The ‘Jihad means Holy war’ myth

Actually it doesn’t. Jihad means ‘struggle’. More often than not Jihad denotes a distinctively spiritual struggle known only to the individual. These personal Jihads typically involve striving to become closer to God, to improve, to think or to act in better ways or to develop a greater self-discipline.

Jihad 1Christian tradition also has its own version of Jihad, of spiritual striving. The lives of the Saints, of countless Christian leaders and indeed of the apostles themselves are replete with examples of exactly the same form of spiritual struggle. Although there doesn’t seem to be a direct translation into English, Christian readers of this blog may be familiar with English words for different aspects of Jihad such as ‘sacrifice’, ‘devotion’, ‘pilgrimage’, ‘quest’ and yes, of course, ‘Crusade’.  Other parallels include Fasting (the Ramadan Jihad) and charity (community service is another important form of Jihad). Britain First’s insistence that every Jihad involves violent conflict is a deliberate misrepresentation of the truth, intended only to create the impression that devout Muslims trying to improve themselves are extremists bent on attacking the rest of us.

When the biffers claim that Jihad means ‘Holy war’ exclusively, they don’t only demonstrate their ignorance of Islam. They also demonstrate their inability to understand religious principles of both Islam and Christianity, their unwillingness to check their ‘facts’ and their refusal to acknowledge the most basic truths about the religion they claim to have studied, even when those truths are pointed out to them.

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8 thoughts on “The ‘Jihad means Holy war’ myth

  1. ebfblogger, perhaps you should find out from Anjem Choudary what Jihad generally means today. He is very often considered the leading muslim cleric in the UK and knows the Qur’an as well as any muslim.

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    • Well Folding Golding certainly thinks he’s the leading Muslim cleric in the UK. Not that he knows very much about Islam beyond a few cherry picked verses and his own worldview of ‘hatred for profit’.

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      • Terry,interesting that if I had posted such a churlish comment as this,ebfblogger would very soon moderate or delete it!!

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        • I’ve published many churlish and indeed unnecessarily rude comments from you, David. It’s only your more extremely abusive comments aimed at other commenters that I delete.

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        • Pray thee tell, David, what is so churlish about my post? That I compared Anjem to Paul? Or asked if you think Paul represents christianity in the same manner as Anjem represents muslims? Because that’s what you seem to imply despite most muslims do not care for Anjem has to say about their religion.

          Besides, I’m under the impression your posts get deleted because you apparently hurl abuse at us. Nowt abusive in my previous post. If you can’t or don’t want to answer my questions, then just don’t reply. Simple as that, mate.

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  2. ebfblogger, as you know I do disagree with a few blogs of yours and I am bound to do so on this one.

    Jihad is generally considered by most Islamic scholars as ” a divine institution enjoined specially for the purpose of advancing Islam. Muslims must strive,fight and kill in the name of God”. I quote from the Quran:
    Q 9.5-6 “Kill those who join other gods with God wherever you may find them” Q 4.76 “Those who believe fight in the cause of God” Q 8.12 “I will instil terror into the hearts of the Infidels,strike off their heads then and strike off from them every fingertip”( ISIS battle cry).Q 8.39-42 “Say to the infidels: if they desist from their unbelief it shall be forgiven them but if they return to it they have already before them the doom of the ancients.Fight against them till strife be at an end and the religion be all of it God’s” Q 2.256 “But they who believe and who fly the country and fight in the cause of God may hope for God’s mercy: and God is Gracious”- Familiar?!

    It is generally considered a sin for a Muslim to shirk battle against the unbelievers-those who do will roast in hell. Q 8.15 ” Believers,when you meet the unbelievers preparing for battle do not turn your backs on them Anyone who does shall incur the wrath of God and hell shall be his home,an evil dwelling indeed” Q9.39 If you do not fight He will punish you severely and put others in your place.Those who die fighting for the only true religion,Islam,will be amply rewarded in the life to come” It is abundantly clear from the above verses that the Qur’an is not talking of metaphorical battles or of moral crusades but of the battlefield.To read such bloodthirsty injunctions in a “holy” book is shocking not only to non-muslims but to ALL “moderate” muslims However,it is very easy to see how ISIS and other terrorist groups are so motivated and not fearful of death-unfortunately!

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  3. ebfblogger,if you want to see how far a far right politician will go in criticising Islam you only need to look up Geert Wilders on Wikipaedia. He leaves me aghast at a large number of proposals he puts forward to deal with Islamist extremism.

    It is ironic then I think that he has recommended what I consider might be a better way of tackling the growing problem of young men and women leaving to join ISIS and/or other terrorist groups. His advice is that by all means let them go but never let them return.

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