What’s in a name

by MG

I and the team (just a bunch of half a dozen enthusiasts) had been working to build solutions, applications and programs for around a year when we got serious about organizing ourselves. We had been working under the aegis of a company that my father founded (which he proudly finds true to its name: a bundle of initiatives) but then we needed another identity. We were looking for a good name for this new company. We wanted our name to say something about what we have in our minds about what we do. Its an interesting loop: you define yourself, the definition leads to a name, and then the name defines you. This leads to the realization that finding a name can be a very effective intervention.

Then, came up ‘Advaiya’ — and it sounded good — which according to the suggester meant ‘unique’. But then Advaiya is a Sanskrit word and is the root of ‘Advaita’. Advaita or non-dualism is a profound philosophy expounded by Shankaracharya. So Advaiya would be the non-dual entity.

It could not have been more apt. I have been fascinated by the concept that all knowledge and all skill are manifestations of the ‘core’ and the core is not segmented into disciplines, functions, fields, subjects or domains. Now I had a name for that: Advaiya. It described us neatly. While we worked on a very small set of technologies, we never could define ourselves by that. For us, technology was just a tool though an interesting, fascinating tool which was in itself an extension to our world-view. Technology, for us, is a natural ingredient in the rational scheme of things which we felt all around us. This rationality has been our window to the core, to Advaiya.

It is so common and so frustrating to see people and companies go about thinking that theory and practice are different, that means and goals are different, that dreams and reality are different, that business and technology are different. We find this narrow. We feel that this inhibits experiencing Advaiya. And, so, we define ourselves: we would help people and companies by building solutions which cut across technologies, functions, departments and teams: which bring them together, which help them experience the Advaiya — the oneness — that, we believe, would lead everyone to their objectives better and faster.