The origins of the word Hindu and Hindu religion


A new trend among the internet Hindus is to refer to Hindu religion as “Sanatan Dharma” claiming that is the original name of the Hinduism. Nothing can be farther from truth. I believe this new trend is a defense for the typical Christian and Islamic criticism of Hinduism is that Hinduism is not a religion but just a phrase given by Arabs to the people living beyond the Sindhu river.

It is a partial truth that the word “Hindu” is derived from “Sindhu” and was widely used by Arabs than the Hindus themselves. However this is not a criticism of Hinduism in any sense. Replace “Hindu” with “Banana loving cow worshippers” or  “Omega 5721” and that doesn’t really change much.

The reality is that people who living beyond the river Sindhu were different from Arabs. The people themselves had figured this out and used the phrase “Mlenccha” for the Arabs and others.

The fundamental difference between Hinduism and monotheistic religions is that the so called “Hinduism” or whatever else you might wish to call it is free from dogma, prophetism and mindless conformance to some centuries old book.

This is not a disadvantage or a bad thing, in fact the strength of Hindu religion.

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