Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad (peace be on him) (1835-1908) was born to a noble family in Qadian, India.
From an early age he had a keen interest in religion. He was also known for his honesty, compassion and resolve. As time passed his knowledge and understanding of religion and its application to society deepened.
Being a Muslim it was his firm belief that all religions were true at their source, and he always sought to uphold the dignity of all religions and their prophets.
His earnest defence of religion was ultimately blessed by God and he received the revelation of his appointment by God in 1882. He continued to receive the blessing of revelation throughout the rest of his life.
God revealed to him that he was the Promised Messiah for whom the followers of all religions were waiting.
He summarised the objectives of his advent in the following words:
‘With God-given strength and with the power of His hand, I am here to set the world back on the path of reformation, righteousness and piety, and to remove their errors in faith and in action.’ (Tadhkiratush Shahadatain)
His mission was thus to revitalise the truth that all religions held within them and to revive the teachings of Islam. It was through this that he was to bring mankind together and establish everlasting peace.
The Promised Messiah(as) said:
‘Allah wants to pull towards His Unity all those with righteous disposition from among all the inhabitants of this world, be they in Europe or Asia. He wants to assemble all His chosen ones under one religion. This is the design of Allah for the accomplishment of which I have been raised.’ (The Will)
In 1889, under Divine guidance, The Promised Messiah(as) founded the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community – a community that has since grown in its stature and strength and remained active in conveying the message of Islam to the ends of the earth.
The Promised Messiah(as) wrote over eighty books that focused on different religious issues.
The Promised Messiah(as) had established himself as a respected writer even before his claim to subordinate prophethood, and his masterful paper on Islam, Braheen-e-Ahmadiyya, won him widespread acclaim.
His other scholarly works include The Philosophy of the Teachings of Islam, that was prepared as a paper and read out at the Conference of Great Religions in 1896.
He also wrote a fascinating treatise in 1899 entitled Jesus in India, a book that uncovered remarkable evidence of Jesus’ journey to India.
Through logic that appeals to the modern mind, he gave a comprehensive explanation of religious teachings and spiritual truths.
In his countless prophecies, the Promised Messiah(as) had also foretold of the phenomenal expansion of his Community that would attract people from all walks of life, from laymen to world-class leaders.
From 1889 until the time of his demise in 1908 tens of thousands of people accepted him. This blessing of expansion has continued through his Khalifas (successors).
Currently, under the fifth successor, we are seeing that the tide of acceptance is world-wide and that the message of the Promised Messiah(as) has reached the ends of the earth.
In defining his mission, the Promised Messiah wrote:
‘The purpose for which God has appointed me is that I should remove the malaise that afflicts the relationship between God and His creatures, and should restore the relationship of love and sincerity between them. Through the proclamation of truth I should bring about peace by putting an end to religious wars and should manifest the verities which have become hidden from the eyes of the world. I am called upon to demonstrate that spirituality, which has been overlaid by selfish darkness. It is for me to demonstrate in practice and not only in words, the Divine attributes which penetrate into the hearts of people and are manifested through prayer and concentration. Most of all it is my purpose to plant once more in the hearts of people the pure and shining unity of God which is free from every suspicion of paganism and which has completely disappeared. All this will be accomplished not through my power, but through the Power of Him Who is the God of Heaven and earth.’