About soul names

I received my soul name this past weekend. It is Sarine, and it means “She who feeds the flowers of God”. I made the decision to ask for my soul name earlier this spring. Although I felt was clear about what this meant to me, and why I wanted to do this, it is only now that I have taken this step that the full extent of my choice is becoming clear to me. I am very happy about this, and very grateful for all the insights that are coming, and I am also very excited that you are asking me about it. So here is my take on the whole thing:

What is a soul name?

The concept of soul names is based on the idea that we are more than the human being we perceive ourselves as in our everyday life. Just to be clear: this does not mean that the human being aspect is an illusion. On the contrary, it is very real, and the whole point of having a physical body is to experience ourselves in this form. But if you believe that you are also something/someone beyond that, too, then the next question is, who/what are we beyond this physical form? To stay focused on the soul name question, let’s just say that if you are among those who believe that we have a soul, and that this soul is an individual, just like our human form, then the question is: who is that soul, what are her qualities? The soul name is obviously not THE answer but it’s a part of the process of getting to know/ remembering yourself.

Why did you decide to ask for your soul name? Your name seemed right, and you seemed happy with it?

True, when I first learned about the concept of soul names, I thought it was cool but it was nothing I considered for myself. I was very happy with the name my parents had given me. I felt that Solveig (meaning “way of the sun”) was very me. I became interested in asking for my soul name some time this spring. I realized that if the whole point is to ask for the name that represents me at a deeper level, there was no way I could be getting anything that would be less me. Since I am always interested in getting to know myself better, taking on my soul name felt like the right next step in that quest for myself.

How did it feel to take on your soul name?

Remember that weekend in Stockholm I wrote about? Well, it was kind of like that. I went into the whole thing without doubt or fear, convinced I could only be happy with the outcome. And then it turned out that I wasn’t. I mean, I did like Sarine, and I did like the meaning very much. I just also felt That Other Thing: “Oh, but I liked Solveig so much, what about that now? What was I thinking to let go of her?!” And, like that weekend in Stockholm, and like so many other times in my life, I just hadn’t factored That Other Thing in. Fortunately, I was able to articulate my feelings right away. I know that always helps but I am not always good at it, since I also have this part of me that doesn’t want to show weakness, that doesn’t want to admit that I can’t handle something. This part is often very quick to say “I’m fine!” before any other feelings get a chance to make themselves heard. But somehow I managed to say that I was a little surprised to find that I wasn’t as thrilled as I had expected to be, that I was in fact feeling regret. Can San, who was present at the naming, gave a very good explanation for how my two names were connected, and how they were related to me. And that somehow led to a different conversation, and when I looked at the clock I noticed how an hour and a half had passed. My name hadn’t been the subject of the conversation at all, but somehow I was at peace with it all of a sudden. Thank you, Can San!

Does that mean your are a different person now?

On the contrary! I was very happy that a friend asked me this question because it helped me see even more clearly what this soul name business meant to me. To be more accurate, my friend didn’t ask that question, she was brave to tell me that she felt a sort of loss. She explained that I had always been Solveig to her, and that the name change felt like that person I was to her would be gone. Frankly, I think when I made the decision to go for the soul name earlier this year, I probably had ideas like that, too. That this would be something that would change me (for the better, of course!).

I always have this yearning to “be better” but I am seeing now that it’s a misconception. I don’t want really to be a different person, someone “better”. I want to see the good in myself clearly and be that. For instance, I remember that I was not really happy with my blog anymore at some point earlier this year. I thought “Maybe it’s because this isn’t you anymore, maybe when you get your soul name, you’ll open a new blog with that name as the title, start on a blank page”. When my friend voiced her concerns, I could suddenly see that it’s the other way around: that the new name is not a renouncement of who I used to be. It is an affirmation of who I really am.

I have many friends from different periods of my life. Whenever my interests changed, I made new friends who shared those new interests with me. Some friendships were built on common experiences. Some friendships dissolved when our interests were not the same any more, or when the experiences we shared had come to an end. But: most of my friends are still my friends despite all those changes. Sometimes this has surprised me. Now I know that those interests or experiences may have been the external reason why we found each other but they were never the reason why we were friends. No matter what changes we go through, whatever is happening in our everyday lives, I always have a certain image of each friend. That never changes, no matter what they do, and no matter what I think of what they do. That is who they are to me, and that is why I cherish them. I believe that is how it works for all of us. That is why those who are surprised by the external events in my life, by the choices I am making, are still around – even if that surprises them, too.

My change of name may cause a brief moment of irritation, but that’s all. It will not change how you see me. This change is more important for me than for anyone else. It is a lot easier for others to see who we truly are than it is for ourselves. By calling me Sarine, you are helping me to see/be myself more clearly. You will always see me the way you see me. I will never be able to change that. If the way you see me changes, you have changed, not me.

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