Thursday, October 27, 2011

What's in a name?

I am following a Master: Madhukar - and I call him my Guru. In 2007 I asked him for a name. Shivani he called me and I use this name since then. I like to write about it because people often ask me about it.

Nonduality and name - isn't this contradictory?

The most indivual thing somebody owns is his name. Pointing with the finger to ones front saying "I" everybody understands what it is about. In nonduality, in Yoga of Silence, in Oneness the topic is to get rid of identification with exactly this "I". And this is the reason why hardly anybody understands what purpose or what sense lies in a name.


Psychologists discovered it: Standing around at a party, chattering with each other, having fun you for sure hear if anybody at any spot of the room is pronouncing your own name. And this works no matter if you were meant or not. Just by hearing the own name attention is drawn from any topic to the one who expressed it. This phenomenon shows quite clearly: There is nothing more powerful to draw attention away from anything like your own name does. The identification you have with your own name doesn't compare to anything else.

Pseudonym is different.

People tend to use pseudonyms for all kind of reasons. Yet, a spiritual name - given by a Master - has it's own magic. It's not about hiding the real identity or to grant a certain privacy. The spiritual name can help you to get detached from identification with the person. Or in other cases it is simply just the expression that there is no identification left at all.  

What did Sri Poonjaji say about names?

The Masters don't give just any name. The name is an expression of the essence of the owner, the name has a certain meaning that also shows in everyday life. Once Papaji was asked for a name. He first gave it, explained it and added:

"Die Namen, die euch im Satsang verliehen werden, sind Klanglaute einer höheren Schwingungsebene, und wer sie benutzt, geht im Liebsten und Schönsten auf. Selbst wenn andere eure Namen aussprechen, fällt etwas von dieser Gnade auf sie zurück. Namen sind Tonschwingungen. Wenn du die Freude namentlich herbeizitierst, wirst du von ihren Schwingungen erfüllt.
Mit dem neuen Namen beruft man sich auf eine andere Herkunft als bisher. Aus Leiden geht Leid hervor und die meisten Namen symbolisieren dieses Leid. Aber nun gehörst du einer anderen Atmosphäre an, und mit dem neuen Namen beginnt ein neues Leben, frei von der Vergangenheit."
(H.W.L. Poonja in "The Truth is")
note: I took this text from the Geman extraction of "The Truth is" which is "Der Gesang des Seins". If you know the page where I can find the original text, I will replace it by the original text. Because I don't want to re-translate it and thus make mistakes. Would not be appropriate... THANK YOU FOR HELP

The expression of a Master can be very poetic and also playful - even with names.

The meaning of the name of my Guruji - Madhukar - is beemaster, if translated strictly formal. Madhu (honey) is the first syllable and -kar (to make) the second. So it is "the one who makes the honey". We also could translate "the one who makes the sweetness" and Sri Poonjaji said the meaning of Madhukar was "beloved sweet like honey". With this translation in my opinion he hit home like only a Master can do. Because like me many others feel drawn to him, feel attracted by his golden presence and enjoy the sweetness which is all around him. To see this potential and to express it in words, in extremely beautiful words this is what only a real Master can do.

What is your experience with your name?

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  1. What is my experience with my name?

    My name is Angela. A lot of people say to me that I am sent from heaven like my name is. Well, this is what people says...
    My experience is with my name is that I love to help people, but this works only when you know who you really are. I found out after having struggled with myself for several years that the only way to feel good and happy is to be in the presence of the my beloved Master Madhukarji.This sweet silence and being faithful with a crystal clear orientation in freedom is for me now the only purpose to be here because this makes me silent,happy and peaceful and also people in my enviroment. I learned that this is the best way to help people without harming myself. Thank you.