Muslims generally classify Jihad into two forms, Jihad Al-Akbar, the Greater Jihad, is said to be the struggle against ones soul (nafs), while Jihad Al-Asgar, the lesser Jihad, is external and is in reference to physical effort, ie. fighting. Traditional Muslim scholars explained there are five kinds of Jihad fi Sabilillah (Jihad in the Cause of Allah): Jihad of the heart/soul ( Jihad bin Nafs/Qalb) , Jihad by the tongue (Jihad bil Lisan), Jihad by the pen/knowledge (Jihad bil Qalam/Ilm), Jihad by the hand (Jihad bil Yad), and Jihad by the sword (Jihad bis saif).  "Jihad of the heart/soul" is an inner struggle of good against evil in the mind, through concepts such as tawhid. Jihad by the tongue is a struggle of good against evil waged by writing and speech, such as in the form of dawah (proslytizing), khutbahs (sermons), and political or military propaganda. Jihad by the pen and knowledge is a struggle for good against evil through scholarly study of Islam, ijtihad (legal reasoning), and through sciences (such as military and medical sciences).
Jihad by the hand refers to a struggle of good against evil waged by actions or with one's wealth, such as going on the Hajj pilgrimage (seen as the best Jihad for women), taking care of elderly parents, providing funding for Jihad, political activity for furthering Islam as a political movement, stopping evil by force, or espionage. Jihad by the sword refers to Qital fi Sabilillah (armed fighting in the way of Allah, meaning holy war).