“He was always available for his spiritual brothers, and everyone could count on him for help – but this has not always been so. No one could imagine he would join Islam one day and change the foundation of his life.”
The search for truth.
Hadayatullah Hübsch Sahib had dedicated his life to Islam and Ahmadiyyat. He had written countless books regarding Islam and Ahmadiyyat, organized many tabligh events and would help wherever he could. He was always available for his spiritual brothers, and everyone could count on him for help – but this has not always been so. No one would have imagined that he would join Islam one day and change the course of his life. He had been a Christian, a Buddhist, an artist, a poet, and a hippie until he discovered Islam.
Hadayatullah Hübsch Sahib was born on 8th January 1946 and was born in a German family in Chemnitz, east Germany. He was born into a middle-class Christian family and his name, before accepting Islam, was Paul Gerhard Hübsch. His family however, had to flee to Frankfurt because of the incoming Russian army. His father, Maximilian Hübsch, was a director at a large cooperation before the second world war. His father was traumatised after the world war and could not take care of him and could not provide him the education that he needed. It was his mother, Susanne Hübsch, who took care of his education.
The country was in ruin after the war and large parts were totally destroyed; and the family did not have the basic needs such as clean water and food.
Hadayatullah Sahib’s father passed away when he was 14 years old. This left a large gap in his youth and deeply affected him. He would often get in to trouble in school and therefore had to change schools. His interest in literature increased and he would read a lot of books. His mother encouraged him to write poems. Hadayatullah Sahib met people who had the same interest as him in school and would hang around with them. They listened to rock music and exchanged poems. He was impressed of the life styles of some rebellious poets such as Allen Ginsberg and Jack Kerouac. At the age fifteen, he turned restless and wild. He decided to write and live like them. He was in a grammar school but due to his behaviour he was left with no other choice but to leave. He developed an interest in philosophy and poetry. He got involved in politics and would often criticize the use and manufacturing of nuclear weapons.
Hadayatullah Sahib became well known because of his poetry. He published his poems in various magazines. Apart from his poetry, he was also politically active and was in charge of the most popular political party in Germany at that time, ‘Club Voltaire’. He became so famous that he would go on tours to present his poetry. During his tour he was introduced to drugs. Fascinated by the effects of these drugs, he left ‘Club Voltaire’ and became a hippie.
Hadayatullah Sahib was in a state of despair as the drugs did not give him what he was looking for, rather they were obstacles in his search for inner peace. Hadayatullah Sahib studied Buddhism and believed that he found a new objective in life. After experiencing all the luxuries and downfalls of western life, at the age of twenty two, he experienced hallucinations and frightening visions during a road trip in morocco during his search for peace and relaxation. Out of total despair he ran to the Moroccan desert, where he experienced a miracle. He felt that an invisible force held him tight to the floor. Although he had a cross around his neck and believed in Buddha, he looked towards the sky and pleaded: “O Allah please purify me”. He was left in a complete state of bewilderment however he was certain that this was a sign from the divine.
On his return to Germany, Hadayatullah Sahib moved back with his mother and witnessed a second miracle. He saw the second sign during a meditation exercise. He saw a light shining towards him from his book shelf. Upon investigating, he established that this was a copy of the Holy Quran with its German translation. Thus, it was a turning point in his life that led him to Islam. He immediately knew that this was a clear sign from God Almighty.
After experimenting all religions, it was evident that – as a young man – he was desperately in search for God. He was certain that he can only find the true God in Islam. Hadayatullah Sahib was so desperately looking for God, that he even tried to go for Hajj but unfortunately he was stopped due to the colour of his skin and the faith he followed. When he began to search for the true Islam he experienced violence due to the way he dressed and looked. He was thrown out of every mosque he went to, except for one, “the Noor Mosque”, located in Frankfurt which belonged to Jam’at Ahmadiyya, welcoming him with open arms. It was God Almighty Grace that the Ahmadiyya Community allowed him in that day.
One day when he went to the mosque, it was the day that was destined to change his life forever. Hadayatullah Sahib writes about that day, when he stepped in to that mosque. He writes:
“I was twenty five, every mosque I went to, was forcing me out of the mosque except the Noor Mosque. I immediately proceeded to the prayer room and began to say my prayer, all I wanted to do was pray, I wanted to know the way to pray and how to pray. These days a non-Muslim is not even allowed to touch the Quran. This was the struggle I was facing. But the Ahmadiyya Muslims allowed me to attend their service. The room had not yet filled with people, an elderly man with a big white turban and a flowing white beard stood gracefully on the pulpit and addressed in a foreign language but I quietly sat down. I was afraid I may be turned out of the mosque again. I wondered who that charming personality is and what language is he speaking! Then all of a sudden I saw him become silent and for a moment or so hiding behind the pulpit, I was becoming further curious as to what was going on. As the man stood up again, he was looking directly at me and I saw a powerful, powerful ray of light emerging out of each one of his eyes and piercing my eyes… I went blind. I could not see anything until the prayer service started. The whole event was a unique experience for me, although I could not understand what happened. Later I realized it was jummah and the holy man behind the pulpit was Hazrat Mirza Nasir Ahmad raabbreviation for "May Allah be pleased with him/her/them", the Third Caliph. I became a Muslim and the Caliph gave me the name Hadayatullah, meaning the one guided to Allah himself.”
Hadayatullah Sahib took Baiat in July 1970 and from that day he began a new chapter in his life. The blessed meeting with the Caliph became the foundation stone for the love he developed towards Khilafat. Later on in his life he had the honour to serve the mosque as an Imam.
Hadayatullah Hübsch Sahib changed his life completely by dedicating his life to Islam. He moved away from his friends and stopped writing. Instead his intense learning of Islam became his sole purpose that inspired him to start learning Arabic in university. Thus he became attached to the community and he got involved in all kinds of external programs for the community, the mosque was his new home.
Hadayatullah Sahib was always full of energy and was a main pillar of the Jamaat. Hadayatullah Sahib spent all his time spreading the true teaching of Islam. He always dominated the discussions regarding Islam and left everyone speechless. At that time, Germany was unfamiliar with Islam hence Hadyatulah Sahib had the opportunity to preach the true and beautiful message of Islam to the German people. The countless tabligh events were one the most effective ways to spread the message of the Holy Prophet Muhammad saabbreviation for "Peace be upon him" and the Promised Messiah asabbreviation for "Peace be upon him". He used to write for Germanys most famous national newspapers. Now he started to write poetry, novels and essays again. After years of neglecting his writing, he started writing, and wrote a book called “Keine zeit fur trips” meaning, ‘no time for trips’. He described in an impressive way; his past, the confusion he experienced and the light he saw that led him to Islam. He was a great artist, who made a living through his art. He was a man who possessed many great qualities which made him a great servant for Islam. A humble and quiet man, until someone attacked Islam; he passionately defended Islam with great zeal. He wrote countless letters to newspaper agencies to refute allegations raised against Islam. He would always refute allegations in a friendly tone according to the community’s motto, “love for all hatred for none.”
Hadayatullah Hübsch Sahib travelled to Qadian and Rabwah and came to love these sacred places. He became so intrigued that he decided to move to Qadian. The unfamiliar tongue did not stop him, for he felt he had found the true purpose! Qadian always had a special meaning to him because it was the birth place of the founder of the Ahmadiyya Community. He recommended every new convert to visit Qadian as he believed that anyone can attain true teaching of Islam in Qadian. In 1977, Abdullah Uwe Wagishauser, the current Ameer of Germany, arrived in Qadian and met Hadayatullah Sahib.
The two Germans were a thousand miles away from their home. Together they were at the forefront in tabligh. Hadayatullah Sahib’s understanding of the young generation was something special. Not only young people relied on him, but also new converts. He became their guide. He passed on his knowledge of Islam through books and many people would read these books and accept Ahmadiyyat. By the grace of Allah, he wrote over a hundred books. He gave excellent speeches in Jalsa Salanas and Ijtemas. When the fourth Caliph established MTA, he would help out and many people would rely on him. Hadayatullah Sahib was also a teacher in Jamia Ahmadiyya Germany and taught the German language.
Hadayatullah Hübsch Sahib wed his first wife on the 14th February 1974. She was from Mauritius. However, on the 14th March 1979 his wife passed away as a result of cancer. Despite this great loss and being a single parent to his daughter, he dealt with this situation really well. In 1980 he re-married with his second wife, Sadiqa Sahiba, who was from Qadian. He had eight children in total.
Hadayatullah Sahib had a great relationship with the third Caliph, Hazrat Mirza Nasir Ahmad raabbreviation for "May Allah be pleased with him/her/them". But however, in 1982 Hadayatullah Sahib received the upsetting news of the demise of the third Caliph, Hazrat Mirza Nasir Ahmad! He was left deeply shocked. It is an event when one cannot keep under control, despite having the hope and trust in God that Khilafat will continue to exist, one can only cry. Hazrat Mirza Tahir Ahmad, the fourth Caliph, knew Hadayatullah sahib prior to his Khilafat because he met him in Rabwah and also multiple times in Frankfurt. He had a good relationship with him. It was therefore a great surprise when he became the caliph.
Hazrat Mirza Tahir Ahmad Caliph rhabbreviation for "May Allah have mercy on him/her/them" would visit Germany frequently. Whenever he held a Q&A (question and answer) session, Hadayatullah Sahib had the privilege and honour to be the translator. While translating, he developed a new skill which no one has even seen before. The fourth Caliph would sometimes talk for over fifteen minutes and then realise that he had forgotten to tell Hadayatullah sahib to translate. Surprisingly, Hadayatullah Sahib would start translating immediately which left the audience astonished because he would never forget anything. Hadayatullah Sahib however would always stay humble and would always be in the background and did not want to be at the centre of attention due to his important work.
In the year 2003, the fourth Caliph passed away. This left Hadayatullah Sahib and the whole community devastated. Hadayatullah Sahib saw in a dream that he was sitting in the Fazal Mosque with a new Caliph. He was also part of the electoral board which elected the fifth Caliph.
Hadayatullah Sahib’s departure was sudden and unexpected. He passed away on the 4th of January 2011. The fifth Caliph, Hazrat Mirza Masroor Ahmad, said the following in his Friday sermon about Hadayatullah Sahib:
Hadayatullah Hübsch Sahib was a simple and sincere person. He excelled in trust in God, belief, faith, fidelity, love and sincerity. He loved Khilafat and did not desire to have any differences. He offered pre-dawn Prayers. He invited me to his home and showed his library. He was ecstatic that I was visiting him. He was a scholar. Sixteen newspapers ran his story at his death. Minister of religious affairs commented on his death. German Ahmadis should follow his footsteps and expound the supremacy of Islam.
Hazrat Musleh Maud raabbreviation for "May Allah be pleased with him/her/them" once said:
“A time will come of great progress of the Jamaat in Germany and it will spread.”
Also our Current Khalifa’s mother, Hazrat Sahibzadi Nasira Begum saw in a dream that she was presented the keys to Germany. Thus Insha’Allah one day there will be a breakthrough in Islam and many of the German people will come to embrace Islam. One of the great diligent examples was Hadayatullah Sahib. He was not only guided by God Almighty himself, but he was the source of guiding many Germans to Islam Ahmadiyyat. May Allah bless us with other great personalities such as Hadayatullah Sahib and may Allah raise Hadayatullah Sahib’s status in Heaven Amin.
This concise biography was written with the help of the family members of Hadayatullah Sahib. All credit in regards to information and pictures is due to them. May Allah bless them immensely.