Islam presents itself as a universal religion with the remarkable and unique features mentioned in the Holy Qur’an as follows:
Its God is the Lord, Who is ‘the Sustainer of all the worlds’, and ‘the Lord of mankind’. (1:2, 114:2) Its Message, the Holy Qur’an, is ‘a Message for all the worlds’. (81:28) Its prophet is the ‘Messenger for the whole humanity’. (7:159) All other religions had always presented their God, their Messenger and their Message to be only applicable to their specific regions or tribes. It is only the religion of Islam, which has claimed to be applicable to the whole mankind.
Islam advocates the Truth of all the Prophets and their Books
The Holy Qur’an says that all the prophets were true, because they were sent by the same God to different races and people:
And there is no people to whom a Warner has not been sent (35 : 25).
The Holy Qur’an reaffirms the original truth of other revealed Books and the Muslims are admonished to believe in all other prophets in the same manner as they believe in their own Prophet. This is not the case with other religions, who believe in the truth of their own prophets only.
Islam – an Eternal Religion
Islam claims to be an eternal religion. This unique claim is based on the reason and logic that its Message is complete and perfect, and also guaranteed to be preserved in its original form. The Almighty God Himself claims in the Holy Qur’an:
This day have I perfected your religion for you and completed My favour upon you and have chosen for you Islam as religion (5:4)
Safeguarding of the Holy Qur’an
The Almighty God Who has sent down the Holy Qur’an has Himself promised to safeguard the verity of its contents:
“Verily We have sent down this book and verily We shall safeguard it”(15:10)
In view of this Divine guarantee, the text of the Holy Qur’an has not suffered even the slightest change, whereas, the other books have been much altered. This fact has also been confirmed by a large number of non-Muslim scholars.
The Almighty God has foretold that He has provided another important measure of safeguarding the real essence of the Holy Qur’an. He appointed Reformers (Mujaddideen) in the beginning of each century, and sent the Promised Messiah in the latter days, to safeguard the true spirit of the Holy Qur’an.
Islam Combines all Truth in a New Perspective
Islam combines the best features of the earlier teachings with the everlasting and comprehensive teachings of its own. The Almighty God says in the Holy Qur’an:
Herein are lasting commandments. (92:2)
This indeed is what is taught in the earlier scriptures; the scriptures of Abraham and Moses (87:19-20)
Greater Insight into God’s Attributes
Islam emphasises the Unity and Universality of God. It teaches that God is the ultimate cause of all creation. He is the All-Knowing and living God. None of His attributes has been suspended and, therefore, He still communicates with mankind as He has always done.
Islam holds that there is no contradiction between God’s words and His actions, and provides far greater insight into the various attributes of God, compared to the other religions.
Complete Code of Conduct and a Perfect Model
Islam is distinct from other Faiths in providing a comprehensive code of social and moral behaviour.
Also, to facilitate the observance of this code, the Almighty provided a perfect Model in the person of the Holy Prophet of Islam may peace and blessings of Allah be upon him. He passed through numerous stages of human experience, and set noble examples for mankind.
Revival in the Latter Days
The Ahmadiyya Muslim Community was founded in 1889 by Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad, may peace be on him. He claimed under Divine guidance to be the Promised Reformer – Promised Messiah & Mahdi, whose advent was foretold by the Holy Prophet of Islam may peace and blessings of Allah be upon him and many other faiths. The fact that his community stands for the revival of Islam is another important distinction of Islam.
Ahmadiyyat is a sect of Islam and not a new religion. Ahmadiyyat is a movement, entirely within the fold of Islam, meant to revive its true spirit and philosophy, to cleanse Islam of all superstitious and unnecessary beliefs and customs which had crept in over the past fourteen centuries, and finally, to preach the religion of Islam to non-Muslims with the enthusiasm and zeal of the early Muslims. Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad’s followers call themselves Ahmadi Muslims, only to differentiate themselves from members of other Islamic sects, and strictly follow the orthodox religion of Islam. As far as the fundamental beliefs or acts of worship are concerned, the Ahmadi Muslims have neither taken anything out nor added anything new to the religion of Islam. The Ahmadi Muslims make their declaration of faith by reciting the same Kalima which was recited by the Holy Prophet Muhammad, may peace and blessings be upon him, himself; they say their Prayers and Fast in the same manner as the Holy Prophet of Islam may peace and blessings be upon him, did; and their Qiblah, their Ka’aba, their Azan and their Holy Qur’an are all exactly the same as that of the other Muslims.