Revelation and Hazrat Mirza's claim: Wahy Nubuwwat and Wahy Wilayat

[ BACK ] This Section presents writings of Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad to show that he clearly distinguished between the two main types of revelation: wahy nubuwwat (revelation exclusive to prophets), and wahy wilayat (the lower form of revelation received by saints as well as prophets); and that he considered wahy nubuwwat to have terminated after the Holy Prophet Muhammad because it characterises a prophet. He only laid claim to receiving wahy wilayat. The Section then deals with the concept of muhaddas, the proper term for a Muslim saint who receives revelation, and shows the meaning Hazrat Mirza attached to this term.

Wahy or revelation from God is of two kinds:

Wahy nubuwwat or wahy risalat (revelation exclusive to prophets).

Wahy wilayat or wahy muhaddasiyyat (revelation received by a saint, a non-prophet).

The persons who are raised by God for a mission are appointed either by receiving wahy nubuwwat or wahy wilayat. Hazrat Mirza wrote:

``God says [in the Holy Quran] that He does not clearly reveal news of matters unseen to anyone except His messengers (rasul), that is to say, those persons who are appointed through wahy risalat or through wahy wilayat, and are known as being from Him.''

(Al-Haq Mubahasa Ludhiana, p. 117)


If such a person is a recipient of wahy nubuwwat, he is called a nabi (prophet) and rasul (messenger), and belongs to the category of prophets.

If, however, he is a recipient of wahy wilayat, he is called a muhaddas (one who receives Divine revelation without being a prophet) or a mujaddid (religious reformer), and belongs to the category of saints (wali).

Wahy nubuwwat (revelation exclusive to prophets) began with the prophet Adam and ended with the Holy Prophet Muhammad. This is what Hazrat Mirza wrote:

``It is my belief that wahy risalat began with Adam and ended with the Holy Prophet Muhammad.''

(Majmu`a Ishtiharat, vol. ii, p.\ 230)

``A seal has been put upon wahy nubuwwat since thirteen hundred years ago.''

(Izala Auham, p. 534)


``It has just been shown that wahy risalat has been terminated till the Day of Judgment.''

(ibid., p. 614)

``How could it be permitted that, despite the fact that our Holy Prophet Muhammad is the Last of the Prophets (Khatam al-anbiya), some other prophet should appear sometime and wahy nubuwwat commence.''

(Ayyam as-Sulh, p. 47)


``O you people, who are called the progeny of Muslims! Do not become opponents of the Quran, and do not start wahy nubuwwat after the Last of the Prophets.''

(Asmani Faisla, p. 16)


So, after the Holy Prophet Muhammad, wahy nubuwwat has been ended. To put man in contact with God now, there only remains wahy wilayat which is received by saints. Hazrat Mirza wrote on this point as follows:

``I believe that it is not wahy nubuwwat but wahy wilayat which the saints receive through the Prophethood of Muhammad due to their perfect following of him. If anyone accuses me of claiming anything beyond this, he departs from honesty and fear of God.''

(Majmu`a Ishtiharat, vol. ii, no. 151, p. 297)


``I have noticed that at the time of revelation, which descends upon me in the form of wahy wilayat, I feel myself in the hands of an extremely strong external force.''

(Barakat-ud-Du`a, p. 21)


``Has it ever happened in the world that God should have so helped an imposter that he could be speaking a lie against God for eleven years, to the effect that His [God's] wahy wilayat and wahy muhaddasiyyat comes to him, and God would not cut off his jugular vein.''

(Ainah Kamalat Islam, p. 323)


Even if the wahy nubuwwat received by someone did not address him by the titles nabi (prophet) and rasul (messenger), he would still become a prophet as the recipient of wahy nubuwwat. The Holy Prophet Muhammad's first revelation in the form of wahy nubuwwat is the Quranic passage beginning with the words: ``Read in the name of thy Lord, Who creates.'' The revelation of this passage made him a prophet, yet it did not address him as nabi or rasul.

Conversely, if the wahy wilayat received by a saint addresses him as nabi and rasul, and he even receives verses of the Holy Quran in his wahy wilayat, he still does not become a prophet, but remains a saint. Many recognised saints throughout the history of Islam received revelation in which they were called nabi and rasul, and they also had revelation which contained verses from the Holy Quran. Imam Ja`far Sadiq, an early Imam from the line of Ali, is said to have received the whole of the Holy Quran in his revelation.

Therefore, the revelation of a single sentence by way of wahy nubuwwat makes the recipient a prophet, but the revelation upon some saint of even the whole of the Holy Quran by way of wahy wilayat does not make him a prophet. Regarding this, Hazrat Mirza writes:

``It is obvious that if it is supposed that the angel Gabriel can now descend with even one sentence of wahy nubuwwat and remain silent thereafter, this would still contradict the finality of prophethood, for when the seal of finality is breached and wahy risalat again starts to descend, it matters not whether the amount is little or much. Every wise person can understand that if God is true to His promise, and the promise given in the Khatam an-nabiyyin verse, which has been explicitly mentioned in the Hadith, that now, after the death of the Prophet of God, peace and the blessings of God be upon him, Gabriel has been forbidden forever from bringing wahy nubuwwat --- if all these things are true and correct, then no person at all can come as a messenger (rasul) after our Prophet, peace be upon him.''

(Izala Auham, p. 577)


``After the Khatam an-nabiyyin, the Holy Quran does not allow the coming of any rasul, whether he is a new one or a former one, because a rasul receives knowledge of religion through the agency of Gabriel, and the coming of Gabriel as bringing wahy risalat has been closed. It is self-contradictory that a messenger (rasul) come into the world, but not be accompanied by wahy risalat.''

(ibid., p. 761)


``Will the revelation of a prophet be called anything other than wahy nubuwwat?''

(Siraj Munir, p. 4)


How explicitly and unequivocally has Hazrat Mirza stated here that, after the Holy Prophet Muhammad, wahy nubuwwat had ended! Even a single sentence of this type of revelation cannot descend upon any person after the Holy Prophet. However many saints, reformers and Divinely-inspired holy men appear among the Muslims, they would receive only wahy wilayat, and Hazrat Mirza is one such personage. Never did he term his revelation as wahy nubuwwat, but always as wahy wilayat.