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Naamkaran (Naming Ceremony)

According to Hindu mythology, the naming ceremony for the newborn takes place on the twelfth day after his/ her birth and is predominantly a ladies' function. On the appointed day, female relatives and friends arrive to participate in this colorful ceremony.

At the auspicious time, the newborn is placed in the jhula (cradle) decorated with colorful flowers and ribbons. All the women gather around the jhula and sing the traditional naming ceremony songs rhyming with the newborn's name. Traditionally, the female participants used to bring rice grains and sugar alongwith toys to mark this auspicious event.

In certain Hindu communities the naming ceremony of the newborn takes place after three months. The baby can no longer be placed in a jhula by the time it is three months old. In these cases, a sturdy colorful (red or green) piece of cloth is used to hold the baby. This cloth is also filled with items of good omen - such as nagarvel paan (green chewing pan), supari (betel nuts), haldi (turmeric), dry cuts, moong and coins of one rupee and quarter rupee denominations. (In Hindu mythology one and quarter is a sign of good luck).

Traditionally, the aunts (the father's sisters) hold the four corners of the cloth in which the baby lies. The aunts then gently swing the cloth, imitating the movement of a cradle, while the female participants continue singing traditional songs. A typical song sung at a naming ceremony is:- 

Oly Jholy Pipal Paan
Fui e Padyu Baby Nu Naam.

Hindus often prefer to name their children based on Hindu raashis because it is considered auspicious and is supposed to bring good fortune to the child. Raashis are determined by planetary positions at the date and exact time of the child's birth.  Visit our baby names section if you would like to name your child based on Hindu raashis. 

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