The Land of Sapt-Sindhu
According to Rigveda (ancient Indian collection of Sanskrit hymns) the Land of Sapt-Sindhu was bounded by Great Himalayas in the North, the Modern-day Tibetan Plateau in the East, Hindu Kush Mountain ranges of Afghanistan is the West, and Vindhyas in the South.
Land of Sapt-Sindhu means the land which had 7 rivers–Indus (Sindhu), Saraswati (it is believed to have got extinct), Beas, Sutlej, Chenab, Jhelum, and Ravi. Later it was termed as Indus-Valley civilization.
Map shows the land of Sapt-Sindhu.
Origin of Hindu
In ancient times there was no concept of religion; people were known by the name of the place in which they live. The ‘Hindu’ word is derived from the river Indus (Sindhu) as Greeks weren’t able to pronounce the word ‘S’ properly they used to call it ‘H’.
Hence people who lived beyond Indus (Sindhu) were named as Hindu by the Western World. Similarly, later in the modern world, the land beyond Indus was called India.
Water bodies like Rivers and Oceans were considered pious hence all the ancient Temple towns are settled on the banks of rivers for example- Varanasi near Ganga, Ayodhya near Saryu, Mathura near the Yamuna, Ujjain near Shipra, Puri near the Bay of Bengal, Somnath near the Arabian Sea and Rameswaram near the Indian Ocean, etc.
The Indian subcontinent is blessed with several rivers therefore the land is fertile and agriculturally rich for ages. This is the reason the majority of Indian festivals are harvesting festivals.
People generally argue about traditions calling it a Hindu tradition but the fact of the matter is that it is an Indian tradition.
Major Rivers in Indian subcontinent
Unity in diversity
Hinduism is not a religion it’s a way of life as it has always been for thousands of years. With changing times and the advent of different religions like Buddhism, Jainism, Islam, Christianity, and Sikhism, India became diverse. With the emergence of different religions, people from different regions started having different food, rituals, customs, etc.
But the very idea of fraternal brotherhood amongst ourselves i.e. we are all children of the same motherland has kept us together.
This holy land has adopted almost everyone maybe it be Christians or Muslims. Even persecuted Jews all around the world and Parsi who came from Zoroastrian Empire after the Persian invasion got shelter here. The most recent ones are the Tibetans who ran from Chinese.
Western System of Division Policy
As Amish Tripathi (a famous Writer) generally quotes “It bemuses me that British Rule isn’t considered as Christian Rule but Mughal Rule is termed as Islamic Rule”. It has been taught to us this way only.
Since the British era, the people of India were engrained to hate each other on religious grounds. And even today people aren’t yet able to come out of their primitive mindset.
People within this country divided themselves into various castes on the basis of birth meanwhile forgetting the true meaning of the Varna-System (Brahmin, Kshatriya, Shudras, and Vaishyas) as per Rigveda.
As if the caste-based division wasn’t enough the British played their divide and rule policy and began separate electorates for people of different religions. In 1909 with Morle-Minto reforms Muslim League was formed. Later in the 1930s VHP (Vishwa Hindu Parishad) was formed on the similar communal lines for Hindus and many other political parties were formed on religious grounds.
It can truly be said as the foundation ground for the idea of division of India on the basis of religion. After the 1946 constituent assembly elections, the result came in favor of INC (Indian National Congress).
Muslim League under the leadership of Muhammad Ali Jinnah became furious with the election results and presented the idea of 2 nation theory. The theory said that Hindus and Muslims can’t live peacefully together and therefore need to have 2 separate nations.
On 15th August India became independent and but got reduced both demographically and politically. With this, a new nation came into existence named Pakistan. Pakistan presently comprises a major chunk of the ancient land of Sapt-Sindhu.
Map of Undivided INDIA [Akhand Bharat] during British Era.
The existential crisis of Pakistan
Despite being the very successor of Sapt-Sindhu or ancient Indus Valley Civilization, the Islamic Republic of Pakistan has always been under an existential crisis. Right after independence, they used to call themselves the successors of the barbaric invaders who attacked India.
In the 1970s when the Arabs started exporting crude oil to the world, Pakistan started calling themselves Arabs. Now recently as Pakistan’s relation with Saudi Arabia is going through a rough patch, they have started calling themselves Turks (from Turkey). Their Prime Minister Imran Khan asked the people of Pakistan to watch “Ertugrul Ghazi” a Turkish show and learn about their forefathers.
All this is happening leaving behind the very fabric (idea) over which this People in the Indian subcontinent used to live. Mass level ethnic cleansing and destruction of cultural heritage sites is well known in Pakistan.
This clearly shows how existential crisis can turn a civilized society (Indus-valley) into a rogue nation.
Way forward for Republic of India
It is often stated in cosmology that “History repeats itself” i.e. repeat of cycles with an infinite series. Indians need to be reminded at regular intervals- Whenever we have fought amongst ourselves, we have been defeated militarily, politically, culturally by our enemies.
“United we stand, divided we fall.”
I would like to end with some lines in Urdu. Once written by a very famous poet in undivided India, Muhammad Iqbal (Writer of Saare Jahan Se Achha).
Yunan-o-Misr-o-Roma sab mit gaye jahan se
Ab tak magar hai baki naam-o—nishan hamara, Kuchh baat hai ke
hasti mit’ti nahin hamari
Sadiyon raha hai dushman daur-e-zaman hamara
(Greek, Egyptians and Romans have all vanished from this world,
But we are still here,
There must be something special in us
That we have not been erased from existence,
For the whole world has been against us for centuries)
Source for images-
Do comment below your insights.
Also from the author: Survival of the Fittest ( Israel-Palestine Conflict)
SpiderPosts may or may not agree with the whole content. Follow the guest author (Nitin) on Twitter.