The Merriam Webster dictionary defines Nomenclature as:
the act or process or an instance of naming.
We do this every day. Some terms exist today that didn’t exist a year ago. Sometimes, this is as a result of new information, innovations, discoveries, and so on.
Names are powerful. Often they confer and convey identity and purpose. Nomenclature is one of the high callings of man as a creature. The ability to define things (setting up the bounds of their possibilities) is one of the powers given to man because he is Man. This works without recourse to his particular beliefs or persuasions.
With Nomenclature, man often has to engage words. This is significant because words are one of the vehicles of creation. The use of words comes with a tremendous responsibility which becomes more critical in the art or instance of naming things.
And out of the ground the LORD God formed every beast of the field, and every fowl of the air; and brought them unto Adam to see what he would call them: and whatsoever Adam called every living creature, that was the name thereof.Genesis 2:19
This is my point of emphasis:
and whatsoever Adam called every living creature, that was the name thereof.
Every living creature was given identity by the man Adam. And regardless of what they do and the pressures they come under, they will always reflect the name that they were given.
Nomenclature is a tremendous privilege and we must pray and trust God for the requisite light to properly engage in this mandate.
All through scriptures we find this unique right being exercised in creation by Men. And we also see that in our daily lives this is so.
The words used by man are critical because on account of the fact that he is Man, his words have the authority to confer identity and give definition.
Child Psychologists always tell parents to use positive and appropriate words for their children. It’s not just because they don’t want the children to feel bad or despondent. Itt is because, at a basal level, when parents use words they are engaging the authority of nomenclature that was given to man by God.
They are knowingly or unknowingly, adding layers of information to the already existing database (in this case, their children). This is even more prominent when it is exercised within the context of creation.
There are dangers associated with this authority: The danger of wrongful nomenclature, the danger of unauthorized nomenclature, the danger of re-nomenclature.
Over my subsequent posts, I will attempt to tease out some of these matters by God’s grace. Suffice it to say, however, that whenever you are at the threshold of nomenclature you ought to pause, take a deep breath and ask for wisdom. Things tend to be what they are called to be. Be wise.