For those who speak Hindi or are truly inspired by the beauty of the language as a whole, giving your dog a Hindi name can be a great way to honor them and the lexicon from which they stem. Many words in Hindi refer to cultural concepts that are often so profound that they don’t even translate into English, adding a sense of both mystique and great meaning. And better yet, the vast number of ways in which to describe your dog should provide more than enough options in finding a name that has both a nice sound to it and significant relevance to them as an individual.
Hindi Dog Names in Pop Culture
Like many cultures and religions all over the world, dogs have held many significant positions in both reality and within the belief system, often used as vehicles to provide meaning or symbolize something much greater in the larger narratives. But unlike many others, there is also a much more direct connection. Whereas dogs may have been a manifestation of an idea or role that needed to be maintained within the belief system, in Hinduism, dogs, referred to in Sanskrit as Shvan, are viewed as a vehicle or embodiment of a deity or part of their manifestation directly, known as a vahana, otherwise known as the deity’s “mount”.
In various sects of Hinduism, the Shvan is directly tied to the religion’s principle deities, Shiva, through another of its kind, Bhairava, who is a fierce manifestation of one of Shiva’s aspects. Although different belief systems hold the deity differently, nearly all of them worship it throughout the region, even including parts of Tibetan Buddhism.
Although Bhairava is often considered a ferocious and intimidating figure associated with annihilation, there is just as much regard for its benevolence. Proper interpretations of its meaning show it to protect believers from internal enemies such as greed, lust, and anger, which may come as little surprise when it is often depicted with the characteristic weapons: a drum, noose, trident, and skull. Even though the origins of the word means “fearful”, Bhairava is actually one who destroys or is beyond fear and protects its devotees from personal elements that keep them from truly connecting with those of divinity.
When depicted in Shiva temples, the idols of Bhairava are often seen without dress and paired with the universal vahana, a dog, both of which seem to play to the concept of being a sentinel meant to prevent humankind from allowing their most animalistic elements from manifesting and preventing their connection to their deistic counterparts.
Strangely enough, dogs in the bigger picture of Hindu belief and mythology are often seen as inauspicious and are largely kept away from the holiest sites. Even as protectors in the Rig Veda, they are regarded differently in day-to-day life, more often seen as unclean and bestial than the traits known to those who keep them as companions. Upon closer examination, it could be assumed that they are seen this way because they are sometimes representative of the traits that remind us that we are, at heart, still animals, regardless of what we seem to see separates us.
Hindi Dog Name Considerations
In the vast world of themed naming, giving your dog a title based on a Hindi word might be one of the easiest. Even though you may not be super familiar with the language (or at all, and just like the sound/meaning of some words for that matter), the translation and research processes are quite straightforward. The best course of action is to first highlight your dog’s strongest or most defining traits, then finding words that appropriately translate their meaning.
If you happen to know that your adopted dog had a bit of a rough past, then the name Moksha, meaning “liberation”, might be a good choice. If they are particularly maternal with how they treat you, other dogs, or even other animals, then the name Vatsalya, meaning “motherly love” would be perfect. If they tend to stray from home or are always trying to escape, then the name Yayavar, meaning “wanderer” would certainly be suitable. If your dog is reckless and often acts without thinking, then the name Barbas would work well.
Based on your dog’s looks, quirks, or personality, there are plenty of ways you can take the naming process. Once you’ve compiled a list that truly defines them, you should have a good name in no time.