As the holy month of Ramadan is here, it is important to understand the true meaning of jihad during this time. While some may associate jihad with violent extremism and terrorism, the concept of jihad is actually much broader and deeper than that. Jihad is an Arabic word that means “struggle” or “effort,” and it encompasses a wide range of actions that Muslims can take to improve themselves and the world around them.

During Ramadan, Muslims are called to engage in several forms of jihad, including the jihad of the self, the jihad of the tongue, and the jihad of the hand. The jihad of the self involves making an effort to improve one’s character and behavior, to be more compassionate, patient, and self-controlled. This is a time to reflect on one’s actions and intentions, to seek forgiveness for past mistakes, and to make a renewed commitment to being a better person.

The jihad of the tongue involves using one’s words to spread positivity and kindness, to avoid gossip and slander, and to promote unity and understanding among people of different backgrounds and beliefs. This is a time to speak out against injustice and oppression, to advocate for the marginalized and vulnerable, and to build bridges of understanding and compassion.

The jihad of the hand involves taking action to help others, to serve one’s community, and to make a positive difference in the world. This may involve volunteering at a local charity, donating to a worthy cause, or simply being kind and helpful to those around us.

These forms of jihad are all rooted in the core values of Islam, which include compassion, mercy, and justice. They are not about violence or extremism, but about making a positive difference in the world and being a force for good. During Ramadan, Muslims are called to focus on these values and to strive to embody them in their daily lives.

It is important to reject the false narrative that jihad is about violence and extremism. This distorted view of Islam only serves to perpetuate hatred and division, and it does not reflect the true teachings of the religion. Instead, we should embrace the true meaning of jihad during Ramadan and work to promote peace, understanding, and compassion in our communities and beyond.