What does “Hindu” mean?

There are many theories on how the word Hindu came about. The word Hindu is a distorted version of the word Sindhu. It is believed that the ancient Persians, who lived on the other side of the river Sindhu, pronounced the letter “S” as “H”. So the word Sindhu became Hindu over time. However this theory is highly questionable as there are still many words that existed back then with the letter H that still continue to exist today. So this theory has very little evidence to stand on. According to a verse in Birhanaradi Puran contradicts the Persian theory. It states “Himalayan samaarabhya yaavath indu sarovaram tham deva nirmitham desam hindustanam prachakshathey”. It refers to India as Hindustan, a country between the Himalayan Mountains and ends in the Indian Ocean. Thus, Hindustan is the holy land for those who call themselves Hindu. Hindus are prescribed to cultivate and practice are: Patience, forgiveness, self-control, cleanliness, control of the senses, wisdom, knowledge, truthfulness, non-violence, charity, honesty and love. Without these qualities Humanity would be like animals. Hindus are defined in the puranic scriptures as “Aa sindo sindu paryantham yasya bhartha bhoomikam maathru bhoo pitru bhoo schaiva sa vai hindu riti smruthaa” which means Hindus are people those who respect the country which extends from Indus Valley up to Indian ocean and consider as their holy motherland.