The word orient is a very occidental word. It comes from the Latin orient, and even further back to the Greek ornynai, meaning to rise. The word has always been associated with rising, the sunrise, and east, which makes sense since the modern term is most associated with the East, and the Orient is located east of Greece, Rome, and all points of occidental origin. Over the years, this common word has taken on several alternate meanings, some of which have obvious links to its roots.
orient n. 1. a moderate to strong blue. 2. dawn; the time of day associated with the sunrise. 3. a very high quality gem, especially a pearl with an exceptional luster. 4. used in navigation, the place on the horizon where the sun rises. 5. adj. ascending; especially, rising in the sky. 6. vt. in mathematics, to assign to a surface a constant outward direction at each point.