How likely are chance resemblances between two languages? Surprisingly, fairly good. Human beings have evolved to be good makers of patterns. However, when looking for similarities, you have to take into account other linguistic factors like loanwords, grammar, syntax, and phonology. Two words being similar or the same does not mean the two languages are related. To analyze a relationship based on resemblances or through the comparative method requires certain steps, not to mention brain power. Sadly, many out there either ignore this requirement.
The most popular allegation is similarity between the Hebrew word שָׂטָן (STN, aka Satan) and Sanskrit ਸਤਿਨਾਮ (sat nam) . These two societies did interact, I’ll grant that. I honestly wish I could take the time to learn Biblical Hebrew and Sanskrit so I could analyze the two languages properly. Until then, let’s use logic for a moment.
Classical Hebrew, the language which is used in the Torah and several canonical editions of the Christian Old Testament, is of the Afro-Asiatic family, and Sanskrit is from the Indo-European family. These are distinct languages with distinct structures and vocabulary. That’s why they’re separate.
Let’s face it, if ‘Ha Sa-tan’ had not been used in the original Hebrew versions of Judeo-Christian literature, we would not be calling our deity Satan and this whole conspiracy theory would not exist. So we owe the word to that language. There’s no two ways about it.
In order for these languages to be linguistically related, the cultures would have to have been more obviously interwoven. There would have to be Indian converts to Judaism in order to influence religious literature to an extent which is alleged. If that were the case, these languages would be a part of the same family. As is easily seen, this is not only historically false but was probably not allowed.
When we deconstruct (שָׂטָן), or STN, the closest we get to Sat is ShT (obvious puns aside) (שָׂט), which, according to Strong’s Hebrew Dictionary and Google translate, means “that which is despised” or “rebel, apostate”. It should also be mentioned that Hebrew leaves out vowels completely. Mind you, I’m no expert, which means that anyone who has studied Biblical Hebrew could provide more information. So, here is where many would say “Aha! That proves it!”. Sorry, no it doesn’t.
The logic one would use from here would be to say that since the Jews obviously wanted to suppress knowledge, they turned “the truth” ( ਸਤਿ) into “despised, etc.” (שָׂט). First of all, the Jewish people did not want to suppress knowledge; they had their own preferences and reacted to foreigners much the same way as anyone else. They wanted to preserve their own culture and saw anything else as a threat to their strict religious code. This is a simple concept and it happens everywhere.
With that in mind… Are there any other loanwords from Sanskrit to Hebrew? Are there any other concepts that are taken from Sikhism or any other Indian culture? Surely if the writers of ancient texts chose one word out of a whole language to portray their symbol of everything they go against, they would take other concepts as well. Why shouldn’t they? They took freely from other religions. If ‘Sat’ was so significant, then why didn’t the same thing happen with other popular religions?
To dismiss hundreds of years of work from countless scholars who devoted their entire lives to this field, and take a something from a conspiracy theorist is illogical. I’d say that their work is vastly more credible than some punk who spent thirty minutes looking at vocabulary lists. Come on. Use your brain, people.