THE MEANING OF THE WORD HINDU

The meaning of the word Hindu

India has been a proud land of the Rishis for thousands of years.  Rishis (the Sages) searched for truth in the deeper layers of the mind.  When the mind is calm, without thoughts, then it is one with the pure Consciousness.  It is one with God.  When it has thoughts, it is separate from the Consciousness.  The Rishis merged the mind with the pure Consciousness and they found the truth and revealed it as Vedas.  The Hindus follow the Vedas.  In this article, I would like to share with you the meaning of the word Hindu. 

The word Hindu is not there in the ancients scriptures like the Upanishad, Brahma sutra or Baghavad Gita.  Somehow, it came in to existence after the Puranic period.  There are many meanings for the word Hindu.

1. Hinam dushyati iti hindu – the meaning for this sanskrit sentence is Hinam means to discard, dushyati means negatives, the entire meaning of the sentence is: a person who knows to discard or destroy the negatives is known as the Hindu.  They may do some rituals or may chant mantras or by japa and meditation, somehow, by following the Vedic way they discard or destroy the negatives.

2. Hindu can be split as H: + Indu.  H: is a beej akshara in Sanskrit and it means the Sun.  Therefore H: represents the Surya vamsa.  Indu means the moon and it represents the Chandra vamsa.  That land which is ruled in the ancient times by the surya vamsa and the chandra vamsa is called the Hindu Rashtra, and the people who live there are called the Hindus. 

3. Hindu can be split as Hi + Indu, Hi means the Himalayas and Indu means the Indu sarovar.  Indu sarovar is the ancient name for the Indian ocean.  That land from the Himalayas to Indian ocean (that is from Kashmir to kanyakumari) is known as the Hindu rashtra and the people who live there are Hindus, and the land where the Hindus live is called Hindusthan.  The ancient name for Bay of Bengal is Ganga sarovar and the ancient name for the Arabian sea is Sindhu sarovar.

4. The people who were settled on the banks of the river Sindhu were called as Hindus.  In the ancient times when the foreigners came to India for trade, especially the Persians, they found it difficult to pronounce the letter “SA” and so they mispronounced the word as Hindu.

These are some of the meanings for the word Hindu.  The Hindus follow the Sanatana Vaidheka Dharma.  Sanatana means eternal, Vaidheka means the Vedas and Dharma has a lot of meaning and but here the meaning taken is – the way of life.  It can be simply said as Sanatana Dharma.  Sanatana dharma is a way of life.  Seeing it as a religion is like seeing the vast sky through a small window.  The main objective of Sanatana dharma is freedom and universal acceptance.  The Hindus follow the Sanatana dharma and attain liberation.