Friday, 2 February 2018

Mirza Ghulam Ahmad: "Moses is Alive"

One of the objections put forward against Mirza Ghulam Ahmad of Qadian is his statement where he apparently proclaims that the ancient Prophet Moses (peace be upon him) is alive in Heaven and not dead:
هذا هو موسى فتى الله الذى أشار الله فى كتابه إلى حياته, وفرض علينا أن نؤمن بأنه حيٌّ فى السماء ولم يمت وليس من الميتين
یہ وہی موسی مرد خدا ہےجس کی نسبت قرآن میں اشارہ ہے کہ وہ زندہ ہے اور ہم پر فرض ہوگیا ہے کہ ہم اس بات پر ایمان لاویں کہ وہ زندہ آسمان میں موجود ہے اور مردوں میں سے نہیں۔
“This is that Moses, man of God, concerning whom the Qur’an infers that he is alive, so it is obligatory upon us to believe that he is alive in Heaven and that he is not among the dead.”
Reference: Ruhani Khaza’in: v.8 p.69; Nur-al-Haq p.50

Incidentally, this same objection was put forward to me in the second part of a recent debate with the Barelwi Mufti Mubashar Qadri on the topic of whether Jesus of Nazareth (peace be upon him) is alive or not. The Barelwi mulla argues that Jesus is alive, and cites this statement of Mirza Ghulam Ahmad polemically, arguing ‘if Moses is alive in Heaven then why not Jesus?’
The viewer of the debate, which is in Urdu, will know that my answer to this objection consists of several points:
1. It is immaterial and a diversion from the topic of the life/death of Jesus of Nazareth
2. It is not a proof from the divinely-revealed Texts of the Qur’an, nor a Hadith of the Prophet , rather a statement of Mirza Ghulam Ahmad
3. Ghulam Ahmad’s statement is actually regarding the spiritual life of Prophet Moses in the afterlife, specifically, the world of the Barzakh. It is not a statement affirming any kind of worldly or bodily life for Prophet Moses
4. The quotation is being taken out of context as I shall demonstrate
Ghulam Ahmad has stated that the reality of Prophet Moses being alive is inferred from the Holy Quraan itself. He is referring to the Verse:
وَلَقَدْ آتَيْنَا مُوسَى الْكِتَابَ فَلَا تَكُن فِي مِرْيَةٍ مِّن لِّقَائِهِ ۖ وَجَعَلْنَاهُ هُدًى لِّبَنِي إِسْرَائِيلَ
And We granted Moses the Book [Torah], so be not in doubt concerning his meeting. And We made it [Torah] a Guide for the Children of Israel (Sura 32:23)
The exegetes mention that the meeting spoken of n this Verse is that which occurred between the Prophet Muhammad and Moses during the Night of the Israa and Mi’raj, for example:
{ وَلَقَدْ ءَاتَيْنَا مُوسَىٱلْكِتَٰبَ } التوراة { فَلاَ تَكُن فِى مِرْيَةٍ } شك { مِّن لِّقَآئِهِ } وقد التقيا ليلة الإِسراء { وَجَعَلْنَٰهُ } أي موسى أو الكتاب { هُدًى } هادياً { لِّبَنِى إِسْرٰءِيلَ }
And verily We gave Moses the Scripture the Torah; so do not be in doubt concerning the encounter with Him and indeed he and He met on the Night of the Journey; and We appointed him namely Moses — or read ‘We appointed it’ the Scripture a guidance for the Children of Israel.
(Tafsir al-Jalalayn)
Anas b. MalikRA reported Allah’s Apostle as saying:
أَتَيْتُ - وَفِي رِوَايَةِ هَدَّابٍ مَرَرْتُ - عَلَى مُوسَى لَيْلَةَ أُسْرِيَ بِي عِنْدَ الْكَثِيبِ الأَحْمَرِ وَهُوَ قَائِمٌ يُصَلِّي فِي قَبْرِهِ
“I came - and in the narration transmitted on the authority of Haddab (the words are) - I happened to pass by Moses on the occasion of the night journey near the red mound (and found him) saying his prayer in his grave. (Sahih Muslim)
Likewise, the Ahadith which describe the Mi’raj of the Prophet Muhammad mention his meeting with Prophet Moses at the Sixth Heaven.
Obviously, these narrations which speak of the Prophet seeing and meeting Moses are in reference to the latter’s life in the world of the Barzakh, and not in this Dunya (world).
Finally, if there is any lingering doubt that Ghulam Ahmad was proposing an entirely new doctrine that Prophet Moses is alive in Heaven without having tasted death, and is alive there in his earthen body, having been raised up to Heaven physically, then simply read the next page, where Ghulam Ahmad says:
وما من رسول إلا تُوُفّى وقد خلت من قبل عيسى الرسلُ
اور کوئی نبی ایسا نہیں جو فوت نہ ہوا ہو اور حضرت عیسی علیہ السلام سے پہلے جو نبی آۓ وہ فوت ہو چکے ہیں
“And there was no prophet who didn’t die; every Prophet before Jesus peace be upon him died.”
Reference: Ruhani Khaza’in: v.8 p.70

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