Thursday, July 07, 2016

Philosophically thinking: Name that Child

The derivation of my name Marcus is usually given to be via Ares, which is the Greek God of War.  So in the following discussion my assertion that naming your child after a God, religious idol, or something really stupid, is usually un-wise, well you could say I have personal experience ...

The above picture is from the USA, when a family first chose the rather alarming Car plate, and followed it up by naming their son Jihad.  The father said he interpreted the word  Jihad as simply struggle generically  (rather my definition which is of the four categories defined in Islam.   You can learn further here).  He said that by so naming it would help his son to struggle.

I think the father is right, naming his child in this way, will transform his life, should he remain in the USA indeed into a struggle, that is absolutely for sure.

Name that Child
I always start from the position that parents do want what is best for their child and hence the given name should also fall under that rule.   However I've personal experience both from my family, close friends and relations of inappropriate names, and the consequent daily or frequent burden seems to contradict this philosophy.

Oh god Please

Perhaps the greatest sin, or in secular terms,  faux pas would be to give your child a name after a modern day God or prophet.  The supporters of Ares are few these days, so I think Marcus gets a pass in the twentieth century onward.  But two notable names that do not:  Jesus and Mohammad.  The only place for such a combination?  Well the Jesus and Mo cartoon strip of course   Besides the implication that you as parents regard your child as somehow Godly, or in any way an incarnation or like the namesake,  you mark, verbally cajole, and possible scar your child for life.  And, for Marcus, as an ex primary school teacher, can you imagine how much fun it is, when a substantial part of the class all have the same bloody name.  Tremendous.

Unusual Names
Celebrities like David Beckham, Frank Zappa, Bob Geldorf and others set the trend for giving their children unusual names.   This trend was then replicated by other celebrities and the worst sort of people /trying to emulate/ them.   It is a tragic picture.

But Just Maybe 

Right now my words are harsh, but there are some situations when parents with resources, and I mean substantial resources, and whose children can also follow a certain lifestyle can grow up easily regardless of parental naming weirdness.  You will need:

- Private Tuition
- Private Jets
- Minimal Government Interaction
- Good at Fighting

The Genius Angle
If your child is truly a genius then an unusual name can work for them, but until we have a Gattaca style based offspring, we really can't make this guarantee with any degree of certainty.

Naming Guidelines

My personal naming guidelines are

- Short
- No clear modern day Religious Affiliation
- Not the same as everybody else
- Nothing absolutely f***wit stupid

Jesus and Mo