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A Community For Jewish Parenting

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[Jun. 9th, 2009|10:38 am]
A Community For Jewish Parenting


I know this isn't a very active community, but I figured I'd ask my question here.

My son was born 5 1/2 months ago. At the time we didn't have a Bris for him, though we did have him circumcise.

Next month (in fact, in almost a month exactly) we are going to my family reunion where my Uncle, a Rabbi, is going to perform a naming ceremony.

Except, we don't have a Hebrew name picked out. We could get away with calling him David, since that is part of his first name, but I'd rather pick out a separate one (and this is coming from someone who could also use her first name as her Hebrew name, and does cause she isn't a fan of her Hebrew name).

My son is named for my father and grandfather (not both David, but he has a hyphenated first name). I feel that if I used either of their Hebrew names, my sister would strangle me then and there. My husband is Jewish, but only found out about it a couple of years back and picked out his own name (long story). He says he doesn't have a strong opinion, and that the only person he'd want to honor would be his grandfather who was Catholic and, more over, doesn't have a name we can easily use (my husband has his grandfather's name except for the middle name, and that's Valentine).

How did people here pick out their kid's Hebrew names?

[User Picture]From: queenriley
2009-06-09 04:11 pm (UTC)
My daughter's Hebrew name honours my grandmother. My son's Hebrew name does not honour anyone. I picked it for him because the name embodies traits I hope for him to have... strength, intelligence, etc and the meaning is what he means to us (beloved).

You could look for a Hebrew name that has a special meaning to you, even if it doesn't honour a relative. Look to historical or biblical figures... is there anybody you particularly admire or who's story has a certain resonance with you? You could use a name based off that as well.

Good luck and I hope you find a name that suits your little guy!
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From: sharleysmom
2009-06-09 07:21 pm (UTC)
Same here. my daughter's hebrew name is my grandma's name.
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[User Picture]From: queenriley
2009-06-09 07:30 pm (UTC)
Oh my goodness your icon! She's so ADORABLE! I'm mesmerized by the cute.
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From: sharleysmom
2009-06-09 07:36 pm (UTC)
Thank you :)
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[User Picture]From: lesliepear
2009-06-09 04:14 pm (UTC)

what we did

My son is Alan Frederick - we had friends who were more knowledgable in hebrew translate it - it came to Alon (not sure of spelling) Ephrahim. My name of Leslie was translated in hebrew school to Leah, DH's name of Mark was somewhere translated to Moishe.

Hope that helps. Maybe there is another "D" name you can use for your son, or perhaps the other part of his hyphenated first name.
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[User Picture]From: kriz1818
2009-06-09 04:49 pm (UTC)
I chose a name I liked (Rachim) out of a book of Hebrew names - looking only in the section starting with the "r" sound, because my son's middle name starts with R.
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[User Picture]From: dream_king
2009-06-09 05:05 pm (UTC)
Are you going to get a proper Bris done on your son now?

In may family, we used family names.

My daughter is named after my mother, first and middle name, we were 1 day off the same birthday.

My son's first name is name after my paternal grandfather and his middle name is after my wife's maternal great grandfather.

All of them just have the single name, as in, we gave them just Jewish names and made their English names what ever their Hebrew names were.
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[User Picture]From: countfroggy
2009-06-09 10:40 pm (UTC)
Well, the common rule is that the Ashkenazim (Northern and Eastern European Jews and most North American Jews) name their children after someone who has died who they want to honor by remembering their name. They also avoid naming children after the living for superstitious reasons. Sephardi Jews, those whose families came out of Spain and Portugal, settling thru most of North Africa and much of Southern Europe, including the Balkans and Turkey don't have restrictions on naming children after the living. I'm sure there are other customs in other places, as well. Even people in those traditions don't always follow the typical rules. For example, I am Ashkinazi, but since both of my grandfather's were named Abraham, one living, one dead, I wasn't given that name in Hebrew or English; instead, I was named after three dead family members but my English name has no resemblance to my Hebrew name. Alan Barry and Shachne Asher.

Why not use his Catholic Grandfather's name converted to Hebrew? Even Jesus translates to Joshua. Good people are worthy of remembering regardless of their religion. We are supposed to use religion to make good people, not the other way around.
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From: shadowkate
2009-06-09 10:44 pm (UTC)
I'm Ashkenazi, and follow the naming thing.

My husband's grandfather was James Valentine.

My husband is James. I can find the translation of James as James. I can't find anything close to Valentine. Thus, I don't think it is going to work.
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[User Picture]From: countfroggy
2009-06-09 11:14 pm (UTC)
My English to Hebrew name lexicon gives me Yakov or Jacob as the translation of James. And, it gives three different variations for Valentine; Gavriel (Gabriel), abir, and Uzi. Of course, you don't have to choose just one person to honor, you could use Jacob to honor your husband's grandfather and choose another name from someone else. For an example (not meant as a real recommendation - that is entirely you and your husband's choice); Jacob Chaim. Chaim means life, usually with an exclamation point. BTW, my father was Chaim and my daughter's first Hebrew name is Chaya ('full of life' or 'wild one'), after her grandfather. If you are a fan of the principles often called 'The Golden Rule', how about Hillel, who wrote them a hundred years before 'the other guy'.

The best part of giving a child a Hebrew name is being able to tell them stories when they are old enough about why you chose that name. It gives them a link to their past, their heritage, and your values.
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[User Picture]From: teawithfrodo
2009-06-10 02:32 am (UTC)
our son isn't even born and I picked out names...I must be a nutter.
But he's named after my father and grandfather. So I did choose my father's Hebrew name.
However my husband is not Jewish and could not pronounce my grandfather's Hebrew name (el chunen).
What we did is find out what it meant, and then looks for other names we liked with the same or similar meanings. That way you can still honor your family without pissing off your sister :)
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