What’s in a name?
Spelling…is not simply how we arrange letters into words. It is powerful magick, capable of binding, exalting, freeing, destroying…
According to John Sacelli, Shaman and author and creator of “ Angelish, The Original Language” book and divination deck, “Words are spelled because they are castings of spells. ‘Word’ comes from the Olde Englishe or Nordic ‘wyrd’ (also the root of weird) which meant equally ‘ground of being’ or ‘a spelling or casting of fate’. When words are spelled they are combined into sentences – and we are sentenced to live by the words we have spoken, the spells we cast.”
Feeling into how this applies to names I looked to my own fur family, my dogs and kitty. I believe that animals often choose their own names, at least in my family. So what do their choices say about them?
- Rose: First there is the flower. Beautiful, sweet-smelling yet surrounded with thorns…Just like the intensity of a mother’s heart, sometimes there has to be some structure and discipline. In aromatherapy, Rose is considered the Mother of all fragrances said to have “sprung from the blood of Venus” – aromatherapist Holly Carrol. Rose is all about love and the heart and everything that comes with it. Rose essential oil is also an enhancer, this means that any blend you add it to, it intensifies the qualities and attributes of the other oils. Simply, it adds value. A lot of it. It resonates with both the first(root) and fourth(heart) chakras. Love and survival.
Our girl is fiercely loving and devoted. She is kind and patient. She is submissive, to a point, then when she is pushed too far (by our other dog), she establishes her boundary, with intensity.
- Mary: Mary is the holy Mother, the Goddess. Mother of us all.
Our Rose is nurturing, generous and forever loving. When she sits with you, her spirit melts into yours, melding the two hearts into one beating drum. She pours her love into you dissolving all that is not love.
- Rosemary: This herb is noted for remembrance.
Rosie guides us in every moment to remember who we are. To feel her omnipresent love and acknowledge that it, too lives within each of us. That we are one heart beating as many.
This is Maddy Jo, or fully Madison Joley. We adopted Maddy from a shelter/rescue in Madison, Wisconsin in 2002. The shelter had named her Joley. She was from a litter of puppies born in Southern Illinois. She and her sister were the last of the bunch and were dropped at the pound and were slated to be euthanized. Rescue workers, doing a sweep, picked them up and drove them to the shelter in Madison who then put their beautiful faces on petfinders.com. This is how we found her. Madison has been a challenging being. She is highly sensitive, nervous and reactive to other dogs. She has incontinence from being spayed at too young an age, suffered deeply from vaccinosis and will attack any dog that comes within biting range. On the positive side, she is deeply loving to us, her human family and has always shown great patience with our daughter as she has grown up. Let’s look at her name, Maddy Jo.
- Maddy: Mad, angry.
She has been a grand mirror for us. Showing us that which lies in the shadows, yearning for light. The sad, wounded parts we have pushed down with food, busy-ness, work/school, entertainment…They are mad, angry and when they are pushed they react, loudly, sometimes viciously. Barking for hours on end when a dog invades her “territory” by walking by the house. She has forced us to look at our own reactions to feeling invaded, violated and ignored. Her presence has shown us the parts of ourselves that are needy and begging for attention.
- Joley (Jo): Joe—coffee.
She is waking us up! Just as Rose shows us that we are infinite love, Maddy shows us that within that infinite love are all the parts that we do not want to accept. Together they teach us to love it all.
This is Doodles. She walked out of the woods surrounding our house in 2005 on the 4th of July. She is fiercely independent and she continues to come and go as she pleases. In a lame attempt at sounding spiritual, I tried to assign the name “Sage” to her. She laughed at me and the name consistently slipped out of my mind. Each morning when I called to her, the name that came to me was “Pusskins” “Pusskins!” I would call and she would come running from wherever she was lounging. Pusskins then morphed into Pusskie which then morphed into Pusskiedoodles which finally became Doodles. This is how she showed me her name. Doodles. What does that mean??
- Doodles: To doodle: My mac dictionary says doodling is: “To engage in idle activity. To scribble absent-mindedly.” To me, doodling is a pathway to our greater unconscious. A doorway, a portal that leads us to parts of ourselves that we have forgotten…it is also fun. It is whimsy. It is joyful…
Doodles wants us to lighten the hell up! Play! Be absent-minded in order to become soul-minded, heart-minded. Let go of what we think we “should” be doing, being, feeling…and dive into the depths of our great unknown. Surrender.
This life journey would not be as rich for me without my animal companions. Do you agree? What have you learned from the names your fur friends have chosen?