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Is it appropriate for Ahmadis to have personal Facebook accounts?

Once, Hadrat Khalifatul-Masih I ra gave certain directions to the Anjuman [board of directors]. However, most members of the Anjuman continuously resisted, and Hudur ra finally wrote to them that, “You have my permission, do what you want, I will not interfere.” When this matter was discussed in the Anjuman, Miyan Mahmood [Hadrat Musleh Mau‘ud]ra explained to them that Hudur ra had already given instructions and that this letter was an expression of anger, not of permission. However, the Anjuman voted in majority to do as they willed. When Hudur ra found out about their decision, he asked Miyan Mahmood ra why his directions were disobeyed, and Miyan Mahmood ra explained that he had opposed this decision in front of everyone. Hadrat Khalifatul-Masih I ra said to them, “Look, you call him a child, but this child understood my letter whereas all of you could not understand it.” Hudur ra then admonished them that blessings are only in willing obedience (Hayate-Nur, p. 384–386)

Our relationship with Khilafat is unique, it is a relationship of love that is founded on willing and open-hearted obedience. Concerning Facebook, Hudur aba said:

Those who have Facebook, they should have full knowledge, and go into it up to a limit.

(Gulshan-e-Waqfe-Nau, Khuddamul- Ahmadiyya Class, Dec 18, 2011)

Hudur aba gave this permission on the condition that:

If you are very fond of it. My work gets done without Facebook, if you people’s work does not get done, then open an account.

(Gulshan-e-Waqfe-Nau, Khuddamul-Ahmadiyya Class, Dec 18, 2011)

We can honestly judge whether this was a permission Hudur aba gave or an expression of some annoyance. Hudur aba mentioned that, recognizing the harms of Facebook, hundreds of thousands of Facebook accounts have been closed in the United States. Hudur aba said:

If those who are worldly understood this, then we who are religious should understand more quickly.

(Gulshan-e-Waqfe-Nau Atfalul-Ahmadiyya & Khuddamul-Ahmadiyya Class, June 8, 2014)

Hudur aba said:

On one hand is the claim, “By coming into the Jama‘at of the Promised Messiah as, we will establish these good actions and righteousness.” On the other hand is, “Why are we stopped from Facebook, why are we deprived of our freedom?” These two things cannot coexist, we will have to consider which of the two we wish to adopt; the pleasure of Allah Almighty and righteousness, or these means of spreading wrong.

(Jalsa Salana Germany 2011 Concluding Address)

For those Ahmadis who still choose to have personal Facebook accounts, there is no compulsion on them. Hudur aba said about Facebook:

To be saved from wrongs, it is necessary to not even go into it, that is why I disallowed it. Whoever accepts will accept. Now, there is a command of Allah Almighty to observe five daily prayers. Many do not accept the command of Allah and do not observe prayers, they are still called Muslims. There are also some Ahmadis who do not observe prayers. My work, as the Holy Quran has said, is to advise and continue advising, and not to tire. I am going to continue advising, and insha’Allah will not tire. However stubborn you will be, your fault will be with those who do not accept. If you accept, then it is good.

(Gulshan-e-Waqfe-Nau Nasirat-ul-Ahmadiyya & Lajna Ima’illah Class, Hamburg Germany, Oct 8, 2011)

Hudur aba has permitted the use of Facebook for tabligh purposes. However, having a Facebook account for personal use has repeatedly been discouraged because of the many social evils that it causes in society. The Holy Prophet sas said:

What is lawful is clear and what is unlawful is clear, but between them are certain doubtful things which many people do not know. So he who guards against doubtful things keeps his religion and his honour blameless. But he who falls into doubtful things falls into that which is unlawful.

(Sahih al-Bukhari, Book 2, Hadith 45; Sahih Muslim, Book 22, Hadith 133)
Updated on February 23, 2019

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