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Imp Q: What's In A Name?


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GurFateh.

I was wondering if I could get some help on something, with (if possible) Gurbaanee Tuks to help me understand more about a certain topic.

I would like to know what is acceptable in Sikhi when it comes to choosing a name. What I mean is.. When choosing a name, what (rules) do we, as Sikhs, need to (abide by) pay attention to?

I know that almost all new Sikh-parents go to the Gurudwara to listen to a Hukamnaamaa, and then decide on a name for their child(ren) that begins with the same letter as the Hukamnaamaa started with... However, I'm wondering about other rules/guidelines, and such to abide by/pay attention to, which (if any) evidently should be followed by Sikhs.

Hope my following questions further explain what I'm asking...

Does the name HAVE TO begin with the same letter as a Hukamnaamaa?

AND/OR

Does the name HAVE TO have a meaning?

AND/OR

Does the name HAVE TO be from Gurmukhee?

AND/OR

Does the name HAVE TO be derived from/relating to Sikh literature?

I'm pretty sure most of you understand why I chose the famous quotes as my topic title. "What's In A Name? That which we call a rose / By any other name would smell as sweet;"

Before replying to my post, please note that I would really appreciate it if no one posts personal opinions alone. I would like to know what Sikhi teaches us more than knowing some of the personal opinions out there. What I mean to say is...please don't bash me or ignore my questions to, instead, tell me your personal views on this thread/topic.

(For example, please don't rhetorically ask me What's wrong with a Sikh name? or Do you know a Sikh thinking of a more western name? or please don't say Why should we stop using Sikh names just to fit in?. Pleeeeeeeeeeease don't ask me those kinds of questions because..

A.] There's nothing wrong with a Sikh name.

B.] I'm not thinking of a random name from another culture/religion/race etc

C.] No one I know is thinking of a more western name.

Also..please don't say that It's better for a Sikh to choose a Sikh name.)

If it is not evident through Gurbaanee that picking a Sikh name is better. I agree that it is a blessing to take the first letter of the Hukamnaamaa as the first letter of a Sikh's name, but what about the name itself? I seriously just wish to understand more about the Sikhi rules/guidelines when it comes to names.

Thanks. (..and sorry for the long post.)

GurFateh.

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Khalsa_Girl_1, by bounding the limits of discussion, you've effectively prevented anyone from saying anything.

The fact is you don't HAVE to do anything you don't want to do. The only reason for you to do so is if you want to feel part of a community. If you don't, do what you like.

I'm sure you already know the answers to the questions you posed, so why ask? Gurbani doesn't have any tuks on the naming process, you didn't expect that it would, would you? It's not like the Bible, filled with stories and strictures and stuff.

With love.

Sorry, couldn't resist this:

Were you thinking of naming someone Obama Singh?

:)

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Following is the quote from Sikh Rehat MAryada edited by SGPC which is accepted

all over Sikh PANTH:-

Chapter XI - Ceremonies pertaining to Social Occasions

Article XVII - Ceremonies pertaining to Birth and Naming of Child

a. In a Sikh's household, as soon after the birth of a child as the mother becomes capable of moving about and taking bath (irrespective of the number of days which that takes), the family and relatives should go to a gurdwara with karhah prashad (sacred pudding) or get karhah prashad made in the gurdwara and recite in the holy presence of the Guru Granth Sahib such hymns as "parmeshar dita bana" (Sorath M. 5 ,Guru Granth Sahib p. 628 ), "Satguru sache dia bhej" (Asa M. 5 , Guru Granth Sahib p. 396 ) that are expressive of joy and thankfulness. Thereafter if a reading of the holy Guru Granth Sahib had been taken up, that should be concluded. Then the holy Hukam (command) should be taken. A name starting with the first letter of the hymn of the Hukam (command) should be proposed by the granthi (man in attendance of the holy book) and, after its acceptance by the congregation, the name should be announced by him. The boy's name must have the suffix "Singh" and the girl's, the suffix "Kaur".

After that the Anand Sahib (short version comprising six stanzas) should be recited and the Ardas in appropriate terms expressing joy over the naming ceremony be offered and the karhah prashad distributed.

bHUL CHUK khima WJKK WJKF

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  • 4 weeks later...

Sorry. I apologize for my late replies :|

The fact is you don't HAVE to do anything you don't want to do. The only reason for you to do so is if you want to feel part of a community. If you don't, do what you like.

So the reason parents name their children with names relating to Gurbaanee, is to feel that they belong in the community...? That's interesting...

Khalsa_Girl_1, by bounding the limits of discussion, you've effectively prevented anyone from saying anything.

I'm sure you already know the answers to the questions you posed, so why ask?

Sorry to tell you, but you are mistaken. I don't know why someone would waste time asking a question, if their purpose was to prevent someone from saying anything at all... I don't know the answers to this question. I've been looking for answers, but like you pointed out, there's nothing in Gurbaanee that I've found relating to this.
Gurbani doesn't have any tuks on the naming process, you didn't expect that it would, would you?
Actually, I DID expect to find a Tuk from Gurbaanee related to my question, because I've almost always found the answers to my questions from Gurbaanee.

I really don't understand why you think I was unnecessarily asking for help :S

It's not like the Bible, filled with stories and strictures and stuff.
...quite irrelevant. I don't know how this ties to the rest of my/your post. I'm talking about Gurbaanee, but thanks anyway...

Sorry, couldn't resist this:

Were you thinking of naming someone Obama Singh?

I'm only 21. Very far from marriage, let alone naming someone.

And clearly, you've asked a question that I was expecting from someone who didn't take my post seriously. As I mentioned in my first post, I would like to gain more knowledge. I still knew that at least one person was going to ask such a question, because evidently..some people still cannot resist asking unnecessary questions. Is there something wrong with me trying to educate myself more about Gurbaanee? I don't come into contact with a lot of Sikhs/Punjabis, so if you'd like to actually answer my question, please do.

And as for naming someone Obama Singh...? You can come up with whatever you'd like, but I'm not even thinking of naming someone..let alone the fact that you think I'd name someone with a name tied to a different religion. C'mon man.. I made it all pretty clear in my first post, and this is exactly why I had done so in the first place.

Following is the quote from Sikh Rehat MAryada edited by SGPC which is accepted

all over Sikh PANTH:-

Chapter XI - Ceremonies pertaining to Social Occasions

Article XVII - Ceremonies pertaining to Birth and Naming of Child

a. In a Sikh's household, as soon after the birth of a child as the mother becomes capable of moving about and taking bath (irrespective of the number of days which that takes), the family and relatives should go to a gurdwara with karhah prashad (sacred pudding) or get karhah prashad made in the gurdwara and recite in the holy presence of the Guru Granth Sahib such hymns as "parmeshar dita bana" (Sorath M. 5 ,Guru Granth Sahib p. 628 ), "Satguru sache dia bhej" (Asa M. 5 , Guru Granth Sahib p. 396 ) that are expressive of joy and thankfulness. Thereafter if a reading of the holy Guru Granth Sahib had been taken up, that should be concluded. Then the holy Hukam (command) should be taken. A name starting with the first letter of the hymn of the Hukam (command) should be proposed by the granthi (man in attendance of the holy book) and, after its acceptance by the congregation, the name should be announced by him. The boy's name must have the suffix "Singh" and the girl's, the suffix "Kaur".

After that the Anand Sahib (short version comprising six stanzas) should be recited and the Ardas in appropriate terms expressing joy over the naming ceremony be offered and the karhah prashad distributed.

bHUL CHUK khima WJKK WJKF

Thank you for the reply :)

I'm guessing that having the first letter be from the Hukamnaamaa, but picking a name without a meaning is still alright according to Sikhi...?

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Sikhs should be proud of their God given name.There is a rehatnama that says call a Sikh by his/her full name . FOr example Malkeet Singh or Prabhsharandeep Kaur. Unfortunately this day and age Malkeet has become Mike and Prabsharandeep have become Sharon. People have completely given away their Gurbani inspired birth names and replaced them with Western names which they feel are more suitable for the general population. But Sikhi is about being distinct and being linked to Gurmat that includes having a Gurmat based name.

WHen a person from a different religion converts to Sikhi Panj Pyaarey always upon tradition change the Name according to the Hukumnama. This is always to inspire a person towards their duty to their Guru. For example would person name George SIngh remember his duty more then a person name GurSevak SIngh. Would person name Hilary Kaur remember her duty to praise WaaheGuru more then Harkeerat Kaur?

Out of most name Gurmukhi seem to be the most unbiased towards Gender which shows equality in ones identity as a Gursikh. While names like John, Henry, Jennifer, etc are more culturally defined and already give the person a more culturally based custom determined on gender roles. Harkeerat Kaur can be a sant, sipahi, etc. While Jennifer Kaur is just an ordinary John

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Sikhs should be proud of their God given name.There is a rehatnama that says call a Sikh by his/her full name . FOr example Malkeet Singh or Prabhsharandeep Kaur. Unfortunately this day and age Malkeet has become Mike and Prabsharandeep have become Sharon. People have completely given away their Gurbani inspired birth names and replaced them with Western names which they feel are more suitable for the general population. But Sikhi is about being distinct and being linked to Gurmat that includes having a Gurmat based name.

WHen a person from a different religion converts to Sikhi Panj Pyaarey always upon tradition change the Name according to the Hukumnama. This is always to inspire a person towards their duty to their Guru. For example would person name George SIngh remember his duty more then a person name GurSevak SIngh. Would person name Hilary Kaur remember her duty to praise WaaheGuru more then Harkeerat Kaur?

Out of most name Gurmukhi seem to be the most unbiased towards Gender which shows equality in ones identity as a Gursikh. While names like John, Henry, Jennifer, etc are more culturally defined and already give the person a more culturally based custom determined on gender roles. Harkeerat Kaur can be a sant, sipahi, etc. While Jennifer Kaur is just an ordinary John

Thank you for the information :) I appreciate it.

But like I mentioned in the last reply, I'm talking about names that do not have any meaning(s), nor relations to anything in particular. I mentioned how I'm not referring to names from a different religion or culture.

Here is the main reason why I am asking all of this: My sister's name does not have a meaning. It does not have a any ties to any religion/culture etc. It is a made-up name. Completely made up. This is what I am asking.

***I am not asking about "Jennifer Kaur" or "Jefferey Singh".***

Thank you.

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Sikhs should be proud of their God given name.There is a rehatnama that says call a Sikh by his/her full name . FOr example Malkeet Singh or Prabhsharandeep Kaur. Unfortunately this day and age Malkeet has become Mike and Prabsharandeep have become Sharon. People have completely given away their Gurbani inspired birth names and replaced them with Western names which they feel are more suitable for the general population. But Sikhi is about being distinct and being linked to Gurmat that includes having a Gurmat based name.

WHen a person from a different religion converts to Sikhi Panj Pyaarey always upon tradition change the Name according to the Hukumnama. This is always to inspire a person towards their duty to their Guru. For example would person name George SIngh remember his duty more then a person name GurSevak SIngh. Would person name Hilary Kaur remember her duty to praise WaaheGuru more then Harkeerat Kaur?

Out of most name Gurmukhi seem to be the most unbiased towards Gender which shows equality in ones identity as a Gursikh. While names like John, Henry, Jennifer, etc are more culturally defined and already give the person a more culturally based custom determined on gender roles. Harkeerat Kaur can be a sant, sipahi, etc. While Jennifer Kaur is just an ordinary John

Thank you for the information :) I appreciate it.

But like I mentioned in the last reply, I'm talking about names that do not have any meaning(s), nor relations to anything in particular. I mentioned how I'm not referring to names from a different religion or culture.

Here is the main reason why I am asking all of this: My sister's name does not have a meaning. It does not have a any ties to any religion/culture etc. It is a made-up name. Completely made up. This is what I am asking.

***I am not asking about "Jennifer Kaur" or "Jefferey Singh".***

Thank you.

Ok sorry, lol

Usually when you take Amrit, Panj Pyaarey ask you if you name has been given according to Sikh tradition . If no then the Panj Pyaarey take a Hukum and a new name is given.

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u can have watever name u want. as long as u put singh or kaur at the end, ur good to go. cuz these were the names given by guru gobind singh ji. so u can pick wat ever u want for the first name, no it does not have to have any meaning wat-so-ever. and no, if u really dont want to, u dont have to go by maharaj's hukamnama, but if ur a guru a sikh, ur obvoiusly going go to by maharaj's mukhvaak. as thats how puraatan maryada is, picking names from maharaj's saroop, or panj piyare give u a name when taking amrit.

but if u pick some other name, then nobody is going to hang u for it. theres people out there doing nindiya of maharaj's bani, but this is just picking names here for god sake. its not that big of an issue. we tend to take the smallest thing and make the biggest scene out of it.

btw, wat is ur sisters name??

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Here is the main reason why I am asking all of this: My sister's name does not have a meaning. It does not have a any ties to any religion/culture etc. It is a made-up name. Completely made up. This is what I am asking.

***I am not asking about "Jennifer Kaur" or "Jefferey Singh".***

Thank you.

Ok sorry, lol

Usually when you take Amrit, Panj Pyaarey ask you if you name has been given according to Sikh tradition . If no then the Panj Pyaarey take a Hukum and a new name is given.

Lol.. I didn't think I'd have to actually explain one of the reasons for my question(s), but I guess some people really thought I was ready to give some next "Sarah Kaur" or "Justin Singh" name....aint the case folks

Her first name is completely made up, but she uses "Kaur" as her last name..not our actual 'surname'.

And the facts you just stated are exactly why I'm so interested in asking about it. My father is friends with a few Panj Piyarey, and we are very close family friends. My sister, brother, mother and father, all took Amrit a while back, and he knew what name had been given to my sister since her birth. He still calls her by that name, of course, and none of the Panj Piyarey suggested it be changed.

I know that when people take Amrit, the Panj Piyarey usually give them a name related to Sikhi, but is that a cultural tradition?.. Or is it mandatory after taking Amrit?

Thanks again.

btw, wat is ur sisters name??

Her name is: Ipan Kaur

Short "i", and the word "pun"

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