I heard recently that Rabbi Chaim Kanievsky Shlita said that one should not name their children with modern hebrew names such as Shira and one should only give names from Tanach. I was also told that this is brought down in a sefer called "V'korey Shmoi B'yisroel". Does anyone have a copy of this part of the sefer or insight into this psak? If only Tanach names should be used what about Yiddish names, or Aramaic names in the Gemara?
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My local shul happens to have this Sefer. I borrowed it and scanned in the relevant pages dealing with R' Chaim Kanievsky's opinion on modern names. Here are the relevant pages from the book (page 50-51, and 168-171).
My loose translation of some of the relevant parts:
It seems the objection was more to the idea of innovating new and modern names, rather than something against non-Tanach names.
In his introduction to the Sefer, he proposes two explanations for this opinion: He suggests that based on the Arizal who says that since the time of the second Beis Hamikdosh, there are no longer new souls brought down, but only re-incarnations. Since the name of a person is connected to the soul, it follows that there should no longer be new names invented. Another possible reason is based on Breishes Rabba 37:7 which states that, "The earlier [generations] would utilize Ruach Hakodesh, and name according to the events that happened. However we do not use Ruach Hakodesh, and give names from earlier generations."
Perhaps he was talking about names in Hebrew specifically, as it is considered a holy language. Therefore, a Yiddish name (which may be derived from German, Slavic, or some other Ashkenazim language) would be okay. Also, saying that you shouldn't name your child something officially doesn't stop them from having that name. Of course, they could take up a modern Hebrew nickname, which you would have no control over. However, one shouldn't assume responsibility for someone else's nickname (in my opinion). I hope this helps.