In somewhat unexpected but joyful news, Zoe Saldana has welcomed a third child to her family with husband Marco Perego. On Saturday, Feb. 18, The Guardians of the Galaxy actor shared the exciting news via an Instagram, celebrating the new addition alongside Saldana and Perego's two other adorable children. And their choice of baby name for the new member of the family is so understated and beautiful, you guys. She wrote in the caption,
And seriously, Zen? I'm in love with that name. But it also isn't all that surprising that they'd opt for one so cool. Saldana and Perego, an Italian artist, had also managed to provide their two twins, born in November 2014, with the equally wonderfully names of Cy Aridio and Bowie Ezio Perego-Saldana. So clearly, Saldana and Perego are just purveyors of extremely cool baby names, in general (and I mean, just look at those two together. Of course, they are).
As E! Online have speculated, it's unclear as to whether Saldana gave birth to the child herself, or whether the baby is the result of adoption or a surrogate. However, it's also worth acknowledging that in 2017, that aspect of this joyful, new arrival isn't something that should be focused on. Instead, allow me stride forward and commence with my celebration of this little baby's fabulous name.
Because, sure, within Western culture, the word Zen might have been adopted as shorthand for anything related to vaguely spiritual, relaxing pursuits. But the actual true, significant meaning of the word is monumental and poignant. And it makes for a particularly fitting title as the name for a new, wondrous life.
A school of Mahayana Buddhism, Zen originated in China as Chan Buddhism, before spreading through to Vietnam, Korea, and Japan, where it became known as Japanese Zen (derived from the Japanese pronunciation of the Chinese word "Chan"). As a practice, Zen emphasizes meditation and staunch self-control, as well as the ability to take cues from Buddhist teachings and apply them within everyday life in manner that is beneficial for others.
For those of us who may not practice any form of Buddhism, however, Zen still holds peaceful connotations within our culture. To be Zen, after all, is to suggest somebody who is free of superficial concerns, and who refuses to expend energy on things that they cannot change. It's basically the pursuit of pure clarity and contentment. And that's surely something that most parents would want for their children.
Saldana and Perego's decision to name their new child Zen feels like a beautifully optimistic way to invest positivity into their son at birth. It's a name which appears to suggest the laying down of protective, peaceful foundations, particularly in a world which currently feels far less than that. It's also a name which suggests two proud parents, ascribing their son with a title that may some day reflect his own level-headed contentment and generous, inquisitive traits.
Welcome to the world, baby Zen.