The Use of the Terms Nabi & Rasul For Non-prophets
Distinction between literal and technical meanings   The words nabi (`prophet') and rasul (`messenger' or `apostle') are well-known to every Muslim. These terms are generally understood in the technical sense assigned to them by Islamic theology and Shari`ah. But in Islamic literature these terms have also been used in a broad, literal (i.e. original linguistic) sense, or in a non-technical metaphorical sense, to refer to those who are not prophets.

We first show that Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad has clearly distinguished between the technical and linguistic meanings of nabi and rasul, and also between the real and metaphorical use of these words. In the proper, technically-defined sense of these words, no prophet can come after the Holy Prophet Muhammad. In the linguistic sense, or as a metaphor, these terms can be used for any saint, and it is only in this sense that Hazrat Mirza applied them to himself.

We then turn to the concept of muhaddas and give extracts from the writings of Hazrat Mirza to show that such a saint can be called nabi and rasul in the linguistic and metaphorical senses noted above. Lastly, views of other religious scholars are also cited to support the same conclusion.

Metaphorical and proper (real) use
Use of nabi and rasul for saints: Views of Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad
Use of nabi and rasul for saints:Views of earlier Muslim Saints
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