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Excommunication and Ostracization

Two types of excommunication are practised: the lesser of the two is ostracization (muqatia), and then excommunication itself (ikhraaj). A sample is provided at the bottom of the page.

Both types of excommunication are communicated to the subject on behalf of the spiritual leader, are usually sudden and without any formal hearing. The decision is final with no right of appeal and is announced at monthly meeting and gatherings throughout the community (see below).

Reversals are common and usually require many letters from the subject to the spiritual leader, abjectly seeking forgiveness.

Ostracisation

This lesser form of communication is a somewhat unique feature of the social environment of the Qadiani Ahmadiyya. This specific sometimes considered a characteristic of a cult.

Over the decades, it has taken one or more of the the following forms, depending on locale:
Total social ostracizing by the community as well as friends and family.
No communication with friends and family.
No communications with community leadership, no involvement in gatherings, including expulsion if visiting premises, and no acceptance of financial donations.
No trade of any type, including retail and grocery items.

In one incident in the 1960s, a senior official of the community hung a plaque around his neck with the inscription 'I am a dog' within sight of the leader for many days before he was pardoned.

As Qadiani Ahmadis have little social relations outside the community, this practices breeds social fears including that of not having a proper funeral or burial. Those members living in towns run by the Qadiani community (Qadian before 1947 and Rabwah after 1954), this social boycott is very effective in keeping dissenters from expressing dissent.

Excommunication

This is excommunication in the general sense and total exclusion from the community and a total ban on the subject.

Offences

There is no general list of offences and their applicable punishment. Dissent, publishing anything without the express approval of the community leaders and criticism are the usual causes. Curiously, a high proportion of expulsions relate to archaic rules on marriage celebrations (see below).

In one such instance in November 2004 in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, Mirza Manzoor died of a heart attack some time after most of his family was excommunicated after not following strict guidelines on marriage ceremonies. Most observers related his death to the excommunication as there was a gap of only a few days between the two events.

Sample

In addition to the documents below, also see documents attached to Ahmadiyya as a Cult. In this example, he expels, and quite predictably - forgives.






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