One of the injured Ahmadis who was beaten into a coma died several days later.  None of the people responsible for the killings has been arrested, even though a 30-minute video of the attack was given to the police as evidence.

The motive for the attack? Ahmadis are considered heretics in Islam. Calls by hard-line Muslim clerics and political leaders for the disbanding of the Ahmadiyya sect and for the persecution of its members often culminate in Ahmadis being the victims of looting, arson and unrepentant murder by mobs of the kind that attacked the Banten Ahmadis last Sunday. Indonesia is fast becoming a carbon copy of Pakistan, gripped in the fist of Taliban and al-Qaida extremism.

Against such a backdrop where compassion, tolerance and peace in the Muslim world seem little more than a mirage, the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community’s motto of “Love for All – Hatred for None” is a lonely cry in the wasteland of ignorance and hate that comprises much of what is viewed as mainstream Islam by the West and by many Muslims themselves – many of them proudly defensive of it.

Critics of Islam say that what passes for the faith of nearly 1.5-billion people today, in all its brutish rage, is merely the fruit of the seeds planted 1,400 years ago in the deserts of Arabia -- that Islam started out violent, evil and oppressive and stayed that way, true to its core principles. Peaceful Muslims aren’t being “true” Muslims.

Others, myself included, answer that a religion whose primary descriptive is ‘peace’ cannot then be its opposite. It has devolved into the barbarity and inhumanity we now see visited upon its perceived enemies, within and without, but that is a result of the corruption and decay of the faith from its pristine understanding and practice, not a product of its original design and manifestation.

This is evident following the advent of Islam in the 7th century AD by the moral, social and spiritual transformation of pre-Islamic Arabia into a cultured civilization that eventually produced the antidote to the Dark Ages.

Islam established a way of life for its adherents that forbade idolatry, non-defensive war, murder, drinking, gambling, promiscuity, theft, deceit, bribery, infanticide and every kind of evil, while mandating belief in One God, compassion for the needy, justice for the oppressed, equal spiritual rank and the right to education for men and women, charity to strangers, neighbors, relatives and orphans, and the promotion of every kind of good.

Compared to the savage feudalism it replaced, Islam was eminently spiritual, civilized, merciful, tolerant, forgiving and moral. How is it possible for a religion routinely labeled as barbaric, evil, immoral and intolerant to somehow produce all of the previously listed social and moral tenets if the core values of that religion are barbarism, evil, immorality and intolerance? The answer is: it can’t and it didn’t.

The Bible and the Quran both record the same wisdom: “A good tree produces good fruit, and an evil tree produces evil fruit.” But it’s also self-evident that a good tree left abandoned will soon wither and become stunted and diseased, eventually producing bad fruit.

In the case of Islam, its “bad” fruits are those violent, extremist Muslims raised on the poisoned fruit from a branch of Islam rooted in a post-Colonial reactionary worldview predicated on real or perceived injustices against Muslims by non-Muslims past and present. This is now the mantra of virtually every Jihadist organization.

Muslims with this mindset have lost sight of the real purpose and message of Islam: to attain peace and Oneness with God, and peace and brotherhood with humanity. These ideals form the true foundation of Islam and are the main reasons people convert to Islam. This is the Islam practiced and preached since 1889 by the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community, now in over 190 countries.

Peace-loving Muslims and non-Muslims must join forces to empower this type of Islam to counter its extremist forms. To side with Muslims who declare Ahmadis non-Muslim only hastens and guarantees more intolerance and violence against any and all who disagree with the radicals version of “beheader’s Islam.”

When nations like Pakistan and Indonesia fall prey to and even celebrate the tyranny and wickedness of militant, extremist Islam, such nations and their populations will inevitably reap the deadly and bitter fruits of their actions -- and their inactions.

Those Muslims whose hearts cry out in anger, pain or shame at the persecution of condemned Christian Asia Bibi and the cold-blooded murder of Punjab Gov. Salman Taseer must stand up now to help save Islam from its self-inflicted wounds of ignorance, intolerance, bigotry and evil.

They can do this by standing up for and with the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community, either in membership or in sympathy, and through the applied rule of law to protect the innocent and end extremism and hate in Islamic countries like Saudi Arabia, Pakistan and Indonesia.

To paraphrase a well-known truth that we all must take to heart, “All that is required for evil people to triumph is for good people to do nothing.” I am an Ahmadi Muslim and I choose to stand with the good.

Appeared as "Murderous Muslims not true to Islam" in the Inland Valley Daily Bulletin and the San Bernardino Sun on Feb. 23rd, 2011 and online at and at:


Muslims believe that God is singularly, non-corporeally One, without partners, “persons” in a godhead or physical offspring. In chapter 112, verses 2-5 in the Holy Quran, we read the quintessential definition of God:

“Proclaim: ‘He is Allah, the only One; Allah, the Independent and Besought of all. He begets not, nor is He begotten; And there is none like Him.”

These four sentences present the true eminence and nature of God; they extol His majesty and supremacy as the sole Creator and Lord over mankind and all creation. These four sentences counter all forms of theology, paganism or idolatry that impute to God any human frailties or worldly limitations.

The Quran teaches that God is free from all defects, with unlimited knowledge and powers. He encompasses everything and nothing encompasses Him. God is the First and the Last, the ever-Living, the Omnipresent, impervious to death. He suffers no decay, nor does he tire. His attributes are eternal, His powers ever intact and undiminished. God is the Master of the Day of Judgment, and on Judgment Day, God has all power to be supremely Merciful, with all power to forgive sins without requiring any payment in the form of the death of anyone, least of all his own physical son.

God also tells us in the Quran in 2:187 that He hears the prayers of His supplicants and helps them in distress. When we are humble and weak and turn to Him, He turns to us with His Love, Mercy and Compassion. God reassures us, saying, “When My servants ask thee about Me, tell them: ‘I am near. I answer the prayer of the supplicant when he prays to Me.’ So they should hearken to Me and believe in Me, that they may follow the right way.”

And while God is compassionate, He is also Just. Unrepentant wrongdoers will not escape God’s Justice, but once they do repent, His Mercy will prevail. In 7:157 God says, “I will inflict My punishment on whom I will; but My mercy encompasses all things; so I will ordain it for those who act righteously…” For those who read “on whom I will” as capricious, remember: God’s Will is always Just.

God tells us in the Holy Quran in 51:57 that He created mankind to worship Him in complete humility and submission. When we do this, we can begin to manifest the qualities or Attributes of God, thus fulfilling the purpose of our creation, which is to become godly. And when God becomes the central focus of all our thoughts and actions, our godliness and righteousness will arise as a natural result.

Islam teaches us the most complete and fulfilling way to worship and serve God. He is my God, your God, and the God of everyone. He desires for us the good of this life and the good of the life to come. For all who wish to be godly, we must first turn to God and worship Him alone. This is what will deliver us from the Hell of this life and the next.

[Ghosted; original draft by Jameel Mohamed for Imam Shamshad's “From the Pulpit” Daily Bulletin religion section. Ran in May19th print edition and at this link: ]


If Jesus Christ descended from heaven, as expected by both mainstream Muslims and Christians, what would be his fate were he to travel to Pakistan? Would he be welcomed with open arms or open hostility? According to the laws of Pakistan, anyone who claims to be a prophet, messenger, or a reformer of any kind can be forbidden to preach, arrested and charged with blasphemy.

In 1974, under pressure from Islamic religious groups, the Pakistani National Assembly amended their Constitution to declare that anyone claiming to be a prophet, messenger, or any kind of reformer is false and cannot be true because the Holy Prophet Muhammad, the founder of Islam, is the last prophet.

To put teeth in this amendment, the Pakistani penal code was amended in 1984-1986 (by the order of the leader of Pakistan, Gen. Zia-ul-Haq) to criminalize the practice of Islam by those deemed non-Muslims, specifically Ahmadi Muslims. Penalties under the blasphemy laws range from fines, imprisonment, and even capital punishment.

This law is unjust on more than just legal grounds because no political assembly has any religious authority or right to interfere with anyone's chosen religious beliefs. As a result of these laws, religious minorities in Pakistan are not only deprived of their basic human right of religious freedom, but these laws are frequently and grossly brought to bear to settle personal grievances and obtain by legal theft the property and resources of others.

If, for instance, a Sunni Muslim hankers after his Shia, Christian, Hindu, Sikh or Ahmadi neighbor’s store, home or other property, all he needs to do is accuse that person of blasphemy against Islam or the Prophet Muhammad or desecrating the Quran and an angry mob and/or the police will appear to dispense vigilante justice.

The grist for this mill of hatred comes from the belief by mainstream Islamic scholars that, in deference to the honor and status of the Holy Prophet Muhammad, no prophet or reformer can appear after the Holy Prophet. Contradicting this is the previously stated belief held by virtually all Muslims and Christians that Jesus Christ, whom Muslims view as the Jewish Messiah and whom Christians view as the literal Son of God and/or God will come again.

Confusing the situation still more is the belief of mainstream Muslims that the Imam Mahdi (the God-guided spiritual leader) will appear after the Holy Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) but that he won’t be a prophet. This begs the obvious question then of just who will be guiding him? Not God?

Another point to be remembered is that without any divine authority or guidance, Jesus (pbuh) would be unable to reform anyone in Pakistan. How would Jesus preach if he is an ordinary person and not a reformer, a prophet, or a messenger? Let us clearly examine and understand this issue.

The Holy Quran clearly states: “Jesus was sent as a prophet to the Children of Israel" (3:50), but the so-called Islamic scholars insist that Jesus (pbuh) will teach Islam to the Christians and Jews after Prophet Muhammad (pbuh).

One finds no actual proof in the Holy Quran that Jesus ascended bodily to heaven, and there is also no evidence anywhere in the Quran that he will physically descend. The Ahmadiyya Muslim point of view, however, is entirely consistent with the Quran, the sayings of the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh), and the Holy Bible, as well as common sense.

Ahmadi Muslims believe that Jesus (pbuh) was saved from an accursed death on the cross and migrated towards Kashmir in search of the ten Lost Tribes of Israel, in accordance with his stated mission to: “gather the Lost Sheep of the House of Israel.” He fulfilled his mission, he died a natural death and is buried in Srinagar in Kashmir (go online to:

Why oppose the blasphemy laws in Pakistan anyway? On May 28th, 2010, an attack was made on two Ahmadi Muslim mosques in Lahore, martyring nearly ninety Ahmadis. Religious terrorism against Ahmadis is the result of Pakistan’s 1974 Constitutional amendment and its 1984-1986 blasphemy laws, none of which have any Quranic validation to defend or support them. Ahmadi Muslims seek only to be true Muslims in the eyes of God, rather than in the eyes of people. God knows all hearts.

I urge all my American Christian friends that if Jesus does in fact come, do not let him go to Pakistan or he will be put to death again, because this is the law of Pakistan.

Ahmadi Muslims believe that the Second Advent of the Messiah has been fulfilled in the person of Mirza Ghulam Ahmad of Qadian, who claimed to be the Promised Messiah and Imam Mahdi (the guided one from God). It is truly sad and ironic that in Islam it is considered perfectly OK to believe that the Promised Messiah and Imam Mahdi will come, but it is not OK to believe that they have.

Go to the Ahmadiyya website: to read the following books: “Jesus in India” and “Where Did Jesus Die?” For more info, please call 1-800-WHY-ISLAM.
[Ghosted; original concept by Imam Shamshad A. Nasir. Essay ran Dec. 16th, 2010 in the Inland Valley Daily Bulletin and the San Bernardino Sun, and also at the independent website: at this link: ]


Fear is the Stonemason of the prison of our sins.
With each brick of selfishness do we slowly build higher
the walls that separate us from Allah’s sunlight of Forgiveness.
Our tears of regret let flow will surely loosen the mortar
of our despair from which we fashion with passion-trembled hands
the fortress of our inner Shaitan.
Our hope for the Mercy of Allah brings His Light of Guidance
and Grace upon the darkest shadows of a soul’s long night, for
Tahajjud is His blessed gift of silence before the dawn, wherein
a humbled heart might whisper a tearful prayer into the ear of God.
“Follow not the footsteps of Shaitan,” our loving Lord commands,
that we not stumble in our darkness.  Then He brings us close in
the embrace of His promise that He purifies whomsoever He pleases,
else all would be lost.  For Allah is the All-Hearing that we may be heard,
the All-Knowing that we may truly know ourselves to be His creation, 
made perfection willed to strive and choose -- with Him or without, 
beside ourselves in doubt as long as we listen to our fear and want.  
Alone as long as we choose to close our eyes in arrogance and pride.  
Trapped in our past or blinded by tomorrow’s temptations of delight, 
we sacrifice our Now-ness with Allah upon the altar of our sins and fears.
Lay your prayer mat before the Throne of God.  
Despair not of the countless millions who precede you to the Hall, 
for His chamber, most surely, is a room that has no walls.  
Beseech Him then for Light on Light that illumines from within 
and fills the heart with gladness and kills the flames of sin.
Seek, therefore, His Power which can free the tortured heart.  
Beg the help of Allah alone -- the One Whom none can thwart, 
His Mercy a flood no walls of pain withstand.  
Humility is the hand that knocks upon His Door; 
your righteousness the key that opens it here and evermore. 
Live within each moment and know that each moment lives in God.  
He frees you every instance you return again to Him, 
so hold fast the rope connecting you to Him.  
It’s ever in you always there, protecting you from sin.
The Light of God is Allah’s Love, the Love of God is Allah’s Light.
Let not fear, the stonemason of sin, entomb your soul in night.
In Allah’s daylight you’re already free -- He’s just waiting
for you to leave your unlocked cell, not ever to return.
Choose now and forever His Loving arms and not the fires that burn,
for your fear is but the stonemason, His Love the key you turn.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012


To:       Dean of Admissions, ISCOR                                                    March 15th, 2012
From:   Jonathan M.A.Ghaffar
Re:       Recent Applicant, Jameel Matin

Dear respected Dean of Admissions for the ISCOR program.
            May Peace and the Blessings of God be upon you.
            I come before you (via this letter) to advocate on behalf of a dear and accomplished friend – someone I have known since he was a child and whom I have grown to respect as a man in every sense of the word, even when so many others, it seems, have long since forgotten how to recognize or embody any other sense besides the physical. I humbly ask you to ponder this:
Who can take the measure of a man better than the man who sets before him the goals he seeks to achieve and the challenges he vows to overcome -- and then does so? I know of no better definition of such a young man than Jameel Matin (pronounced Mateen). His very name means “the Sublime and the Strong,” and is an accurate attestation of his determination, integrity, humility and humanity. Mr. Matin was recently denied acceptance into the ISCOR program. I would like to take a few minutes of your valuable time to persuade you to reconsider that decision. Here’s why:
            Mr. Matin has just finished serving his country with honor and distinction as a United States Marine assigned to an elite special interdiction unit known as F.A.S.T. (Fleet Anti-terrorism Security Team), 1st Company, whose accomplishments he cannot divulge for reasons pertaining to the classified nature of the missions. Suffice it to say; the recent documentary-style movie “Act of Valor” will give you a good idea of what Mr. Matin’s field environment and responsibilities were as a member of this select unit. So while looking over his resume, keep in mind that it may appear lacking in its listings of insurgency “hot spots” regularly mentioned in the news, but their omission is two-fold: he is not allowed to list them or discuss the details of his deployments, and many of the “hot spots” are ones that seldom if ever make the news anyway, but it’s the actions of Special Ops teams like the USMC’s F.A.S.T. company and the Navy SEALs that routinely prevent “hot spots” or terrorist events from happening in the first place. We just rarely or never hear about them.
            I bring this up not to aggrandize Mr. Matin or his military service, but to make a vitally relevant point with regard to the stated objectives of the ISCOR program to facilitate non-military conflict resolution in this increasingly geopolitically unstable world: you cannot hope to achieve success in non-military conflict resolution if you have not experienced and do not intimately understand the physical, emotional, psychological and spiritual costs of war.
Letter of recommendation for Jameel Matin                                                                          pg. 2
The frightful and prescient warnings about the military-industrial complex by President Eisenhower would have sounded on deaf ears as the hollow bombasts of a politician had he not been General Eisenhower before he was President. And both history and common sense tell us that the most ardent and impassioned advocates for peace (especially during the time of war) are never those who dodged the draft but those who dodged the bullets.
            Jameel Matin has passed through the valley of the shadow of death, and now wants to bring the insight and wisdom gleaned from his military past to help the world forge a straight path of peace in and for the future. He is eminently qualified to succeed in this latest endeavor he has chosen to pursue. That it is the ISCOR program he wants to enroll in and master demonstrates the same perceptiveness of judgment and objective that kindled and focused his initial desire as a teen still in High School to apply for the toughest and most self-demanding branch of the U.S. military whose motto ”Semper Fi” is the iconic mantra of patriotic idealism. He willingly traversed the chasm of Hell, first in basic training as a raw Marine recruit, and then repeatedly in clandestine military deployments around the world, emerging each time with his psyche, his honor and his humanity intact. No small feat.
He credits this to his steadfast and unshakable faith in, and reliance upon, God. He was born and raised as a devout member of the worldwide Ahmadiyya Muslim Community, whose motto is: “Love for All – Hatred for None.” Much of his intrinsic value and contribution to F.A.S.T. 1st company resides in his fluency in Urdu, Hindi and Bangla, as well as his in-depth understanding of the root causes and effects of the Jihadi politics and extremist mindset of Islamic militants (such as the Taliban and al-Qaida) as a direct result of the frequent targeted persecution and killing of Ahmadi Muslims at the hands of radical so-called “Muslims” in the Middle East, Pakistan, Indonesia and in his native country of Bangladesh.
His accomplishments (what he can reveal) succinctly and eloquently reflect not just on his chosen branch of military service, but on his personal commitment to his ideals and to his moral and spiritual character as a human being. His future achievements in the struggles for peace and justice as a graduate of ISCOR will similarly reflect well on the institution and its goals which he seeks to embody and empower in the world and its people. Please help him.
In all humility and service to the cause of Peace, I thank you for your kind consideration.
--Jonathan M.A.Ghaffar  


In the land of Ibraheem before the Elephant or Abu Jahl
                a prayer was cried to the Maker of Prophets
                Allah the Beneficent, Most Magnificent of all
In the shade of the Ka’aba father and son did beseech
                the Most High in Whose Hands all things are in reach
                                “O Allah!  Raise from among our future selves –
                                 those submissive to Thee – Your Chosen One
                                 to purify, to teach the Book and make us see
                                 to guide us true with wisdom nigh
                                 and raise us up towards You on High.”
And so it came to pass like all things decreed
                that Aaminah was blessed with salvation’s seed:
                Muhammad Mustafa – may peace be upon him
                God’s Light for the world – our protection from sin
Not even in youth, being orphaned and tried,
                was his love for the truth ever marred or denied
                While his friends all sought pleasures too many to number
                God’s Hand pressed His Shepherd away from sin into slumber
Who could have foreseen from such a humble beginning
                the Prophet of God under fire – yet still winning
                at Badr, out-numbered, sand clenched in his fist
                in defiance he yelled through the dawn’s early mist
                “I am Muhammad!  God’s Prophet and the son of Abdullah!”
                as he threw forth his sand ‘twas not his hand but Allah’s
And so through such trials and numberless tears
                was the Deen of Islam sent in 23 years
From Jibra’eel to Muhammad – the man for all peoples
came the faith pre-ordained to bring down all church steeples
                                and put shame to the lie that God was of three
                                or that Jesus could die being hanged on the tree
For a great man declared for the whole world to hear
                “Jesus died at 120 – he’s entombed in Kashmir.”
In the fourteenth century after Islam’s first Adhan
when the Light of Muhammad was jeered at and spat on
There arose from the East in the land they called Punjab
among Hindus and Sikhs a man born for the mehrab
A Persian foretold as Muhammad’s reflection
to bring all men to Allah from every direction
From the Light of Allah in the form of Muhammad
                to the night of Islam before the coming of Ahmad
                                when the full moon once dark burned bright in the soul
                                of a lover of God crying out to be whole
In the silence and weeping of prayers after
                did Allah raise Ahmad as the Defender of His Light
                                to champion and spearhead the rebirth of Islam
                                his pen was the sword, his demeanor tho’ was calm
He was hailed as a Lion, as Islam’s messiah
                but when God made him Mahdi, he became a pariah
                Denounced and defamed by some who once called him ‘friend’
                                history tells of the ruin that would soon be their end
For the seed of the Mirza was planted in true soil
                destined for blessings like a bright flame in pure oil
                As Muslims our example is Muhammad – we all know
                in Ahmad our proof that God’s Light can still glow 
                                The Straight Path to Him is ever before us
                                our clarion call to salvation sonorous
So strive hard, my brothers, in the Way of Allah
                the religion of Peace and the Prophet’s Sunnah
Make steadfast your hands to the onslaught of arrows
                Hold true to your pledge when your path in life narrows
                And give up what is dear of your worldly gain
                                for the loss of the next life is the only real pain
And don’t shirk from the call of Hazoor and say “See yah!”
Stand up and serve proudly – you’re Jama'at-e-Ahmadiyya!

[ Written in Aug. 2001 and delivered at a Nat'l Khuddam Ijtema poem competition, the word "Muslims" was originally "khaddims" and "Jama'at-e" in the last line was orginally "Khuddam-ul". . .    -- the author.]