The purpose of a baby shower is to celebrate the arrival of a new baby, and to welcome the little one into the world. Today, expectant mothers often decide to know the gender of the baby before they give birth, and it is known ahead of the baby shower. However, in some cases, parents choose to wait until the due date to know the sex of the baby and be surprised the day that the infant arrives.
In American society, when the gender of the baby is known, parents often begin brainstorming ideas and deciding on some names that they believe will be perfect for the baby. In many cases, parents already know what they want to name the baby even before the child is born. This is not the case, however, for various different cultures.
There are a variety of different cultures that view the baby-naming process from a completely different perspective. Each cultural group generally has some sort of a baby-naming ceremony or traditional process. From the Jewish to the Japanese, each culture views the act of giving a name to a baby from a very interesting and distinct angle.
In Japan, the baby naming ceremony is typically held seven days after the babys birth. The name is written in Kanji, which are Chinese characters that are usually used in the modern Japanese Iogographic writing system. On this seventh day, the Japanese give their children a first name and a last name, but no middle name, which is a common custom in American society. Girls are usually given names that are associated with purity and morality, and boys are often associated with their position in the family.
Greek families also often name their babies on the seventh day after their birth, and sometimes on the tenth day. Traditionally, first-born males are named after their paternal grandfather, and first-born females are named after their paternal grandmother. The Greek Orthodox Church also strongly influences the baby-naming process, and many infants are given the names of saints. Because of this saint name acquisition, children acquire their saints name day. Therefore, many Greek Orthodox people celebrate their lives on two occasions: their actual birth date and their saints name day.
For many Italian and Hispanic cultures, baby names are also often influenced by religion. In these areas, the Roman Catholic religion is the most prevalent; therefore, biblical names like Maria (in Hispanic culture), and Paulo (in Italian culture) are common.
In Jewish culture, baby girls have what is called the Zeved Habat ceremony, while baby boys have the Berit Milah ceremony. The Zevet Habat is a small ceremony held at a home or in a synagogue. During the ceremony, which is led by a Rabbi, the mother recites a word, the name-giving prayer is said, and she then gives thanks to everyone.
There are countless different ways of naming a baby, and there is no right or wrong method to giving your child the perfect name. It is interesting to see, however, the traditions and customs of baby naming across the globe.