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As I've mentioned before on the forums, I have an interest in names and name magic. So here's a question for you all:
If you use an otherkin name, where did it come from? Is it something you remembered? Is it something that just popped into your head one day? Is it something bestowed on you by someone else, such as the Silver Elves?
For my part, in all honesty, I first came up with the name Jarin Dreamsinger for a roleplaying game. For some reason, I tend to agonize over naming things, especially characters, and I spent literally days pouring through books of baby names looking for one that felt and sounded just right and had an appropriate meaning. I came up with nothing. Finally, the name Jarin just popped into my head. It wasn't in the books, I'd never heard it before, searches on the internet didn't turn up anything at the time, but it felt right so I went with it. Dreamsinger also popped in practically as an afterthought.
Around that time, I needed to create a new email address for myself online. My former provider had gone defunct. My primary presence on the internet at that time was in the roleplaying and fantasy fiction communities, so I used that name to sign up for a yahoo email account. Later, when I joined the otherkin community, I'd been going by that name online for probably somewhere between one and two years.
Cas might remember that in early conversations with him and Arhuaine I frequently lamented the fact that I couldn't remember my elven name. I had no interest, and still don't, in one created by the Silver Elves; I feel no connection whatsoever to their “Silver Speech”. Finally, someone (I believe it was Arhuaine?) suggested that Jarin WAS the name I'd had on Alorya, or something very close to it. After a while, comparing notes with a few others who remembered me from that life, I finally settled on Jarandhel as having been my full name (or close enough for government work anyway) and Jarin (or possibly Jaran) having been a shortened version, like a nickname.
So, that's the story behind my otherkin name. What's yours?
Well, I started awakening when I was about 12, but it was some time before I chose a name. My real-life one is Morgan, and the whole time I was growing up I disliked it. Especially the sounds of it; I mean, it was sort of cool because of Morgan le Fay and stuff, and that may even have played its part in the early stages of my awakening, but for a long time I just tolerated it.
There are so many names I’ve tried on for size throughout my life that it isn’t even funny. I was exactly like you, spending hours and days with baby name books and dictionaries trying to find the perfect ones. Online, in 2006, I called myself Lithoniel, but only once. In ’08 or ’09, I was figuring out the numerological values of my name and birth date when I randomly decided to calculate what they’d be if my name were Lirien. It just popped into my head. After that, there was a brief period of time where I thought of calling myself “Sirin”, which I invented, and was playing around with the spelling. To me, it conveyed the idea of “grey” or “silvery-grey”. I knew I didn’t want a Tolkien name, for whatever reason, or something too weird or unpronounceable.
It was early last year that I finally came up with Liryen. I had realized that Lirien would be pretty widely used, and then a spark of inspiration seemed to wrap itself around my thoughts almost as quickly as I could type “Liryen”. Back then, I pronounced them the same way, but it wasn’t long before I just started thinking “Leer-yen”. And it just stuck. I haven’t felt a need for another username since it came to me. At that point, it was almost exclusively mine; not so much anymore. It brings up sunlit trees to me, the golds and greens of spring or summer (because of the colors I “see” it in). I don’t remember my actual name, and I kind of doubt it was Liryen or even something similar, but it works fer me. 😀
Ancient of Days
I’ve gone by a number of names throughout my tenure in the otherkin community, but I’ll talk about just two here:
Eshari was my main name for a long time. I originally got it when I was experimenting with Harner’s “core shamanism” in late 1998, and in a journey visited a city by that name. At the time (I have no idea of the real truth of this, but it was meaningful then) it was intimated to me that the city was “mine” in some sense and so I took its name for myself. This name has/had a longer form, Eshearendelari, which I sometimes talked about as being a “draconic” form attached to stardragon-me (an identification I no longer directly use), but that wasn’t “discovered”, that was put there because I liked the way it sounded. I remember retconning up some meaning for it with skiewing – something like “the (serpent?) from the high place of waterfalls of light” or something.
Over time it grew to bother me that the name Eshari wasn’t really attached to a specific existence. That is, I had no inklings of a past life or anything where I was named that. I tried to console myself that it was OK to go by something that was “me, here, now, the sum total of all that feyness” but I dunno, it just itched and felt like I was “less real”. (something which has been a giant boogeyman for me ever since I awakened in the first place, actually.)
Arethinn (it’s pronounced ARE-eh-theen or ARE-uh-theen, soft “th” as in “thin”, btw – I heard someone try uh-RETH-inn once and was like “wat?”) was kind of ginned up out of me playing around with syllables and phonemes I liked the sound of. I can’t say that it’s 100% “correct” but at least it managed to stick around in my head for several years before I decided to take the plunge and adopt it, rather than thinking it was nice one day and waking up the very next day going “OMG that sounds dumb”, so it’s got that going for it at least.
Long form, Arethinn na’eleth aTinderel. Now this, at least the last part, Tinderel, I can say I received. (pron. tin-DARE-ell or TIN-dare-ell – phase of the moon, it seems; I can’t decide, myself. Sometimes I feel like I should somehow be saying it both ways simultaneously, but that I lack the appropriate vocal apparatus or maybe psychic transmission skills to pronounce things “correctly”.) It’s one of only a handful of names I’ve ever dreamed (that is, sleep-dreamed) in my life, and although I didn’t know what to do with it at first, similarly it at least doesn’t make me itch like crazy just to look at it and I haven’t wanted to change it. I think if it’s really something “factual” that it is a family or clan kind of name. The mid part “na’eleth” would be a kind of designator of rank or position (which for me is to say, not high: I’ve bandied about the term “smallsidhe”, and I have some vague inklings that I might have mixed faery heritage which is kind of looked down on as “half-breed”-y) or maybe birth order (? I have a hard time contemplating family structure and kinships when half the time I think we were totally non-physical anyway and I have no idea how the heck such a race “breeds”).
Some other terms along these lines which I’ve “come up with” (which sounds like “made up from whole cloth, but I don’t really mean that; more like “tried to be quiet and listen and see what comes forward”) are ne ruinnas (nay roo-EE-nas), siltheri and oneth or uneth (see above about the feeling I should somehow be able to say it both ways at once).
In this life I chose the name Ayaka Inu because its meaning reminds me of the best parts of my original life. Otherwise I would simply be nameless, as most white wolves would not be identified by name, but by scent, although on occasion one could earn a title, for example my mate in that life earned a title that would translate to sun, which is why in this life I use the name Sol when speaking of him from memory. In short, the name is just two words and a little symbolism, nothing more. On the subject of name magic, I can't really say, but I won't dismiss it, or any magical possibility, I cannot dismiss what I do not fully understand.
Ayaka Inu said:
On the subject of name magic, I can’t really say, but I won’t dismiss it, or any magical possibility, I cannot dismiss what I do not fully understand.
*nods*. Well said. It was discussed in this thread from last year
, if that helps any.
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