Buy a Custom Altruism-related Chinese and/or Japanese Calligraphy Wall Scroll

You can choose from many options to create artwork with Altruism-related characters on a wall scroll or portrait.
Start your project by clicking on the button next to your favorite title below...

Quick links to words on this page...

  1. Benevolence
  2. Kindness / Benevolence
  3. Benevolent Heart
  4. Compassionate Heart / Benevolent Heart
  5. Benevolent and Skilled Doctor
  6. Kindheartedness / Benevolence...
  7. Charity
  8. Caring
  9. Compassion
10. Mercy / Compassion / Love
11. The Five Tenets of Confucius
12. Confucius: Golden Rule / Ethic of Reciprocity
13. Courage to do what is right
14. Empathy / Humanity
15. Fair / Impartial
16. Forgiveness
17. Generosity
18. Gentleness
19. Goddess of Mercy and Compassion
20. Goddess of Compassion
21. Goodness / Good Deed
22. Goodness / Kind-Hearted
23. Grace from Heaven / Grace from God
24. Grace from Heaven...
25. Helpfulness
26. Human Race / Humanity...
27. Human Nature
28. Love for Humanity / Brotherly Love
29. Impartial and Fair to the...
30. Justice / Rectitude / Right Decision
31. Kindness and Forgiving Nature
32. Kindness / Caring
33. Love
34. Loving Heart / Compassion
35. Loving Heart / One’s Love
36. Mercy / Compassion...
37. Moral and Virtuous
38. Oneness of Heaven and Humanity
39. Self-Restraint / Self-Control
40. Selflessness
41. The Tao or Dao of Being Human / Humanity
42. Unselfish: Perfectly Impartial
43. Work Unselfishly for the Common Good
44. Doing good is the greatest source of happiness


China rén
Japan jin
Benevolence Wall Scroll

Beyond "benevolence" this character can be also be defined as "charity" or "mercy" depending on context.

The deeper meaning suggests that one should pay alms to the poor, care for those in trouble, and take care of his fellow man (or woman).

仁 is one of the five tenets of Confucius. In fact, it is a subject in which Confucius spent a great deal of time explaining to his disciples.

I have also seen this benevolent-related word translated as perfect virtue, selflessness, love for humanity, humaneness, goodness, good will, or simply "love" in the non-romantic form.

This word is so important to me that I named my second daughter with this character. Her name is "Renni" which means "Benevolent Girl."

This is also a virtue of the Samurai Warrior
See our page with just Code of the Samurai / Bushido here

See Also:  Love | Kindness | Charity | Confucius

Kindness / Benevolence

China rén cí
Japan jin ji
Kindness / Benevolence Wall Scroll

仁慈 word is used in Chinese, Korean, Japanese, and Asian Buddhism to relay the important idea of loving kindness.

仁慈 can also be defined as: benevolent; charitable; kind; merciful; kind-hearted; benevolence; kindness; humanity; mercy.

In Japanese, this can also be the given name Hitoji. This would also be a good Mandarin Chinese given name romanized as Jentzu (in Taiwan) or Renci (really sounds like ren-tsuh).

See Also:  Love | Kindness | Charity

Benevolent Heart

Japan ji hi no kokoro
Benevolent Heart Wall Scroll

慈悲の心 means benevolent heart, compassionate heart, or merciful heart in Japanese.

慈悲の心 is a Japanese-only phrase, and should be ordered from our Japanese master calligrapher. 慈悲の心 is because the third character is special Hiragana.

Chances are you are into Inuyasha and are seeking the title of chapter 471 which is often translated as "Merciful Heart."

See Also:  Love

Compassionate Heart / Benevolent Heart

China cí xīn
Japan jishin
Compassionate Heart / Benevolent Heart Wall Scroll

This title means, "Compassionate Heart" or "Benevolent Heart." It's used in day-to-day speech to refer to someone who has the traits of benevolence, mercy, and compassion for their fellow humans.

This title is also used in Buddhism with the same profound meaning.

Benevolent and Skilled Doctor

China miào shǒu rén xīn xuán hú jì shì
Benevolent and Skilled Doctor Wall Scroll

This phrase celebrates the benevolence, skill, and service to his/her patients.

Here's a breakdown of the characters:
妙手 miào shǒu admirable skill in curing disease (when used in reference to doctors).
仁心 rén xīn kindheartedness, charity, benevolent heart.
悬壶济世 xuán hú jì shì practice medicine or pharmacy to help the people or public.

Benevolent and Skilled Doctor

Short version
China miào shǒu rén xīn
Benevolent and Skilled Doctor Wall Scroll

This phrase celebrates the benevolence, skill, and service to his/her patients.

Here's a breakdown of the characters:
妙手 miào shǒu admirable skill in curing disease (when used in reference to doctors).
仁心 rén xīn kindheartedness, charity, benevolent heart.

Kindheartedness / Benevolence

China rén dé
Japan jintoku
Kindheartedness / Benevolence / Humanity Wall Scroll

These two characters create a word that can be translated as love, kindheartedness, benevolence and humanity.

The first character means benevolence by itself.
The second character means virtue or morality.

Japanese note: The second Kanji of this word has been slightly simplified (one tiny horizontal stroke removed). It is still readable for Japanese but if you select our Japanese calligrapher, expect that stroke to be missing on your wall scroll.


China cí shàn
Japan jizen
Charity Wall Scroll

There are a few different words used to express charity in Chinese characters, Japanese Kanji and old Korean Hanja but this is the most common. Some of the other words describe acts such as "giving alms" etc.

Note: Also considered to be one of the Seven Heavenly Virtues.

If you need a different meaning, just post your request on our Asian calligraphy forum.

Note: Sometimes this is translated as benevolence or benevolent.

See Also:  Benevolence


China guān xīn
Caring Wall Scroll

Caring is giving love and attention to people and things that matter to you and anyone who is in need of help. When you care about people, you help them. You do a careful job, giving your very best effort. You treat people and things gently and respectfully. Caring makes the world a safer place.

關心 means caring in Chinese, and is also a word in Korean Hanja but with more of a flavor or "taking an interest" and "concern."

Note, this is also a word in Korean Hanja but in Korean, it means taking interest or concern. In Korean it's still a good word but it doesn't quite have the "caring for a person" meaning that it does in Chinese.

See Also:  Love | Benevolence


China tóng qíng
Japan dou jou
Compassion Wall Scroll

These two characters mean compassion and sympathy in Chinese, Japanese, and Korean, which makes this word universal.

Compassion is caring and understanding someone is hurt or troubled (even if you don't know them). It is wanting to help, even if all you can do is listen and say kind words. You forgive mistakes. You are a friend when someone needs a friend.

See Also:  Love | Caring | Kindness

Mercy / Compassion / Love

Japan ji
Mercy / Compassion / Love Wall Scroll

慈 is the simplest way to express the idea of compassion. It can also mean love for your fellow humans, humanity, or living creatures. Sometimes this is extended to mean charity.

This term is often used with Buddhist or Christian context. The concept was also spoken of by Laozi (Lao Tzu) in the Dao De Jing (Tao Te Ching).

慈 is considered the direct translation of the Sanskrit word मैत्री (maitrī) Pali word मेत्ता (mettā). In this context, it means benevolence, loving-kindness, and good will.

This Chinese character is understood in Japanese but is usually used in compound words (not seen alone). Also used in old Korean Hanja, so it's very universal.

See Also:  Mercy | Benevolence | Forgiveness | Kindness

The Five Tenets of Confucius

The Five Cardinal Rules / Virtues of Confucius
China rén yì lǐ zhì xìn
Japan jin gi rei tomo nobu
The Five Tenets of Confucius Wall Scroll

These are the core of Confucius philosophy. Simply stated they are:
benevolence / charity
justice / rectitude
courtesy / politeness / tact
wisdom / knowledge
fidelity / trust / sincerity

Many of these concepts can be found in various religious teachings. Though it should be clearly understood that Confucianism is not a religion but should instead be considered a moral code for a proper and civilized society.

This title is also labeled, "5 Confucian virtues."

礼 If you order this from the Japanese calligrapher, expect the middle Kanji to be written in a more simple form (as seen to the right). This can also be romanized as "jin gi rei satoshi shin" in Japanese. Not all Japanese will recognize this as Confucian tenets but they will know all the meanings of the characters.

See Also:  Confucius Teachings | Ethics

Confucius: Golden Rule / Ethic of Reciprocity

Do not do to others what you do not want done to yourself
China jǐ suǒ bú yù wù shī yú rén
Confucius: Golden Rule / Ethic of Reciprocity Wall Scroll

Some may think of this as a "Christian trait" but actually it transcends many religions.

This Chinese teaching dates back to about 2,500 years ago in China. Confucius had always taught the belief in being benevolent (ren) but this idea was hard to grasp for some of his students, as benevolence could be kind-heartedness, or an essence of humanity itself.

When answering Zhong Gong's question as to what "ren" actually meant, Confucius said:

"When you go out, you should behave as if you were in the presence of a distinguished guest, when people do favors for you, act as if a great sacrifice was made for you. Whatever you wouldn't like done to you, do not do that thing to others. Don't complain at work or at home."

Hearing this, Zhong Gong said humbly, "Although I am not clever, I will do what you say."

From this encounter, the Chinese version of the "Golden Rule" or "Ethic of Reciprocity" came to be.
The characters you see above express, "Do not do to others whatever you do not want done to yourself."

See Also:  Confucius Teachings | Benevolence

Courage to do what is right

China jiàn yì yǒng wéi
Courage to do what is right Wall Scroll

The title says it all.

This could also be translated as:
"Never hesitate to do what is right."

See Also:  Work Unselfishly for the Common Good | Justice | Bravery

Empathy / Humanity

China rén qíng
Japan ninjou
Empathy / Humanity Wall Scroll

This title can apply to a lot of meanings including: humanity; empathy; kindness; sympathy; human nature; human emotions; human interaction.

Fair / Impartial

China gōng píng
Japan kouhei
Fair / Impartial Wall Scroll

This word means impartial, fairness, and justice in Chinese, old Korean, and Japanese.

This character, on your wall, should be used to remind yourself to be fair and just in all situations of life.

See Also:  Justice | Balance

Forgiveness (from the top down)

China róng shè
Japan you sha
Forgiveness (from the top down) Wall Scroll

容赦 is the kind of forgiveness that a king might give to his subjects for crimes or wrong-doings.

容赦 is a rather high-level forgiveness. Meaning that it goes from a higher level to lower (not the reverse).

Alone, the first character can mean "to bear," "to allow" and/or "to tolerate," and the second can mean "to forgive," "to pardon" and/or "to excuse."

When you put both characters together, you get forgiveness, pardon, mercy, leniency, or going easy (on someone).

See Also:  Benevolence


China shù
Forgiveness Wall Scroll

This character means to forgive, show mercy, absolve, or excuse in Chinese and Korean Hanja (though mostly used in compound words in Korean).

This character incorporates the pictogram of a heart at the bottom, and a woman and a mouth at the top. The heart portion has the most significance, as it is suggested that it is the heart's nature to forgive.
In Asian culture, as with most other cultures, forgiveness is an act of benevolence and altruism. In forgiving, you put yourself in someone else's shoes and show them the kindness that you would want them to show you. Confucius referred to this quality as "human-heartedness."


China kuān dà
Japan kandai
Generosity Wall Scroll

Generosity is giving and sharing. You share freely, not with the idea of receiving something in return. You find ways to give others happiness, and give just for the joy of giving. Generosity is one of the best ways to show love and friendship.

This word can also be translated as charitable, magnanimity, liberality or in some context broad-mindedness.

Note: There is a tiny deviation in the first character when written in Japanese. If you choose our Japanese master calligrapher, the little dot on the lower right of the first character will be omitted. With or without the dot, this can be read in Chinese, Japanese, and old Korean.

See Also:  Benevolence | Charity


China wēn róu
Gentleness Wall Scroll

Gentleness is moving wisely, touching softly, holding carefully, speaking quietly and thinking kindly. When you feel mad or hurt, use your self-control. Instead of harming someone, talk things out peacefully. You are making the world a safer, gentler place.

See Also:  Kindness | Caring


China wēn hòu
Japan on kou
Gentleness Wall Scroll

溫厚 is a Chinese, Japanese and old Korean word for "gentle" or "gentleness." This can also mean "kindness" (more as an adjective like "kind person").

温The modern Japanese version of the first character looks like the one to the right. If you want this modern Japanese form, just click on that Kanji instead of the button above.

See Also:  Kindness | Caring

Goddess of Mercy and Compassion

China guān yīn
HK kwun yum
Japan kan non
Goddess of Mercy and Compassion Wall Scroll

觀音 / 観音 is the Buddhist deity known as the Goddess of Mercy or Bodhisattva of Compassion.

In Chinese, the proper name of this being is Guan Yin. There is some debate as to whether Guan Yin is female. The argument comes from some scripture that suggests Buddhist deities take on the male form. Others say that Guan Yin has no sex. And still others are okay with the female representation of Guan Yin.

This bodhisattva is also known or Romanized in the following ways:
Mandarin Chinese: Guan Yin, Kuan Yin, Kwan Yin.
Japanese: Kannon, Kwannon.
Sanskrit: Bodhisattva Avalokitesvara.
Korean: Gwan-eum.
Vietnamese: Quan Âm.
Thai: Kuan Eim.
English: Bodhisattva of Mercy and Salvation, Goddess of Compassion, Buddha of Mercy, et al.

Note: The first character has a slight variation in Japanese. If your audience is specifically Japanese, you may want to select that version.

See Also:  Buddhism | Goddess | Namo Amitabha | Bodhisattva

Goddess of Mercy and Compassion

This is the long or more formal version of this title
China guān shì yīn
Goddess of Mercy and Compassion Wall Scroll

觀世音 is the longer, and perhaps more formal title for the Buddhist deity known as the Goddess of Mercy or Bodhisattva of Compassion.

The longer title of this bodhisattva is Romanized in the following ways:
Mandarin Chinese: Guanshi Yin, Kuan-shih Yin.
Japanese: Kanzeon.
Sanskrit: Bodhisattva Avalokitesvara.
Korean: Gwan-se-eum.
Vietnamese: Quan Thế Âm.
Thai: Prah Mae Kuan Eim.
English: Bodhisattva of Mercy and Salvation, Goddess of Compassion, Buddha of Mercy, et al.

Please view our more common and shorter version "Guan Yin" before you make a decision. Also, note that the first character has a slight variation in Japanese. If your audience is specifically Japanese, you may want to select that version.

See Also:  Buddhism | Goddess

Goddess of Compassion

China guān yīn
Japan kan non
Goddess of Compassion Wall Scroll

観音 is the specifically Japanese version of Bodhisattva of Compassion or Guan Yin.

In Japanese, this is pronounced Kannon, and occasionally spelled Kwannon. The Chinese version is a bit more commonly-seen in Asia. However, in Japanese, there is a slight variation with the first character.

Some time ago, a camera company in Japan named their company after this Buddhist deity. That camera company is still known as Canon (they chose a "C" instead of a "K" when they Romanized this name).

Goddess of Compassion

Long or more formal Japanese version of this title
China guān shì yīn
Japan kan ze on
Goddess of Compassion Wall Scroll

観世音 is the longer and more formal Japanese version of Bodhisattva of Compassion or Guan Yin.

In Japanese, this is pronounced Kanzeon. The Chinese version is a bit more common in Asia but in Japanese they use a slight variation of the first character. Choose this version only if your intended audience is specifically Japanese.

Goodness / Good Deed

China shàn
Japan zen
Goodness / Good Deed Wall Scroll

This word means goodness, virtue, good deed, charitable, benevolent, well-disposed, nice, pleasant, kind, or simply, "good."

善 is the kind of good that applies to someone's good character, or a good person in general.

Referring to someone with this word means that they have a well-aimed moral compass, are charitable, giving, wise, and honest. Basically, this is a blanket statement for every good trait a human can have, or all the things that make someone good.

In another context, it can mean to improve or perfect something or refer to someone who is good at something.

Goodness / Kind-Hearted

China shàn liáng
Japan zen ryou
Goodness / Kind-Hearted Wall Scroll

This word means good and honest, kind-hearted, goodness, excellence, and/or virtue.

Grace from Heaven / Grace from God

China tiān ēn
Grace from Heaven / Grace from God Wall Scroll

天恩 is the deepest way to say "Heaven's Grace" or "God's Grace" in Chinese.

The first character means Heaven or sky (referring in this case to the domain of God).
The second character means grace, blessings, benevolence, favor/favour, acts of kindness, merits, or beneficial influence.

This title can also be defined as:
Blessings of Heaven, Favor of the Emperor, Divination's luckiest day, or blessings of nature. Note: When you see "Emperor" above, keep in mind that the Emperor, like the Pope is theoretically chosen by God, or seen as an emissary or conduit of God in ancient Asian culture. It would only be read that way in a certain context such as, "The Emperor, in his mercy, bestowed upon him Heaven's Grace and the prisoner was set free."

Note: Technically, this is a Japanese word too (pronounced "ten-on") but it's rarely used in Japan anymore. Therefore, this title is best if your audience is Chinese.

Grace from Heaven
Grace from God

Japan kami no on kei
Grace from Heaven / Grace from God Wall Scroll

神の恩恵 means God's Grace in Japanese.

The first two characters act to create a word that means "divine," "God's," or "The Spirit's."

The last two Kanji mean grace, favor/favour, blessing, or benefit.


China lè yú zhù rén
Helpfulness Wall Scroll

Helpfulness is being of service to others, doing thoughtful things that make a difference in their lives. Offer your help without waiting to be asked. Ask for help when you need it. When we help each other, we get more done. We make our lives easier.

See Also:  Caring | Charity | Benevolence

Human Race / Humanity

China rén lèi
Japan jinrui
Human Race / Humanity / Mankind Wall Scroll

人類 is the way to say mankind or humankind in Chinese. It's kind of the "animal title" for human. 人類 is the word you would use if you said this phrase in Chinese, "Mammals include dolphins, monkeys, dogs, and humans among others."

人類 is a weird selection for a calligraphy wall scroll. But a customer begged me to add this word.

Human Nature

China rén xìng
Human Nature Wall Scroll

This title is the essence of what it means to act and be human.

These two characters refer to the way we are as people.

人性 is also sometimes translated as human personality, human instinct, humanity, or humanism.

The first character literally means human or people.

The second character means nature. It can also mean property, quality, attribute, or essence. It can even be a modifier like "-ity" or "-ness," which is why this word is also translated as "humanity."

Love for Humanity / Brotherly Love

benevolence, love
China bó ài
Japan hakuai
Love for Humanity / Brotherly Love Wall Scroll

In Chinese and Korean, this means universal fraternity, brotherhood, or universal love.

In Japanese, this means charity, benevolence, philanthropy, or love for humanity.

Please note these subtle differences and take that into account depending on your intended audience (Chinese, Korean or Japanese).

See Also:  Benevolence

Impartial and Fair to the
Brotherhood and Sisterhood of the World

AKA: Universal Benevolence
China yí shì tóng rén
Japan isshidoujin
Impartial and Fair to the / Brotherhood and Sisterhood of the World Wall Scroll

一視同仁 is how to write "universal benevolence." 一視同仁 is also how to express the idea that you see all people the same.

If you are kind and charitable to all people, this is the best way to state that virtue. It is the essence of being impartial to all mankind, regardless of social standing, background, race, sex, etc. You do not judge others but rather you see them eye to eye on the same level with you.

See Also:  Benevolence | Compassion | Equality | Justice | Right Decision | Selflessness | Work Unselfishly for the Common

Justice / Rectitude / Right Decision

Also means: honor loyalty morality righteousness
Japan gi
Justice / Rectitude / Right Decision Wall Scroll

義 is about doing the right thing or making the right decision, not because it's easy but because it's ethically and morally correct.

No matter the outcome or result, one does not lose face if tempering proper justice.

This character can also be defined as righteousness, justice, morality, honor, or "right conduct." In more a more expanded definition, it can mean loyalty to friends, loyalty to the public good, or patriotism. This idea of loyalty and friendship comes from the fact that you will treat those you are loyal to with morality and justice.

義 is also one of the five tenets of Confucius doctrine.

儀 There's also an alternate version of this character sometimes seen in Bushido or Korean Taekwondo tenets. It's just the addition of a radical on the left side of the character. If you want this version, click on the image to the right instead of the button above.

This is also a virtue of the Samurai Warrior
See our page with just Code of the Samurai / Bushido here

See Also:  Judgment | Impartial | Confucius Tenets

Kindness and Forgiving Nature

China rén shù
Japan jinjo
Kindness and Forgiving Nature Wall Scroll

These two characters create a word in Chinese and Japanese that means something like benevolence with magnanimity or kindness with a forgiving nature.

If this describes you, then you are the type of person that I would like to call my friend.

This may not be the most common word in daily use but it's old enough that it transcended cultures from China to Japan in the 5th century when Japan lacked a written language, and absorbed Chinese characters and words into their language.
Note: 仁恕 is not commonly used in Korean.

Kindness / Caring

China qīn qiè
Japan shin setsu
Kindness / Caring Wall Scroll

Kindness is showing you care, doing some good to make life better for others. Be thoughtful about people's needs. Show love and compassion to someone who is sad or needs your help. When you are tempted to be cruel, to criticize or tease, decide to be kind instead.

This Chinese / Japanese / Korean word can also mean affectionate, cordial, warmly, or close (emotionally).

See Also:  Love | Caring | Benevolence


China ài
Japan ai
Love Wall Scroll

愛 is a very universal character. It means love in Chinese, Japanese Kanji, old Korean Hanja, and old Vietnamese.

愛 is one of the most recognized Asian symbols in the west, and is often seen on tee-shirts, coffee mugs, tattoos, and more.

This character can also be defined as affection, to be fond of, to like, or to be keen on. It often refers to romantic love, and is found in phrases like, "I love you." But in Chinese, one can say, "I love that movie" using this character as well.

This can also be a pet-name or part of a pet-name in the way we say "dear" or "honey" in English.

It's very common for couples to say "I love you" in Chinese. However, in Japanese, "love" is not a term used very often. In fact, a person is more likely to say "I like you" rather than "I love you" in Japanese. So this word is well-known but seldom spoken.

More about this character:

This may be hard to imagine as a westerner but the strokes at the top of this love character symbolize family & marriage.

心The symbol in the middle is a little easier to identify. It is the character for "heart" (it can also mean "mind" or "soul"). I guess you can say that no matter if you are from the East or the West, you must put your heart into your love.

友The strokes at the bottom create a modified character that means "friend" or "friendship."

I suppose you could say that the full meaning of this love character is to love your family, spouse, and friends with all of your heart, since all three elements exist in this character.

See Also:  I Love You | Caring | Benevolence | Friendliness | Double Happiness Happy Marriage Wall Scroll

Loving Heart / Compassion

China ài xīn
Loving Heart / Compassion Wall Scroll

This literally means "loving heart." It can also be translated as "compassion."

In Chinese, it carries more of a compassion meaning.

This word is rarely used in Japanese anymore, so best if your audience is Chinese.

See Also:  Compassion | Love

Loving Heart / One’s Love

Japan koi gokoro
Loving Heart / One’s Love Wall Scroll

This literally means "loving heart." It can also be translated as "one's love" or "awakening of love."

戀心 is used exclusively for love between boyfriends and girlfriends or husband and wife.

Breaking down the meaning by each Kanji, the first means love, affection, or tender passion. The second Kanji means heart, mind, or soul (most will read it as heart).

See Also:  Compassion | Love

Mercy / Compassion
Buddhist Loving Kindness

China cí bēi
Japan ji hi
Mercy / Compassion / Buddhist Loving Kindness Wall Scroll

Besides the title above, 慈悲 can also be defined as clemency or lenience and sometimes the act of giving charity.

In Buddhist context, it can be defined as, "benevolence," "loving kindness and compassion," or "mercy and compassion."

Even if you do not understand the Four Noble Truths, or Eightfold Path, this Buddhist virtue is perhaps the most important to employ in your life. All sentient beings that you encounter should be given your loving kindness. And trust me, however much you can give, it comes back. Make your life and the world a better place!

This Chinese/Japanese Buddhist term is the equivalent of Metta Karuna from Pali or Maitri Karuna from Sanskrit.

慈 can mean loving-kindness by itself.
悲 adds a component of sorrow, empathy, compassion, and sympathy for others.

See Also:  Benevolence

Moral and Virtuous

Japan toku
Moral and Virtuous Wall Scroll

德 is the simple way to express the ideas of having virtue, morals, kindness, benevolence, goodness etc. This character also happens to be the first character of the Chinese word for Germany.

徳There is a slight deviation in the Japanese Kanji form. If you want the modern Japanese version, please click on the special Kanji shown to the right instead of the button above. Note that the traditional Chinese form is still readable and understood by Japanese people.

See Also:  Ethics | Chastity | Prudence | Benevolence | Morality

Oneness of Heaven and Humanity

China tiān rén hé yī
Oneness of Heaven and Humanity Wall Scroll

This title represents the oneness of heaven and humanity. It conveys the idea that man is an integral part of nature.

You can also read this as "heaven and man in unity," or "nature and man in unity." The "man" is really "people" or "humans" and is not gender-specific in Chinese.

Self-Restraint / Self-Control

China kè jǐ
Japan kokki
Self-Restraint / Self-Control Wall Scroll

This word can be translated as "self-denial," "self-abnegation," "self-restraint," "self-discipline," "self-mastery" or selflessness.

As a tenet of Korean taekwondo, and other martial arts, this is often used with the title "self-control."


China wú sī
Japan mushi
Selflessness Wall Scroll

This would be literally translated as "none self" in Chinese, Korean, and Japanese. It is used to express "selflessness" or "unselfish." 無私 is a popular term for the idea of being selfless or unselfish in modern China and Japan.
This term is not as commonly used in Korea but still has good meaning.

See Also:  Unselfish


China wú wǒ
Japan muga
Selflessness Wall Scroll

無我 is a more common way to say selflessness in Japanese. This literally means "no self" or a better translation might be "not thinking of oneself." 無我 is also understood in Chinese and Korean. 無我 is a very old word in CJK languages.

無我 is the word a Buddhist would use express the idea of selflessness or unselfishness. For Korean Buddhists it can mean self-renunciation.

The Tao or Dao of Being Human / Humanity

China rén dào
Japan jindou
The Tao or Dao of Being Human / Humanity Wall Scroll

人道 is literally the "The Way of Being Human," or "The Human Way." It can also be translated as "humanity."

This word has a secondary meaning of "sidewalk" as in "the way for people to walk" (in Japanese and Korean only). But as calligraphy artwork, nobody will read it with that translation.

Please note that there are two ways to Romanized Dao or Tao as in Daoism = Taoism. It's the same word in Chinese.

Unselfish: Perfectly Impartial

China dà gōng wú sī
Unselfish: Perfectly Impartial Wall Scroll

This Chinese proverb comes from an old story from some time before 476 BC. About a man named Qi Huangyang, who was commissioned by the king to select the best person for a certain job in the Imperial Court.

Qi Huangyang selected his enemy for the job. The king was very confused by the selection but Qi Huangyang explained that he was asked to find the best person for the job, not necessarily someone that he personally liked or had a friendship with.

Later, Confucius commented on how unselfish and impartial Qi Huangyang was by saying "Da Gong Wu Si" which if you look it up in a Chinese dictionary, is generally translated as "Unselfish" or "Just and Fair."

If you translate each character, you'd have something like,

"Big/Deep Justice Without Self."

Direct translations like this leave out a lot of what the Chinese characters really say. Use your imagination, and suddenly you realize that "without self" means "without thinking about yourself in the decision" - together, these two words mean "unselfish." The first two characters serve to really drive the point home that we are talking about a concept that is similar to "blind justice."

One of my Chinese-English dictionaries translates this simply as "just and fair." So that is the short and simple version.

Note: This can be pronounced in Korean but it's not a commonly used term.

See Also:  Selflessness | Work Unselfishly for the Common Good

Work Unselfishly for the Common Good

China kè jǐ fèng gōng
Work Unselfishly for the Common Good Wall Scroll

This can also mean: "Place Strict Standards on Oneself in Public Service."
This Chinese proverb is often used to express how one should act as a government official. Most of us wish our public officials would hold themselves to higher standards. I wish I could send this scroll, along with the meaning to every member of Congress, and the President (or if I was from the UK, all the members of Parliament, and the PM)

The story behind this ancient Chinese idiom:
A man named Cai Zun was born in China a little over 2000 years ago. In 24 AD, he joined an uprising led by Liu Xiu who later became the emperor of the Eastern Han Dynasty.

Later, the new emperor put Cai Zun in charge of the military court. Cai Zun exercised his power in strict accordance with military law, regardless of the offender's rank or background. He even ordered the execution of one of the emperor's close servants after the servant committed a serious crime.

Cai Zun led a simple life but put great demands on himself to do all things in an honorable way. The emperor rewarded him for his honest character and honorable nature by promoting him to the rank of General and granting him the title of Marquis.

Whenever Cai Zun would receive an award, he would give credit to his men and share the reward with them.
Cai Zun was always praised by historians who found many examples of his selfless acts that served the public interest.
Sometime, long ago in history, people began to refer to Cai Zun as "ke ji feng gong."

See Also:  Unselfish | Selflessness

Doing good is the greatest source of happiness

China wéi shàn zuì lè
Doing good is the greatest source of happiness Wall Scroll

為善最樂 can be translated as, "Doing good is the greatest source of happiness," or "doing good deeds brings the greatest joy".

The origin is not known, sometimes used in the context of Buddhism. However, this Chinese proverb or philosophy is a fairly mainstream idea of benevolence.

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The following table may be helpful for those studying Chinese or Japanese...

Title CharactersRomaji(Romanized Japanese)Various forms of Romanized Chinese
Benevolence jinrén / ren2 / ren jen
仁慈jin ji / jinjirén cí / ren2 ci2 / ren ci / renci jen tz`u / jentzu / jen tzu
Benevolent Heart 慈悲の心ji hi no kokoro
Compassionate Heart
Benevolent Heart
慈心jishincí xīn / ci2 xin1 / ci xin / cixin tz`u hsin / tzuhsin / tzu hsin
Benevolent and Skilled Doctor 妙手仁心懸壺濟世
miào shǒu rén xīn xuán hú jì shì
miao4 shou3 ren2 xin1 xuan2 hu2 ji4 shi4
miao shou ren xin xuan hu ji shi
miao shou jen hsin hsüan hu chi shih
Benevolent and Skilled Doctor 妙手仁心miào shǒu rén xīn
miao4 shou3 ren2 xin1
miao shou ren xin
miao shou jen hsin
仁德jintokurén dé / ren2 de2 / ren de / rende jen te / jente
Charity 慈善jizencí shàn / ci2 shan4 / ci shan / cishan tz`u shan / tzushan / tzu shan
Caring 關心
guān xīn / guan1 xin1 / guan xin / guanxin kuan hsin / kuanhsin
Compassion 同情dou jou / doujou / do jo / dojotóng qíng
tong2 qing2
tong qing
t`ung ch`ing
tung ching
In some entries above you will see that characters have different versions above and below a line.
In these cases, the characters above the line are Traditional Chinese, while the ones below are Simplified Chinese.

All of our calligraphy wall scrolls are handmade.

When the calligrapher finishes creating your artwork, it is taken to my art mounting workshop in Beijing where a wall scroll is made by hand from a combination of silk, rice paper, and wood.
After we create your wall scroll, it takes at least two weeks for air mail delivery from Beijing to you.

Allow a few weeks for delivery. Rush service speeds it up by a week or two for $10!

When you select your calligraphy, you'll be taken to another page where you can choose various custom options.

A nice Chinese calligraphy wall scroll

The wall scroll that Sandy is holding in this picture is a "large size"
single-character wall scroll.
We also offer custom wall scrolls in small, medium, and an even-larger jumbo size.

A professional Chinese Calligrapher

Professional calligraphers are getting to be hard to find these days.
Instead of drawing characters by hand, the new generation in China merely type roman letters into their computer keyboards and pick the character that they want from a list that pops up.

There is some fear that true Chinese calligraphy may become a lost art in the coming years. Many art institutes in China are now promoting calligraphy programs in hopes of keeping this unique form of art alive.

Trying to learn Chinese calligrapher - a futile effort

Even with the teachings of a top-ranked calligrapher in China, my calligraphy will never be good enough to sell. I will leave that to the experts.

A high-ranked Chinese master calligrapher that I met in Zhongwei

The same calligrapher who gave me those lessons also attracted a crowd of thousands and a TV crew as he created characters over 6-feet high. He happens to be ranked as one of the top 100 calligraphers in all of China. He is also one of very few that would actually attempt such a feat.