You might remember seeing Channel 5’s documentary entitled ‘Britian’s Biggest Mosque’ – and you might even recall Nasir Khan sahib’s interview, when he stated that this function, or annual ‘spiritual’ gathering, is one which avoids music, dancing and all the other aspects that you might encounter in a concert or ‘mela’.
So, how does one entertain himself despite not having the means that a worldly person might consider as an entertaining way to spend time? Jalsa is full of programmes which keep people spiritually entertained and busy, and I’ll prove it to you in just 3 minutes (depending on your reading pace!)
Possibly the most fundamental and important thing Jalsa provides, and for which every other thing falls under, is that we fulfil the Quranic verse of:
وما خلقت الجن والانس الا لیعبدون
That is that Allah Almighty states: “I have not created the jinn and men except that they may worship me” (Holy Quran, 51:57). Hearing the Adhaan before every prayer on the loudspeaker in the Jalsa compound, reading all five daily prayers in congregation, being encouraged to worship as much as possible and pledging to keep this practise a routine allows every individual present to build a formidable relationship with his Creator.
Jalsa teaches one to start every matter with a Quranic prayer, imploring for Allah’s help. The speakers discuss how prayers are answered, and what the true concept and purpose of prayer is, through analysing history and seeing how saints, Khulafa, Sahaba (companions of prophets) and pious people had their prayers answered. Not only that, it allows one to have the opportunity themselves to pray to Allah Almighty and experience the results of their prayers.
When the Promised Messiah (as) planted this seed, he stated himself that he wanted men who would void themselves of all worldly matters and join this three-day convention for the purpose of building and strengthening the relationship they have with Allah Almighty and thus, in return, rectify the world and its errors. This relationship can only be attained when the world is put to one side and special focus is given to worship and prayer. This explains why you won’t find any music or activities, which deprives one from creating that bond with God. But fret not! If melody is your preference, then it would probably please you to know that throughout the three days during each session, people recite Nazms in the praise of God, the Holy Prophet (saw), and topics related to spiritual matters.
Huzoor-e-Anwar (atba), whilst addressing missionaries of Jamia Ahmadiyya UK, stated: “You should not only maintain the standards of your predecessors but you should also seek to raise the existing standards.”
We sometimes spend so much time admiring football stars, TV anchors and personalities who have a fan base of millions, but may have no idea of our existence. However, this ‘one in 7 billion’, cares for us abundantly and Jalsa is one of the many functions that has made millions of people realise this. Despite Huzoor’s packed schedule, despite his long hours which run into the late night, despite addressing issues on an international and global scale and despite seeing matters from every country in the world, still takes personal interest in every matter, person, office, department, guest and action taking place in the garden of the Promised Messiah (as).
Not only that, but every single attendee has a story to tell of how Huzoor-e-Anwar (atba) remembers every detail. He takes a focused interest in every functioning department, every volunteer who forgets when day turns into night, every guest attending from overseas, and every office which has members working tirelessly to ensure that no glitch or fault occurs. Huzoor (atba) cares for us so much that no dictionary in the world has been made which contains the word which can justify this emotional and beautiful attachment.
So, if you want to experience the Khalifa’s jalsa… Jalsa Salana UK is your chance to do so!
By Syed Adeel Ahmad Shah