The birth of a child in a family is an occasion that brings joy and happiness to everyone associated with the family. The first thing that comes to mind after the birth of a child is choosing an apt name for him/her.
“Nama” exactly means “name” and “karana” means “to create, to result”. The Namakaran Sanskar is usually held after the first 10 days of a baby’s delivery. These 10 post-natal days are considered to be inauspicious as the mother and child are considered to be impure. After those 10 days, the house is cleaned and sanctified.
According to the Nakshatra at the time of birth, a particular letter of the Sanskrit alphabet is chosen which would prove lucky for the baby. The baby is then given a name starting with that letter. Usually the father whispers the name four times in the right ear of the baby.
The Namakaran Samskar is also performed on adult converts to Hinduism to mark their formal entrance into Hinduism. The convert chooses a Hindu name to declare his allegiance to Hinduism and his severance from his formal religion. A Vedic fire sacrifice is then performed and the convert writes his new name in a tray of uncooked rice.