Wednesday, December 11, 2013
This is an Addendum to the first article in the series which examines the role of the most sacred cows among the Muslims who carved out their national destinies on the Grand Chessboard of the twentieth century: Sacred Cow: Allama Iqbal – marde-momin or superman?.
Was “Sir” Allama Iqbal also an Ahmadi and the follower of Mirza Ghulam Ahmad, the fellow who created a new “peaceful Islam” Movement in India as the so called “promised reformer” after the militant 1857 Indian War of Independence which the British empire termed “mutiny”, had failed? A new document find reveals that to be the case.
This is a most significant question because Mirza Ghulam Ahmad anointed himself the God inspired “mujjaddid” and founded an intellectual Movement of “peace” in the name of Islam which principally did not challenge the British empire’s right to rule the Indian sub-continent as the new divinely appointed authority over the Muslims. The hijacking of the verse 4:59 of the Holy Qur’an to “Obey Allah, Obey the Messenger and those vested in authority over you” made it theologically easy. This indefinite clause has been used for fourteen centuries to legitimize imperial authority over the Muslim mind. Initially it was by the Muslims themselves and the world saw one dynastic Caliphate after another deriving their legitimacy as administerers of God’s authority over the Muslim public. Well, by the beginning of the 19th century the burden had passed on to the Anglo-Saxon Christian empire to rule the Muslim mind in the Indian sub-continent. The Ahmadiyyat Movement sought to neutralize Indian Muslim militant and intellectual opposition to the British empire which had surfaced with extreme violence in 1857 uniting Hindus and Sikhs with Muslims in common cause.
The new “peaceful Islam” philosophy was marketed under the banner of “reform” not much different in its political dispensation than the “moderate Islam” being marketed by Daniel Pipes and his patsies like Tahir-ul Qadri et. al. worldwide, defining the new “good Muslim” and advocating full cooperation with all of the empire’s mandates, narratives, and political directions. The overzealously religious Muslims of the Indo sub-continent needed subduing by all means possible, and theology is usually among the first recourse of any invader from an advanced civilization intellectually sophisticated enough to understand its power to command obedience. The Mongol invaders weren’t and therefore eventually came to be absorbed by the relatively richer Indian civilization themselves. The new invaders, the more advanced British empire, understood Machiavelli. And so the Indians got the flourishing Ahmadiyyat movement which tacitly accepted the white man’s burden of the superior civilizing force gradually bequeathing political and educational enlightenment by piece-meal dispensation to the backward Indian natives to slowly bring them up to speed on the self-governance they demanded! In the meantime, the white man continued to plunder the Jewel in the Crown as fair compensation for his selfless la mission civilisatrice!
The fact that the British empire exactly harbored that very primacy complex and cultivated native Uncle Toms to help run the empire’s la mission civilisatrice is already proven by Lord Macaulay’s speech of 1835 to the British Parliament which had led to crafting of the Indian Education policy for its Jewel in the Crown. The number of Ahmadis and other Muslim minorities anointed into “Sir” by the British Empire, the Uncle Toms trained in London and brought forth into public prominence and into Muslim leadership, all of whom subsequently led, energized, and participated in the manufactured separatist movement to divide the Indian sub-continent in the name of Islam, is itself beyond doubt. It is both factual and self-evident.
The shocking discovery here is that “Sir” Allama Iqbal, the Ahmadi documentation claims, was an Ahmadi!
The “shocking” part, so to speak, is why would a supposed intellectual of the stature of “Sir” Allama Iqbal fall for this “mujjaddid reformer”, and as the document asserts, “in 1897, Sir Muhammad Iqbal took the pledge of Mirza sahib”?
It is not like “Sir” Muhammad Iqbal was born into the Ahmadiyya sect and inherited that belief system like many of its notable members who played a direct role in the orchestration of Pakistan, men like “Sir” Zafarulla Khan.
If this report is to be believed, Allama Iqbal intellectually adopted the Ahmadiyya faith by taking the pledge of allegiance directly at the hands of its original founder who called himself the divinely anointed “mujjaddid”!
Why isn’t this “fact” more well known in Pakistan where the scholarly study of Iqbal, and all things Iqbal, termed “Iqbaliyat”, is ubiquitous?
Virtually every Muslim group, sect, and fiqh, of Pakistan claims “Sir” Iqbal to be their intellectual based on his lofty poems selling the “marde-momin”. But it was Iqbal who claimed Ahmadiyyat as his intellectual foundation.
Dr. Iqbal’s attachment grew so much that in 1897 he formally took the bai‘at at the hand of Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad. This was confirmed by Maulvi Ghulam Muhiy-ud-Din Qasoori, ex-General Secretary of the Anjuman Himayat-i Islam, Lahore, at the time when the Munir Court of Enquiry was being held in Pakistan in 1953. His statement was reported in a newspaper as follows:
“After five years, in 1897, Sir Muhammad Iqbal took the pledge of Mirza sahib.” (Daily Nawa-i Waqt, Lahore, 15 November 1953.)
Reference: See Chapter 2, Maulana Hafiz Sher Mohammad, Dr. Sir Muhammad Iqbal and the Ahmadiyya Movement, Ahmadiyya Anjuman Isha’at Islam Lahore Inc., U.S.A. 1995, http://www.muslim.org/iqbal/ch2.htm .
Download pdf of the full book from http://www.muslim.org/iqbal/smiatam.htm .
See Chapter 8 for English translation of some verses of “Sir” Allama Iqbal’s poems that were written in praise of the British rulers of India, http://www.muslim.org/iqbal/ch8.htm . The future knighted “Sir” of the British empire evidently also harbored scant reservations for writing flattering praise for the oppressive British sovereigns if such gratuitous ass-kissing could make him standout as their greatest Uncle Tom from among their worldwide subjects! Well, sure enough, Iqbal stood out, the British empire noticed him, educated him, groomed him to serve their interests, appointed him to the Round Table, and eventually knighted him! Allama Iqbal’s willing acceptance of knighthood betrays his motivation for the lavish praise that he heaped upon the King and Queen of the British empire and supported their imperial causes by his acts of both commission and omission. It all makes sense.
A second revealing Ahmadi document lends new insights into “Sir” Allama Iqbal’s “fickle mindedness” to easily go with the political flow when it was necessary to do so, titled: Sir Muhammad Iqbal’s Statement re The Qadianis, by Maulana Muhammad Ali. It is a rebuttal written by this famous late Ahmadi scholar who is also deemed to be the first Muslim English translator of the Holy Qur’an to offer a fair and well-respected translation to the English speaking world (MMA 1917), to “Sir” Allama Iqbal after the lauded poet-philosopher had evidently turned volt face on his pledge of acceptance of the Ahmadiyyat faith towards the latter part of his life and condemned the Qadiani Ahmadis “kafir”. Download pdf http://aaiil.org/text/books/mali/sirmuhammadiqbalsstatementsqadianis/sirmuhammadiqbalsstatementsqadianis.pdf .
This document shockingly reveals that “Sir” Allama Iqbal invited “the British Government to interfere in the religious controversy between the Qadianis and the orthodox to help the majority against an insignificant minority,”.
The “shocking” thing here, once again putting the exclamation in double quotes to emphasize it, is that “Sir” Allama Iqbal is seen inviting the British empire’s intervention in supposedly a purely religious matter among the Muslim sects. The knight of the British empire is gratuitously calling upon his Christian masters as the colonizing state of India to legally deem the Qadianis, even if deemed a dubious Muslim sect by the pious keepers of the faith, officially “kafir”!
“Sir” Allama Iqbal’s own words, written as a Postscript in clarification of his own statements to which presumably Maulana Muhammad Ali was responding, leave no room for doubt that Iqbal is calling upon the British empire, the “rulers” of India, to declare the Qadianis non-Muslim:
“I understand that this statement has caused some misunderstanding in some quarters. It is thought that I have made a subtle suggestion to the Government to suppress the Qadiani movement by force. Nothing of the kind. I have made it clear that the policy of non-interference in religion is the only policy which can be adopted by the rulers of India. No other policy is possible. I confess, however, that to my mind this policy is harmful to the interests of religious communities; but there is no escape from it and those who suffer will have to safeguard their interests by suitable means. The best course for the rulers of India is, in my opinion, to declare the Qadianis a separate community. This will be perfectly consistent with the policy of the Qadianis themselves, and the Indian Muslim will tolerate them just as he tolerates other religions.” Qadianis and Orthodox Muslims, Dr. Muhammad Iqbal, circa 1935 (source: http://www.koranselskab.dk/profiler/iqbal/qadianis.htm )
Once again, “Sir” Allama Iqbal is a) inviting state sanction on “takfir”; and b) inviting a Christian state’s sanction ruling India on a Muslim internal theological matter!
What sort of marde-momin is this?
This document written by the famous and most respected translator of the Holy Qur’an, and “Sir” Allama Iqbal’s own words, lend compelling evidence to the idea that the rising takfiri trend in Pakistan today has a most distinguished intellectual pedigree in the Indian sub-continent that goes back at least to the Ahrar of the 1930s! See: Memo: The ‘Ahrar-Ahmadiya controversy’ of 1953 and Shia Killings today in 2013. And given that the beleaguered Shia Muslims of Pakistan today rush to proclaim “Sir” Allama Iqbal as their own greatest contributor to mankind in the twentieth century, they may have this same great benefactor to thank for the rabid state-sponsored “takfirism” that has now engulfed Pakistan with the state officially adjudicating in 1974, and subsequently continually “tickling”, the specious doctrinal question who is Muslim and who isn’t. That sword is now hanging over the Shia minority of Pakistan themselves. See: What Role did Shias Play in Condemning Qadianis to Kafirdom in Cahoots with Sunni Scholars in 1974?. Furthermore, as evidence of the veracity of the first half of the preceding statement, that the Shia pulpit too unabashedly proclaims “Sir” Allama Iqbal as the “alambardar” (flag-bearer) of “deen-e-Shabbiri” (the deen as exemplified by Imam Hussein, the grandson of the Prophet of Islam, at Karbala), the Qom (Iran) trained fiery Shia pontiff of Pakistan, Syed Jawad Naqvi of Lahore, is oft heard declaring this tall knight of the British empire to be the first and foremost intellectual exponent of “valih-e-faqih” (even before the late Ayatollah Khomeini had borrowed Plato’s 2500 year old “philosopher-king” and cleverly re-flavored it to give it revelatory underpinnings under the banner of “revolutionary Islam”)! See The Rise of Revolutionary Islam in Pakistan – A Report on Behavior Control.
To even ask such a loaded religious doctrinal question who is a Muslim and who isn’t, never mind to try to answer it, only benefits the cultivation of divide and conquer!
The fact as per this document that Allama Iqbal even participated in that Machiavellian question like any ordinary mullah of the day (and of today), something which even puzzled Maulana Mohammad Ali as is visible from his rebuttal, is a most disturbing fact. The brightest Allama of the British empire is a European trained intellectual philosopher in the Age of post enlightenment. He is not only academically intimate with Hegel and Nietzsche, Spinoza and Will Durant, but is also plugged in politically as the member of Round Table representing Muslim political interests. Even a quick peruse of his long essay titled: “The Muslim Attitude towards the Ahmadiyya Movement”, written in response to Pandit Jawahar Lal Nehru inquiring into the Muslim attitudes towards the Ahmadis, trivially shows the reader that “Sir” Allama Iqbal is a sophisticated and intellectually savvy scholar to say the least. Read his essay which is even used today by both the feeble of mind and the shrewd Machiavelli to lend an intellectual veneer to the marginalization of Ahmadis and Qadianis as non Muslims : http://www.koranselskab.dk/profiler/iqbal/ahmadiyya.htm .
Therefore, once again, is it gross impertinence to ask whether the shinning knight of the British empire is so politically naïve as to not realize that the foolish doctrinal question of trying to settle who is a Muslim and who isn’t – and especially under a politically charged imperial umbrella that harkens to the partition of the sectarianly divisive Indian sub-continent – only begs open an endless Pandora’s box? That pursuing that question can never achieve anything productive, or in the national interest, except the inevitable political disenfranchisement of the minority public thus targeted, and for whom, it is safe to presume, their practice of religion is often their native belief system of birth for which they will willingly live and die in the extremes like any self-respecting people? Does it take a rocket scientist to know that only “revolutionary times” will be the natural harvest of fueling that volatile inferno? This is entirely self-evident.
We can see the truth of this observation even today. It is now almost trivial to seed, germinate, cultivate and harvest theological differences among Muslims based on that exact same doctrinal question for pushing any political agenda no differently than how the British empire cultivated the Hegelian Dialectic of “peaceful Islam” to encourage the Muslims of the day to refrain from challenging its sovereign authority over them as an integral part of their own religion Islam. Compare with today’s Hegelian Dialectic of “moderate Islam” as the “peaceful Islam” of Tahir-ul Qadri and Daniel Pipes et. al. It also refrains from questioning the empire’s narratives of the day, narratives that aid and abet its latter day “imperial mobilization” agendas. And juxtapose it against both of its antithesis, “militant Islam” based on Sunni derived orthodoxy and “revolutionary Islam” based on Shia derived orthodoxy. All these opposites and their exponents naturally clashing with each other and with all others on the grand chessboard of today, inevitably leads to percolating “revolutionary times” all along the “arc of crisis” in the “global zone of percolating violence”. Just as it was self-servingly presaged by Zbigniew Brzezinski, the former National Security Advisor to President Jimmy Carter (1976-1980).
The violence, both externally directed, and internecine, is naturally seeded in a self-fulfilling prophecy because one side terrorizes while the other side defends itself, and the third party sprinkles the “peaceful” reform panacea to the mix to add to the chaos and confusion of the “revolutionary times”. The fact is that they all principally serve the same interests, to lend natural justification for whatever a priori political agenda that needed to be foisted upon the public, to be automatically achieved in the guise of the officialdom pursuing legitimate reactions to these manufactured “revolutionary times”. See Hegelian Dialectic – What is it? if you are unfamiliar with journeying with the uber sophisticated Machiavelli on the road to “imperial mobilization”.
These two document finds are what they are. Please read them carefully in the light of what is examined here, and make up your own damn mind of why and how did “Sir” Allama Iqbal come to adopt Ahmadiyyat and its pragmatic theosophy of not only not opposing the British empire as the rulers of the sub-continent, but working cooperatively with all its imperial agendas. All notable Ahmadis, without exception, as far as I am aware, pragmatically cooperated with the discourse boundaries and the political directions bequeathed by the British empire to the sub-continent. The factual record of the actual acts and deeds of our noble Superman, and of the concomitant rewards so reaped from the British empire, exactly reflects that very Ahmadiyyat theosophy of pragmaticism despite all his moral sermonizing of the virtuous marde-momin! Oscar Wilde most straightforwardly summarized this state of affairs in The Picture of Dorian Gray: “And what sort of lives do these people, who pose as being moral, lead themselves? My dear fellow, you forget that we are in the native land of the hypocrite.”
As the final word, the Ahmadis today, born and socialized into their core belief system no differently than any other people, including the Shias and the Sunnis in their myriad Muslim sects, cannot be denied their political rights in Pakistan and continued to be marginalized as “non Muslim”. That infernal question of who is a Muslim and who isn’t in the sectarianly infested Muslim polity is only the devil’s gambit to sow discord among a foolish people. When a purely theological and academic matter that is best relegated to intellectual discourses in mullah seminaries among the idle caste posing as the self-appointed guardians of faith, is cast in political overtones, then those participating in it can only be the devil’s apprentice. Separating propaganda from religious dogma when the two have deliberately been intertwined requires expending intellectual energy to match the villainy, not state sponsored tyranny.
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“Sir” Allama Iqbal an Ahmadi? By Zahir Ebrahim