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Since Jay Z and Beyoncé got Rumi and Sir trademarked following the birth of their twins, fans have been speculating that those were the names the power couple had chosen for their newborns. When Beyoncé confirmed that those were in fact their names with a majestic birth announcement photo, the public was thrilled to hear the news, but it begs the question — what inspired their names?
While Sir Carter was likely named with royalty in mind, it is possible that Jay Z and Beyoncé’s pick of “Rumi” is in reference to the 13th century Persian poet Jamal ad-Din Muhammad Rumi.
The famed poet is known for his writings about love, religion and being of service to all people, despite belief, class or race, and his practice of Sufism, an Islamic movement based in mysticism. In practicing and teaching Sufism, Rumi and his followers believed that life on earth was a tomb for the soul before moving on to be with the divine, and in order to connect with heavenly bodies, Rumi preached playing music and dancing to free the spirit.
The music he played went on to become the basis for classical Iranian and Afghan music and has been adapted, along with his poems, for contemporary artists like Philip Glass’ opera Monsters of Grace and Madonna’s appearance on Deepak Chopra’s 1998 album A Gift of Love: Music Inspired by the Love Poems of Rumi, which also featured a number of famous guests like Demi Moore and Goldie Hawn.
Because of the poet’s history and meaningful works attached to love and acceptance, it seems the Carters picked a powerful, statement name for their newborn. And with Rumi’s basis in music, we can hope that another Carter musical prodigy is on the way, too.
This article originally appeared on Billboard.com.
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