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How To Choose a Bad Magickal Name

Updated on June 18, 2007

There's a standard joke in the Pagan community that, at a gathering, if the loudspeaker were to announce, "Will Raven, Morgan, and Rhiannon please come to registration?" half the attendees would show up.

Like most good jokes, it has a lot of truth in it.

So rule number one of how not to choose a magickal name is: pick one that's already been overused.

Rule number two: pick one that's unpronounceable. I can't even begin to tell you how many times people with magickal names like Aistiranpaistinfionncoinini have gotten really pissy with me because I can't pronounce their moniker. Um, sorry. I don't speak Gaelic/Antarean/Klingon/whatever.

Also, if you are determined to never be taken seriously in the Pagan community, choose a popular deity's name, add a title in front of it, and introduce yourself as, say, Lady Diana. First of all, general consensus agrees that naming yourself after a God or Goddess is hubris. Second of all, unless you're a) British nobility, b) a member of a traditional coven, initiated, and in ritual, or c) an artist or performer who's been knighted by Queen Elizabeth II, titles like "Lord" or "Lady" will make people laugh at you. And not always behind your back. For what it's worth, people who have been initiated by British traditional covens tend to go by a completely different name in ritual than they do in Pagan public. And a lot of them use their legal names, like Bill, in Pagan public. I'm just sayin'.

Another really bad way to choose a magickal name is to pick one - for a couple of months, then pick another one...and another one...until everyone in the community is so confused about what you're calling yourself this lunar cycle that they just give up on calling you anything at all!

Any well-known name from a work of science fiction or fantasy is, in general, a really bad magickal name. This means that Frodo is right out. So is Aragorn. And Gandalf. So is Luke, Hans, and Leia. And Yoda. A Yoda in the community will be laughed at - trust me. Unless nine hundred years you really are, taken seriously you will not be.

Also, avoid names and words that have a different connotation in the 21st century than they originally did. I had a friend who got stuck with the unfortunate magickal name of Nimrod. Nimrod is the name of a God. However, today the word "nimrod" basically means "idiot." You have been warned.

If you want a really bad magickal name, enthusiastically embrace cultural blending faux pas. If you have red hair and blue eyes and you're legally named after your grandmother Bridget O'Malley who came directly to America from Ireland, it will be really hilarious to your fellow Pagans if you choose to be called Big Buffalo Woman.

Oh, and those Pagan name generators on the Internet? They're a joke. They're meant to be funny. They are not for real! You'd think everyone would know that, but I've run into about one too many Lavender Mermaid of the Sands who got her "special" name from one of those sites and took it seriously. But that's okay. I needed the laugh.


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      Lea Williams 6 years ago

      Great article! I have struggled for the past thre years trying to come up with the perfect one, and so far don't feel I have, but at least I don't call myself Lady Black Raven or something. =P

    • River_DragonWolf profile image

      River_DragonWolf 8 years ago from Oklahoma City

      This was awesome!! I especially ROFL'd at the Nimrod bit! XD

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      Sahara Stone 8 years ago

      Hahaha that is hillarious i had a Freind come up to me and Say I have a witch name now i laughed and asked what she said faerie rainbows..I was so sick with laughter i couldn't even tell her!

      )O( Blessed be!

    • profile image

      Jason 8 years ago

      Great article, yasir you make me sad, that you're so closed minded.

      I have recently looked into choosing a magickal name, and the only one i have come up with so far (that i feel is suitable) is Dawn watcher. :)

      What kind of response do you think this would have?

    • profile image

      yasir 8 years ago

      I have never seen real magic in my life....its fake

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      Destiny 8 years ago

      great article...really funny. especaially about the pagan name generator thing...ive run into some people who have taken them seriously too-LMAO!!! i prefered to keep my real name as a magickal parents had no idea how good a job they did picking my name out!!!

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      Agro Donkey 9 years ago from Ohio

      Very good. I'm not pagan per say but I do attend Native American Pow Wows and play on a native drum. I was given my native name by my elder who also happened to be my drum leader. It is simple and to the point. White Boy. They even got me a shirt with it written across the back. Everyone laughs at it but hey a name is only a name. Sure I would have loved to be Tatonka, Stands with Wind, or Bear, but I got White Boy. Nothing I can do about it but it's always good for a laugh.

    • Kitchy Wytch profile image

      Kitchy Wytch 10 years ago from Alabama

      lol LOVED it!

    • Poetic Knight profile image

      Poetic Knight 10 years ago from Ottawa

      very humerous. I enjoyed it muchly.