In the Hindu way, every child born is named and this ceremony is called the namakaranam. This function is not just a religious one but also has the social and the legal aspects to it. This is the first ceremony in a baby’s life and so it helps to forge a good bond between the baby and his or her family. It is usually conducted after the 12th day of birth but this differs as per region and custom. The 12th day is chosen because the first ten days after a baby’s birth is thought off to be a period of impurity and so in a sense we can say that the ritual of namakaranam is one to cleanse the baby and the mother as in some cultures both are given a good oil bath. The name for the newborn is chosen after consultations with the elders. The custom is to give a child a name that is significant for various reasons.
The guests present bless the child with good health, wealth and prosperity with a bright future so that he or she may follow the line of his or her great ancestors. This will also help the parents to understand the task of parenting that lies ahead of them. We can say that this ceremony is a reaffirmation of the importance and significance of the human life.
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