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Child Naming Ceremony: (Naam Karan)
This ceremony usually takes place in a Gurdwara after the baby and mother are medically and physically fit to attend the Gurdwara. There is no limit or threshold to this timing and the family should not feel undue pressure of any kind as to the timing. The only matters that need to be taken into account is the well being of the mother and child.
As soon as the family is ready to undertake this ceremony, the father or other senior member of the family should make contact with their local Gurdwara and make arrangements for this brief ceremony.
On the day of this happy occasion, the family should with all invited guests, the mother and baby go to attend the normal weekly kirtan gathering of the Saadh Sangat, the holy congregation. The family should make arrangements to have Karah Prasad made for the occasion. Various Shabads of thanks, joy and support should be sung in the congregation followed by the short Anand Sahib (6 pauris). Then if a Sahaj Paath has been arranged, the Bhog of this reading should take place.
Then comes the main part of the ceremony which is the naming to the baby. The Ardas is done in the normal way with a request to Guru ji to grant the child good health; make him or her a dedicated Sewadar of the country and Panth; to enlighten the name of his family and Dharma and to ask for a name for the child. The Ardas is followed by the Hukamnama. When the Hukamnama is taken, the first letter of the first word of the Hukam is the letter to be used to give the name to the child. So for example if the Hukam is:
|ਧਨਾਸਰੀ ਮਹਲਾ ੫ ॥ Dhanaasree mehlaa 5. Dhanaasaree, Fifth Mehl:
ਸਗਲ ਮਨੋਰਥ ਪ੍ਰਭ ਤੇ ਪਾਏ ਕੰਠਿ ਲਾਇ ਗੁਰਿ ਰਾਖੇ ॥ ਸੰਸਾਰ ਸਾਗਰ ਮਹਿ ਜਲਨਿ ਨ ਦੀਨੇ ਕਿਨੈ ਨ ਦੁਤਰੁ ਭਾਖੇ ॥੧॥
God has fulfilled all my desires. Holding me close in His embrace, the Guru has saved me.
ਜਿਨ ਕੈ ਮਨਿ ਸਾਚਾ ਬਿਸ੍ਵਾਸੁ ॥ ਪੇਖਿ ਪੇਖਿ ਸੁਆਮੀ ਕੀ ਸੋਭਾ ਆਨਦੁ ਸਦਾ ਉਲਾਸੁ ॥ ਰਹਾਉ ॥
ਚਰਨ ਸਰਨਿ ਪੂਰਨ ਪਰਮੇਸੁਰ ਅੰਤਰਜਾਮੀ ਸਾਖਿਓ ॥ ਜਾਨਿ ਬੂਝਿ ਅਪਨਾ ਕੀਓ ਨਾਨਕ ਭਗਤਨ ਕਾ ਅੰਕੁਰੁ ਰਾਖਿਓ ॥੨॥੨॥੨੬॥
|SGGS page 677|
The first word of the Hukam is "Sagal" so the child's name should start with the first letter, which is "S" – The Article here has 1000's of names to help you make up your mind. Please study these before you go to the ceremony.
Once you have chosen the name for the baby, the word "Kaur" is added to the names of girls and the name "Singh" is added to the names of boys. The Gianni will pronounce the name of the child in the Sangat and hail the Jakara – Jo bole so nay-hal – Sat Siri Akal.
That completes the ceremony. The parents should then begin calling the child with the name pronounced in the Sangat and this should be then registered with the legal authorities.
See also Sikh Names