Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Fengshui - The Tao In Names

I notice an upward trend in parents giving unusual Mandarin names for their new borns, where they either create a new word (under influence of a Fengshui practitioner) or use rare words like 胤,雍,颙 etc that are used by past Chinese emperors.

Besides the identification purpose in names, words have a long profound influence in a person's character and personality. 

A popular publication some time ago, Messages From Water (Masaru Emoto), illustrated the power of words very well.  Do have a read if you have the time.

Danger of using unusual Mandarin words

Words that are names of the Chinese emperors and the Ba-Gua (八卦) are some of which I've noticed recently. 

In the past, these names are specially selected for members with royal blood by the astrologers in the palace, as these people have very different Ba-Zi (八字) compared to the nobles and commonfolks.  With the abolishment of the monarchy in China, many highly experienced and qualified Fengshui practitioners then wouldn't advice using those words as well, as those words are very "heavy".

"Heavy" being, their unique energy is not suitable for most people (99.999%), even for the exceptionally rich and powerful because a name cannot overpower one's life according to the Ba-Zi (八字).

Words which are seldom used in names or the daily life are very likely to cause the person to be "weird", unhealthy, difficult to get along with, and discipline.

There might be more problems when parents "invent" a new word for their offspring because of novelty, or if the Fengshui practitioner wants to experiement on their clients.  Words cannot be invented to be names as they've not gathered any Earthly energy.  Without that Earthly energy, the person owning that name is likely to be "out of the frequency" with the society.  And not everyone can handle such stress where a likely result would be mental and/or social problems in future.

All rich powerful people in modern history have very common names if one would do a careful research.  While names have an influence on one, it must never overpower that individual.  Balance is very important.

The criteria to naming yourself or a newborn

From Ba-Zi (八字), one can get a balanced name with the criteria where I'll summarise below:

  • Personality - Give a name where their personality or behaviour is lacking e.g negative person is suitable for "brighter" names.
  • According to the 5 Elements (五行)
  • Sound - It must sound soothing, well pronounced and easy when speak with the surname, eg Zhu1 Qian2 Che4(朱乾澈) is a poor example.
  • Association - The name shouldn't sound "wrong" e.g Zhu1 Qian2 Che4 (朱乾澈) sound like Zu1 Quan2 Che1 (租全车) meaning, "rent the whole car"
  • Pictorial association - As the Mandarin language is pictorial-based, the component in the name shouldn't clash with one's personality e.g the right side component of the word "利" means knife, it shouldn't be used for Ba-Zi (八字) that is aggressive and/or big temper even if the total strokes matches the element.
  • Strokes - The more strokes a word has, the more difficult it is for name owner to write and memorise their name well.  In the Fengshui practise, one should be Master to their name and not a Slave.
  • Gender - Unless in very exceptional cases, a male shouldn't have a lady-like name whether by sound/writing and vice versa.

My practice is to have the parents/client to come up with the words they like then start the elimination process.  If they leave the whole process to me, I'd still do some fact-finding to understand why they want to change their names, why they like the words, their aspiration etc etc along with a detailed birthdate analysis.

Western names and numerology

In the last 20 years where the Western culture influenced many Asian countries, many Asians tend to given themselves a Western name so it's easy to remember in workplace or social gatherings, or, a Christian name due to the religious background.

In the Western society, choosing a name looks into the the origin of either in the Bible context or, the Latin/Hebrew roots or, from various mythologies e.g Greek, Egyptian and etc etc.

Then a numerology oracle would be casted to understand the vibration of the name on it's own and with the last name.  It would then tell the family or individual what it means and how it would contribute to the person's personality, future and career.

Normally, vowels have a higher vibration than the consonant and consonants with a vowel sounding end (e.g Y, Z) have to be treated differently from it's peers.  All names should have a balanced combination of consonants and vowels.

In the Western naming culture, there're also names that got popular because of historical famous emperors, conqueror, Greek Gods etc.  An experienced numerologist would inform the parents or individual the implications of giving such names accordingly, so they make a better, informed decision.

Coming back to the Asian society, we can also know how a Western/Christian name affect one by the combination of that name with the romanized alphabets of their Asian name adhering to the calculating principles of the Western numerology for names.  However, their mother-tongue name gives more weight to the influence than the Western one, if not more.


Please don't underestimate the influence of nicknames on people, it's important for parents not to give negative nicknames on their offsprings like "silly Caesar", "buay-zai-see" etc etc.  As I've mentioned above, words have their own influence on people and nicknames would too, even if it's not a formal name.

A child growing up with a negative nickname would display the exact nature of that nickname as it's a psychological imprint over a long period of time.  This is taboo in Fengshui practise, and in the Western psycho-analysis, this is Neuro Linguistic Programming where many psychiatrists and psychologists are embracing now.

Neutral nicknames like "puppy", "honey" etc are advised.  Otherwise, no nickname altogether.

I hope I've given you a good overview of how a name/naming work for an individual and feel free to contact me for an analysis should you're interested.  As I'll be going for a retreat soon, I'll only be able to fulfill bookings from now in July.  Any inconvenience caused is deeply regretted.