For many years I’ve gone through countless options & ideas, searching for a few different names for a few different purposes. And now that I’m bellydancing more publicly, the question of a dance name has come sharply back into play. When it comes to your dance name(s), how did you choose yours..? Did you go by numerology? Meaning? Did you just pick your name randomly, or choose it by the sound of the name, instead of the meaning, initially? Did you make your name up, or did someone bequeath your name to you as you passed from beginner to full-fledged dancer? Do you use a nickname, or does your dance moniker have some sort of spiritual significance for you? And how concerned are you with making sure the public can pronounce and/or spell your dance name..? Given that a majority of the dancers I’ve encountered use names from (or at least inspired by) the Middle East, how big a concern is it that one’s audience be able to spell/pronounce one’s stage name? And have you had issues with announcers mangling your names as you began to take the stage..? What do you feel are the Dos and Don’ts of bellydance naming? Or do you feel that show names are even necessary nowadays? I’d love to know your thoughts. :)
Personally, meaning, sound/flow, and lastly numerology are my 3 big deciding factors. (When contemplating options for myself, that is. I don’t expect anyone else to hold to my weirdo standards of what I think is right for me. ;)) When I first began pondering dance names years ago, the name “Ananda Y/Iara” came into my head.. like a whisper from above. It wasn’t until ages later that I began taking real dance classes in-true, and even later when I decided to try and look these words up, to see if these inspired words actually meant anything. Turns out, “ananda” is a Sanskrit word meaning “bliss/blissful” and “happy,” and “Yara/Yiara/Iara” is a Native Brazilian word meaning “water goddess” or “water lady.” And when I learned this, I have to admit, I go the chills. ..I’d never heard the words consciously before, and as a HUGE water-baby who identifies much w/mermaids, selchies and other water-beings, this seemingly divinely-given name really hit home. :):)
But the numbers didn’t fit, unfortunately.. so I kept looking. (See, I’ve been under the impression that I needed my number to add up to 3- which is the prime number for creativity and creative, passionate, personal expression.) And after another long stretch of searching, one of my long-used monikers seemed to suddenly dawn on me, in a mysteriously blended conjunction with that original, seemingly divinely inspired name. Oddly enough, after aaaaages of trying to think up myriad combinations & new concoctions all together, after countless episodes of pouring over numerology sites & seeing what could possibly work, one name just popped out of the ether; “Yluriananda.” And with that one inspiration, it was like the clouds suddenly split open and the something deep & quiet in me just.. sang. It just felt Right… You know..? And to seemingly tie all these things neatly up in a bow? It turns out that “Yluriananda” also adds up to 3. :) It’s like the heavens opened up for me and shined that name down upon my head. ^_^ (Yeah.. I’m guessing you’re probably thinking I’m TOTALLY nuts at this point. ;) Sorry ‘bout that! But I believe names can potentially have a lot of power, and I don’t want to start associating myself w/the wrong energy and mess up anything for myself before it’s even begun. Does that make any sense..?)
So now, do you think either of these would be acceptable for dance use? I positively LOVE the look, sound, meaning & feel of “Yluriananda,” but I’ve had lots of non-dancers tell me how unwieldy they feel that name is. ..Plus, it’s not that original, divinely inspired naming/gift… As for the “anandas;” I’ve come to find out over time (and all this scouring) that “Ananda Yara” and “Ananda Iara” both have their own positive attributes, so they wouldn’t be so bad, numerologically speaking, either. :) (Especially the latter, as it adds up to “1,” which has a lot of individual power and creativity associated with it. :))
So.. what do you think? Do you like “Ananda Y/iara” or “Yluriananda?” Or none of the above..?
Personally, I think I kinda like the second (newest) name more… But if it’s gonna prove to be too unweildy for the everyday person (or even many dancers and/or announcers) to pronounce and/or deal with, that’s a major consideration to me. Or heck.. should I even care? Given that many dancers’ names are in Arabic and other foreign languages, is it just kind of a given in bellydance culture that people’re gonna have names which some folks might just have to struggle through..?
What are your thoughts/beliefs/ideas on naming? Do tell! ^_^
I sit here waiting, your eager suppliant. :)