“Jihad” in Arabic, The Arabic word “jihad” is a noun. Its singular past tense verb is “jahada” (masculine) or “jahadat” (feminine). The singular active participle of “jihad” is “mujahid” (masculine) or “mujahida“(feminine). The root of the word “jihad” is “juhd” which means “effort.” Another related word is “ijtihad“which means “working hard or diligently.”
Jihad is simply the process of “exerting the best efforts,” involving some form of “struggle” and “resistance,” to achieve a particular goal. In other words, jihad is the struggle against, or resistance to, something for the sake of a goal. The meaning of the word is independent of the nature of the invested efforts or the sought goal.
Contrary to common belief, the word “jihad” does not necessarily imply any violent effort, let alone “war” and such instances of extreme violence. It is a general term that can mean violent as well as peaceful actions, depending on the context in which it is used, as we shall indeed see later. Similarly, “jihad” as a generic word can be used even when the sought goals are not Islamic, i.e. in non-religious contexts.
The Qur’an uses the verb of “jihad” in its generic meaning of “exerting the best efforts against something” in the following two verses:
And We have enjoined on man to be good to his parents; his mother bears him in weakness upon weakness, and his weaning is in two years; and that [you must] be grateful to Me and to both your parents. To Me is the eventual coming (31.14). And if they jahadaka (do jihad against you) to make you associate [a god] with Me, of which you have no knowledge [being a god], do not obey them, but keep company with them in this world kindly; and follow the way of he who turns to Me. Then to Me is your [O people!] return, then I shall inform you of your past deeds (31.15).
I read in today’s local news paper that Six suspected Islamic militants arrested in Yemen…
My request to the people not to use the word “Islamic Militant” because a Militant does’nt have humanity and religion. Islam never asked followers to kill innocent for any reason, so they should be called as a “Militant” without prefixing religion.