The recipe is not some supernatural phenomenon, which cannot be be observed or demonstrated. The panacea is genuine repentance with honest intention not to repeat the mistake or the sin. Firstly, I will introduce two small booklets by the Founder of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community, the Messiah, Mirza Ghulam Ahmad Qadiani. Secondly, I will show the effectiveness of the recipe by borrowing a metaphor from Alcohol Anonymous. In this article and the booklets attached, the reader will find an adequate presentation of the Islamic view of how to be free from sin and refutation of the Christian dogma about atonement.
The Messiah writes that man is by his very nature averse to things he believes to be harmful, and if he commits sin it is only because he does not truly believe in the existence of God and in the Day of Reckoning. Had he possessed the same certainty about the accountability of sin, as he does, for instance, about the harmfulness of a poison or a snake, he would never even think of transgressing Divine commandments.
The Messiah also argues that a true religion must be judged by its ability to lead its followers to certainty about the existence of God. The holy author makes a detailed comparison between Islam and other major religions, and concludes that Islam alone can lead man to perfect awareness and, consequently, to freedom from sin.
“All blessings emanate from a Living God, not a dead one; and light shines forth when the sun rises and not when it sets.” Mirza Ghulam Ahmad Qadiani
“You should also consider that it is God’s eternal and established law that He forgives in response to repentance and penitence, and hears the prayers of His righteous servants which are offered by way of intercession. But we never observe in the Divine law of nature that ‘A’ hits his own head with a stone and this cures the headache of ‘B’. We are, therefore, at a loss to understand how people can acquire inner purification through the suicide committed by the Messiah. Is there any law or philosophy which can make us understand how the Messiah’s blood could have cleansed the inner impurities of other people? Our observation is, in fact, opposed to this principle, because, until the time when the Messiah decided to commit suicide, we find an element of righteousness and godliness among the Christians. After the crucifixion, however, their carnal passions burst forth like a river which breaks its banks and inundates the land.There is no doubt that even if this suicide on the part of the Messiah was deliberate, it was quite needless. If he had, instead, spent his life in preaching and exhortation, he would have done a lot of good for God’s creation. But this act did not serve them in any way. Yes, if the Messiah had indeed come back to life after his suicide, and had ascended to heaven before the very eyes of the Jews, they would surely have believed in him. But, as things stand, the Jews, and all reasonable people, consider the Messiah’s ascension to be no more than a fable.”
As I have often stated before, attraction forms the basis for everything that happens in the world, and the side which possesses greater conviction is able attract others towards itself. There is every truth in the principle that a force can only be counteracted by another more powerful than itself. It is impossible for this world, which is being pulled downwards by the force of base attractions, to rise up again, unless an opposing force appears from heaven to reinforce people’s faith, and to show them that there is more substantial and lasting joy in submission to the commandments of God than in the fulfilment of carnal passions, and to convince them that transgression is worse than death. This heavenly light of conviction is granted to man through the ‘Sun’, i.e., the Imam of his age, and failure to recognize him amounts to dying a death of ignorance. The person who thinks he has no need of this true source of light is deluded, for he sets himself against the immutable laws of God. Human eyes, even though they possess a light of their own, cannot see without the sun. The sun is the source of the light which descends from heaven and illuminates the earth, and without it our eyes are as good as blind. He who attains conviction through this heavenly light is drawn towards piety, and it is natural for a struggle to ensue between the two attractions, one pulling him towards virtue and the other towards vice, one towards the East and the other towards the West. The clash is all the more ferocious when the two attractions are at their peak—as they are during times of tremendous material advancement. As the earth undergoes phenomenal progress, rest assured that spiritual preparations are also being made and an attraction has been formed in heaven to counter the earthly one. The days when neglect and evil reign supreme upon the earth are terrifying, because they have been marked for the spiritual battle foretold by the Prophets in the form of various metaphors. Some people describe it as the final battle between the Angels of heaven and the Satans of the earth, which will culminate in the end of the world; others naively think that it will be a physical battle, fought with swords and guns. The latter are completely mistaken, for they naïvely interpret a spiritual battle to mean a physical one.
In short, a fierce clash between the darkness of the earth and the light of heaven is imminent, as foretold by all the Prophets, from Adam to the Holy Prophet, may peace be on him. The commander of the one side is called ‘the Concealer of the truth’, while that of the other is known as ‘the Revealer of the truth’. The one who comes from heaven in the company of angels is the manifestation of [the Angel] Michael, and the one who is raised from the earth with the powers of darkness is the manifestation of Satan.When we observe the well-armed legions of the earth busy in their preparations, having already accomplished a great deal, we are led to believe that the kingdom of heaven is not unmindful of its preparations either. The heavenly dominion is averse to show and ostentation and it accomplishes a great deal without anyone knowing about it. People finally become aware of it when there appears a light in heaven and a white minaret on earth; the heavenly light then falls upon the minaret and illuminates the whole world.
Recovery from alcoholism a metaphor of recovery from any sin
“It is a voluntary fellowship of alcoholic persons who seek to get sober and remain sober through self-help and the help of other recovered alcoholics. Although general conventions meet periodically and Alcoholics Anonymous World Services, Inc., is headquartered in New York City, all AA groups are essentially local and autonomous. To counteract self-indulgence and promote the group’s welfare, members identify themselves only by first name and surname initial. Much of the program has a social and spiritual, but nonsectarian, basis.AA began in May 1935 in the meeting of two alcoholics attempting to overcome their drinking problems: a New York stockbroker, “Bill W.” (William Griffith Wilson [1895–1971]), and a surgeon from Akron, Ohio, “Dr. Bob S.” (Robert Holbrook Smith [1879–1950]). Drawing upon their own experiences, they set out to help fellow alcoholics and first recorded their program in Alcoholics Anonymous (1939; 3rd ed., 1976). By the early 21st century, Alcoholics Anonymous had some 2,000,000 members forming more than 110,000 groups in about 180 countries and territories (most of them, however, in the United States and Canada).”
“People of faith have a logical idea of what life is all about. Actually, we used to have no reasonable conception whatever. We used to amuse ourselves by cynically dissecting spiritual beliefs and practices when we might have observed that many spiritually minded persons of all races, colors, and creeds were demonstrating a degree of stability, happiness and usefulness which we should have sought ourselves.”
“Instead, we looked at the human defects of these people, and sometimes used their shortcomings as a basis of wholesale condemnation. We talked of intolerance, while we were intolerant ourselves. We missed the reality and the beauty of the forest because we were diverted by the ugliness of some of its trees. We never gave the spiritual side of life a fair hearing.”
1. We admitted we were powerless over gambling that our lives had become unmanageable.2. Came to believe that a Power greater than ourselves could restore us to a normal way of thinking and living.3. Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of this Power of our own understanding.4. Made a searching and fearless moral and financial inventory of ourselves.5. Admitted to ourselves and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs.6. Were entirely ready to have these defects of character removed.7. Humbly asked God (of our understanding) to remove shortcomings.8. Made a list of all persons we had harmed and became willing to make amends to them all.9. Made direct amends to such people wherever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others.10. Continued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong, promptly admitted it.11. Sought through prayer and meditation to improve our conscious contact with God as we understood Him, praying only for knowledge of His will for us and the power to carry that out.12. Having made an effort to practice the principles in all our affairs, we tried to carry this message to other compulsive gamblers.
“The true purpose of adopting a faith is that one should acquire such certainty concerning God, Who is the fountainhead of salvation, as if one can see Him with one’s eyes. The wicked spirit of sin seeks to destroy a man and a person cannot escape the fatal poison of sin till he believes with full certainty in the Perfect and Living God and till he knows for certain that God exists, Who punishes the offender and bestows upon the righteous everlasting joy. It is a common experience that when one believes in the fatal effects of anything one does not have recourse to it. For instance, no one swallows poison consciously. No one deliberately stands in front of a wild tiger. No one deliberately thrusts his hand into the hole of a serpent. Then why does a person commit sin deliberately? The reason is that he has not that certainty in this matter as he has in other matters of the kind that we have mentioned. The first duty of a person, therefore, is to acquire certainty with regard to the existence of God, and to adopt a religion through which this certainty can be acquired so that he should fear God and shun sin. How can such certainty be acquired? It cannot be acquired through mere stories. It cannot be acquired through mere arguments. The only way of acquiring certainty is to experience God repeatedly through converse with Him or through witnessing His extraordinary signs, or by keeping company with someone who has that experience.”
“The purpose of religion is that man should obtain deliverance from his passions and should develop personal love for God Almighty through certain faith in His existence and His perfect attributes. Such love of God is the paradise, which will appear in diverse shapes in the hereafter. To be unaware of the True God, to keep away from Him, and not to have any love for Him, is the hell which will appear in diverse shapes in the hereafter. Thus, the true purpose is to have full faith in Him. Now the question is which religion and which book can fulfill this need. The Bible tells us that the door of converse with God is closed and that the ways of obtaining certainty are sealed. Whatever was to happen, happened in the past and there is nothing in the future….. Of what use then is a religion that is dead? What benefit can we derive from a book that is dead? What grace can be bestowed by a god who is dead?”
- “alcoholism.” Encyclopædia Britannica. 2010. Encyclopædia Britannica Online. 05 Feb. 2010 ca.com/EBchecked/topic/13448/alcoholism>.
- “Alcoholics Anonymous (AA).” Encyclopædia Britannica. 2010. Encyclopædia Britannica Online. 05 Feb. 2010 ca.com/EBchecked/topic/13445/Alcoholics-Anonymous>.
- Alcohoic Anonymous. Third edition. Page 49.
- Alcohoic Anonymous. Third edition. Page 50.
- [Nasim-e-Da‘wat, Ruhani Khaza’in, Vol. 19, pp. 447-448] http://www.alislam.org/books/Essence-1.pdf
- [Chashma-e-Masihi, Ruhani Khaza’in, Vol. 20, pp. 352-353] http://www.alislam.org/books/Essence-1.pdf