Convert Finds True Islam, Saves own Soul
Account of a former Convert's Experience
by Usman Barry
"Naturally, I met all the top people of the Ahmadi clan. I
found them all too glib, too Prone to false smiles to be credible... I
thought, could the divinely inspired and supremely successful movement of
Mohammed, The Messenger of Allah, culminate in a few boring, money-mad
Pakistanis, trying to lead their followers into complete submission to the
Kuffar (enemies of Islam)?"
In the name of Allah, the Merciful, the Compassionate
I was born in England of Irish Catholic parents and became interested in
comparative religion in my early twenties. After a trip to Morocco
and a year spent in India, I became more and more attracted to Islam. As
my appreciation developed into a desire for acceptance, I felt the need for
Muslim company. During my stay in Copenhagen, Denmark, a quick look
through the telephone directory showed only one mosque, 'The Ahmadiyya Islamic
Mission', though I later discovered that the Turks, Morrocans and the Pakistanis
had places which they used as Mosques. This meant that any school or
college that wanted to take students to a mosque, found only the Ahmadiyya
Muslim Mission and the same applied to a would be convert like myself. It
was my first encounter with the 'Ahmadiyya Efficiency', which today manifests
itself in Satellite TV and Periodicals in many languages.
I was welcomed by the mosque goers, who were a mixture of Pakistanis and
some Danish converts plus an American Musician of some note, Sahib Shihaab,
who was well know in the Jazz world. I was working as a musician myself
at the time and, although I never actually joined them, they taught me to
pray and gave me many books to read, including an English translation of
Quran by Muhammad Zafarulla Khan, which I found very interesting indeed.
The translation I had before was by the unsubtle enemy of Islam, George
After six months of praying the Friday prayers with the Qadianis of Copenhagen,
I left Denmark to return to England. In Birmingham, to my dismay I
found the Ahmadiyya Community to be much less organized , less serious, and
less intelligent than Coperhagen. For the mosque they had a very slapshod
arrangement where hardly few people were coming for prayers. Disillusioned
by such setup, I started going to the Birmingham's Main Mosque.
Here I met several Jamaicans who had similar
experience. They too had joined Ahmadiyya Movement thinking them to
be Muslims but embraced Islam after discovering the truth. This
was the first time someone had explained to me the difference between Ahmadiyyat
and Islam. However I was still not sure.
My visits to Birmingham Mosque was of course, greeted with cries of horror
by the Qadianis, who were in contact with me. I was told frankly
that such prayers would not be accepted. Ahmadis informed me that they
are the only real Muslims and they are the only group in Islam accepted by
the Westerners for their moderate views. The only other alternatives
are the grave-worshiping, ignorant Barelvis on the one hand and the bomb-throwing
fundamentalists on the other. Obviously that is a line that must work
with many weakminded persons. It was at this time that a Biy'ah Form
(an oath of allegiance to Mirza Ghulam) was presented to me for signing,
which I signed, though my heart was not in it nor had my musician lifestyle
changed much more than my giving up alcohol.
In the December of 1981, the Head of the Qadianis in London, one Mubarak
Ahmad, called me and gave me a ticket for Karachi, telling me to attend the
Jalsa Salana in Rabwa. I found my way to Rabwa via Karachi and Lahore
and met members of the sect form all over the world, even an Arab or two.
I spent my time with 2 Euro-Qadianis, a German (Ahmad something) and
an English man by the name of Luqman somebody. Both were married to
Qadiani women and were thus effectively captured. Fortunately for me,
I was already married and thus was spared this particular fitna.
However it was suggested to me that since my wife was in the way
of my religion, I should leave her and I can have a nice Qadiani girl.
I had three beautiful girls and I had no intention of leaving them.
I found the books of Mohammed Zafarulla Khan interesting, based as they were,
on real Islam with the 'Promised Messiah' kept well to the background. His
translation of 'Riyadh as Saliheen' has the best English usage and is, as
for as I know, acceptable.
However, it was the books of the Promised Messiah, Mirza Ghulam Ahmad,
translated into English, that disturbed me. There was one particular
revelation where this Promised Messiah saw in a dream a tree, with many white
birds on it. He then heard a voice saying (in English), "I will give
you a large party of Islam."
I wondered how God who revealed Quran in such eloquent, beautiful and faultless
Arabic, could not manage a grammatically correct English sentence. I
was reminded of this revelation, while I was in Rabwa. We three Europeans
were put on display to others as the white birds of the revelation.
Naturally, I met all the top people of the
Ahmadi clan. I found them all too glib, too prone to false smiles to
be credible. I noted the wickedness in their habit of educating
the sons of small qadiani farmers around Rabwa (eg sending them to Moscow
or Romania with its cheap education) and then accepting donations of the
aging gratified farmers' land, who by now has no son to help him with the
hardwork. In this way, the empire of the Holy Family, as I heard
them call, continues to expand.
After the Jalsa, I was compelled to visit the grave of Mirza Ghulam Ahmad
in Qadian as part of a religious requirement. I found people there
most discourteous and ill-mannered and was glad to get out of that place.
As I mentioned, we three white birds met with Mirza Nasir Ahmad, the then
second Khalifa, with a cameraman always present by his side, who would jump
to take a snap as soon as someone of not comes to shake hands with him. I
also met the present leader, Mirza Tahir Ahmad, who gave us a long talk on
how everything in the West was wonderful and right, except for its morality
of course, and how the West would have to look to Rabwah for guidance for
its moral up lift. I thought, could the Divinely Inspired and Supremely
Successful Movement of Mohammed, The Messenger of Allah, culminate in a few
boring, money-mad Pakistanis, trying to lead their followers into complete
submission to the Kuffar (enemies of Islam)? It seemed unlikely.
To me, all those whom I met, belonged to either of the two categories:
Fools, who had no idea what is going around them; and
Rascals who were well aware of their fraud in the name of Islam and were
actively involved in corruption in their Jama'at.
All in all, I'd had enough of this sneaky and underhanded sect and made up
my mind to abandon them as soon as possible. When I got back to England,
I dropped the whole thing -- prayers, reading and everything and for two
and half years put the idea of being a Muslim out of my head. I
came to the conclusion that, if Ahmadiyyat was the true Islam, then Islam
was not for me.
I gave up the music business and rented a farm in Ireland. For several
years I thought of Islam only occasionally. Then, by Allah's Grace,
I met some of the Muslim community in Dublin and my wife and I embraced the
real Islam in 1984 in Dublin Mosque.
Islamic Information Centre
P.O. Box 5732, Dubai
United Arab Emirates
Allah accept the repentance of those who do evil in ignorance and repent
soon afterwards; to them will Allah turn in mercy: For Allah is full of knowledge
Of no effect is the repentance of those who continue to do evil, until death
faces one of them, and he says, "Now have I repented indeed;" nor of those
who die rejecting Faith: for them have We prepared a punishment most
(The holy Quran, An-Nisa, 4:17-18)