Soul searching…

Surésh is an Indian masculine given name originating in the Sanskrit word sureśa (compound of sura and īśa). Its meaning is “Ruler of gods” and it has been used as an epithet for the Hindu gods Bhrama, Vishnu and Shiva (Wikipedia).

Cf. “Ruler of rulers” in Daniel8:25 / EBR / దానియేలు 8:25 was revealed to me from a Bible dictionary at a Bible literature exhibition at Basseterre on the island of Saint Kitts & Nevis during our stay there between years 2003-2006.

Around 1968-1972, when i was an infant and my brother–Sudeep Motupalli Rao–was still crawling, my mother–Motupalli Jayalakshmi with maiden name Neelam Jayalakshmi–after being ill-treated by my dissatisfied earthly father–Motupalli Yogesware Rao–over a prolonged period of time, with the last straw of being beaten up (including this one), tried to commit suicide and jumped into the well in our house yard. She went to the bottom of the water of the well and then frantically kicked herself back to the surface of the water of the well (cf. 1Peter3:20-21; Romans6:4; Matthew18:3; John3:5). With fear of death suddenly gripping her now, she stretched out her arms and found the walls of the well, which kept her from sinking. She then heard us crying above. So she decided to live for us and cried out to a neighbour’s servant (Ramudu) to drop a rope. Ramudu brought her back up.

Later without knowing the meaning of Suresh (not even today?) or Sudeep, she renamed me సురేష్ (Surésh), replacing సీతారాం (SitaRam), which was my grandfather’s name from my father’s side (a name, similarly carried through many generations), and my brother-in-the-flesh సుదీప్ (Sudeep), replacing సుబ్భా రావు (Subba Rao), which was my grandfather’s name from my mother’s side.

As it sounded good to her heart, but without knowing the meaning of it, the name “Suresh” was simply adopted by my mother for me from her immediately elder sister-in-law’s (Kali Kamba) son’s name (i came to know of this only today when i inquired her). And the name “Sudeep” as a name for my brother-in-the-flesh, simply came to her mind as something that rhymed with the name “Suresh.”

Much later in 1995, Servant of God, Brother K. Phillip in a message confirmed my desire to change my name to Caleb, which was a name of my room-mate in Albuquerque, New Mexico. I did not know the meaning of the name, but it merely sounded good to me, so when i returned to India, i thought of taking that name as my Christian name. On that night after Phillip uncle gave the message, i kept awake all night without sleep and was sort of in prayer. When it was dawning (August 20th, 1995), i also read the daily devotional from Mother Charles Cowman’s “Streams in the Desert.” That day’s devotional was about god telling Jacob, “Your name shall no longer be Jacob, but hereafter, you shall be called Israel.” Then at about 5 AM as planned i took an auto-rickshaw from Sri Ram Nagar, Madras (Chennai) where we lived and went to Jehovah-shammah, which was in Vepery, Madras (Chennai), where the Servant of God was serving and residing. As soon as he saw me, before i said anything after the greeting, he said that his devotional that day was, “This is my beloved Son in whom i am well pleased.” And i was the first one whom he had encountered early that morning at about 5:30 AM IST. I then told him how the Lord lead me to change my name from Suresh to Caleb yesterday. But early that morning how i felt through the devotional that God was telling me instead to take the name Israel. Then Uncle explained to me the correct meaning behind that instruction in the devotional where God was sealing the change of name; just as Jacob  became Israel, i too now became Caleb from Suresh. He then went inside and fetched his Bible dictionary and found the meaning of the Hebrew name, Caleb: “a dog that yelps.” I was quite pleased and went home. When it came time (after few weeks?) to changing the name in the records such as Passport etc, i had to publish my new name after change of religion in couple of news papers (vernacular and English) and in the government gazette. As amma was close to Celestial aunty (wife of the Servant of God, Brother K. Phillip), during conversation about change of my name, she advised i retain the name Suresh as part of my name, just as Brother Balu David did, in order that i can witness and reach out to my Hindu friends & family using my name. I am sure aunty too did not know(?) the meaning of the common Hindu name Suresh. But even though i thought the old creation was dead (2Cor5:17) and with that the old name as well, i took the advise of Phillip aunty and retained the name Suresh. But unlike Brother Balu David, who put his old name ahead of the new name. I placed the old name after the new name and went with Caleb Suresh Motupalli. I also retained Motupalli because i wanted to testify that this being had a basic earthly human existence.

And significantly today a Brahmin Chartered Accountant, who helped with incorporating AgapeJUST [P] Ltd., on March 6, 2017, but with whom i lost touch with, called me all of a sudden reminding me about filing tax returns with the government. For which i followed up with submitting some documents along with a message about Jesus Christ (Krishna). He replied by addressing me using the general greeting: “Dear sir.” Sir, which is adopted from the British, is pronounced here in Andhra as sar apparently equivalent to the Hebrew śar שַׂר־שָׂרִים֙.

Since my inadvertently given name is rather intriguing, did some further research today (15th December 2017). I came to know that Sura is commonly used in India (Sanskrit language) to denote alcohol (spirit) or god. Sura is also used to refer to verses/chapters/books in the Quran. The Lord Jesus Christ Himself said His Word is equal to sura (spirit) and life (Jn6:63). As for īśa, it simply means Lord in the Upanishads. But we know īśa specifically is another word for Yeshua/Jesus as in the Bible AND Quran. So it appears to me that Sura + Isa in English means: Lord Spirit of 2 Corinthians 3:17-18.  Is naming someone సురేష్ (Surésh), the Blasphemy that Jesus spoke about in Matthew 12:31? Or సురేష్ (Surésh/שורש/שֹׁרֶשׁ of Isaiah11:1ff) in an official capacity?

(Originally published on Nov 30, 2017 at 3:44pm)


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