Each religion believes it has the truth, the future belongs to it, and that the final word from God has been revealed to it. Therein lies the problem of the world.
I am not going to argue theology or the validity of prophecies completed with anyone because we all have this dialectic which serves only to convince us of the rightness of our cause and the wrongness of everyone else.
I, who have lived so many times, knew the prophets and where they came from. I witnessed, I knew what their purpose was, and how they accomplished what they did. I even knew their families and the people who followed them. These special beings came at specific times of the history of the world, to a specific people, and, and when their purpose was done, what they created...changed.
Now most of the people of the world are without religion, yet have not evolved beyond that to find peace, or spirituality, which is the peace that comes from within...
But I wish to talk about Islam. I was born into it, I choose to be outside of it, and yet, have defended it many times here in North America, as you will see in my writings. Not because I agree or disagree with it, but because it is the right thing to do. As I understand it, the prophecy is that the saviour of humanity will come out of Islam, but does not say that he will be a Muslim. Muslims believe that it is Jesus who will come and fight Dajjal, the symbol of all that is wrong with the world, and will ultimately defeat him. They also believe in the promised redeemer of Islam, the Imam Mahdi for the Sunni, and the hidden Imam of the lineage of Ali for the Shia, either of whom will help reform the Muslim people.
I could, if I were to argue the rightness of prophecy, state this: My name is Ahmad. I am a Syed, a direct descendant of the prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him, not just the Quraysh family. I was also, for those who might accept the possibility of reincarnation, the man who was the Fourth Caliph and the First Imam, Ali ibn Abi Talib, so I was the first man, again. But even then, the physical and spiritual lineage is a statement only, which I offer as a way of understanding.
The Word comes to all of us in different forms: A voice, the sight of a burning bush, an angel, or a man. All serve God's purpose, for that moment in time, which then leads to new things. They were meant to evolve, and none were perfect.
The people who brought the Way of Atlan to Earth never intended for it to become a religion, yet over time the original Word was forgotten, and Religion, with all its panoply, rituals, constructs and dogmas came into being. The original religions, filtered through man's consciousness, changed and changed again over time, as ideologists argued over which was the correct version.
It is the failure of religion that few follow it faithfully, and it is an even greater failure to say we have fallen only because we had not followed faithfully. Perhaps the problem lies in the religion itself?
There is much to admire within Islam. Its humanitarian ideals, despite what you may read. Its commitment to social justice and incorruptible government. Its refusal of usury. Its concept of Jihad, a spiritual 'struggle', which is resistance against external forces of control but also an internal struggle to try to accept God's plan for us. (When you equate that with karma, in its true sense of 'action', the possibilities are breath-taking!)
But the fact is that the glory days of Islam are long gone, and will not return. The reasons are manifold:
- It had the seeds of change within it, but that was never understood.
- While the Sufis attempted a greater degree of Gnosis, and there was a genuine debate in Islam in the 13th and 14th centuries relating to the balance between spirituality and orthodoxy, orthodoxy won.
- Due to an unreasoning belief that the Koran is a perfect, final, fixed document, for all time, and that the prophet's vision was complete, Muslims give up freedom of choice by blindly accepting the scholars and theologian's interpretations of the sayings, traditions and actions of the prophet Muhammad (pbuh) even when they have many evident contradictions or misinterpretations.
- The role of women in Islam is not fully developed and they are treated as weaker beings, in a paternalistic way. They are not unequal, but neither are they equal in Islam, and therefore cannot fully develop as spiritual beings.
- It retains many of the negative elements of monotheistic religion, including intolerance of other faiths, promoting fear of a punishing god, sexual repression, and suppression of dissenting views. This predisposes people to accepting authority figures, which leads to the corrupt authoritarian governments in the Muslim world, which misuse Islam for their own ends.
- It cannot accept God coming to Earth in human form, which is its biggest taboo, called shirk. As if God can't do whatever God's purpose is. As if God must always be this unknowable being, with angels and prophets to intercede for humanity. As if God hasn't already been here, many times.
But these are my observations, not criticisms. Granted, that all religions enter into corrupt deals with the nation states. Granted, that all religions do not treat women equally. Yes, there are biological differences, yes, they are equal. God is male and female and child; no question in my view that God can appear in any form. But religion, like empires, like injustice, decays from within, and does not last forever, for change happens, and balance comes into being.
It isn't my place to change Islam. The revelations of the Koran were rightly given to a particular people at a particular time for a particular purpose, and if it is the appeal of religion that so many follow it as best they can, who am I to deny them that right?
But it is a pity that there is not one person within Islam who is capable of being Caliph of the believers, for the people have fallen far. It is a pity that you're divided amongst yourself by so many sects, all of them mistaken in their core beliefs. It is a pity that there is an unending war against Muslims and no one can stop the killing of innocents, and that many Muslims don't even care. It is a pity that even the religious within Islam can't speak out against the crimes done by Muslims in its name, and it's a pity that they are just as seduced by the material world as all others, that so many are ashamed just of being Muslims.
Yet, when I travelled through Pakistan in 1995, and Iran in 2007, I made sure to say that I was bringing a new faith which really was an old one, that I was meant to bring peace but first people would have to change, and accept this path, and know who I was. So I did my healing work, with Sunnis, and Shias, and Sufis, in the hundreds. (I could have gone to a Sufi festival with 50,000 people but it wasn't the time) You would have thought from what you read about how violent they are I would have been in trouble, but I never worried, was never bothered by anyone. A famous Sufi mystic, a woman (there's another shattered myth) when told by my cousin that my statements troubled her greatly, said "you leave him alone, he's an angel" (my aunt said exactly the same thing to her)
The fact still remains that Muslims will have to follow me, and become my disciples, not just listening and waiting for me to save them. They would have to follow me, no matter how difficult. There was one, just one, who did, but the path proved too difficult. Yet I helped her family and I helped the people of Iran, and Pakistan, because of my love for them. Any one who attacks those countries will be making a grave mistake; they will not lose, but neither will they win. But I still wait for Islam to change one day, and for Muslims to follow me, and become, like many others of other faiths, my disciples.
And if not? As was said once, "you have your religion, and I have mine", and when the day of reckoning comes, you will all be judged for what you did or did not do. I can only say I do not see a peaceful resolution, or a victory for your people; not until and unless you change.
Peace be upon you.