Created | Updated Feb 24, 2009
Everything has a name. Most things have more than one. Most people have more than one. You are bound to be referred to by at least one of the following at some point during your life:
- Christian/first name
- Family Name
There are names for people you aren't allowed to use in polite society, and use of them in anger or ridicule of another can be met with physical violence. We have names for things that don't exist or are purely hypothetical. We even have names for names.
There are also names we don't know. Secret, hidden names that most of us don't even suspect we possess.
One name that every living thing on Earth possesses is an exceedingly long name composed of only four letters: A, C, T and G. This particular type of name has a name of its own, in fact it has two: deoxyribonucleic acid, or its more commonly known nickname DNA.
DNA is a name that can describe to a number of specially-trained individuals exactly who and what we are. It can identify us wherever we go and whatever we do, especially if what we do transgresses local statutes.
Ironically, this hidden name, once known, can identify those whose other names are unknown, and can give a name to the long since departed for whom any name no longer exists.
There are also True Names. One common theme among a number of belief systems is that every living thing and everything not of this earth has a secret hidden name, and if one knows another's True Name one will have power over that individual. And if you've discovered the name of a higher being, then all the better.
That is why in a number of religions, the gods are known not by their real name, but a nickname (yet another name to be known by). For example, in some of these religions they say that Yahweh's real name isn't Yahweh. Yahweh just means 'Boss' or 'The Big Giant Head'. Yahweh's real name is an unknown combination of 72 letters. Qabalists, Alchemists and Gnostics have been trying for centuries to discover that name, as well as those of the angels and demons.
There are some who believe that the various names of God, of Deity, follow a pattern, revealing something hidden about their nature, or our own. These people believe that the names of all the high gods form Tetragrams, sacred combinations of four letters. For example, Yhvh, Zeus, Jove, Odin, Alla et al.