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Definition of Hindu

Is there a proper definition for the term Hindu? The meaning of the term Hindu has always been controversial for many reasons. Today it is limited to denote the practitioners of Hinduism or Hindu religion. But while searching for a definition of the term I came across a beautiful meaning and explanation of the term Hindu by Dr. N. Gopalakrishnan, Ph. D., D.litt. Indian institute of scientific heritage, Thiruvananthapuram.

The definition of Hindu as per Dr. N. Gopalakrishnan reads like this –

Aa sindho: sinduparyantham yasya bhaaratha bhoomikaa maathru bhoo: pithru bhoo (punya) schaiva sa vai Hindu iti smruthaa:

Meaning - Whomsoever, is considering the land between the sapta sindu ( Indus valley river) upto Indian ocean as the motherland/ fatherland and holy land, is known as Hindu. This land is known as Hindustan which is defined as follows:

Himaalayam samaarabhya yaavath hindu sarovaram tham deva nirmitham desam hindustaanam prachakshate.

The land created by god himself and which is lying between Himalayas and Indian Ocean is known as Hindustan.

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Origin of the word Hindu