Are there any scriptures (Dharma Shastra-s) or Hindu saints who have talked about patriotism?

Related: This post discusses specific to Kshatriya class, Martyr concept in Hinduism

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    The only instance i know is this sloka जननी जन्मभूमिश्च स्वर्गादपि गरीयसी but only few editions of Ramayana has it. I think there are no explicit references supporting Patriotism for a land or country. In Living with Himayalayan masters by Swami Rama, his guru opposed his idea to fight against British saying Spirituality is more important than Patriotism.
    – The Destroyer
    Commented Sep 19, 2016 at 14:10
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    My goodness! Haven't you read any of Vivekananda?? There's a reason his pictures and statues are everywhere in the country... Commented Sep 19, 2016 at 14:54
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    I imagine Guru Gobind Singh would also have something in this regards, as he fought for the country, although I have not read his works either. Commented Sep 19, 2016 at 15:33
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    @AmitSaxena actually considering the place of birth(nation) as worshipable is highly condemned in Bhagavatam.You can read here.-vedabase.com/en/sb/10/84/13 . Actually nationalism,patriotism etc are due to false identification of person with the body and is only due to ignorance. such false notion is condemned in Bhagavatam and other scriptures as well. Commented Sep 20, 2016 at 7:06
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    @Yogi That depends on the person you are talking to. I see Sikhism as part of Hinduism. Commented Sep 20, 2016 at 8:05

5 Answers 5


The Vedas, in particular, do not have a limited (narrow) vision of patriotism. The Vedas clearly say that we all are the children of Mother Earth. Hence, we should love the whole earth as our motherland and not just our own country.

MAta Bhumih Putro Aham PrithivyAha .


The earth is my mother, I her son.

Atharva Veda Samhita, Kanda 12, Sukta 1, Mantra 12.


In Hinduism, Earth and Bharatvarsh is considered as mother. And, in general, everyone love their mother.

Vishnu Purana says:

उत्तरम् यत् समुद्रस्य हिमाद्रे: चैव दक्षिणम्।

वर्षम् तद् भारतम् नाम भारती यत्र संतति:||

THE country that lies north of the ocean, and south of the snowy mountains, is called Bhárata, for there dwelt the descendants of Bharata.

Earth is also known as consort of Lord Vishnu, so very respectable. There is a shloka regarding this.

समुद्रवसने देवि पर्वतस्तनमण्डले ।

विष्णुपत्नि नमस्तुभ्यं पादस्पर्शं क्षमस्वमे ॥

Samudra-Vasane Devi Parvata-Stana-Mannddale |

Vissnnu-Patni Namas-Tubhyam Paada-Sparsham Kssamasva-Me ||

1: (Oh Mother Earth) The Devi Who is having Ocean as Her Garments and Mountains as Her Bosom,

2: Who is the Consort of Sri Vishnu, I Bow to You; Please Forgive me for Touching You with my Feet.

Vishnu Purana also praise Bharatavarsh as:

गायन्ति देवा: किल गीतिकानि, धन्यास्तु ते भारतभूमिभागे।

स्वर्गापवर्गास्पद - मार्गभूते, भवन्ति भूय: पुरुषा: सुरत्वात्।।

The gods themselves exclaim, "Happy are those who are born, even from the condition of gods, as men in Bhárata-varsha, as that is the way to the pleasures of Paradise, or the greater blessing of final liberation.

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    All of the quotes from puranas glorify bharatvarsha / Mother Earth. How is this supportive/related to Patriotism?
    – Yogi
    Commented Sep 19, 2016 at 19:29
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    @Yoogi If we consider this land as our mother then naturally we will love it more than anyone. And so if anyone will try to do some harm to it, we will defend it at any cost. Message here is if you love your mother then you will love your motherland. Commented Sep 20, 2016 at 3:02
  • Thats your interpretation, other people can have different views so we need clear statements from shastras not indications.
    – Yogi
    Commented Sep 20, 2016 at 5:58
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    @Yogi Patriotism is an emotional attachment towards the motherland. And in ancient time, people have more attachment towards spirituality and sacredness. That's why the sages and seers have declared this earth as sacred (this is my opinion) so that people can understand the importance of motherland. And there are number of verses in our scripture that are indicative. You can see it as there are various sects in Hinduism and they interpret the same verse according to their sect beliefs. Commented Sep 20, 2016 at 6:34
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    Yeah thats what I am talking about interpretation can be dubious but actual meaning of verse is not.
    – Yogi
    Commented Sep 20, 2016 at 7:19

There are shlokas in Hindu scriptures which may be interpreted as patriotic.

It seems that the gods sing songs to this purport. Those who live in this part of the world called Bharata are in fact blessed. In order to enjoy the fruits of heaven and salvation they are born as human beings, casting off their deity-hood.

[Garuda Purana, Dharma Khanda, chapter I]

In the sub-continent Bharatvarsha men are auspicious and their longevity depends on their Karmans. They are said to live for a hundred years. They are of different colours and their bodies are small.

Linga Purana I.52.25

Said the God of fire: The country which lies to the north of the ocean and on the south side of the mount Himalaya is called Bharatvarsa and measure nine thousand yojanas in breadth. The country named above is the working place of those who ascend heaven or enjoy other celestial comforts by dint of their own piety and through the merit of good deeds done there in. The seven principal mountain chains (Kulaparvata) which traverse the continent of Bharatvarsa, are Mahendra, Malaya, Sahya, Suktiman, Hemaparvata (the Golden mountain), the Vindhya and the Pariyatra. The nine islands (territories in which the above said country is divided), are, Indradvipa, Kaseru, Tamravani, Gabhastiman, Nagadvipa, Saumya, Gandharva, Varuna and Ayam which are surrounded by all sides by the sea. The country above described is eight thousand miles in length from North to South and is divided into nine principal divisions named after the people residing therein and which lie around the central part of the country from the East. They are the land of the Kiratas, the land of the Yavanas, the land of the Brahmanas from whose lips drop down the deep and profound truths inculcated in the Vedas and Smritis. In mount Pariyatra is the source, of several rivers, while the Narmada and several other streams take rise from the Vindhya. The Tapi and the Payosnika, the Godavari, the Bhimarathi, the Krsna, the Veni and several other rivers take rise from the Sahya Mountain, while the Krtamala and the Trisama respectively flow from the Malaya and the Mahendra Mountains. The rivers Kumara and others have their source in the Suktiman Mountain, while the Candrabhaga takes its rise from the Himalaya. The countries known as the Kurupancala and the Madhya-desa are in the western part of the continent of India.

Agni Purana 119.1-8


Dharma is greater than patriotism. Patriotism is not to be conflated with Dharma.

This is best explained with the help of Vibhishina’s siding with Sri Rama (i.e. Dharma) instead of Ravana.

Before the was Vibhishina insisted on returning Sita Mata as it was the right thing to do

किम् च राक्षस राजस्य रामेण अपकृतम् पुरा |
आजहार जन स्थानाद् यस्य भार्याम् यशस्विनः || ६-९-१३

"What offence was done earlier to the king of demons by the illustrious Rama, whose wife that he bore away from Janasthana?"

न नः क्षमम् वीर्यवता तेन धर्म अनुवर्तिना |
वैरम् निरर्थकम् कर्तुम् दीयताम् अस्य मैथिली || ६-९-१६

"It is not appropriate to make enmity uselessly with Rama, who is valiant and who follows righteousness. Let Seetha be given away to him."

Ravana, Indrajit and other Rakshasas ofcourse didn't agree with Vibhishana, and Ravana even accused him of being a traitor to his kinsmen

जानामि शीलम् ज्ञातीनाम् सर्व लोकेषु राक्षस |
हृष्यन्ति व्यसनेष्वेते ज्ञातीनाम् ज्ञातयः सदा || ६-१६-३

"O, demon! I know the conduct of kinsmen in all the worlds. These kinsmen always are rejoiced at the calamities of their kinsmen"

प्रधानम् साधकम् वैद्यम् धर्म शीलम् च राक्षस |
ज्ञातयो ह्यनमन्यन्ते शूरम् परिभवन्ति च || ६-१६-४

"O, demon! The kinsmen indeed insult and even humiliate their kinsman, who is an effective leader, a person of education and right conduct and a valiant man."

नित्यम् अन्योन्य सम्हृष्टा व्यसनेष्वाततायिनः |
प्रच्चन्न हृदया घोरा ज्ञातयस् तु भय आवहाः || ६-१६-५

"The horrible kinsmen with their concealed thoughts and treacherous minds, terrific ones as they are, always rejoice each other in adversities."

विद्यते गोषु सम्पन्नम् विद्यते ज्ञातितो भयम् |
विद्यते स्त्रीषु चापल्यम् विद्यते ज्ञातितो भयम् || ६-१६-९

"There is wealth in cows. There is fear of kinsmen. There is fickleness in women. There is austerity in Brahmins."

Vibhishana found the above accusations insulting and left Lanka to side with Sri Rama.

Bottom line is that nation is a tool for dharma and not the end goal in the absence of dharma. Country is equated with the dominant polity of that time (as seen in the above case of Vibhishana and Ravana) For the sake of supporting your country (which by extension becomes the support of dominant polity) you shouldn't compromise dharma. Only when polity is conducive is then the phrase "जननी जन्मभूमिश्च स्वर्गादपि गरीयसी" (One's Mother and Motherland are more glorious than the heaven) becomes meaningful


The best mention I think is the one mentioned by The Destroyer in comment :

Valmiki Ramayana 6.124.17b

मित्राणि धन धान्यानि प्रजानां सम्मतानिव | जननी जन्म भूमिश्च स्वर्गादपि गरीयसी || ६-१२४-१७

"The friends, the riches and the grains are highly honoured in this world. Mother and mother-land are far superior to even the heaven."

Translation by Sri K. M. K. Murthy


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