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Eight Ways To Name A Baby

by L. Duriga

There are simple (but not necessarily easy) ways to choose a name for your baby. There are also complex, involved ways. And there are certainly more than 8 ways that parents have used to decide on a name. If you've been at it awhile, you know finding a just-right fit when it comes to choosing a name can be a challenging process. Maybe these suggestions can help sort things out a little.

A NAME YOU'VE ALWAYS LOVED

1. Perhaps you went to school with a Miranda who had a great personality, good looks and was an A student. Since then you've never met a Miranda you didn't like. You like the sound of Miranda. You like the fact that it derives from the Latin mirandus which means "wonderful." There are no gender issues with the name. It's exclusively feminine. And you like the way it goes with your last name. No naming book is necessary for you. For your baby girl's name, it has to be Miranda. So the first way -- a simple, no-fuss way -- to name a baby is simply to choose a name that appeals to you.

A NAME THAT'S BEEN IN THE FAMILY

2. There's been a Rodney or a Stan in the family for generations. You'd like to preserve that continuity. Suggestion #2 as a way to name a baby is to choose a family name. Happily, you're not hampered by a strict protocol for naming your baby, the way it used to be in many cultures. The Scottish naming pattern in the past, for example, meant that the first son was named after his father. The second son after his mother's father. The first daughter was named for her mother's mother, and the second daughter named for her father's mother. Since families were much larger just a few generations ago, naming patterns could be quite elaborate.

A NAME THAT REFLECTS YOUR ROOTS

3. Most of us will automatically consider ethnic names without even realizing it since they are a part of the culture we live in. It's not likely that a Russian is going to choose a Japanese name and vice versa. Since most of us have ethnic pride and want to connect and preserve our ethnic roots, the names common to our culture are the obvious choice. Just be careful when considering an ethnic name that it compliments the last name. Patrick sounds better with O'Brien than, say, Juan does. How to name a baby suggestion #3 is to explore your ethnic roots. Branch out from your family tree and learn a little history of who your people are and the names they've used and loved.

A NAME BY THE NUMBERS

4. If you have a lucky number or believe that the universe is guided by numerical patterns, numerology might be a method to consider in choosing a name. According to this metaphysical science, all numbers have a vibration that indicates our potential attitudes, talents and traits. Numerologists work with a "core" digit by reducing double digits to a single number. So, there are only 9 personality numbers.

In one system of numerology, (There are several including the Pythagorean, Chinese and Chaldean system.) for instance, say you like the attributes that are associated with the number 5 which are adventure, excitement and change. You would then calculate the core number of your last name and choose a name that, when combined with the surname, would equal 5. Of course, numerology can be much more elaborate than this, bringing in energy balances, formulas for blending harmonious and disharmonious aspects and Master Numbers that aren't reduced.

A NAME IN HARMONY WITH THE STARS

5. Do you read your horoscope every day and think there just might be something to the notion that the planets influence our lives? Then consider consulting an astrologer to suggest a name. Or you could choose a name, according to the birthstone, the flower or colors associated with your baby's birth month. For example, the daisy is associated with the sign of Taurus. Jasmine is associated with Gemini, and the diamond birthstone is associated with Aries. Additionally, archangels are supposedly associated with astrological elements and act as guardians to those born in their assigned month. Their names would also make interesting name choices: Anael (ah-nay-el) -- Libra Cassiel (kass-ee-ell) -- Capricorn Raphael -- Gemini and Virgo Sachiel (sa-chee-ell) -- Sagittarius Gabriel -- Cancer Samael or Samuel -- Aries Michael -- Leo Uriel -- Aquarius Azrael (AZ-ree-ell) -- Scorpio Auriel -- (or-ree-ell) -- Taurus Asariel -- (ah-sah-ree-ell) Pisces

A NAME LIKE NO OTHER

6. If you'd like to give your baby the ultimate gift of individuality, you could invent a name. You don't need to make up a name full of x's and z's that sounds like it came from another planet to be creative. Just recombining common syllables can lead to some interesting alternatives. For example, take the syllable "Ca" and combine it with "rinthia" and an unusual, beautiful new name appears, Carinthia. "Ja" + "kira" for Jakira. "Te" and "ger" for Teger. This seems to work better with girls' name as the naming climate today is generally more tolerant of unusual girls' name, but boys' names can benefit from a fresh twist as well. If you do go the creative route, most of the experts warn against just changing or complicating the spelling of a name. After all, whether you spell it Tyson, Tieson or Tisen, it's the same name.

A NAME THAT HONORS SOMETHING OR SOMEPLACE

7. Honoring a person, a place, or even something intangible that is important to you is another way to choose a name. It could be a place you love, like the ocean or a meadow, or a meaningful city -- maybe Odessa, if your great grandparents immigrated from around the Russian Black Sea area. If you visited Chennai in India and found the city uplifting and spiritual, it would be meaningful to you and your child too, once she was old enough to enjoy the story of how her name was chosen. If music is your life, Allegro which means to play a piece briskly and full of energy might be worth considering.

A NAME THAT CONTAINS AN ESSENCE

8. We all can agree that choosing a name carefully is important. After all corporations will spend lots of money and sometimes months or years deciding on a logo or name. A name that sums up exactly the mood and feeling of their image. But, for some, what a name contains goes well beyond image. Nameologists or name "profilers" believe names contain an energetic cache that can affect our finances, our health, our happiness, basically all aspects of our lives. If you believe that subtle energies like sound and vibration are more important than people give them credit for, you might consider consulting a namelogist for help in choosing an "energetically correct" name.

Naming styles change and lots of arents aren't satisfied sitting down with a name book, starting at A and 140,000 names later, ending with Z. So today's baby naming books (and websites) have changed too. The up-to-date guides are much more targeted. You can find baby name lists now with names from Shakespeare's plays, celebrities' baby names, soap opera names, cowgirl and cowboy names, cool names, names from folklore, mythological names and the names of the saints. With so many things to consider, it's a good thing pregnancy lasts nine months!


About the Author

L. Duriga is the webmaster at traditional-baby-names.com where you'll find the best-loved, most popular names of all time.

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