Even though the word ‘Jihad’ conjures up fear in the mind of many people, in Arabic the word merely means ‘to strive’, or to make ‘a determined effort’. What people today are afraid of is the distorted meaning of the word.
‘This tie, however, advances a twisted concept with little to do with the mainstream teaching of Islam.’
From the Glossary:
Jihad = striving; ‘effort’ or ‘struggle’. Muslims distinguish between two forms of jihad: the inner jihad, referring to the struggle against temptation and to improve one’s own character and to a militant struggle waged to defend the (land of) Islam.