Hinduism is one of the few ancient religions that survive to this day. The collection of traditions that make up modern Hinduism has evolved over the past 5,000 years and began in the Indus Valley region (in modern Indian society and Pakistan), the largest ancient civilization.
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There are no "founders" of Hinduism, no prophets or elementary school teachers. Hindus believe that their religion has no definite beginning or end, and therefore they often call it the Sanatana Dharma ("Eternal Way").
As for the name itself, "Hindu" is the first word used by the Persians in the 6th century BC to describe people who lived outside the Indus. In the beginning it did not have any religious connotation. The religious meaning of this term only developed after about 1,000 years.
Hindus do not have a single sacred book that can guide religious practice. In contrast, Hinduism has a large number of spiritual texts which guide followers. The first is the Vedas ("Knowledge" in Sanskrit), a collection of hymns about the divine power of nature, which is an important Hindu teaching.
The Vedas, which are considered to be manifested (revealed) eternal truths, have been transmitted orally for thousands of years before being recorded. Hindu philosophy was further developed in the Upanishads.