MURDER ME… IT’S AT YOUR PERIL!
Back then in our Traditional African Communication class, my lecturer, Mr. Akinola was so passionate about this particular topic that day: NAMES. What’s in a name sef?
In Africa, well particularly with my Nigerian experience, we take our names serious and we don’t just give names, there is usually a reason for giving names, I remember him being angry then that some would have beautiful local names but because they want to “form civilization” would go for “atowoda” (self-given) English names that they in most case, don’t even know the meaning.
In this part of the world, we believe that there is power in a name, your name can make or mar you, just remembered a story I heard sometimes ago, according to the narrator, there is this classmate of his whose name is “Araragbaya” (I can take all sufferings) and indeed he gets punished almost on a daily basis even for someone else’ offence.
Back to my point, there is power in a name, even in nicknames, hence, we should always watch it before we choose it, don’t get me wrong, am not saying we should not adopt a nickname but adopt the ones that are positively meaningful if you must choose one, likewise your name, let people see the beauty in pronouncing it well and saying it in full. Your name or nickname should be reflective of who you are and who you want to be.
My lecturer did call this name murdering, if your name is Oluwadamilola and you decide to shorten it to Dam for instance, I guess you did get damned! So at whose peril are you murdering your name?
Sometimes I find it really annoying why an Oluwabukola would decide to spell her name as Orhluwabukholar, just because they want to Englishnize their name, apart from the fact that the spelling looks annoying you changed the meaning of the name to Only-God-knows what?
The power in a name did reflected on our number one citizen in the country as he keeps coming from nowhere to “big places” and thus became the man with no shoes with countless shoes, you can imagine how the number of babies that begin to go by the name Goodluck skyrocketed within that period even some adult became Goodluck over night. Though I wonder if people still want to be goodluck? This goes to show that one needs to work even on a good name to sustain it, how much more when we give ourselves name that we know nothing about its root, origin or meaning.
I see no reason why a Subulola would want to be called Subu, the name has been murdered at her own peril, yes, because Subulola means fall into wealth, but when she allows herself to be called Subu which simply means fall, then she can probably fall into anything.
Let’s keep it positive, whether as names or nicknames, you don’t have to “funkify” the spelling or pronunciation of your name all in the name of civilization, because most times you lose the beautiful meaning of the Name in the process.
Now, before you axe me, am not saying we can’t be called by our nickname or have a short form pronunciation of our names but then let’s make it positive not like the “Subu” type. Whatever the swag you want to give to your name, don’t lost its meaning and keep it positive, because if you murder your name, it is at your own peril.
There is power in a name!
Well, any of the names used is just what came up in my thought , no personal vendetta okay, and I had to use mainly Yoruba names because am familiar with them and know their meaning.
Adebisi Halimat Bukola
@halybee on twitter
Powered by Facebook Comments