1000 petals by axinia

the only truth I know is my own experience

What’s in your name? -interesting insight on significance of a name December 12, 2009

There is a great secret hidden in name, be it the name of a person or a thing, and it is formed in relation to the past, present and future conditions of its object…

 The meaning of a name has a great influence upon its possessor as well as upon others. From the sound of the letters and the word they compose the mystic can understand much about the character and the fate of a person. An intelligent person generally gets the idea from the sound of letters that compose a name, whether it is beautiful or ugly, soft or hard, consonant or dissonant, but does not know what makes it so; the one who understands knows why it is so.

 Letters singly or together are either pronounced smoothly or with difficulty and have their effect accordingly upon oneself and upon another. Names that are smooth and soft sounding make a soft effect upon the speaker and listener, whereas hard-sounding names have a contrary effect. Man naturally calls soft things by smooth names and hard things by hard-sounding names, as for instance flower and rock, wool and flint, etc.

 Language, and especially name, shows the class of people and character of families, communities and races. Vowels play a great part in the name and its influence. E and I denote jemal, the feminine quality of grace, wisdom, beauty and receptivity. O and U denote jelal, the masculine quality of power and expression. A denotes kemal, which is significant of the perfection in which both these qualities are centered. The above-named vowels in the composition of the name have an effect according to their place in the name, whether in the beginning, center or end.

 Fate in Sanskrit is called karma, meaning the rhythm of past actions. The influence of rhythm suggested by a name has an effect upon the entity whose name it is, as well as upon those who call him by that name. Evenness of rhythm gives balance, while unevenness causes lack of balance. The beauty of rhythm beautifies the character of man.

 By rhythm is meant the way in which the name begins and how it ends, whether evenly or unevenly, on the accent or before the accent. The accent falling on the beginning, middle or end varies the effect which plays a part in a person’s character and fate. The rhythm of the name suggests the main thing in life: balance or its lack. Lack of balance is a deficiency in character, and causes adversity in life.

 The number of letters plays a great part in the name of a person. An even number shows beauty and wisdom, and an odd number shows love and power. Number plays a great part in life, and especially in name. Each letter in the constitution of a name has a numerical value; in oriental science it is called jafr. By this system not only are names given to buildings, objects and people, conveying their period of commencement and completion, but the combination of these numbers conveys to the seer its mystical effect.

 Every letter, either singly or when grouped in a word, produces a picture which tells its secret to the seer. For instance ‘X’ makes a cross, and ‘O’ zero, both of which have a meaning. The alphabet used in modern times is a corruption of the original ones. The old Arabian and Persian writings which are found on arches, walls, hems of garments, on brass vessels and carpets, are of most perfect and beautiful design. A great symbolic significance may be seen in the Chinese, Japanese, Sanskrit and other ancient scripts. Every line, dot and curve has a meaning. The ancient used to write every name not with different letters, but as a picture signifying what they wished to express. The picture was divided into different parts and each part was used to represent a certain sound, and in this way the alphabets were made. By this break the true picture was lost, but a certain likeness may still be traced. Even in the present day, although we have a most corrupted form of writing, still from the appearance of a certain name a person’s life, fate or character may be read in whatever language it may be written. For instance, a name beginning with I shows a steadfast and righteous ego, uniqueness and love of God and the pursuit of truth. E shows a shy and backward nature and an interest in three directions.

The Christian name has a greater influence than the surname. Sometimes a nickname has a still greater effect. The effect of the name is according to its use; the more it is used the greater the effect. Shortened names such as May for Mary, Bill or Willie for William lessen the effect of the name. The names given by the holy ones have a double effect: that of the name itself and that of the will of the one who gave it.  There are many instances to be found where a change of name has brought an entire change in a man’s life. We read in the Bible that the blessing of Jacob was the name of Israel given to him by the angel.

By Hazrat Ihayat Khan, A Sufi master


24 Responses to “What’s in your name? -interesting insight on significance of a name”

  1. radha Says:

    i always love to read about these things on names, they re true and meaningful. also very proud of my birth name, my parents did a great choice, moreover they included in it one syllabe identical as one in the last name, so to end up with a pleasant sounding combination. but after married it s nice to change name with changing life too ))).

  2. Dima Says:

    I respect of words of Inayat Khan, but how should we apply this info for our society? I mean we have about 10 names for boys and 10 for girls. My generation was: Dima/Sasha/Sergey
    Now it’s Danil/Nikita and few more…And about 300 million people.
    Of course rythm and melody is the basis of all creation. But we shouldn’t be conditioned by it, especially by a limited number of names in modern society 🙂

    • Ldinka_108 Says:

      It is interesting why people prefer some names to others in particular times. Maybe according to vibrations of those times?

    • axinia Says:

      Dima, I know what you mean, however let me disagree with you. There is a certain magic behind each nema, althought it is hard to generalize.

      I notice some strange coincidences, that I can get along with people of certain names easier than with others. Or, better to say, I often meet people of some names, and alsmost never – with other names, altought they can be popular.

      When i was a young girl, by a stange coincidence as soon as I get to know any Sergey, he would fall in love with me And I did not really like the name! Yes, it was a popular name at that time (as you correctly mention), but for instance I had no such stories with Sashas or Dimas…
      How would you explain that?

  3. Interesting my name is Vishesh Unni (as per the above thing has a lot of jemal 😛 ) but people usually call me as Vishesh .. my name(Vishesh) means special..and Unni is supposed to refer to Unni Krishnan, where it mean baby or small 🙂 So basically my name means “special kid/baby” 😀

  4. swaps Says:

    Names are precious – some that can give the heart a toss…

    They name thee before me,
    A knell to mine ear;
    A shudder comes o’er me–
    Why wert thou so dear?
    They know not I knew thee,
    Who knew thee too well:
    Long, long shall I rue thee,
    Too deeply to tell.

  5. As much as I love my name, I would still say, What’s in a name? A rose by any other name would smell as sweet! 🙂

    I’m delighted to learn that women are increasingly keeping their birth names even after marriage. Men never change their names after marriage, so why should women always go through the trouble of doing so 😕

    Making women change their names (or take an additional part to their names) after marriage is a primitive, uncouth practice that goes back to the savage times when women were viewed as mere “property” of men 😡 So once a woman got married, her father relinquished “ownership” of her to her husband, who now had the right to name the “baby-producing machine” that he just “purchased” after himself/his family. Of course, the babies produced by his “child-bearing machine” are always named after himself/his family 😐

    In the barbaric “cultures” of the lowly, semi-civilised places in the world, women are still treated as “property” and as “baby-making machines”, so it’s perhaps apt that such uncouth “cultures” continue to make women change their names after marriage to reflect the “transfer of ownership” 😡 But why don’t the civilised societies where marriage is a more of a union of equals for love (rather than a mere “goods transaction” where the guardian of the “child-bearing machine” transfers “ownership” to the man who has obtained the right to make babies on the “machine”) give up this semi-civilised practice? It baffles me that civilised societies continue to hang on to the vestiges of uncouth practices from their primitive pasts 😕


  6. axinia Says:

    “Men never change their names after marriage,”
    Raj, I know some men who ahve taken their wife’s name after marriage, and one is even an Indian! 🙂

    • Let’s say you know about five such men, Axinia. Let’s also assume that there are about two hundred and fifty such men in the whole world. What difference does 250 (or even 2500) men changing their names make in a world where 2 500 000 000 (2.5 billion) women are made to change their names after marriage 😕 (2.5 billion is an approximate guess, 1/2 of 5 billion. Although 7 billion is closer to the world population, I considered only 5 billion since I’m aware that in certain “cultures”, women usually don’t change their names after marriage, even if such “cultures” happen to be savage, uncouth and primitive.)

      Also, why should men go through this unnecessary hassle just because women are subjected to the primitive, uncouth practice of being made to change their names after marriage 😐 Instead of getting rid of such an uncivilised and barbaric practice, why should it be thrust on men 😕 What would happen if, after marriage, the man takes his wife’s family name and the woman takes her husband’s family name simultaneously 😕 Then the parents of the man would have a “daughter” take the place of their son and the parents of the woman would have a “son” take the place of their daughter in their respective families 😀 It would give a whole new meaning to the words son-in-law and daughter-in-law 😆

      In fact, the primitive and uncouth (but very common) practice of having women change their names after marriage actually distorts the relationship between a woman and her husband. Instead of being his wife, she becomes his sister by taking his family name 😉

      To be fair, the mediaeval hordes did have a way of avoiding such a confusion 😐 And that was through the equally primitive practice of making an unmarried woman use the title of Miss and a married woman use the title of Mrs. while men are given the title of Mr. whether they are married or not. Of course, this primitive practice is meant to convey that a woman is only “half-a-human-being” until a man takes “ownership” of the “child-producing machine” and gets the right to make babies on “it”.

      The civilised societies are actually giving up this second primitive practice. Nowadays, women are increasingly being addressed with the title of Ms. whether they are married or not. This title of Ms. has got to be one of the best additions to the English language! 🙂 It saves a huge deal of discomfort and unpleasantness. I mean, what does it matter to one whether a woman (who just happens to be a business or professional acquaintance) is married or not 😕 How stupid and uncomfortable it would be if one had to take the trouble of finding out the marital status of every woman one comes across, just to find the correct way of addressing her?

      The primitive titles like Mrs. and Miss should become archaic and outdated, and along with the uncouth practice of making women change their names after marriage, deserve to be thrown out of civilised society for good.


  7. […] What’s in your name? -interesting insight on significance of a name  […]

  8. Föhre Says:

    Super, dieses Thema interessiert mich auch sehr.
    Ich hab nach der Hochzeit den Namen meines Mannes angenommen, weil ich es wollte.
    “Zufällig” passt mein neuer Familienname beinahe erschreckend gut zu der Bedeutung meines Vornahmens!


  9. Your entire posting, “Whats in your name? -interesting insight on significance of a name
    1000 petals by axinia” was in fact well worth commenting on!
    Merely desired to admit you truly did a great job.
    Many thanks ,Alberto

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