The Polynesian Triangle is a region of the Pacific Ocean with three island groups at its corners: Hawaii (an island state of the United States), Easter Island (also called Rapa Nui) and New Zealand. It is often used as a simple way to define Polynesia.

The many island cultures within this vast triangle speak Polynesian languages, which mainstream scholars say ultimately derive from the Proto-Austronesian language spoken in Southeast Asia 5,000 years ago. That the mother language of all languages of ancient South East Asia was Sanskrit is well known. 

The Maoris of New Zealand speak of their original homeland as Hawaiki, as Iriha, as Atia, as Tawhiti, as Uru, and as Mataora

The Hawaiki was regarded as a ‘tapu’ place, i.e, ‘sacred’, ‘spiritual’ and ‘unknown’. The word ‘tapu’ is probably related to the Sanskrit ‘tap’ (तप्), i.e., ‘penance’ or ‘asceticism’. Tapu also means ‘island’ in Sanskrit. As they migrated away from their original motherland, the Polynesians nam
ed many of their newer homes also as Hawaiki. For example, what later came to be known as New Zealand was also given the name Hawaiki-Tahutahu by some branches of the Polynesian race. 

The people of Rarotongan, the most populous island within the Cook Islands group and a part of New Zealand today, referred to their original homeland as ‘Atia-te-varinga-nui’. We track here the origins of the two names of New Zealand, ‘Iriha’ and ‘Atia-te-varinga-nui’.

In his research work ‘The Origin of the Maori- the Hidden Homeland of the Maori and its Probable Location’ in the Journal of the Polynesian Society, Volume 32, 1923, researcher Elsdon Best traces the name ‘Iriha‘ to India

He states, “We now come to the name of Irihia, and here encounter two interesting facts. In the first place we know that an old Sanskrit name for India was Vrihia, and no Maori could pronounce this name otherwise than as Irihia or Wirihia ….vrihi (व्रीहि) is a Sanskrit name for rice, hence ‘vrihia’ bears a meaning equivalent to the name Atia-te-varinga-nu”.  

The Rarotongan name ‘Atia-te-varinga-nu’ is translated by them in their local language as the ‘be-riced place’. ‘Atia’ means ‘plentiful’ and ‘vari’ means ‘rice’ in their local language. Refer then to the Sanskrit ‘ati’ (अति) meaning ‘plentiful’, ‘vrihi’ (व्रीहि) meaning ‘rice’. In the name Atia-te-Varinga-nu, Varinga is a distortion of ‘vrihi’.

Another name of the original homeland that the Polynesians mentioned was ‘Uru’ (उरु). Uru is a Sanskrit word which means ‘great’, vast, or ‘spacious’.

Dr. E. S. Cragihill Handy describes the story of Polynesian culture as “a mere index to Indian history.” And now for some archaeological collateral. 

The hypothesis of Indian contact with the Polynesians is strengthened by the discovery of the Easter Island scripts which closely resemble the scripts of the Indus Valley civilization. 

The odd number columns represent the Indus valley script, the even numbered columns the Easter Island script.

And on the same pattern are the petroglyphs of Hawaii.

The petroglyph of Hawaii are similar
to those of Easter Island and Indus valley.
Pu’u Loa Petroglyphs of Hawaii.

Some of the symbols in the petro-glyphs of Hawaii are described as akin to early Brahmi script of India.


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