Islam and the Ahmadiyya Jamaʻat: History, Belief, Practice
Simon Ross Valentine has written the first scholarly evaluation of the teachings, beliefs, and lifestyle of the Ahmaddiya Jama'at, an Islamic reform group founded in nineteenth-century India that currently boasts millions of followers worldwide. To the great aggravation of other Muslims, the Ahmadis assert that prophets existed after Muhammad, a controversial belief that has led to fierce persecution, especially in South Asia, where the government has declared the Ahmadis to be non-Muslims.
Valentine explores other major claims made by the Ahmadis, including their assertion that Jesus, instead of dying on the cross (as Christians believe) or ascending to heaven after the crucifixion (as mainstream Muslims teach), in fact escaped from the Romans and settled in Srinagar, the capital of Kashmir and the alleged location of Christ's tomb. After an account of the life of the movement's founder, Ghulam Mirza Ahmad, Valentine discusses the history of the Ahmadis, their proselytization strategies, the role of mosques and madrasas, the position of women within the religion, and the Ahmadis' doctrine of a peaceful jihad.