As you might know, Muslim reverts can pick a Muslim name, that may be with a meaning to which they are attached. My birth name means "God of War," and no doubt, I did not want to go by in the Muslim community with a name that not only has violent connotations, but also commits the sin of shirk (idolatry or polytheism).
My name "Nasir al-Din" is not official, however, since I do not want to bother changing my name on my passport.
Google time. At first, I wanted to choose a name that sounded like my real name, however, none of them had a meaning to which I related. I read about the "abd - (name of Allah)" format, but I figured that it was way too long for me.
I asked my (only) Muslim friend at the time what "Nasir" meant, because my Mum's friend's friend was called "Nasir," and I googled it too. Then I found out it meant "Defender." My Muslim friend suggested "al-Din" as a last name to accompany "Nasir." Then all the pieces fit together.
Defender of the Faith.
I love having this name. Not only because it is a chance for a new identity in Islam, but also because of its meaning. I have always loved to defend what I truly believe in, and when I was Christian, I believed that God called on me to help people understand religion, and to help bring people towards Him, and be the catalyst.
The new name has also helped me become more open about Islam, and helped in my introduction to new brothers and sisters in the Ummah.
I leave you with this quote from the Holy Qur'an:
"He is God, the Creator, the Maker Who shapes allforms and appearancesHis are the most beautiful names.All that is in the heavens and the earthextols His limitless gloryand He is the Mighty, the Wise."(Quran Chapter 59:24)
PS: Leave a comment below and tell me about your Muslim name and what it means to you. Allah Hafiz!