Does a convert have to change his or her name and how does a convert change his or her name?

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If someone converts to Islam does he or she need to change their name?

This is a very common question asked by those brothers and sisters who wish to convert to Islam or have just converted to Islam. A person who has converted to Islam does not need to change their name unless their name embodies the worship of  someone or some thing other than God.

Thus if the original name does not comprise or imply something forbidden in Islam., then he or she is permitted to retain it. 

However, some say it is preferable to change ones name to an Islamic name it will also distinguish him or her from the non -Muslims. But it is not manatory.

I want to change my name. How do I change my name?

A persons name is one of the most important issues in people’s lives, because a person’s name is a title which says something about him, and is essential for communicating with him. It is an adornment and symbol for the person, by which he is called in this world and in the Hereafter. It is indicative of the religion to which he belongs, and makes him feel that he is one of the followers of that religion. It gives an impression of him to other people, and in their view it is like a garment.

There are some names that are more beloved to Allah than others and certain names that are forbidden (haram) and certain ones that are disliked (makroo).

It is according to the sunnah  (the examples of the Prophet's life what he said, did, implemented, how he implemented), to change a bad name (whether it is an Arabic name or any other language) immediately, and it is permissible according to sunnah to exchange a name for a better one.

The Islamic system of naming is   follows:

Firstly It is essential that one attributes his or her lineage to his or her biological  father. by having their secound name as son of so and so and daughter of so and so

The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: "Whoever calls himself by other than his father’s name (or attributes himself to someone other than his father), will be cursed by Allaah, the angels and all the people." (Reported by Ibn Maajah, 2599; see also Saheeh al-Jaami’, 6104).

The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: "Allaah has cursed the one who claims to belong to someone other than his father." (Reported by Imaam Ahmad and others).

The Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: "Whoever claims knowingly to belong to someone other than his father will be denied Paradise." (Reported by al-Bukhaari and Muslim, Fath, no. 3982). He also said: "Whoever claims to belong to someone other than his father, will be cursed by Allaah, the angels and all the people, and Allaah will not accept any deeds or excuses from him on the Day of Resurrection." (Reported by Muslim, may Allaah have mercy on him, in his Saheeh, no. 2433).

Narrated from Abu Dharr, who heard the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) say: "There is no one who knowingly calls himself after someone other than his father, but he is guilty of Kufr"

(Narrated by al-Bukhaari, 3371; Muslim, 61).

Those who are adopted or fostered must be given the name of their real father and not the person adopting or fostering them.

Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning): "Call them (adopted sons) by (the names of) their fathers, that is more just with Allaah…" [al-Ahzaab 33:5].

Therefore it is haram (forbidden) for any woman, convert or born into a Muslim family,  to take her husbands name.


If you have been married for a long time and changed your name to your Husbands name many years ago. Then you should change it back to your fathers name officially.

If however a person does not know who his or her father is and it is impossible to find out then. Allah does not burden some one beyond their capabilities and you can add to your surname a neutral name like Abdullah (Slave of Allah) or Abdur Rahman

 Lets now learn how to change your name.

Lets first learn two import terms
1. Ibn this means son of
2. Bint this means Daughter of.

1. If you are Male and you have decided you like a certian name. Then your full name will be as follows:

Chosen name ibn-fathers name

Let us assume that Bilal is a name which you have chosen for your self and your fathers name is John Smith. Then your full name will be 

 Bilal ibn John 

which means Bilal son of John.

2. If you are Female and you have decided you like a certian name. Then your full name will be as follows:

Chosen name bint-fathers name

Let us assume that Ayesha is a name which you have chosen for your self and your fathers name is John Smith. Then your full name will be 

Ayesha bint John 

Which means Ayesha daughter of John

 

Are there any names which are preferred and are there are  names which are forbidden and disliked to have?

1 There are some names which are forbidden (haram) to have.

2 There are some names which are disliked to have and if one can change such a name then he/she do so,

3 There are some names which are recommended to have

This is explained in more detail on the following article

Important Guidelines to choosing a Muslim name

  After you have read the above Article I suggest you browse through the list of names and choose the one you prefer if you are considering changing your first name.

List of Muslim Female Names

List of Muslim Male Names

Obviously baby and adult names are the same as babies grow up and keep their names so do not be alarmed if you see headings which say baby names.

 

AbuUbaida

 

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