‘Israel’ in Hebrew does not mean a land or a nation. It literally means ‘he has struggled with God.’ It means exactly what ‘Jihad’ means in Arabic: ‘Struggle for God.’
These sacred words do not refer to a patch of land, or to a religious war. Only the adolescent mind of the fundamentalist would so reduce and impoverish their meaning.
Both terms describe our inward struggle to lift the human heart beyond the ego, toward the beauty of the divine will, the will for peace and justice.
~ Fred LaMotte