Jihad: A Just Struggle or Unjust Violence? – Zaid Shakir

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1) Defining ‘Jihad’
2) Physically Fighting
3) Terrorism?
4) Three Types of Jihad
5) Struggling With the Self
6) Struggling With Non-Muslims
7) Taliban, Intolerance, and the Buddha Statues
8) The Muslim View of Pacifism
9) Jihad in Defending Non-Muslims
10) Isn’t Violence a Cyclical Process?
11) Eliminating Extremism

A lecture for those seeking the correct understanding of the utterly misunderstood concept of jihad. Zaid Shakir, addressing an audience at Northwestern University in Chicago, takes a comprehensive look at this truly noble and important concept in Islam. He first analyzes the word itself: its linguistic meaning, its derivatives, and its meaning as described in the Holy Qur’an. He then looks at the practical and normative application of jihad (or struggle) in the everyday life of the Muslim: the struggle of purifying the soul, the struggle of physically fighting in the way of Islam, the struggle with non-antagonist non-Muslims, and the struggle with the devil. Along the way, he explores many related topics such as terrorism, situations that justify the use of violence, various tools one can utilize in struggling against the self, love and compassion with non-Muslims, and the struggles within the family. And he concludes with a commentary on the role of Muslims in non-Muslim lands. An ideal talk for schools, libraries and Muslim student organizations. Other topics discussed: the destruction of the Buddha statues in Afghanistan, the Muslim response to pacifism, jihad in defense of non-Muslims, and the need to establish institutions that can help eliminate root causes of violence. (Duration: 1 hour, 25 min)