Ruling on calling a child Adam
I heard that everyone has a share of his name, so what is the person’s share of his name in this case? Does calling a child Adam come under the heading of imitating the non-Arabs?
Praise be to Allah.
Firstly: calling a child Adam is something that is acceptable in Islam and there is nothing wrong with it, because Adam (peace be upon him) was one of the Prophets, and calling children by the names of the Prophets comes under the heading of giving names that are good and are recommended. It says in Kashshaaf al-Qinaa‘ (3/26):
It is good to give children the names of the Prophets, such as Ibraaheem, Nooh, Muhammad, Saalih and so on. End quote.
Ibn al-Qayyim (may Allah have mercy on him) said:
There was a difference of scholarly opinion as to whether it is makrooh to give children the names of Prophets. There are two views, the first of which is that it is not makrooh. This is the view of the majority and is the correct view. The second view is that it is makrooh.
End quote from Tuhfat al-Mawdood (p. 1 27)
Please see also the answer to question no. 7180.
Calling a child Adam does not come under the heading of imitating the non-Arabs, because this name has been known among the Muslims throughout the ages and in different regions and countries, with no objection. Among the scholars of hadith there are some who had the name Adam, such as Adam ibn Sulaymaan, Adam ibn Abi Iyaas, Adam ibn ‘Ali, Adam ibn al-Hakam, and others.
For more information on the guidelines on the kind of resemblance to the mushrikeen that is prohibited, please see the answer to question no. 108996
Names may have an impact on that to which they are given. For this and other reasons it is Islamically prescribed to choose good names. Ibn al-Qayyim (may Allah have mercy on him) said:
Because names have meanings, it is wise that there should be a proper connection between the meaning of the names and the object that is carrying the name. It should not be the case that the meaning is not suited to the object and there is no connection between the meaning and the object, because this is what is decreed by the Most Wise, and reality testifies to that. Indeed names have a great impact on the objects to which they are applied, and the objects that carry these names will definitely be influenced by these names, whether these names are good or ugly, whether they refer to meanings of lightness or heaviness, kindness or cruelty.
End quote from Zaad al-Ma‘aad (2/307)
But that is not always the case and is not an unchanging principle that applies to every single name and every single person who is named. You may come across a bad person whose name is one of the best of names, or you may come across a righteous man whose name is not as it should be. Rather that is an opinion based on the reflection of those scholars who mentioned it: that what is usually the case among people is that there should be some kind of a connection between the name and the one to whom it is given.
The main point is that what matters is the character of the one to whom the name is given, and not only his name; he may or may not have a share of his name. Allah, may He be exalted, does not look at a man’s name or his colour or lineage, or his outward appearance, status or wealth; rather He looks at his deeds and his heart.
And Allah knows best.