“How many favours of your Lord will you then deny?” Holy Quran
It all started when my great great grandfather was introduced to Ahmadiyyat by the well known companion of Promised Messiah (a.s) Ghulam Rasool Rajeki sahib (may his soul rest in peace), which further lead to him having the honour of taking bait at the hands of the Promised Messiah (as). Therefore, those who followed as his offspring automatically joined the fold of Ahmadiyyat. الحمد لله
I thank the supreme abundantly for blessing my family and I to such an extent.
Although I am born an Ahmadi Muslim, like many, I see myself accepting Ahmadiyyat separately.
My story shares the same thrill as many individuals who question before accepting and the same was my situation.
I was an innocent and naive child who loved bombarding her parents and teachers for the sake of answers which would satisfy her thirst for knowledge. Being told to believe in something purely because my ancestors did really bother me and forced my heart to reject those things, I always wanted solid logic and reasoning behind every point. Thus I started on my conquest to find solutions or at least valid answers to my questions.
My request was simple: logic with reason and practicality.
Without this, it was impossible to divert my mind to sympathize with the situation and accept what was being presented to me.
As a young child, I was motivated to attend Jamaat functions, attend competitions and be involved as much as possible – like any mother.
However, being naive, I failed to understand why I was told to hide my identity to those around me who did not know of my faith.
I was left confused when my parents strictly forbade me to tell my classmates that I had won a prize at a local Ijtema.
Whilst listening to the Friday sermon of our beloved Imam, I used to be so pleased seeing merely one glance of him and at the end of the sermon, my mother would question me on what I had learned throughout and I would enjoy explaining the sermon in my own words.
Therefore, when I returned to school and heard my friends discussing cartoons and television programmes, it would hurt me that I couldn’t explain what our beloved imam had narrated.
I lost many friends due to my faith. Many close friends and dear ones. But even if I lose my family, my possession, my life in this cause. I would present it to my faith, purely for the sake of my creator.
Nonetheless, I remember asking my mother once if I could tell my friends that I am an Ahmadi. I was given such a negative answer so swiftly. My mother purposely sent me to a Christian school out of fear of mullahs and that I would not tell anyone about my faith.
For some time this lead to question my faith. If it was the truthful religion and claimed to be the best, then why was it hiding its truth from the world?
On one hand, I was being told to always stand for truth, even if my life goes and on the other, I was being told to live a life of someone in exile.
Having these thoughts at the age of 9 really disturbed me.
I adored going to the mosque for Jumah and Eid prayers. When telling my Ahmadi friends, they found that they too were interested and asked me to take them along.
But it wasn’t long when we were banned from reading Numaaz at Mosques, this lead to further frustration and annoyed me.
I was too young to understand them, but the event which unfolded afterwards and the circumstance of Pakistan today clearly illustrate that my mother was right in telling me to hide my identity.
However, It pained me to hide my identity. Why should I? What role does the Pakistani government have for me to decide whether I should be called Muslim or not?
Furthermore, following this inner battle with myself, I decided that I no longer wanted to hide my identity in 7th grade (when I joined a tuition centre near my house). Without telling, one of my teachers found out that I am an Ahmadi Muslim. I believe she guessed from my angry face when she used to speak ill of our Promised Messiah (as). She did this repetitively to annoy me and forced me to stay back after lessons, to answer questions which I had no answers to.
Such is the mindset of these ill creatures who target innocent and young children, who they know cannot answer in depth theology related questions.
She asked me to bring any Jamaat related books and that she would prove our Messiah (as) to be wrong using the Holy Quran.
Not knowing what to do, and without taking suggestions from my parents, I decided to take a Deeni Maloomat book which was given to us at the beginning of our academic syllabus.
After showing her, she became very furious and complained. Screaming at the top of her voice, she said that she had asked me to bring something related to the community. She would not accept that book as being from our community.
This left me in tears. Broken. I rushed home and narrated the story to my mother; furious as anyone would be, she forbade me to go to the centre again and strictly told me to not indulge in any religious discussions. But how couldn’t I? There was now a mountain of questions in my mind, screeching from one side of my brain to the other. This lead to me having quarrels in my house and I started arguing about why I couldn’t share my identity to others if it was so truthful.
So many questions, yet I didn’t know what to do. My mother tried explaining, she took it upon herself to try her best to explain to me whatever issue I had bothering me.
Her answers though, didn’t satisfy my heart and I didn’t like the feeling.
I remember her telling my father that she feared me leaving the community because of my behaviour.
My father, being close to me, used to say lovingly to my mother that “you are not explaining it properly to my daughter that’s why and therefore, I will give her answers.” I sensed a sight of relief but even when I asked him, he would try his best but would then proceed to ask me about where I learnt these questions from saying they were pointless.
Meanwhile, asking my grandfather who was alive at the time (may his soul rest in peace), helped me magnificently. He suggested that I should open the Holy Book of Islam and find the answers to my problems there. I never understood his point and the fact that he couldn’t answer my questions straightforwardly.
Nonetheless, agreeing to his advice, I started leaning the Holy Quran with Tarjama, which was gifted to me by my grandfather.
My mother promoted me sitting with the elders of the community during Ijlaases and they would address small issues, giving me lectures. However, this endless war on my problems wasn’t satisfying me.
Something was missing. There was a huge gap.
My mother felt burdened and worried and thus started asking for Allah’s mercy on me, that He should show me the truth in Ahmadiyyat as well as the correct path. Her prayers were full of tears and she begged in front of her creator to be forgiven, that He would instill the love of the community in my heart and mind.
My heart always said that Ahmadiyyat is right but my brain never agreed with it. My brain was full of so many questions which lead me to confusion. I got confused, simply because there were many, and still are, notorious and extremist people who tried to misguide me. I wanted solid and probable answers, because it was paining me to see the feelings I had developed for the community and being unable to defend it.
In 9th grade I joined an academy and to my benefit, we were taught about Islam.
A whole lesson throughout the week was dedicated to this subject.
Later I found out that this was actually the opposite of what I had hoped for as this academy was teaching hate against Ahmadis. It left me amazed to see how much hate was being instilled in my peers, this practice was being taught from corner to corner of Pakistan.
Hearing that our Messiah (as) died an unnatural death left me heartbroken. I remember coming home and crying nights on ends, most of the time I would go to the bathroom and secretly cry my eyes out.
This is “my” Pakistan. The country I am ready to shed my blood for is treating me like an infidel.
When I used to run into the arms of my mother, she would always consolidate and encourage me to become regular in prayers and to seek for Allah’s mercy for those who have become too arrogant to understand the truth and myself.
The abusive language of the teacher and what was being taught, struck as a positive for my belief to strengthen and even my prayers from then onwards, becoming a source of begging to the Almighty, in which I begged for the truth and for it to come out clearly and visibly to me, without any hindering or problems.
I thought right therefore, to learn certain parts of the Holy Quran with translation and further read its commentary and explanations. I then used to compare the translations with other non-Ahmadi scholars, this become the mystery solving moment for me.
My troubles, question, issues and problems all seemed to be getting resolved through the Holy Scripture. It seemed as if the Almighty had answered my prayer and had blessed me abundantly.
My brain starting coinciding with my heart and they started to function together. My mind was at rest and peace. Issues such as the death of Hazrat Issa (as), the need for an Imam, the need for Khilafat and many more issues were being answered logically with reason and solidarity.
I also started reading the books of the promised Messiah (as) alongside other books of the community. This was the time where indulging in the right area mattered and helped profusely.
Tafseer-e-Kabeer actually amazed me. I was left speechless to see how many meanings one word could have in Arabic, yet in every context it would still fit and fulfill its purpose.
I was 15 and felt as if I had achieved my goal.
My religion was now truly mine.
I have made it incumbent upon myself to be regular in prayers, hear words of wisdom from our beloved Imam and personally study the community.
My journey was made rough due to the place I resided in, but I do not regret any of those moments now, as it was a path which connected me closer to the destination.
All thanks to the mighty, the wise, for his guidance and support. Without whom, I would have still been struggling and stuck in the trap of hypocrite Mullahs.
This was my journey and now that I have accepted Islam Ahmadiyyat from my heart, I feel blessed for the bounties that the Lord has favoured upon me.
All praise belongs to him. Without whom we are nothing.