On some connections between ancient Slavs and India

Contrary to what you might believe, the oldest evidence of the “lotus pose” does not come from Asia, but from the Mesolithic burials of Lepenski Vir culture, modern-day Serbia (9,500 BC).

The oldest evidence of Swastika comes from a bird-shaped object, discovered in Mezine, Ukraine. It dates to more-less the same period as these burials (10.000 BC).

Interestingly, long before this artifact was discovered, in Slavic mythology there was a deity Mater Sva. She is the wife of god Svarog, whose symbol is a Kolovrat – two intertwined swastikas. Moreover, Mater Sva was usually portrayed as a bird. A bird with a swastika?

Vedic knowledge

In Sanskrit, Veda means “knowledge”. In many Slavic languages, like Czech, Slovak and Polish this word has the exact same meaning. A Slavic word for God is “Bog”, while a rich person is “bogat” and the same parallel exists in Sanskrit in a word “Bhaga” which means “Lord” as well as “wealth, prosperity”. The list of such cognates is way too long to mention it here. It is strikingly noticeable especially when it comes to religious concepts. Here are some of the most interesting:

The law of Karma

The wheel of Karma is also known as Dharmachakra. It looks like a ship’s helm. Interestingly, in the Serbian language the word for the helm, the rudder is “kormilo”. Also, The Sanskrit noun “dharma” is a derivation from the root dhṛ, which has a meaning of “to hold, maintain, keep”. In Serbian dr-žati means “to hold, maintain, keep” – root is the same.

Holy mountain – Sveta gora – Sveta-giri

The name of Mount Athos, one of the holiest places of Orthodox religion, is Sveta Gora in all Slavic languages. The words mean literally “Holy Mountain” or “Bright Mountain”, from Slavic words “svetal” – bright and “svet” – holy. There are dozens of other “holy mountains” scattered all across the Slavic territories.

Interestingly, the same meaning exists in Sanskrit, as well as the toponym itself.

Moksha and Svarga / Mokosh and Svarog

The Hinduistic concept of Moksha and Svarga mirrors in the names of deities of the Slavic pantheon – Mokosh and Svarog.

Agni and Oganj / Jagnje

The name of the Vedic god Agni meant “fire” in Sanskrit. Slavic word “oganj” comes from the same root. But only in Slavic languages, we see the parallel lamb-jagnje, an animal associated with Agni.

Perun – Parjanya

Slavic thunder god, Perun, has a direct equivalent in Vedic Parjanya.

Volos – Vala

Slavic deity Volos had already been etymologically connected to the Vedic Vala in the past. Besides the similarity of the names, both deities are seen as snakes.

Triglav and Shiva

The triple-headed god of the Indus Valley civilization, later associated with Shiva, appears in Slavic mythology as Triglav (three-headed). This deity was very important in Slavic mythology, as witnessed by numerous toponyms still present today, from Balkans to Poland.

Zbruch Idol and Brahma

On the other hand, the famous four-headed Zbruch idol from Poland matches perfectly depictions of Brahma.

It is obvious that these similarities could not be a coincidence. They point out to the fact that some precious pieces of information on ancient Slavic beliefs still exist in Hinduism.

St. Andrew and Indra

Similar parallels exist in Christianity. With its arrival in Slavic lands, pagan gods became saints, and so Indra became St. Andrew. We are no talking only about the similarity of names. Indra is a thunder god, and as such it relates to Jupiter of Roman mythology. In astrology, planet Jupiter rules the constellation of Pisces. And the Bible tells us that Andrew (and his brother ju-Peter) were fishermen. Jesus promised to make them “fishers of man”.

Even Andrew’s cross somewhat resembles the shape of the constellation of Pisces. So without getting deeper in astrotheology, similarities are indeed obvious. There is no satisfying historical explanation of how Indra ended up in Christianity. Or why is the day of this saint so popular in Slavic nations.

St. Demetrius and Mitra

Vedic Mitra appears too in a disguise of a Saint Demetrius. The worship of this horse-mounted saint came to Christianity via the ancient city of Sirmium, modern Serbia, probably under the Sarmatian influence. On Balkans, the day of this saint is still called Mitrovdan – Mitra’s day.

Vedic Radha, Slavic Lada, and Roman Leda

Radha, one of the favorite Indian goddesses, is the same as Slavic Lada. The names are slightly different only because of the common change between R and L. Like Mitra above, both of the goddesses also relate to the Virgo constellation. This is clear not only from the specific body posture which mimics the shape of the constellation (see photos below) but also from the holidays of the Fiery Maria, for which we know that came as a Christian answer to Lada worship. The constellation of Cygnus the swan dominates the night sky at the same time.

The question is who and when brought Leda to the Roman empire.

Kresnik and Krishna

Not much is known about the Slavic deities Kresnik, as we only have medieval records of its name. However, scholars have already proposed that his name is etymologically close to Krishna.

The Slavic Vedas, Vishnu, and the Vishny god

Speaking of Vedas, we must also mention three different controversial books.

First one, called “Slavic-Arian Vedas” is allegedly thousand of years old (but published only a few decades ago in Russia) This book even gave rise to a Russian pagan church of Ynglism.

The second one, called “Veda of Slavs” is older – dates to the late 19th century, and it is supposedly a compilation of ancient folk songs from the area of Bulgaria and Macedonia. Both books have divided the public in passionate supporters and those who equally passionately label them as forgeries. And while personally I have my doubts about the authenticity of the first book, in case of “Veda of Slavs”, it is worth a mention that it contains names of many Vedic deities, mainly Vishnu (Visnyi, or Sve-visnyi, “the exalted one” in Slavic) and that it is indeed written in an archaic language, in a style similar to the original Vedas.

One interesting critic which concludes that the author either had to be a “poetic genius” to forge 23809 lines of poetry or there is simply something more to this book.

The third one, from the late 19th century Serbia, has been discovered in an old monastery manuscript. It is a compilation of 345 poems of which at least 15 speak of Serbs being in India (under a name Hindustan and Indjija) mentioning also toponyms such as the Hindu Kush, Manchuria, and Tatarstan.

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Yin Yang symbol from Cucuteni-Trypillian culture

Similarities between Sanskrit and Slavic languages

It is not at all unusual to find cognates in Indo-European languages. But when it comes to Sanskrit and Slavic, the number of cognates fits into a proper book. Anz Slavic speaking person can play with an online dictionary such as Spoken Sanskrit and see for themselves.

There are actually books of such “Slavic – Sanskrit dictionaries” in many Slavic countries, like Serbia and Russia. In case you can’t get hold of any, you can check these few English links:

Sanskrit in Croatia, by Sutra journal

or

Sanskrit and Russian – ancient kinship, by Russia and India report

The caste system with a notion of democracy

The word “caste” comes from Latin words CASTUS – (PURE) and  CASTITAS(MORAL PURITY), which translated in Slavic would be CHIST and CHESTITOST. An interesting connection between Slavic and Latin.

There are no proofs that ancient Slavic society had a cast system, but it is very likely that it had existed in many pre-Roman societies of Europe. Celts and Gauls had Druids in the role of high-priests, as well as merchants, warriors, and slaves, just like the Vedic India of the time.

However, Slavic word for work – “rabota”, actually implies that the work is done by a slave – “rob” or “rab”, depending on pronunciation. The word “robot” comes from Czech and has the same connotation.

Moreover, the Sanskrit word Sabhā, mentioned already in the Rigveda and Mahabharata, meant: “an assembly, congregation, meeting, council…” Interestingly, this word survived in all modern Slavic languages, with the exact same meaning, directly from Proto-Slavic.

This word is very important, as it could also be the root of both, Slavic word for Saturday (Subota) and the Jewish “Sabbath”.

Toponyms

There are many toponyms across Slavic countries that have their match in Asia, while they don’t mean much in Slavic language, and vice-versa. In order to avoid mistakes, I will focus only on Serbia, a region that is familiar.

One of the most obvious toponyms is a city of Indjija, which simply translates to “India”. There is no official explanation for its name whose first mention comes from the 15th century. When Serbian monastery poems were discovered, some authors had tried to connect mentions of India with this town. Indeed, some of the poems also refer to India as “Indjija“. However, this theory does not explain where the name of the town actually comes from. Neither it explains why other poems mention the Hindu Kush and Manchuria.

Not far from Indjija is a town of Chenei which mirrors in Chenai, India. And not far from there is a city of Kikinda, also mentioned in the 15th century, a name that does not mean anything in Serbian, but reminds on the name of an ancient kingdom of Kishkindha.

Another Indo-Aryian Kingdom, of the Vedic period, the Nishada Kingdom, perhaps mirrors in the city of Nish. This is an important city, as Emperor Constantine was born here. In Latin, the name of the city was Naisus, but since this was not a Latin name, we can perhaps assume that the Slavic word is closer to the original, pre-Roman name.

There are also many other toponyms, most of them being in Pannonia, ancient Sarmatia:

At the beginning of this article, we also talked about mountain Rtanj and Sveta Gora. And You can read a full article on the etymology of Belgrade here.

This is just a small sample of many “strange” toponyms we encounter every day in Serbia without thinking that they may actually have a story to tell. Tribes of Sarmatians and later Avars had indeed once thrived in this region so it is not strange that they left such traces. The only problem is that modern Serbian historians for some reason consider this topic as a taboo.

sarmatia pannonia.jpg

Pannonia marked as Sarmatia in 1st century AD, from Arheoloski vesnik 41, 1990.

The question of Gypsies

When I say “Gypsie”, I am not using this word as a pejorative. Gypsie means someone who comes from Egypt, as this was a popular belief in medieval times. So even in middle ages, there was a riddle of how and when these people arrived in Europe, and most of all – on Balkans. They refer to themselves as Roma, which could be related to the Roman empire of which their ancestors had probably been a part of, as there is no evidence of their migration in more recent history. The other possible etymology could be related to god Rama.

Modern genetics and linguistic clearly points out that their origin is in Northern India, more specifically in Punjab region. So when did they come here? We know that Alexander the Great went as far as India, from this very region of Balkans. But according to the popular episode of Greek mythology he had only repeated what Dionysus had done some centuries before him, a story which must have been quite familiar to Alexander, although we have no evidence that it actually ever happened.

But then again, we know of tribes of Scythians and Sarmatians, whose empire once stretched from Northern India to Balkans, long before Alexander. There are actually people in North India who claim to be descendants of Indo-Scythians to this day. They are known as Jats.

If you read the highlighted article you will see that Jats have no doubts that their fair skin, unusual height, and blue eyes are inheritance of people who came from Ukraine, or according to others, from Gets or Goths (presumed to be the same word as Jat) which used to be a Thraco-Scythian tribe of modern-day Romania.

Moreover, over 70% of the Brahmins (highest caste in Hinduism) belong to R1a1 haplogroup according to genetic research presented on Eupedia. This “Sarmatian” haplogroup is now most dominant in Poland. (cca 60%)

Anyway, in conclusion: we have people from India living in Balkans for millennia, and we have people in North India tracing their origin to Balkans and no mainstream theory to explain this.

I don’t know about you, but I find it all a little bit bizarre.

For more on this subject please see the related articles below:

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32 COMMENTS

  1. We know that the Gypsies are an Indian People who went from India ,still we do not know as to when and why they went out of India Dr.S.S Misra from Banaras University,In His Book ARYAN PROBLEM,says that the Gypsies went in 400B.C. My point is ,”as they have forgotten that they are from India,likewise rest of the Aryans like Persians,Greeks ,and All Aryans also went from India.If we accept this as a fact then there is no need to hypothecate Indo-European people as the fathers of all the Aryan Nations.

    • True, that would have been a logical possibility. However, genetics clearly shows that “Indo-Aryan” R1a haplogroup which is dominant in North India as well as in most of Eastern parts of Europe first appeared in the steppes of Ukraine. There is no doubt that the first contact between these cultures happened quite a long time ago but before this migration to the east, there had to be a migration to the west.

      • NA, could you please check your source re timing of R1a migration. I am of understanding that 15000 years ago 5 separate tribes of father R descendants left India in various directions. Two tribes we know as R 1a and R 1b left towards Europe. R 1b stopped in today’s Georgia roughly and remained there while R1a continued towards Lepenski Vir. Here on the shores of Danube they met the survivors of the Ice Age and together they formed a people, a nation, or whatever one might call the association which in the period of 7500 and 6200 years ago developed the world’s first civilization. The word Serb appears for the first time in writing around 4000 years ago and refers to those same people who lived, by now, in a much wider area than today’s Serbia. around 6200 some R 1b people arrived in Serbia from their home in Georgia and at first there was no problem but very quickly the turned on the native population with genocide in mind. That is when a huge number of R 1a and some I-2 people left for Ukraine and further, while others went east to Mesopotamia ( Sumaria). Around 5000 BC Jewish King Sargon arrived and conquered Sumerians and that is when a large number of R 1a folks came to settle in Mesopotamia. Chronologically this all fits as Mesopotamian Civilization is roughly 2000 younger then Vinča.

        • R1b is not aryan, only partly on mothers side. It has egyptian mixed roots. Notice all the languages that use the word ‘slave’ deprived from ‘slav’ are originally the descendants of the aryans on mothers side. Otherwise the ‘slave’ masters wouldn’t corrupt such a holy word, unless they had some connection to it. Slavo= word (to speak the word) Slava=Glory, it goes back to the law of words (attraction) to speak with glorious words. Slavic languages are the only right brained languages in europe. Words can be rearranged to rhyme, no worthless words like had, have, the, are. Word endings can be changed to be past, present, future, it, he, she, have, had,, so you say the word with one breath. You feel it like poetry. And the aryans spoke a holy right brain language, right brain connects to the heart. Left brain is logic base=ego. All western european languages have been manipulated. And when you speak a english or latin language and know a slavic language as well, you feel how your brain operates, left brain right brain. Research shows that speaking sanskrit improves the brain. Sanskrit is also a right brain language.

  2. MAY BE the temprature ,weather and the customs of india suitable for giving good GENETICAL evidences in archealogy,Generally in india in the belief of the ultimate evidences of everything gone and over is done away with for eg Bhogi the festival where old thing are burnt away.the burning of all things gone and over and old might come in the way of getting necessary evidences

  3. There are more similarities than there are differences. Lepenski vir is one of the oldest settlements of Serbian people. There are arts found that points to direct origin in indian vedas.

      • Vendishen musseum or something like this is name for Serbian museum in Germany.
        We now know that name “Serb” is older then “Slavic” but that is not that much of important clue for now…we just whant that Slavic people get their place in true history not in this nazi-history we are learning today!!!

        • To Boris035,take a look at youtube video Vedas And Human DNA Arkaim The Cradle Of Aryan Civilization Parts 1 to 6.

  4. I am a kulin brahmin… And i always wondered why many of us look very similar to Russians and eastern Europeans… i think the Brahmins came from eastern Europe… And Sanskrit originated near Caucasus

    • Yes I often ask myself exactly the same question. The looks, the names (Rada, Maya, Milan, Karan) the toponims (Hisar, Banat), the old folk customs considering f.e. phases of the Moon (praying for children on Purnima)…the list is endless. How it is possible that we dont know the truth yet? And greetings to kulin brahmin – there was a ruler Kulin Ban in medieval Bosnia:)

  5. I am Russian and I can understand most words in Sanskrit, it’s because we, the Aryans(Iranians, Ariani) attacked India long ago and became the ruling caste, did you know that the people in the highest caste have R1a DNA and are white? It’s because they are Aryans.

    • Thats really doubtful. I’ve speak Sanskrit and I don’t understand a word of Russian when I here it. In fact, only when etymology, and linguistic analysis is used to I notice similarities between the two, which seldom occurs. Both languages are thousands of years apart and are not mutually intelligible. A Hindi speaker cannot understand a Sanskrit speaker or Sanskrit Shlokas. So the Idea that you could understand Sanskrit because you speak Russian is a stretch. It is like saying I understand German because I speak English. BTW English is a Germanic language, but I still don’t understand German. As for your remark on caste, whiteness, and Aryans, that too is misleading. Skin color and caste do not at all correlate. Caste is only a social hierarchy where social status and occupation is inherited from parents. Varna is a theoretical category in the Vedas that classifies the qualities of a human and of Society. It wasn’t an important concept in the Vedas (I have studied them). Most people in India who are light skinned are usually concentrated up north where there is cool temperature. While some tribes/castes(Jati) are phenotypically known for light skin, it does not mean all of that group are light skinned. The Khatri are light skinned on average, but my Khatri friend is dark skinned. I know a low caste tribal who is very white and and a middle caste who is very asian looking. Phenotype and caste do not go hand in hand. As for Aryans, that is a modern word. In ancient India Arya ment many things. In the Vedas it was an ethnic endonym for the Puru and other Indian tribes, it implied someone who followed Vedic culture and religion, and it more literally someone who was Noble (in deeds, or in blood ie royalty). In modern times Aryan applies only to Indians, airyAn to Iranians, and ary to Hittites. Please don’t base your facts on popular history.

      • Im Polish and looking at the sanskrit examples, i would be able to learn it easly, not as easy as language of our neighbour germans. What they say/write doesnt make any sense to me

  6. “So in conclusion, we have people from India living on Balkan for millennia, and we have people in North India tracing their origin to Balkans and no mainstream theory to explain this.”

    Croatian historian claims opposite, regarding Lepenski vir. Video is in Serbian

  7. These similarities can be old but not so old. I can imagine here a link with Scythian/Sarmatian rule of Slavic territories. Similar with Scots/Saka similarities. There was a wave of scythians into India much later than aryan one – they are called Jats now. There could have been a similar influx in the opposite direction into Europe. Croats and Serbs were quite distinctive in comparison to other Slavs – they appear to be more iranian/sarmatian/aryan more kurgan culture related than there rest. They were also living around core Slavdom – either on south in white chrobatia or close to Germans like Sorbians. They were also these more active groups which moved to Balcans in place of postroman void there. They were first to organise properly and build slavic states. Also including preserving or developing writing – glagolica. If can indicate that they could have some older link with territories were writing systems first developed – I mean in a connection with black sea, greece, middle east – greek, phoenician, hittie scipts. I could add here also Bulgarians – and paradoxally also Hungarians – because of their runic script (if they came from Asia then in what part of Asia did it emerge?). I can imagine them being exactly a more caste based group with a specific function in Slavdom or other bigger political or cultural constructs containing Slavdom. There were a really massive climate changes (pushing Scythians out of steppes, weakening them, causing emerging of a need sarmatian construct) and Slavdom was mostly that peaceful farming lands without any major need for a centralised organization or even slave trade (this was later characteristic only for Russia ruled by outside elites or Chechs under german/bavarian influence, historically Slavs were taking hostages for few years and gave them freedom, they could stay or leave freely). Tamgas in old polish couts or arms also indicate that military elites had connection with steppe cultures, or own more archaic and conservative – same as the great Polish-Lithuanian empire emerged with culture which was mixing western and far eastern concepts, being much bigger confederation than original tribes which built it while they were all native, just cultural drift clash of cultures, empires added many inovations from outside. You can see many old Croatian women with swastika and other old signs tattoos – nothing of such ritual beliefs i ever seen in western or eastern Slavdom. Of course these can be preserved old remnants – what can be seen in sign on old wooden honey hives in old forests in Poland – these family signs of ownership also resemble tamgas. This is a great mystery that i hope will be uncovered in future.

    • “You can see many old Croatian women with swastika and other old signs tattoos – nothing of such ritual beliefs i ever seen in western or eastern Slavdom.”….what ?……if you are reffering to old croatian women actually living today, those swastikas are those of the nazis….croatia was loving the nazi germany and was aiding them in the extermination of jews and gypsies, but mostly serbs, in ww2….surprised u didn’t know that tho

  8. Modern genealogy studies have found that the R1a and R1b both came out of Siberia and actually part of R1a went south to Indian and Iran eventually. Vedas states that it came from the north – so it is actually the Slavs that went south to India, not the other way around. Not sure at which point Vedas originated, but as the first part of this article states, the Slavic remains of lotus pose were found before any Indian.
    R1b went west, swooped down into Egypt (there was a recent finding of DNA of Tutankhamon that he was R1b, but Egyptian govt is keeping that on the hush hush, because doesn’t look good for the Arabs), then continued north to take over Europe.
    Celts used to be predominantly R1a, but over time R1b genotype replaced that as the majority.

  9. R1B is western Aryan mix. King tut had R1b and the ancient egyptians weren’t white aryan but annunaki the creatures with the long skulls. Read the book of enoch on how they made many hybrid races including africans. To this day westerners have more enlarged skull bones, narrow hip ratio and narrow longer feet, bigger jawline and wider lip ratio, fine but lesser hair count than slavs. Ever heard of the slavic slave trade? Well all the descendants of them mock the word “slav” to mean ‘slave’ when it actually comes from ‘slovo’ meaning to ‘speak the work’ and ‘slava’ meaning ‘glory’. So it goes back to the Law of Attraction speak the word with glorious tongue, that was a very big Secret in the west, your words manifest your reality. Only now is the Secret or the law of attraction being made public in western world.
    Also, all the masonic cults originate in egypt, which is a pyramid system of status and titles, that wasn’t the slavic way of life. Notice before how western women were not allowed to speak to their men out of line or question them? That is why the west has the biggest problem with true feminine energy and true masculine energy. No creatures in nature avoid communication and eye contact with their gendered opposite. That comes from the slave system, where women were not allowed to question authority of men and men weren’t allowed to question the authority of their master, a pyramid system.
    In honesty most of the world is hybrid, no matter if they have been completely genetically modified with perfect blond hair and blue eyes. So get over it. And not only that but everyone on earth has things in their genetics like crime or evil. All that gets recorded in the DNA and passed down, and its up to you to fix it by living a moral and loving life. The frequency of love 528 can heal the DNA and is very activating.

  10. Good to hear all the discussion. I am an Indian learning Bulgarian and see quite a few words that we in India use. The recent word ‘Dushman’ perhaps Turkisk is the same in India which means enemy. The word ‘Piya’ has the same meaning in Bulgarian language ie; drink. There are some words that end with ‘m’ which sounds like Sanskrit. I see that the word ‘maidan’ seems common too. Another word ‘gardan kosh’ to mean chest in Bulgarian, where as we in India use ‘gardan’ to mean neck.I am sure there may be many more words with little variation that is common. You will also notice the numbers 1,2,3 etc sounds almost same.

    • Piya – Piję – in polish “I drink”
      gardan – gardło – in polish throat
      kosh – kosz – in polish “basket”

      one – jeden
      two – dwa
      three – trzy

      😉

      Sława!

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