Umar exemplified his jihad through some of his actions. An example is a storyrelated about this caliph in which he was giving a sermon and interrupted his ownsermon, saying: “O Umar, you were a shepherd taking care of your father’ssheep!” Later, he was asked why he had said this, and he replied: “I rememberedthat I was the caliph, and was afraid of feeling proud.” Another story whichexemplifies his jihad is when Umar was asked why he was carrying a sack on hisback, to which he replied “I felt some pride, and wanted to get rid of it” (Gilen18-31). Through these two examples we can see how Muslims in the past strove toachieve spiritual enlightenment.The lesser jihad a Muslim will strive for includes all outward actions towardsothers that are done for the cause of God. In other words, this means conveyingGod’s message to others through all aspects of a Muslim’s daily life. Given thisidea, the lesser jihad will be practiced while going to war with others, but let usnot forget that it will also be practiced in other more prosaic actions, such asshaking hands with someone. If the outwardly action will help one person or many people and it is carried out in the name of God then it is considered to be jihad. Forceful jihad is resorted to and permitted only when a person or manypeople seek to maintain a society or group that has been built on corruption, self-interest, oppression, and the degradation of the rights of others. This means thatforceful jihad is only permitted when a society or group seeks to contain or evendeflate the basic principles of Islam and in essence, Islam itself (Gilen208-227).This point is clearly illustrated in the history of the persecution that the firstconverts to Islam faced while living in Mecca. Moustapha Akkad outlines thispoint successfully in his film, The Message: Muslims who were living in Meccawere facing extreme persecution from the pagans. It was upon God’s commandthat Muhammad, who was with his some of his followers in Medina, led hisfollowers into battle against the persecuting Meccans. The Muslims in Medinatook arms against the Meccans only because numerous Muslims in Mecca werefacing severe persecution for their beliefs and practices. Thus jihad wasnecessary in order to save those who were victims of persecution. In hiscommentary on the revelation associated with this event, Abdullah Ali states how jihad was used justifiably,Even from the human point of view, the cause of God is the cause of justice, thecause of the oppressed. In the great persecution, before Mecca was won again,what sorrows, threats, tortures, and oppressions were suffered by those whosefaith was unshaken? Muhammad’s life and that of his adherents was threatened:they were mocked, assaulted, insulted, and beaten; those within the power of theenemy were put into chains and cast into prison … they could not even buy thefood they wanted or perform their religious duties. (208)Thus, there was need and justification for Muhammad and his followers to fightthe persecuting Meccans. It is easy to see from this example that forceful jihad isused only as a method of last resort and it is only a small aspect of the lesser jihad. Hence, lesser jihad incorporates all aspects of Muslims’ outwardly actions,which unless otherwise directed by God, will be peaceful, since they will strive toshare the message of God with others.