“Hindu” comes from “Indu” which stands for Soma PavamAna (Soma juice).
RV 8.48.3 (Devata: Soma, Rsi: Kanva)
अपा॑म । सोम॑म् । अ॒मृताः॑ । अ॒भू॒म॒ । अग॑न्म । ज्योतिः॑ । अवि॑दाम । दे॒वान् । किम् । नू॒नम् । अ॒स्मान् । कृ॒ण॒व॒त् । अरा॑ति । किम् । ऊँ॒ इति॑ । धू॒र्तिः । अ॒मृ॒त॒ । मर्त्य॑स्य ॥
apāma | somam | amṛtāḥ | abhūma | aganma | jyotiḥ | avidāma | devān | kim | nūnam | asmān | kṛṇavat | arāti | kim | oṃ iti | dhūrtiḥ | amṛta | martyasya
meaning: “We have drunk Soma (Indu), become Immortal, of Light, and discovered the Gods. Now what harm mortals’ trickery could possibly do to us (the Immortals)?”
This rica from the Veda is very definitive of Āstika ideals. So, whether you use Hindu or Indu, Hindustan or India, doesnt matter.
Soma PavamAna is known as Indu, e.g.
RV 09.113.11 (Devata: Soma PavmAna, Rsi: Kashyapa)
यत्र॑ । आ॒न॒न्दाः । च॒ । मोदाः॑ । च॒ । मुदः॑ । प्र॒ऽमुदः॑ । आस॑ते । काम॑स्य । यत्र॑ । आ॒प्ताः । कामाः॑ । तत्र॑ । माम् । अ॒मृत॑म् । कृ॒धि॒ । इन्द्रा॑य । इ॒न्दो॒ इति॑ । परि॑ । स्र॒व॒ ॥
yatra | ānandāḥ | ca | modāḥ | ca | mudaḥ | pra-mudaḥ | āsate | kāmasya | yatra | āptāḥ | kāmāḥ | tatra | mām | amṛtam | kṛdhi | indrāya | indo iti | pari | srava
Make me immortal in that realm (Prithvi in this pada) where happiness and transports, where Joys and felicities combine, and longing wishes are fulfilled. Flow, Indu, flow for Indra’s sake.
From “Indu” to “Hindu” there is hardly any journey, to warrant an overreaction. Indian/ Indu/ Bharatiya/ Hindu/ Hindustan/ Indus all mean the same thing in Vedic Sanskrit.
Sindhu originally means : Ocean, Sea. SaptaSindhu (HaptaHindu) is the region near Ocean where Seven rivers (used to) end their journey. This region is known as Sindh. SaptaSindhavah (plural) means those seven rivers meeting the ocean, in the Sindh region, the leading most of whom is (was) Sarasvati (river).
Sindhu also denotes the “Fourth” realm (see here) which equates it to the word Samudra of the Veda.
Sindhu only later came to be identified with a river when Sarasvati started to flow into that (needs more research though).
We also have HinduKush/ HinduKo west of Indus, and not the east of it.
If we see that the Greek branch of IE is older than Avestan (the latest to migrate out of India), then “Indu” is original just as “Hindu”.
1. Hindu stands for original Indu, notwithstanding the SaptaSindhu-HaptaHindu identity.
2. In Veda, Indu means “Soma flow”/ “Soma-river” and is related to “Indra” who intakes (as in receiving from indriya-s) the Soma through the tongue “which is Agni”. Agni (the janus faced god) has these aspects: bhArata, bhArati. Agni is explicitly called bhArata in Veda. So in the Vedic understanding, bhArat and Indu are on the same level. Again, bhArata means “Indra-like” (like Arjuna is addressed as bhArata by Krishna). bhArati, on the other hand, is like goddess IlA. So in the mystical sense bhArata is the kingdom of Indra, whereas ilA-vrata is the spiritual loka hovering directly over it.
Indu in Aryan Languages
1) Indigo (English) : Greek indikon (ινδικόν), Roman indicum
Literally, “of/ from India”. Also, indikon (and English indigo) is the Greek word for “dye”.
That is, “dye from India”.
On the other hand, indigo as a color is a prominent (sixth) color of Indradhanuhsa. Indra Himself is related to six (as the leader of the six loka-s of dyAvAprithvi), and also originally the lord of the sixth chakra (now it is Soma/ Indu, in Tantra). This is the mystical meaning behind indigo the color, which is the sixth color among the seven of the Indradhanusha light-spectrum. Interestingly, in the modern yoga practices the 6th chakra is shown in indigo color.
2) Indigenous : Latin indu+gena
Indu people (gena/jana) are the indigenous people. That is the psychological reason why the westerners christened many aboriginal races as Indians (Red Indians, West Indians, Indonesians, etc). “The Homeland”/ “Motherland” is subconsciously attached with India.
3) Induction : Latin inducere/ induco : induce, lead in, bring in.
Indra = Indu + ra
Indra drinking indu denotes the receiving of spiritual intuition. “Induction” derives from that.
This has to be seen distinct from Greek [endos], which means “within” and not “leading into”.
4) Industry :
late 15c., “cleverness, skill,” from Old French industrie “activity; aptitude” (14c.) or directly from Latinindustria “diligence, activity, zeal,” fem. of industrius “industrious, diligent,” used as a noun, from early Latin indostruus “diligent,” from indu “in, within” + stem of struere “to build” (see structure (n.)). Sense of “diligence, effort” is from 1530s; meaning “trade or manufacture” first recorded 1560s; that of “systematic work” is 1610s.
The word is reflective of the Indus (Vedic) civilisation of India which was, as is commonly known, innovations and industry driven. “Indus Civilisation” can be seen thus as “Industrial Civilisation”.
So, we have plenty there on the IE side of the story. Closer to home, I don’t see ancients were so dumb as to equate Sindh with the whole of India. Again, HinduKush/ HinduKo is more along the lines of indiko discussed earlier, and geographically as well doesn’t sit well with Sindh idea. Sindh is still there, as well as the Sindhis.
And India of Indra and Indu is also, still here.
[Advanced readings: In RgVeda Sindhu (Ocean, Samudra) has a mystical meaning more than anything. So, even though the Ocean there is called Sindhu mahAsAgar, we very well know Sindhu means Samudra in general in even Hindi. The best picture imo (in RV thought) is this: Indu (Soma) originates from Samudra (Sindhu) and finally pours into Samudra (Sindhu) as well. Indeed, there are two Samudra-s (one above, one below) in Vedic thought. Sarasvati, too, is called in one place “sindhu-mAtA” (bahuvrihi) meaning: having Samudra (Sindhu) as Her Origin (Mother), which all sounds to be too counter-intuitive if understood in very literal terms. To continue with the Indu flow picture, when it enters into mystical dyAvAprithvi realm through the efforts of Indra, it branches out in six/seven streams each one of which finally merges into the Samudra.]
Indian-Hindu-Āstika :: Political:Cultural:Religious
The “directory”, apparently, is:
Indian > Hindu > Āstika
Here I am taking the words according to their present meaning (so, “Hindu” is cultural, and “Indian” is political, even though both derive from the same word Indu).
Or, let us say:
Today it has already suffered ellipsis and we have:
And tomorrow, devoid of the cultural assets, the bindi and the sari, it will be:
This can be the western route. By that time, to counterbalance that, there will be no India left.
This is based on pure observation. The story on this end of spectrum is going on like this:
Already we are into the phase in India where Hindu word has been orchestrated.
It is already into the last phase where the idea of India is in peril. Foreigners and Indian intellectuals (not to forget the immigrants)have joined a chorus: “there never was an India” (la-la-..background music).
Yet, pick any Indian among the billions of them, and run a narco on him/her, you will hear Vedic rica-s straight coming one after one from the mouth.
*But, again, that one is from the third innermost, obsolete, layer i.e. Āstika.
[The idea “India” received a major setback during the mass exodus of thousands of “educated Indians” especially during the nineties, the consequences of which will be most readily visible in the next twenty-five years.]
“Indu” went under some other morphisms too. One example is “Bindu”.
Bindu: drop, point, ajna chakra, soma.
Yet another is: “Bindi” which women folk put on their foreheads (again, the 3rd eye, ajna chakra).
That Bindu and Bindi are sound morphisms becomes evident from their non-derivation from any sandhi or other rules in Sanskrit.
“Indu” is obviously a less understood word and its significance is not grasped fully even by pundits of Hindu Dharma. So, I will not be surprised if it still takes many decades before Hindus themselves are able to understand and visualise this word Hindu/ Indu properly in its full light.
Ultimately, however, I do see the point of having the freedom to choose ones own name, instead of relying on terms given by others no matter however much Vedic in origin or not.
So, the focal point is this word, “Indu”. Why should we accept it?
Why should we, of all Devatā-s in our pantheon, relate ourselves, for the denomination, to Indra only?
Where is the evidence, if there at all, that our Rishis called themselves as Indu-s?
However, we know that we have always used BhArata and BhArati for self-identity.
But, who is this BhArata and this BhArati?
Well, there have been illustrious kings, chakravartins, going by that name. There was a Vedic tribe, a very prominent one, also of name BhArata.
But ultimately it is our spirituality, our worldview, that gives us a meaningful insight into the meaning of these two words.
Though I have touched on this earlier, briefly, I will rather avoid dwelling on it right now. Except, emphasising on that there is a point where BhArata meets BhArati. That point is to be understood (again, IMO) as Indu.
In Indu, both BhArata and BhArati are simultaneously present.
Then, it might be asked here: why the hell we don’t remember all this?
Because, this was a real, long, long time ago.
Another hint that I will leave here is, the whole world was dominated and in a way controlled by Aryan armies from India. India, therefore, when seen through the eyes of the world, was an icon, murthy, of Lord Indra.
bhArata and bhAratī —
Let us think of these as mere words (so, Sanskrit is the key, again).
Both these words mean: “of bharata” (Hindi: भरत का).
Mostly, bhArata = son of bharata
bhAratī = daughter of bharata
This much is clear as day. But, now, just imagine,
Who (ka?) is that divine power that could be the Father of Mother BhArati Herself?
PrajApati. It is PrajApati.
So the next immediate question: is PrajApati called bharata anywhere? Or, who are the deities that are called bharata?
Satpatha BrAhmaNa 1.8.14
‘Far, far famed is this Agni of the Bharata (tribe),’–the Bharata, doubtless, is Pragâpati, for he sustains (bhar) this entire (universe);–‘that his great light shineth brightly, as the sun(Surya),’–that is, ‘that, like the sun(Surya), his great light shines brightly;’
My further opinion on this;
Agni and Prajāpati together form the Whole. It is as if the coming together of Finite and Infinite. When we start Yagya, we first become inflated and one with Agni, and then invoke Prajapati to unite with us (this is somewhere in some BrAhmaNa). This is still only a very generic understanding. Actually, just as a rectangular field can be divided by any line running across it, similarly, Rsis used to dissect the Map Of Reality in as many ways as possible, so in that sense we can say, the division into Agni and PrajApati is one such (and of particular interest to us in the present context).
Now let us have a look at this pada of RgVeda [9.5.9] regarding Indu (Soma) PavamAna,
“Indu is Indra, tawny Steer; PavamAna is PrajApati.”
So “Indu PavamAna” is purposely broken into Indu and PavamAna to showcase the duality inherent in Indu.
One part is, clearly, on the side of Infinite Godhead, the PrajApati, while the other is on the side of the Finite Godhead, Indra.
But, instead of themselves fully entering inside the DNA of Indu (ain’t possible )- PrajApati and Indra elect their representations. Indra selects bhArata from this side and PrajApati sends BhArati from His side. So that’s why I said in an earlier post that BhArata is “Indra-like”.
But I also said that BhArati is ILA-like, but here I write She is a representation of PrajApati, how? Actually, it is in the same manner as “bhArata is Indra-like, yet also a representation of Agni”. It isn’t clear at all, I guess, but let it be, for now.
So this kind of, “logically”, illustrates that “Indu is bhArata-bhArati”.]
1) Indu doesn’t mean “Moon” originally, neither does soma. Indu is infact more related to Surya Deva. “Moon” is a symbol of “mind-body” and thus is the last receiver of the nectar, here on the mortal Earth, and hence soma can be seen on this level only symbolically as Moon. Indu, however, is the level of soma not on Earth but on Swarga. So connecting Indu with Moon is not OK.
2) PrajApati has undergone some change after the Vedic age, but still, as this wiki-page amply shows, He still remained a very formidable Deity, and could well be on a resurgence today. The wiki-page also suggests the relationship between PrajApati and the geographical map of India.