Hadhrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad (as) of Qadian was foretold in one of his Arabic prophecies around the year 1965:
“Your age will be eight years—a few years less or some years more; and you will live long enough to witness your distant progeny.” [Tadhkirah page 9]
He was around 30 years at the time of this revelation. The prophecy said that he would live almost another four to five decades. He elaborated on the prophecy thus:
“The real words about the promise in the revelation assign the age between 74 and 86″ [Zamima Baraheen-e-Ahmadiyya Vol 5 page 97 margin]
Then it was revealed to Ahmad (as) in 1891:
“We shall bestow upon you a good life; eighty years or thereabouts” [Tadhkirah page 243]
This same revelation was repeated again in the year 1900. The prophecy was repeated one more time in the Urdu language in 1906.
This was a grand prophecy. It was grand because of two reasons, both beyond the control of man. Firstly, it meant that Ahmad (as) would not die before the assigned age. Most Muslim clerics in India had turned against Ahmad (as) and had branded him a heretic. He was also hated by some Christian Missionaries and Arya Samaj activists whom he had directly challenged and defeated in debates. There had been attempts on his life and he had no extra protection from the government either. Yet, he prophecized that no one would be able to harm him and he would live a comfortable long life.
Secondly, it also meant that he wouldn’t live beyond the assigned age. Living to the age of ninety for instance would have proved the prophecy wrong.
Thus, according to the prophecies common sense dictates the age of the Promised Messiah (as) to be between 76 and 84 years of age. I would like to show by way of simple calculations that Hadhrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad (as) the Promised Messiah and Mahdi of this age lived to the ripe age of 76 years and hence fulfilled these prophecies.
To calculate a person’s age, one requires to know the date of birth and the date of demise.
Date of Demise
Ahmad (as) passed away on the 24th of Rabbi-us-Sani 1326 AH (Islamic Calendar), or 26th May, 1908. This is agreed upon by the Ahmadi Muslims and indeed the critics.
Date of Birth
The date of birth of Hadhrat Ahmad (as) is NOT recorded in any book because at the time of his birth, it wasn’t a custom to remember dates of birth and there was no official registration as well. Different writings contain different estimates of his age. Ahmad (as) writes:
“God knows the real age but according to my knowledge, my age is near 70 years at present in the year 1323 AH. God knows best” [Zamima Baraheen-e-Ahmadiyya Vol 5 page 193]
This shows he wasn’t sure of his age but there are certain signs and clues in his writings using which we can calculate his true date of birth, which calculates to the 14th of Shawwal 1250 AH or 13th February, 1835 (a Friday).
However, we find in the writings of Hadhrat Ahmad (as):
“This humble one was born in the month of Phalugna on a Friday on the 14th night of the moon” [Zikr-e-habib by Mufti Muhammad Sadiq Sahib pages 238 & 239]
So we note that when Hadhrat Ahmad (as) was born, it was:
2) The 14th of the Islamic calendar
3) The Month of Phalguna of the Hindi calendar.
Using the three criteria above and by means of simple calculations we shall be able to ascertain the date of the birth of the Promised Messiah (as ) accurately, Insha’Allah.
Summary of Method
I will first discuss the reliability of web based Hijri to Gregorian calender converters and establish the right software to use.
I will discuss variants of the Hindu calenders and establish which is the most suitable for the purpose of our calculation.
I will use the second and the third criteria as found in the writings of the Promised Messiah (as) himself to establish corresponding Gregorian dates.
Similarly I will make use of the first and second criteria to establish a set of corresponding Gregorian dates.
Finally the Gregorian dates that coincide should help us to determine the actual date of birth of the Promised Messiah (as) and hence the age of the Promised Messiah (as).
Reliability of Hijri to Gregorian Converters
There are many Hijri to Gregorian calender converters available online. Unfortunately enough, many of them are not accurate enough to easily solve the task at hand. There is always a possibility of one day error as I will demonstrate with known examples. However, I came across a much more accurate software, namely moonc60 calculator by Dr. Manzoor Ahmad which can be downloaded [[www.4shared.com/file/23652807/6f0ff68/mo…PwdVerified=afca1334 - here]].
Taking Gregorian dates with known corresponding dates for grated we will be able to present a few examples to testify the reliability of the moonc60 calculator. It is necessary to produce more than
We know that Pakistan was created on the 14th of August 1947 which as we are told corresponds to the 27th of the Islamic month of Ramadhan 1366. When we enter the Gregorian date we receive:
Thursday 26th Ramadhan 1366 A.H. (web-based converter)
Friday 27th Ramadhan 1366 A.H. (moonc60 converter)
The Ahmadiyya newspaper Al-Hakkam was in publish at the time of the Promised Messiah (as).
It has printed both the Hijri and the Gregorian dates. For my personal ease, I shall not upload individual images of the Al-Hakkam newspaper to prove my point. However, if challenged for verification I will upload them, or if one wishes they can look it up themselves. Nonetheless, please note the following three examples:
Date 31 / 3 / 1906 should correspond to 5 Safar 1324 A.H :
Saturday 6 Safar 1324 A.H (web-based converter)
Friday 5 Safar 1324 A.H (moonc60 converter)
Date 24 / 5 / 1906 should correspond to 29th Rabīʿ al-Awwal 1324 A.H :
Thursday 30th Rabīʿ al-Awwal 1324 A.H (web-based converter)
Wednesday 29th Rabīʿ al-Awwal 1324 A.H (moonc60 converter)
Date 17 / 12 /1906 should correspond to 30th Shawwal 1324 A.H :
Monday 1 Dhu al-Qa’dah 1324 A.H (web-based converter)
Sunday 30th Shawwal 1324 A.H (moonc60 converter)
Hence we can base all our calculations on the moonc60 converter to achieve Islamic calendar dates accurately from corresponding Gregorian dates.
The Hindu Calender
It should be kept in the mind that there is no standard Hindu calendar used through out India. Different regions of the country used different Hindi calenders. It should be noted that it was in 1957 that a single Hindi calender was adopted by the government of India.
On the Wikipedia article [[Indian National Calender]] we discover that:
The calendar was introduced by the Calendar Reform Committee in 1957, as part of the Indian Ephemeris and Nautical Almanac, which also contained other astronomical data, as well as timings and formulae for preparing Hindu religious calendars, in an attempt to harmonise this practice. Despite this effort, local variations based on older sources such as the Surya Siddhanta may still exist. Source
Thus the official Indian calendar was adopted in 1957, and there existed many local variations before it which are still in use today. Hence,it becomes necessary to find which calender was being used in and around Qadian at the time of Promised Messiah (as).
On the [[Hindu calender]] article on Wikipedia we find that:
The lunar months are split into two pakshas of 15 days. The waxing paksha is called [[shukla paksha]], light half, and the waning paksha the [[krishna paksha]], dark half. There are two different systems for making the lunar calendar: Source
amavasyanta or mukhya mana system – a month begins with a new moon, mostly followed in the southern states
purnimanta or gauna mana system – a month begins with a full moon, followed more in the North.
On the same page on Wikipedia discussing regional variants we discover that:
The two calendars most widely used in India today are the Vikrama calender followed in Western and Northern India and Nepal, and theShalivahana or Saka calendar which is followed in South India, Maharashtra and Goa. Source
The other little-known difference between the two calendars exists: while each month in the Shalivahana calendar begins with the ‘bright half’ and is followed by the ‘dark half’, the opposite obtains in the Vikrama calendar. Thus, each month of the Shalivahana calendar ends with the no-moon day and the new month begins on the day after that, while the full-moon day brings each month of the Vikrama calendar to a close (This is an exception in Gujarati Calendar, its month (and hence new year) starts on a sunrise of the day after new moon, and ends on the new moon, though it follows Vikram Samvat).
Hence the calender most suitable for the purpose of our calculation is the one that has been most used in the Northern and Western states of India since Qadian, the birthplace of the Promised Messiah (as) lies within those states. This requires us to note that when we make use of a web based calender (which off course is based on the calender formed by the Indian Calender Reform committee) we will have to shift half a month (about 15 days). For example, if the web based converter says it is the 1st of Phalguana , then in fact it will be 14 of Phalguna with respect to the time and place of the Promised Messiah (as). Similarly if the web based calender says 15/16 of the month of Magah the it we consider the 1st of Phalguna.
This is because we know that the start of the Islamic calender begins with a New Moon, whereas the selected Hindu calender beings with the Full Moon. We will now proceed with the actual calculation with the help of a web based Hindu calender converters which can be downloaded here.
Here is how we will calculate the Gregorian date of birth from the criteria given by the Promised Messiah (as) himself. We know that the Promised Messiah (as) was born on the 14th of the Islamic calender and this as I have discussed above corresponds to the 1st of the month of the Phalguna of the Hindu calender used at the time and place of the Promised Messiah (as).
Now using the web based converter we shall derive Gregorian dates from the corresponding 1st of Phalguna of the Hindu calender ranging from 1830 to 1840 C.E.
|1) 1 Phalguna 1886 V.E||24th of Feb 1830|
|2) 1 Phalguna 1887 V.E||13 February 1831|
|3) 1 Phalguna 1888 V.E||3 March 1832|
|4) 1 Phalguna 1889 V.E||20 February 1833|
|5) 1 Phalguna 1890 V.E||11 March 1834|
|6) 1 Phalguna 1891 V.E||28 February 1835|
|7) 1 Phalguna 1892 V.E||17 February 1836|
|8)1 Phalguna 1893 V.E||7 March 1837|
|9)1 Phalguna 1894 V.E||25 February 1838|
|10)1 Phalguna 1895 V.E||15 February 1839|
|11) 1 Phalguna 1896 V.E||5 March 1840|
Notice however, we have took 1st of Phalguna to be the calender prevalent at the time and place of the Promised Messiah (as). On the other hand, I have used the modern Hindu calender converter to give the corresponding Gregorian dates. Therefore, as established above, 1st of Phalguna at the time and place of the Promised Messiah (as) corresponds to the 14th of Phalguna of the calender established by the Indian Committee, which the web based calender is based on.
Equally however we could take away 14 days from the Gregorian dates that have already been derived to correspond to the 1st of Phalguna of the Hindu calender used at the time and place of the Promised Messiah (as), which itself corresponds to the 14th of the Islamic month.
|1) 1 Phalguna 1886 V.E||7 February 1830|
|2) 1 Phalguna 1887 V.E||28 January 1831|
|3) 1 Phalguna 1888 V.E||16 February 1832|
|4) 1 Phalguna 1889 V.E||4 February 1833|
|5) 1 Phalguna 1890 V.E||23 February 1834|
|6) 1 Phalguna 1891 V.E||13 February 1835|
|7) 1 Phalguna 1892 V.E||2 February 1836|
|8)1 Phalguna 1893 V.E||20 February 1837|
|9)1 Phalguna 1894 V.E||9 February 1838|
|10)1 Phalguna 1895 V.E||29 January 1839|
|11) 1 Phalguna 1896 V.E||17 February 1840|
It is possible for the list to include a little bit error of someday. This possibility can be removed by using the moonc60 calculator software which we have established to be accurate. We will use Friday the 14th of any Islamic month (which are two of the three criteria mentioned by the Promised Messiah (as)) to derive corresponding Gregorian dates. If any of these Gregorian dates coincide with the Gregorian dates given by the Hindu calender calculations, then we can be quite sure that the calculations above are accurate and the Gregorian date that coincides is likely to be the date of birth of the Promised Messiah (as). Here is the table:
|1)14th of shaban||9th feb 1830|
|2) 14th of shaban||10th feb 1831|
|3) 14th of shaban||5th feb 1832|
|4)14th of Ramazan||5th feb 1833|
|5)14th of shawal||24th feb 1834|
|6)14th of shawal||13th feb 1835|
|7)14th of shawal||2nd feb 1836|
|8) 14th Zul qada||20th feb 1837|
|9)14th Zul qada||10th feb 1838|
|10)14th Zul qada||30th Jan. 1839|
|11)14th Zul Hajj||18th Feb 1840|
Here is the summarising the calender conversions. We come to realize that only 13th of February 1835 coincides with 1st of Phalguna of any year within the range. It should be noted that 1st of Phalguna 1891 V.E which corresponds to the Gregorian date also falls on a Friday. We also see that niether 1839 nor 1840 Gregorian dates coincide with the Hindu calender and the Islamic calender.
|Islamic Month||Gegorian Date||Hindi Month||Day|
|1) 14th of shaban||| 9th Feb 1830||| 1 Phalguna 1886 V.E||Tuesday|
|2) 14th of shaban||| 10th Feb 1831||| 1 Phalguna 1887 V.E||Thursday|
|3) 14th of shaban||| 5th Feb 1832||| 1 Phalguna 1888 V.E||Sunday|
|4) 14th of Ramadhan||| 5th Feb 1833||| 1 Phalguna 1889 V.E||Tuesday|
|5) 14th of Shawwal||| 24th Feb 1834||| 1 Phalguna 1890 V.E||Monday|
|6) 14th of Shawwal||| 13th Feb 1835||| 1 Phalguna 1891 V.E||Friday|
|7) 14th of Shawwal||| 2nd Feb 1836||| 1 Phalguna 1892 V.E||Wednesday|
|8) 14th of Zul qada||| 20th Feb 1837||| 1 Phalguna 1893 V.E||Monday|
|9) 14th of Zul qada||| 10th Feb 1838||| 1 Phalguna 1894 V.E||Saturday|
|10) 14th of Zul qada||| 30th Jan 1839||| 1 Phalguna 1895 V.E||Wednesday|
|11) 14th of Zul Hajj||| 18th Feb 1840||| 1 Phalguna 1896 V.E||Tuesday|
Hence we conclude that the date of birth of the Promised Messiah and Mahdi (as) is Friday 14th of Shawwal 1250 A.H, 13th Feb 1835 1 Phalguna 1891 V.E . Taking into account the date of demise, 25 of Rahi Aul Thani 1326 A.H , 26th of May 1908, we can see that the age of the Promised Messiah (as) is 73 according to the Gregorian year and 76 according to the Hijri calender. Hence the Promised Messiah (as) fullfilled the prophecy exatcly as revealed by Allah Almighty.
Writings of the Promised Messiah (as)
When we analyze other writings of Ahmad (as), we come to know that this is his true date of birth. He writes:
“This is strange and I see it as a sign of God that right in the year 1290 AH, this humble self had attained communion with God”[Haqiqatul Wahi page 199, first edition]
At another place, he writes:
“when I reached the age of 40, God blessed me with his word and revelation” [Taryaqul-Quloob, page 68 first edition]
Then in another place, he writes in one of his poetic verses:
I was 40 years old in this world; When I was blessed with God’s revelation”
This confirms his year of birth being 1250 AH.
Opponents of Ahmad (as) present certain writings that seem to prove that his age was less than what it calculates to be. It is important to understand that those wordings do not mention an accurate date but an estimate only. There are numerous people in the third world even today who do not know their dates of birth and can only estimate their age. Most people in the villages of India and Pakistan respond to the question of their age in words such as ‘almost forty’, ‘between ‘seventy and eighty’ etc. Ahmad (as) lived almost two centuries back. His not knowing his exact date of birth is no surprise. All his writings mentioning his age are mere estimates.
However as shown above, scientific calculations have been employed to calculate Ahmad’s (as) exact date of birth.
“On 23rd of August, 1903 a leaflet was published from me against Dowie which states that I am around 70 years in age and Dowie, as he mentions, is a young man of 50.” [Tatma Haqiqatul Wahi page 71 and Majmooa-ishtaharat vol 3 page 564]
If Ahmad (as) was 70 in the year 1903, at his death in 1908, his age calculates to 75 by the Solar calendar and 77 by the Lunar calendar.
Testimony Of His Opponents
1) Maulvi Sanaullah Amritsari who was a staunch opponent of Ahmad (as) writes:
“Mirza Sahib has said that his demise would be near 80 years of age and perhaps he has fulfilled all those conditions” [Ahl-e-hadith 3rd May 1907 page 3 column2]
In 1907, Maulvi Sanaullah was questioning why Ahmad (as) hadn’t died when according to prophecy, the time had come! Exactly after one year, Ahmad (as) passed away.
2) Maulvi Sanaullah probably wanted to prove that Ahmad (as) had reached 75 years of age and should die now according to his own prophecy. He writes in another place:
“A person who is older than 70 years of age (as is Mirza sahib himself)…” [Tafseer-e-sanai Matbooa 1899 Hashia 4 under ayat Inni mutawaffeeqa ]
If his age was more than 70 years according to Maulvi Sanaullah in the year 1899, at his demise in 1908, his age calculates to be: 70 +9 = more than 79 years of age.
3) Another blood-thirsty enemy of Ahmad (as), Maulvi Hussain Batalwi, wrote in Risala Isha’at-us-sunnah vol 15, page 191 in 1893 thus:
“He’s already 63 years old..”.
Mirza Ghulam Ahmad (as) remained alive for 15 years after this! Thus his age according to Batalwi would calculate to 63 + 15 = 78 years.
Another reason why Batalwi’s testimony is more valid that his other adversaries is that he was Ahmad’s (as) close friend from childhood and would have a better idea of his age.
In the presence of such clear testimony of even his opponents, the allegation that his age at demise was not as predicted stands no ground.
In short, the age prophecy was another grand prophecy that met fulfillment at God’s hand for it is outside man’s power to predict his age in his days of youth. The Prophecy was fulfilled literally and points to the truth of the Promised Messiah (as). Who on earth can predict his age at demise in his robust youth? Indeed it is only one bestowed with the knowledge of the future, knowledge from the all-knowing God!