Aviva Directory » Faith & Spirituality » World Religions » Abrahamic Religions » Islam » Denominations & Sects » Ahmadi

Officially known as the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community, or as the Ahmadiyya Muslim Jama'at, adherents of the Ahmadiyya are known as Ahmadi Muslims or as Ahmadis.

They are also sometimes referred to as Qadiyani, for Qadian, the hometown of Ghulam Ahmad, or as Mirzai, for Mirza, one of his titles. These, however, are terms used by as pejorative terms by Muslims outside of the movement, and are not used by the Ahmadiyya Muslim community.

The worldwide Islamic revival movement began in Punjab, British India in the late 1800s, inspired by the teachings of Mirza Ghulam Ahmad, who claimed to have been appointed by God as the Mahdi and Messiah, whose appearance had long been anticipated by Muslims at the End Times, bringing about the final triumph of Islam.

Ahmadis believe that Islam was what God intended for humanity, but that it was necessary to restore it to its pristine form, as revealed to the Prophet Muhammad. Adherents believe that Ahmad had appeared as the Mahdi, having all of the qualities of Jesus, fulfilling their understanding of the prophecies in scripture.

Ahmadis view Ahmadiyya as the proper format to return Islam to its original precepts, as practiced by the Prophet Mohammad and the early Islamic community.

Mirza Ghulam Ahmad accepted the allegiance of his followers in 1889, establishing the movement that has been led by a succession of Caliphs since his death in 1908, spreading to more than two hundred countries worldwide, with a concentration in South Asia, West Africa, East Africa, and Indonesia.

In the early years of the movement, a group of Ahmadis separated to form the Lahore Ahmadiyya Movement for the Propagation of Islam, which still exists as a small faction within the Ahmadi community.

The Six Articles of Islamic Faith and the Five Pillars of Islam form the basis for Ahmadi beliefs and practices. Ahmadis accept the Quran as their holy text, they face the Kaaba during prayer, and follow the Sunnah, which was the standard practice of the Prophet Muhammad. They also accept, as authoritative, the sayings and narrations about Muhammad that are known as the Hadith. In Ahmadi doctrine, the Quran has the ultimate authority, followed by the Sunnah and the Hadith. The Quran cannot be superseded by any secondary source.

Regarding their acceptance of the authority of the Caliphs, the Ahmadi are more closely aligned with the Sunni than the Shia.

The chief distinguishing point between the Ahmadi and other Muslim sects is their belief in the founder of their movement as the promised Mahdi and Messiah.

The teachings of the Ahmadi are that all of the major world religions had divine origins, and were part of Allah's plan for the establishment of Islam as the mankind's final religion. They believe, as well, that the Mahdi fulfills the eschatological prophecies found in all of the Abrahamic religions, Zoroastrianism, the religions of India, and Native American traditions.

Since the beginnings of Ahmadiyya, the Ahmadis have been subject to religious discrimination and persecution. As fervent missionaries and translators of the Quran, many people throughout the world came to Islam through the Ahmadis. Yet, in several Islamic countries, Ahmadiyya has been defined as heretical and its adherents labeled heretics and non-Muslim.

They have been subject to arrest and violence in Bangladesh, Indonesia, Pakistan, and the Palestinian territories. Pakistan has the largest number of Ahmadis, yet it is the only state in which they have been officially declared non-Muslim, and their practice of religion has been severely curtailed. A full ban is threatened in Indonesia, as well. Ahmadis have been subject to legal persecution in Algeria and Saudi Arabia. Ahmadis in the United Kingdom have endured protests, killings, and other forms of intimidation. In India, where there is a large Ahmadi population, the law regards them as Muslims and the Indian legal system has protected their freedom of religion. However, they have suffered discrimination from Muslims belonging to other sects.

The focus of this category is on the Islamic sect known as Ahmadiyya. Topics related to Ahmadiyya or the Ahmadis are appropriate for this category. Informational sites, whether supportive or confrontational, are appropriate for this category as long as the topic is focused on the Ahmadiyya sect or its adherents, known as Ahmadis or Ahmadi Muslims.



Recommended Resources

Search for Ahmadi on Google or Bing