To most of us, this word is better known as “holy war”. No, it hadn’t been invented by the Moslem. It is the idea of the Crusaders, backed with great ardor by popes and ‘saints’ alike. It had been the Christians, who invented the concept of Jihad, of justifiable murder. Only we did it in the name of the Prince of Love. In the name of Yeshûa.
Thou shalt not kill, said Moses. Oh, yes, you may, replied Pope Gregory VII, after he bravely overcame initial qualms. Those had been long cleared up by an early 5th century Saint (!), Augustine of Hippo, in his City of God dissertation. He, the saint, liked writing works on Christian Doctrine. Why love them when you can kill them? Sounds like a hippie proposition.
By the time of the first crusade, some 500 years later, the ground, I mean the doctrine, has been clearly set.
Thou shalt not kill? Oh, yes you may, confirmed Pope Urban II, by now sure of his righteousness. Love your enemy, affirmed Yeshûa. Only after I murder them, apparently. Turn the other cheek? I wonder if Urban II was smiling an inane smile when he blessed the first Crusaders setting out on their tour of duty.
So what of Jihad?
In Arabic, the word means ‘struggle’ and, so they say, it is a religious duty of Muslims. Wikipedia defines it as: “A religious war with those who are unbelievers in the mission of Muhammad… (there is more).
Welcome to the club.
There is one consolation. Crusades lasted only a little over 100 years (1096-1204), thus there is a good chance that if what is happening at present in Moslem countries could be regarded as a form of Jihad, then in a mere 80 years or so they will reach the same level of sanity which we, the Christians have reached in comparative time. Of course, they might not benefit from the good services of Philip IV, of France, who managed to murder most, and outlaw the rest of the Crusaders. We shall see.
Of course, in the 12th century Pope Lucius III created the concept of inquisition to combat heresy, and the church continued to burn heretics, alive, until Joseph Bonaparte abolished such peccadilloes in early nineteenth century. The Holy Office had fun while it lasted.
Since history is said to have the habit of repeating itself, we can look forward to only some 80 years of continued Jihads, and then… to a around a millennium of homicidal excesses based on the explicit examples set out by the Great Inquisition.
Unless… unless the Moslem are much, much more advanced as human beings then Christians were during the last two thousand years.
We shall see.
In my Essay #49 the matter is discussed in greater depth. You can find it in my collection Beyond Religion Volume 3.
 More info. in I Segreti del Vaticano by Corrado Augias