1. Andrae Smith
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    Andrae Smith Gone exploring... in the inner realm... Contributor

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    Name for a god

    Discussion in 'Character Development' started by Andrae Smith, Jul 16, 2012.

    So I posted a thread "Dawn of Ages" and it is the birth of the God Raizen [Rye-zin] and it leads to him creating the universe. However some trouble with reading the name has led me to hunt for a new name. It has come down to the two choices:

    Xenos [Zee-nos] and Io [Eye-oh]

    Asking my friends [all fresh out of high school], Xenos seems to be the favorite because it has a ring to it, and it seems more powerful and imposing than Io. and it sounds like Zeus in a way. My thing is I feel like the prefix "xeno" is too cheesy.

    I have a thing for Io because it sounds more mystic or cosmic, like there is a well of knowledge and power. But it is less imposing. My thing is it is more believable and doesn't over impose in the readers mind or detract from the story because the name is too "out there".

    The trouble is I can't decide which to use, becaue they both have valid pro and cons.

    To understand this character, He is a spirit at the beginning of the universe who has a thought that becomes his name and triggers his "physical" creation and thereby the consequential creation of the universe. He is omniscient, omnipotent, and omnipresent, and is essentially this perfect God with no true weakness of flaw.

    If you guys could offer your input or even another name that would be sooo much appreciated. :) and The name is very important to me so I will choose one at some point. THANK YOU
     
  2. chicagoliz
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    chicagoliz Contributing Member Contributor

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    Google them both. Io is one of Jupiter's moons, named after someone in Greek mythology. Xenos has a Greek meaning as well. Consider both of those in deciding if that's okay with you.
     
  3. Andrae Smith
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    Andrae Smith Gone exploring... in the inner realm... Contributor

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    The trouble is, after my search was narrowed down to those two, I did the research. "xeno" is greek for "stranger" or "alien" While Io was, in fact, a nymph that Zeus seduced. I just am not sure which one might be the best fit. Do you think Xenos is too imposing? or that Io is too subtle? Thanks for your help :)
     
  4. modus
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    modus Member

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    What kind of god is he/she/it? Calm and just? Severe and unmoving?

    I think both those names work fine. Like you said, Io has a calm, mysterious feel to it. Xenos sounds like someone I'd be afraid of.
     
  5. minstrel
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    minstrel Leader of the Insquirrelgency Staff Supporter Contributor

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    You could have a name the god knows, but is unpronounceable in any human language, so the humans (or whatever non-god lifeforms exist in your universe) know him as Omnos, owing to his omniness of presence, potence, and science, if you don't mind my putting it that way.
     
  6. Andrae Smith
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    Andrae Smith Gone exploring... in the inner realm... Contributor

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    He ppears twice in the story. in his first appearance he is calm, wise and just, as Io, but when he appears the second time he is terrifying, forceful, and powerful... Maybe the name will change with his character... is that a good idea?

    I don't mind putting it that way at all ha ha that is an exceptioal idea. If I do use it I hope you don't mind my use of the name and idea, I'll credit you somehow for it if I go that route :)
     
  7. DomTheDoxx
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    DomTheDoxx Member

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    Ahh so Io was a nymph huh? hahahaha.

    Well from what i heard, i originally thought that Io was more feminine, and Xenos was a type of masculine energy.
    Just a suggestion, but what if there were parent gods, which were originally one, but split into two in order to form the concept of duality, reproduction, and masculine/feminine energy? If that's not your cup of tea, i'd say it depends on the "demeanor" of your god.
    If they are more authoritative and more for justice than mercy, i'd say Xenos
    If they are more supportive and warm, and more for mercy than justice, i'd say Io

    in the end its really up to you and how you want your god to be portrayed
     
  8. Jamie Senopole
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    Jamie Senopole Member

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    I think I would go with this name. Since you are creating your own mythology, I wouldn't use a name that's already known in any other mythologies.
     
  9. Fullmetal Xeno
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    Fullmetal Xeno Protector of Literature Contributor

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    lol Xeno is my name! haha just kidding you can name your character that. I've always liked the name Xeno and if i were you i would choose Xenos. It sounds better than Io to me. :)
     
  10. jane elliot
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    jane elliot Member

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    My initial reaction to Xenos was to think of the word "xenophobia," and so, if just given the name without a story, I might assume off the bat that the character in question was some sort of stranger. If you are partial to that name, and since he is a stranger, a god, maybe it would fit if you applied it properly. But I don't know how your character interacts with or is seen by other characters, so maybe not. And I don't know about anyone else, but Io makes me think immediately about cows, since Io's transformation into one is a big part of her myth. If your god's story was one of trickery, betrayal, and transformation, however, Io could be molded into that framework, as well. In my opinion, at least. Perspective is what makes art so great, after all!

    I think everyone makes a good point about the "Omnos" thing, too. What a god calls himself might be very different from what the mortals call him. Maybe they call him something with more terrifying connotations, maybe with roots from their own language (in which case, Greek names kind of work, no?). It depends on how they perceive him. His real name, his godly name, might be something completely different, in a different language, with a different meaning.
     
  11. Andrae Smith
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    Andrae Smith Gone exploring... in the inner realm... Contributor

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    As It would happen, I toiled for hours trying to find the perfect name. But when I finally narrowed it down, I had developed Io and Xenos, come to find they actually have verydifferent meanings and existing roles in existing mythos and language.... but I was too annoyed to try to find new ones when I'm creating a mythology that will develope itself if done write. I tried to be original, but it got me that so mmmh...

    As for the Omnos Idea, I love it, and it wouldn't take massive resturcture. the real trouble lies with the fact that this god does interact with humans in an astral kingdom before they are on earth. so they have his language. The other issue [as the previous could be solved bey giving man its own language that can be spoken in which his name is omnos] is th that he splits into 5 lesser God's who know hs name and will use it a few times in the story.

    Since the god appears 2x and he is different both times, I will use a different name for each of hiis appearances. The first will be Io, because it seems to have the calmer, more forgiving and sage-like connotation, while the second atime he will be Xenos, the wrathful, judge [per se].

    Although I still have a lot of ideas to work wth so continue to post because no decision is final yet, I need this before I can write :) Thabks everyone :D
     
  12. Morkonan
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    Morkonan Senior Member

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    Be wary of using known or recognizable names. They may carry cultural connotations for the reader that detract from the imagery you're trying to build. Then again, you can also use known or recognizable names for the same effect, relying on a reader's culture and their own knowledge to carry imagery you can use or safely assume, later.

    For instance, if I called a god "Odin", that would carry along with it a host of imagery and mythology I might not want. Similarly, if I called him "Shatner", I may be forced to build overweight statues and recitations of Shakespearean prose that _ just doesn't _ help my_ story.

    Try to free yourself of picking known names unless you really need to develop a very intricate pantheon and need to use the work of someone who has already done it. For example, many authors have used obscure, for their target audience, religious names for a variety of characters, personalities, gods and even things. Indian mythology has been used to a great extent as a source for interesting names and relationships for fiction marketed to Western culture. Likewise, so has Arabic mythology and Ancient Mediterranean mythos. (The use of mythology and mythos in my explanation is not an attempt to denigrate those practitioners of those religions.)

    Lastly, when stuck, go online and look up a random name generator, preferably for fantasy and fantasy role-playing games. There are a bajillion of them out there.

    For instance, here's one : http://rinkworks.com/namegen/ Google is your friend.

    If you can't find one suitable, then just start off with some odd consonant and vowel combinations. Hard sounds for "heavy" gods, soft sounds for more benevolent ones, etc.
     

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