Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Ahmadiyya Muslims translate Quran into Yiddish

Moderator Mike Ghouse's Note:  

I  admire the Ahmadiyya Muslim community for the peaceful work they have been doing, where  ever they go. They bring a good name to Islam and Muslims.

However, no Muslim, Christian, Jewish or Hindu community is free from arrogance and hints that they are better, peaceful, scientific, old...  to claim superiority over the others does not make religious sense. The very first principle of religion, any religion is humility, where every one feels there is a greater power, and that we all have equal opportunity to excel.  Muslims are no exception - its a shame that one tribe claims to be better, legitimate or otherwise, as if God has secretly signed a deal with them - that is non-sense.  I was happy to read the work of Ahmadiyya Muslims in spreading positive thoughts about Islam every place they do their work and I salute them for the same.  

One of the things Ahmadiyya community needs to resist is telling others that "we are the Muslims who advocate peace" not like the other ones. We condemn terrorism, etc etc."  It is not a good statement, you got that wrong, All Muslims advocate peace,  fewer than 1% of Muslims don't; same formula applies to all religions.  It is not just Ahmadiyya, every group has such men, who denigrate the other as if it is going to make them superior.  

Please note the following sentence in the article is not kosher, "You don't hear about us because we don't throw rocks at buses," Odeh said. Its like Romney saying they don't ask my birth certificate because they know I am from here"  By the way, with the limited time I have in a given day, I do note thoughtless comments like the one above. As a persecuted minority, I understand, but still cannot justify such comments. 

As a Muslim I am continually embarrassed by the Muslim behavior in Pakistan and elsewhere, whose Islam is not based on being a good Muslim, but denying others their Muslimness. Muslim are so eager to deny Ahmadiyya their Muslimness, as if they own Islam and God has made them his deputies to render judgments.  What a shirk! Things have to change. 
Mike Ghouse

Group's Israeli leader says aim was to show different face of Islam.

Members of a Muslim sect that translated parts of the Koran into Yiddish are marking 25 years since that translation was published.
Ahmadiyya Muslim Community leader Muhammad Sharif Odeh with the Yiddish text in Haifa
Ahmadiyya Muslim Community leader Muhammad Sharif Odeh with the Yiddish text in Haifa in August 2012. 'We had to make sure our neighbors could read the Koran too.' Photo by Haggai Frid
The president of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community in Israel, Muhammad Sharif Odeh, said the group translated select parts of the Koran into Yiddish in order to present a different face of Islam. In addition, said Odeh, "We decided we had to make sure that our neighbors could also read the Koran."
The Ahmadiyya Muslim Community is the only Islamic community that believes the Messiah has come. Adherents believe that Mirza Ghulam Ahmad, born in 1835, was the "metaphorical second coming of Jesus ... whose advent was foretold by the Prophet of Islam, Muhammad," according to the website. "God sent Ahmad, like Jesus, to end religious wars, condemn bloodshed and reinstitute morality, justice and peace," say believers.
There are some 2,000 Ahmadiyya Muslims in Israel; most of them reside in Haifa's Kababir neighborhood. The sect says it has tens of millions of followers in more than 200 countries.
The Ahmadiyya Muslim Community translated parts of the Koran into Yiddish in 1987. The sect chose Yiddish, one of 100 languages into which it has translated parts of the sacred book of Islam, so that "Yiddish speakers who wanted to know about us would be able to do so without language being an obstacle," Odeh explained.
The decision to translate the Koran into Yiddish was made by the community's religious leader at the time, the fourth Caliph, Mirza Tahir Ahmad, who was living then in Pakistan. The current Caliph, the fifth, Mirza Masroor Ahmad, resides in the United Kingdom.
Odeh said the particular selections that were translated show that Islam is "not the way it is presented in Afghanistan." He noted, for example, "Before the Koran, women did not have rights. The Koran gives women full protection on the spiritual level and gives her an independent status." Odeh has been head of the local Ahmadiyya community for 13 years.
Most Israelis know little about the sect, which is considered peaceful and non-proselytizing. Haifa Mayor Yona Yahav has gone so far as to call them "Reform Arabs." The community's motto is "Love for all, hatred for none."
"You don't hear about us because we don't throw rocks at buses," Odeh said. "We believe that nothing can be achieved through hatred and hostility." He said he is very worried about the talk of a possible war with Iran, and that the Caliph recently appealed to all world leaders, including Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, to avoid a war. "Netanyahu didn't respond, Queen Elizabeth actually did," Odeh reported.
Odeh said the concept of secularism is foreign to the Ahmadiyya community. "Everyone prays, some come to the mosque and others pray at home." Believers express their faith in concrete ways as well. Wealthier members tithe at least 10 percent of their monthly income to the community; everyone else gives six percent. The sect does not accept government funds, on principle. One quarter of the money collected from local members is passed on to fund the sect's international activities.
Kababir is considered a mixed neighborhood, with a significant minority of Jews in addition to the Ahmadiyya majority, and city officials view it as a model of coexistence.
"Haifa is an example par excellence of living together," Odeh said, adding, "It's not coexistence, it's monoexistence, as it were. What is coexistence? In my view it's when everyone keeps their distinctiveness and does not seek to assimilate. Residents of the neighborhood don't feel different, it's a matter of education, that's the idea of Ahmadiyya." According to Odeh, there is a growing trend of West Bank Palestinians joining the Ahmadiyya community.
"Ideology is not fought with weapons," he said. "Even if you're under occupation Islam does not allow you to hurt others. Nothing can be solved with hatred."


  1. Dear Mike,

    I think all moderate muslims should make an active effort to distance themselves from the extremists.

    Ahmadis do not say that we are the only Muslims advocating peace, but there is no denying the fact that our interpretation of Jihad has been used as a reason for our takfir by the orthodoxy.

  2. Actually Ahmadis never say that there are no peaceful people among other sects or group. Infact Ahmadis always invite other Muslim & groups to stand up for true Islam along side them; ie Peace, understanding, interfaith & harmony. It is the other Muslim groups that isolate Ahmadis (even in the west) as if they have nothing to do with Islam. I humbly feel you're pointing your fingers in the wrong direction.

    Saying "You don't hear about us because we don't throw rocks at buses," is not wrong. It doesn't imply at all that there no peaceful people among other Muslim groups. How would you that they did not ask "Why have we not heard of you?" then what simple answer is more fitting than the ones that imply 'we simply are not violent'.

    A distinction needs to be made about humility. Humility is something that is expressed at a personal level. In my humble opinion, not as a religious group. To think that other faiths are better or may be better than your own, my question would be what are you doing sitting in this faith? One should not be satisfied until the 'best' faith is found. However one can think that "individuals" of other faith can excel you. That's humility.

  3. Dear Mike Ghouse,

    I appreciate very much your sincere and genuine thoughts. There is no doubt you write it with the most well-meaning intentions and I agree with most of what you are saying. I want to note just one thing, however. The comment about not being noticed because we don't throw rocks at buses is a sad and poor reflection on the media, not Ahmadis. Indeed, I have worked hard to get media attention for noble causes of Ahmadis, and it is a sad reality that some of the most ridiculous things get exponentially more coverage compared to Ahmadi efforts to promote peace, love and understanding among all people. Such notions simply aren't media friendly. And indeed it is true, you will not see Ahmadis throwing rocks at buses.

    Thanks again for your kind note.

  4. Thanks for sharing! I also want to share Quran app by Deenwise exclusively offers you the complete Quran with translation on iPhone. It includes Quran with English Urdu Translation which beautifies your life with the blessing of reading, listening to, and understanding the Quran on the go. 



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quraan burning

Planned Muslim Response to Qur'an Burning by Pastor Jones on September 11 in Mulberry, Florida

August 19, 2013| Dallas, Texas

Mike Ghouse
Text/Talk: (214) 325-1916

Mirza A Beg
(205) 454-8797



We as Muslims plan to respond to pastor Terry Jones' planned burning of 3000 copies of Quran on September 11, 2013 in positive terms.

Our response - we will reclaim the standard of behavior practiced by the Prophet concerning “scurrilous and hostile criticism of the Qur’an” (Muhammad Asad Translation Note 31, verse 41:34). It was "To overcome evil with good is good, and to resist evil by evil is evil." It is also strongly enjoined in the Qur’an in the same verse 41:34, “Good and evil deeds are not equal. Repel evil with what is better; then you will see that one who was once your enemy has become your dearest friend.”

God willing Muslims will follow the divine guidance and pray for the restoration of Goodwill, and on that day many Muslim organizations will go on a “blood drive” to save lives and serve humanity with kindness.

We invite fellow Americans of all faiths, races, and ethnicities to join us to rededicate the pledge, “One nation under God”, and to build a cohesive America where no American has to live in apprehension, discomfort or fear of fellow Americans. This event is a substitute for our 10th Annual Unity Day Celebration (www.UnitydayUSA.com) held in Dallas, but now it will be at Mulberry, Florida.

Unwittingly Pastor Jones has done us a favor by invigorating us by his decision to burn nearly 3000 copies Quran on September 11, 2013. Obviously he is not satisfied by the notoriety he garnered by burning one Qur'an last year.

As Muslims and citizens we honor the free speech guaranteed in our constitution. We have no intentions to criticize, condemn or oppose Pastor Terry Jones' freedom of expression. Instead, we will be donating blood and praying for goodness to permeate in our society.

We plan to follow Jesus Christ (pbuh), a revered prophet in Islam as well as Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) – that of mitigating the conflicts and nurturing good will for the common good of the society.

We hope, this event and the message will remind Muslims elsewhere in the world as well, that violence is not the way. Muslims, who react violently to senseless provocation, should realize that, violence causes more violence, and besmirches the name of the religion that we hold so dear. We believe that Prophet Muhammad was a mercy to the mankind, and we ought to practice what we believe and preach. We must not insult Islam by the negative reactions of a few.

We can only hope it will bring about a change in the attitude of the followers of Pastor Jones, and in the behavior of those Muslims who reacted violently the last time Pastor sought notoriety – We hope this small step towards a bridge to peaceful coexistence would propel us towards building a cohesive society.

Like most Americans a majority of Muslims quietly go about their own business, but it is time to speak up and take positive action instead of negative reaction. May this message of peace and goodwill reverberate and reach many shores.

Lastly, we appreciate the Citizens of Mulberry, Florida, Honorable Mayor George Hatch, City Commissioners, police and Fire Chiefs for handing this situation very well. This will add a ‘feather of peace’ in the City’s reputation. We hope Mulberry will be a catalyst in showing the way in handling conflict with dignity and peace.

We thank the Media for giving value to the work towards peace rather than conflict.

URL- http://worldmuslimcongress.blogspot.com/2013/08/planned-muslim-response-to-quran_18.html

Thank you.


The people in Dallas are making an effort to understand and clean their own hearts first, when we are free from bias, it would be easy to share that with others. Islam teaches us in so many ways to "respect the otherness of others" and it is time we find simple practical ways of doing it.