Custom Life Chinese & Japanese Calligraphy Wall Scroll

Seeking the word for Life in Chinese or Japanese?
Want a word that means the essence of life and existence?
You've come to the right place...

Quick links to words on this page...

  1. Living / Live Life
  2. Birth / Life
  3. Alive
  4. Beautiful Life / Life in Perfect Harmony
  5. Choose Life
  6. Embrace Life / Embrace Living
  7. Embrace Life
  8. Enjoy Life
  9. Eternal Life / Everlasting Life...
10. Eternal Life / Future Life
11. Everyday Life
12. Forever Young / Long Life
13. The Good Life / Beautiful Life
14. The key to immortality is first living a life worth remembering
15. A Life of Serenity Yields Understanding
16. Through the Ups and Downs of Life
17. Life Saving Sword
18. Life in Harmony / Balanced Life
19. Life in Balance / Balancing Life
20. Life in Harmony / Balanced Life
21. Life Energy / Spiritual Energy
22. Life Force
23. Life Full of Love
24. Life Goes On
25. A Life of Happiness and Prosperity
26. Life in Every Breath
27. Life Is But A Dream
28. Life is a Journey
29. Life is Good / Life is Beautiful
30. Life is Good
31. Life is Short
32. Life is What You Make It
33. Life is What You Make of It
34. Journey of Life
35. Life Full of Love
36. Life of Love
37. Life of Serenity
38. Life with Love
39. Life is Good
40. Longevity / Long Life Wishes
41. Longevity / Long Life
42. Love Life
43. Music is Life
44. New Life
45. Better to sacrifice your life than your principles
46. Principles of Life
47. The Single Life
48. Such is Life
49. Such is Life / Such is Destiny
50. This is Life
51. Thug Life
52. Way of Life / Art of Life
53. Eternal Wheel of Life
54. Jesus is My Life
55. My Life, My Rules
56. Optimism / Happy With Your Fate
57. The Tree of Enlightenment...
58. Triple Truth of Japanese Buddhism
59. Carpe Diem / Seize the Day
60. Die Without Regret
61. Eat Drink and Be Merry
62. First Born Daughter
63. First Born Son
64. First Born
65. Rise and Fall / Ups and Downs
66. Healthy Living
67. We are not born with knowledge,...
68. Live For The Day
69. Live For The Day / Seize The Day
70. Live for What You Love
71. Live Laugh Love
72. Live Without Regret
73. Live Laugh Love
74. New Beginning
75. Freedom from Anger and Worry Yields Longevity
76. No Regrets
77. 5. Right Living / Right Livelihood / Perfect Livelihood
78. Re-Birth / Renaissance
79. Resurrection / Re-Birth
80. Sacrifice
81. Soul Mates
82. Vitality


Living / Live Life

China shēng huó
Japan sei katsu
Living / Live Life Wall Scroll

生活 means life, living, to live, or the state of being alive. It can also refer to your daily existence or livelihood. It can also be a suggestion to just "Live life."

生活 is also the term used in other titles such as "healthy living" or Lance Armstrong's "Livestrong" campaign (Chinese title for Livestrong only).

If you need a reminder that you are alive, and to take a breath, this might be the perfect wall scroll for you.

Birth / Life

China shēng
Japan shou / iku
Birth / Life Wall Scroll

This Chinese word means "to be born" and "to give birth."

Also, it's often used to refer to life itself, and sometimes "to grow."

This character is used in a lot of compound words such as "yi sheng," which means "doctor" (literally "healer of life"), "sheng ri" which means "birthday" (literally "birth day") and "xue sheng" which means student (literally "studying life" or "learner [about] life"). Few Chinese people will think of the literal meaning when this use words like doctor and student - but it is interesting to note.

This character has the same root meaning in Korean Hanja and Japanese. However, in Japanese, there are many possible pronunciations, and this can be used to mean "raw" or "unprocessed" (as in draft beer). Therefore, not be the best if your audience is Japanese.


See Also:  Vitality

Alive

China huó zhe
Alive Wall Scroll

活著 is the word that means alive, as in the state of living or being alive (Chinese only).

Beautiful Life / Life in Perfect Harmony

China hé měi
Japan wa mi
Beautiful Life / Life in Perfect Harmony Wall Scroll

These two characters create a word that means, "harmonious" or, "in perfect harmony." The deeper meaning or more natural translation would be something like, "beautiful life."

The first character means peace and harmony.

The second character means beautiful. But in this case, when combined with the first character, beautiful refers to being satisfied with what you have in your life. This can be having good relations, good feelings, comfort, and having enough (with no feeling of wanting).


Note: In Japanese, this is often used as the name "Wami." This title is probably more appropriate if your audience is Chinese.

Choose Life

China xuǎn zé shēng huó
Choose Life Wall Scroll

This can mean to choose life instead of death (or suicide) or to choose to live life to the fullest.

I think of it as the key phrase used by Renton (Ewan McGregor) in the movie Trainspotting. While Chinese people will not think of Trainspotting when they see this phrase, for me, it will always be what comes near the end of this colorful rant:

Choose life. Choose a job. Choose a career. Choose a family. Choose a fucking big television, Choose washing machines, cars, compact disc players, and electrical tin can openers. Choose good health, low cholesterol, and dental insurance. Choose fixed-interest mortgage repayments. Choose a starter home. Choose your friends. Choose leisure wear and matching luggage. Choose a three piece suite on hire purchase in a range of fucking fabrics. Choose DIY and wondering who the fuck you are on a Sunday morning. Choose sitting on that couch watching mind-numbing spirit-crushing game shows, stuffing fucking junk food into your mouth. Choose rotting away at the end of it all, pissing your last in a miserable home, nothing more than an embarrassment to the selfish, fucked-up brats you have spawned to replace yourself. Choose your future. Choose life.

Embrace Life / Embrace Living

China yōng bào shēng huó
Embrace Life / Embrace Living Wall Scroll

This Chinese title means to embrace or to hug life, or the embrace what it is to live.

Embrace Life

Japan jinsei o kyouju suru
Embrace Life Wall Scroll

人生を享受する means, "embrace life," in Japanese.

This can also be translated as "enjoy life."


Note: Because this selection contains some special Japanese Hiragana characters, it should be written by a Japanese calligrapher.

Enjoy Life

China xiǎng shòu shēng huó
Enjoy Life Wall Scroll

享受生活 is a Chinese proverb that means "Enjoy Life."

The first two characters mean "to enjoy" and the last two mean "life" or "living."

Enjoy Life

Japan jin sei o tano shi mi ni shi te i ru
Enjoy Life Wall Scroll

人生を楽しみにしている is one way to write "enjoy life" in Japanese.

The character breakdown:
人生 (jinsei) life (i.e. conception to death) human lifetime, living.
を (o) connecting particle.
楽しみ (tanoshimi) enjoyment; pleasure; anticipation; looking forward to.
に (ni) connecting particle.
し (shi) to do; to cause; to become; to make (into).
て (te) connecting particle.
いる (iru) indicates continuing action or resulting state.


Note: Because this selection contains some special Japanese Hiragana characters, it should be written by a Japanese calligrapher.

Eternal Life / Everlasting Life
Immortality

China yǒng shēng
Japan eisei
Eternal Life / Everlasting Life / Immortality Wall Scroll

These are the last two words from John 3:16 in the Chinese Union Bible.

Although not specifically Christian, this is the way to express ever-lasting life or eternal life in Chinese.

In Japanese, this can either mean eternal life or immortality.


See Also:  Eternity | Rebirth | Reincarnation | Immortality

Eternal Life / Future Life

China lái shì
Japan rai-se
Eternal Life / Future Life Wall Scroll

This word can be used in many different ways. It is often used to express the next life (life in heaven or wherever your soul is bound for). So it does have a religious overtone. However, it can also be used to express your life in the future - perhaps during your present lifetime. It can also be translated as "the next world," "the next generation," "the time that is to come," "otherworld," or simply "posterity."


See Also:  Eternity | Rebirth | Reincarnation | Immortality

Everyday Life

China rì cháng shēng huó
Japan nichi jou sei katsu
Everyday Life Wall Scroll

This simply means everyday life or regular life. You can also translate it as "Living day to day."

Forever Young / Long Life

Japan fu rou chou ju
Forever Young / Long Life Wall Scroll

This Japanese phrase means "perpetual youth and longevity." It contains the ideas of never getting old and eternal life.

The Good Life / Beautiful Life

China měi hǎo de shēng huó
The Good Life / Beautiful Life Wall Scroll

In Chinese, this means "Beautiful Life," or "The Good Life."

The key to immortality is first living a life worth remembering

China huò dé yǒng shēng de yào shí shì xiān yào huó dé jīng cǎi
The key to immortality is first living a life worth remembering Wall Scroll

獲得永生的鑰匙是先要活得精彩 is a famous quote from Bruce Lee. However, when quoted, he was speaking in English. So this is a translation of his English quote into Chinese. Since Bruce spoke both Chinese and English, his quotes sometimes go both ways.

A Life of Serenity Yields Understanding

China dàn bó yǐ míng zhì, níng jìng ér zhì yuǎn
A Life of Serenity Yields Understanding Wall Scroll

淡泊以明志寧靜而致遠 is a kind of complex ten-character proverb composed by Zhuge Liang about 1800 years ago.

This Chinese proverb means "Leading a simple life will yield a clear mind, and having inner peace will help you see far (into the world)."

What I have translated as "simple life" means NOT being materialistic and NOT competing in the rat race.

The last word means "far" but the deeper meaning is that you will surpass what you can currently see or understand. Perhaps even the idea of opening up vast knowledge and understanding of complex ideas.

The whole phrase has a theme that suggests if you are NOT an aggressive cut-throat person who fights his way to the top no matter how many people he crushes on the way, and instead seek inner peace, you will have a happier existence and be more likely to understand the meaning of life.


See Also:  Serenity

Through the Ups and Downs of Life

China tóng gān gòng kǔ
Through the Ups and Downs of Life Wall Scroll

This Chinese proverb talks of "shared delights and common hardships." This can be translated and understood a few different ways, including:
To share life's joys and sorrows.
For better or for worse.
Through joys and sorrows of life.
Through all life ups and downs.
To go through thick and thin.
To stick together through thick and thin.
To share joys and sorrows of life.
To share pleasures and pains.
To partake in each other's joys and sorrows.
To take "for better or for worse."

Life Saving Sword

Japan katsu jin ken
Life Saving Sword Wall Scroll

活人剣 is a Japanese title for "life saving sword" or "katsujinken."

This title suggests that a sword used for killing can also be used for saving or giving life.


See Also:  Satsujinken

Life in Harmony / Balanced Life

Harmonious Life
China hé xié shēng huó
Life in Harmony / Balanced Life Wall Scroll

This title suggests that you have, or want to get your life in balance.

The first two characters regard the idea of balance, harmony, and peace.

The second two characters mean "life." More specifically this refers to your livelihood, career, and the daily activities that comprise your life or living. Some would translate those two characters as "one's daily existence."


Note: We have a couple of titles for this idea. This version is more of a noun, thus "The Balanced Life" verses a verb form like "Balancing [Your] Life."

Life in Balance / Balancing Life

The art of balancing your life
China píng héng rén shēng
Japan hei kou jin sei
Life in Balance / Balancing Life Wall Scroll

This title suggests that you are actively trying to keep your life in balance. Think of this as being the action-verb of seeking or having a balanced life.

The first two characters mean balance, equilibrium or keeping things equal.

The last two characters mean "life." Literally "human life."

Life in Harmony / Balanced Life

Japan cho wa sei katsu
Life in Harmony / Balanced Life Wall Scroll

This Japanese title suggests that you have, or want to get your life in balance.

The first two Kanji mean harmonious or in harmony.

The second two Kanji mean "life." More specifically this refers to your livelihood, career, and the daily activities that comprise your life or living.

Life Energy / Spiritual Energy

Chi Energy: Essence of Life / Energy Flow
China
Japan ki
Life Energy / Spiritual Energy Wall Scroll

This energy flow is a fundamental concept of traditional Asian culture.

This character is romanized as "Qi" or "Chi" in Chinese, "Gi" in Korean, and "Ki" in Japanese.
Chi is believed to be part of everything that exists, as in “life force” or “spiritual energy”. It is most often translated as “energy flow,” or literally as “air” or “breath”. Some people will simply translate this as “spirit” but you have to take into consideration the kind of spirit we're talking about. I think this is weighted more toward energy than spirit.

米The character itself is a representation of steam (or breath) rising from rice. To clarify, the character for rice is shown to the right.

Steam was apparently seen as visual evidence of the release of "life energy" when this concept was first developed. The Qi / Chi / Ki character is still used in compound words to mean steam or vapor.

氣氣The etymology of this character is a bit complicated. It's suggested that the first form of this character from bronze script (about 2500 years ago) looked like one the symbols shown to the right.

氣However, it was easy to confuse this with the character for the number three. So the rice radical was added by 221 B.C. (the exact time of this change is debated). This first version with the rice radical is shown to the right.

The idea of Qi / Chi / Ki is really a philosophical concept. It's often used to refer to the “flow” of metaphysical energy that sustains living beings. Yet there is much debate that has continued for thousands of years as to whether Qi / Chi / Ki is pure energy, or consists partially, or fully of matter.

You can also see the character for Qi / Chi / Ki in common compound words such as Tai Chi / Tai Qi, Aikido, Reiki and Qi Gong / Chi Kung.

In the modern Japanese Kanji, the rice radical has been changed into two strokes that form an X.


気The original and traditional Chinese form is still understood in Japanese but we can also offer that modern Kanji form in our custom calligraphy. If you want this Japanese Kanji, please click on the character to the right, instead of the “Select and Customize” button above.

More language notes: This is pronounced like “chee” in Mandarin Chinese, and like “key” in Japanese.
This is also the same way to write this in Korean Hanja where it is Romanized as “gi” and pronounced like “gee” but with a real G-sound, not a J-sound.
Though Vietnamese no longer use Chinese characters in their daily language, this character is still widely known in Vietnam.


See Also:  Energy | Life Force | Vitality | Birth | Soul

Life Force

China shēng mìng
Japan seimei / inochi
Life Force Wall Scroll

This Chinese, Korean and Japanese word means "life force" or simply "life." The first character means "life" or "birth." The second means "life" or "fate." Together they create the meaning of "life force," though some will translate this as "existence" and sometimes "vitality."


See Also:  Vitality | Birth

Life Full of Love

Japan ai ni afu re ta jin sei
Life Full of Love Wall Scroll

This Japanese proverb means "life full of love" or "life filled with love."


Note: Because this selection contains some special Japanese Hiragana characters, it should be written by a Japanese calligrapher.

Life Goes On

China shēng huó zài jì xù
Life Goes On Wall Scroll

No matter what happens, life goes on. For better or worse, life goes one. 生活在繼續 is the basic idea behind this modern Chinese proverb which literally says "Life goes on" in these five characters.


A further explanation of this phrase can now be found on our forum here: Life Goes On in Chinese, explained.

Life Goes On

Japan jin sei ha tsudu ku
Life Goes On Wall Scroll

人生は続く is a Japanese phrase that expresses, "Life Goes On."

The first two characters mean "life" (literally "human life").
The third character is a particle which connects the ideas in this phrase.
The last two characters mean "to continue," "to last," "to go on," "to occur again and again."


Note: Because this selection contains some special Japanese Hiragana characters, it should be written by a Japanese calligrapher.

A Life of Happiness and Prosperity

China xìng fú chéng gōng de yì shēng
A Life of Happiness and Prosperity Wall Scroll

幸福成功的一生 means, "A life of happiness and prosperity" or "A life of happiness and success." It's a great and very positive and inspirational wall scroll selection.


See Also:  Prosperity

A Life of Happiness and Prosperity

Japan kou fuku to ha nei no jin sei
A Life of Happiness and Prosperity Wall Scroll

This Japanese proverb means, "A life of happiness and prosperity" or "A life of happiness and success."


Note: Because this selection contains some special Japanese Hiragana characters, it should be written by a Japanese calligrapher.


See Also:  Prosperity

Life in Every Breath

China shēng huó zhōng de měi yī cì hū xī
Life in Every Breath Wall Scroll

生活中的每一次呼吸 means, "life in every breath" in Chinese.

This phrase is more like "every breath in life," as if it's a quantity of breaths that makes up your life.


There are many ways to understand this phrase in English, so this is one of a few ways it could be translated into Chinese. If you're looking for a different meaning, post a on the Chinese Calligraphy Question Forum.

Life in Every Breath

Japan hakuiki hitotsu nimo seimei ga yadori
Life in Every Breath Wall Scroll

吐く息一つにも生命が宿り means, "life in every breath" in Japanese.

This phrase is more like "every single breath as you live and dwell."

The characters breakdown this way:
吐く息 (hakuiki) to breathe; exhaled air; one's breath; breathing.
一つ (hitotsu) one; only; just.
にも (nimo) also; too; as well; even.
生命 (seimei) life; existence; living.
が (ga) particle.
宿り (yadori) to lodge; to dwell; lodging; abode; shelter.


Note: Because this selection contains some special Japanese Hiragana characters, it should be written by a Japanese calligrapher.

Life Is But A Dream

China rén shēng rú mèng
Life Is But A Dream Wall Scroll

人生如夢 is an old Chinese proverb that suggests, "life is but a dream."

This kind of follows the Buddhist idea that the world is a temporal place, where reality may not be as real as you think.

Life is a Journey

China rén shēng shì yí duàn lǚ chéng
Life is a Journey Wall Scroll

This proverb means "Life is a Journey."

If this matches your philosophy, this might be the perfect Chinese calligraphy for you.

Life is Good / Life is Beautiful

Japan jinsei wa subarashii
Life is Good / Life is Beautiful Wall Scroll

人生は素晴らしい means "life is good," "life is great," or "life is beautiful" in Japanese.

The first two characters mean "life" (as in your or a human lifespan).

The third character kind of means "is."

The last five characters are a long adjective that means wonderful, splendid, and/or magnificent. In the context of life it reads more like good or beautiful.


Note: Because this selection contains some special Japanese Hiragana characters, it should be written by a Japanese calligrapher.

Life is Good / Life is Beautiful

China shēng huó měi hǎo
Life is Good / Life is Beautiful Wall Scroll

生活美好 means "life is good" in Chinese.

The first two characters mean "life" or "living."

The last two characters mean "good" or "beautiful."

Life is Good

China rén shēng liáng hǎo
Japan jin sei ryou kou
Life is Good Wall Scroll

人生良好 means "life is good" in Japanese.

The first two characters mean "life" (as in your or a human lifespan).

The last two characters mean "good."

This also makes sense in Chinese but it reads more like, "life is all right."

Life is Short

Even a 100-year-old is but a traveler passing through this life
China bǎi suì guāng yīn rú guò kè
Life is Short Wall Scroll

百歲光陰如過客 directly translates as: [Even a] hundred-year-old [person] is [just a] traveler passing by.

The simple message is, "Human life is short." Of course, there is an unspoken suggestion that you should make the best of the time you have here on earth.

Life is Short

Japan jinsei ha mijikai
Life is Short Wall Scroll

人生は短い is "life is short" in Japanese.

The character breakdown:
人生 (jinsei) life (i.e. conception to death); human life, living, lifetime.
は (ha/wa) particle (means "is" in this case).
短い (mijikai) short.


Note: Because this selection contains some special Japanese Hiragana characters, it should be written by a Japanese calligrapher.

Life is What You Make It

China shēng huó shì zì jǐ chuàng zào de
Life is What You Make It Wall Scroll

生活是自己創造的 is a Chinese phrase meaning, "Life is what you make of it," or "Life is your own creation."

Life is What You Make of It

Japan jinsei wa tsukuru mono
Life is What You Make of It Wall Scroll

人生は作るもの means, "life is what you make of it," in Japanese.


Note: Because this selection contains some special Japanese Hiragana characters, it should be written by a Japanese calligrapher.

Journey of Life

Japan jinseikouro
Journey of Life Wall Scroll

If you believe that life is a journey, this is a nice Japanese title for you wall.

人生行路 means "journey of life" in Japanese Kanji. The actual word order is more like "life (人生) journey (行路)" as Japanese grammar is a bit different than English.

Note: The "journey" part can also be translated as "road," so this is also how to say, "the road of life."

Life Full of Love

China chōng mǎn ài de shēng huó
Life Full of Love Wall Scroll

充滿沖愛的生活 is the Chinese way to say, "life full of love," "life brimming with love," or "life overflowing with love."

Life of Love

China ài qíng shēng huó
Japan aijyou seikatsu
Life of Love Wall Scroll

愛情生活 is the Chinese proverb for "Loving Life." Some also translate this as "[your] Loving Life" or "Life full of Love."

愛情生活 is about being a loving person (to spouse and/or family) during your life. 愛情生活 is not the same as loving the state of being alive - not "love of living" but rather "being loving person during your life."


Note: Korean pronunciation is included above, though use of this proverb in Korean has not been verified.

This proverb can be understood in Japanese but it's primarily a Chinese proverb (it will "feel" Chinese to a Japanese person).

Life of Love

Japan aini michita seikatsu
Life of Love Wall Scroll

This Japanese phrase means "a loving life" or "life filled with love."


Note: Because this selection contains some special Japanese Hiragana characters, it should be written by a Japanese calligrapher.

Life of Serenity

Japan yuu yuu kan kan
Life of Serenity Wall Scroll

悠悠閑閑 means, "life of serenity" in Japanese.
However, it can also have these meanings depending on how it's read: "composed and unhurried," "easygoing and leisurely," "in indolence," or "life of idleness."

Life with Love

Japan ai no a ru jin sei
Life with Love Wall Scroll

This Japanese phrase means "Life with Love."


Note: Because this selection contains some special Japanese Hiragana characters, it should be written by a Japanese calligrapher.

Life is Good

China shēng huó shì měi hǎo de
Life is Good Wall Scroll

生活是美好的 is "Life is Good" in Mandarin Chinese.

Longevity / Long Life Wishes

A wish for a long and prosperous life
China fú rú dōng hǎi shòu bǐ nán shān
Longevity / Long Life Wishes Wall Scroll

福如東海壽比南山 is a phrase that means "May you have good fortune as great as the eastern oceans, and may your life last as long as the southern mountains."

In ancient Chinese mythology, the eastern oceans and southern mountains are where God resides (basically it is the same as saying "heaven"). So it's like saying, "May your good fortune and life be as vast as the heavens."

There is also a longer, 14-character version of this phrase. Also, this can be cut into two scrolls (with half the phrase on each side - great for hanging on either side of a doorway). Just let me know if you'd like a special version (there is an additional cost).

Longevity / Long Life Wishes

Japan nan zan no jyu
Longevity / Long Life Wishes Wall Scroll

南山之壽 is a wish for long life for someone. The first part of this Japanese phrase is, "Nan Zan," which literally means "south mountain." This mountain is one of good wishes, good fortune, and prosperity. The title is often used as a salutation of good wishes.

The third Kanji is just a connector, and the last Kanji means long life or longevity.

I guess you could translate this phrase as "May your life be as long as Nan Zan is tall."

Longevity / Long Life

China cháng shòu
Japan chouju
Longevity / Long Life Wall Scroll

Used as a noun, this word means "longevity" or "the ability to live long." It can also be an adjective meaning "long lived."


Japanese LongevityPlease note that Japanese use a simplified version of the second character of longevity - it also happens to be the same simplification used in mainland China. Click on the character to the right if you want the Japanese/Simplified version of this two-character longevity calligraphy.

Longevity / Long Life

China shòu
Japan ju / kotobuki
Longevity / Long Life Wall Scroll

Can be defined as "long life" or "longevity" in the simplest form.


Japanese LongevityPlease note that Japanese use a simplified version of this character - it also happens to be the same simplification used in mainland China. Click on the character to the right if you want the Japanese/Simplified version.

Love Life

China rè ài shēng mìng
Love Life Wall Scroll

熱愛生命 is the Chinese phrase for "Love Life" or "Love of Life."

If you love your life, or want a reminder on your wall to keep you loving your life each day, this is the selection for you.

To clarify, this is different than "A life full of love," or "love while you live." With this phrase, you are loving the state of being alive.


Note: Korean pronunciation is included above, though use of this phrase in Korean has not been verified.

Music is Life

Japan ongaku wa jinseidesu
Music is Life Wall Scroll

音楽は人生です means "music is life" in Japanese.


Note: Because this selection contains some special Japanese Hiragana characters, it should be written by a Japanese calligrapher.

Music is Life

China yīn yuè jiù shì shēng mìng
Music is Life Wall Scroll

音樂就是生命 means, "Music is Life," in Chinese.

音樂就是生命 is a title that we composed after so many people searched for it on our website.

New Life

China xīn shēng
Japan waka ki
New Life Wall Scroll

This literally means "new life" or "new birth" in Chinese, Japanese Kanji, and old Korean Hanja.

Depending on context, this word can also mean newborn, new student, rebirth, new birth, nascent.
In Japanese, this can be the given name Wakaki.


Note: This is not the most common word selection for a calligraphy wall scroll. But if you're a westerner, you can bend the rules a bit.

New Life

Japan shin sei katsu
New Life Wall Scroll

This literally means "new life" or "new livelihood" in Japanese Kanji.

This word is most appropriate if you are starting a new career, or otherwise are starting a new chapter in your life or a new beginning.


Note: This is not the most common word selection for a calligraphy wall scroll. But if you're a westerner, you can bend the rules a bit.

Better to sacrifice your life than your principles

China shě shēng qǔ yì
Better to sacrifice your life than your principles Wall Scroll

捨生取義 is a Chinese proverb that comes from the philosopher Mencius.

It can be translated a few different ways:
To give up life for righteousness.
To choose honor over life
Better to sacrifice one's life than one's principles.

Principles of Life

China shēng huó xìn tiáo
Principles of Life Wall Scroll

This Chinese proverb means "principles of life" or "The personal obligations and rules that you live by."

For instance, if you were a vegetarian, the act of not eating meat fits into this category.
This could also be translated as "Way of living."

The Single Life

Dokushin-Kizoku
Japan do kushin ki zoku
The Single Life Wall Scroll

This Japanese proverb literally means "Single Aristocrat" or "Single Noble."

The understood meaning is that single people can live freely without a spouse or kids to support. To put it in an old cliché, they are footloose and fancy-free.

If you are a bachelor or bachelorette with few responsibilities and just a thirst for freedom and a worry-free life, this could be the title for you.

Such is Life

China shēng huó jiù shì zhè yàng
Such is Life Wall Scroll

生活就是這樣 is probably the best way to say, "Such is life," or "C'est la vie" in Chinese.

Such is Life / Such is Destiny

China zhè jiù shì mìng
Such is Life / Such is Destiny Wall Scroll

這就是命 means, "Such is life," or "Such is destiny."

This can also be translated as "這就是命 is life," "這就是命 is [our] lot in life," or "這就是命 is [our] destiny." It is perhaps a fatalistic phrase. It can be compared with the French, "Ceci est la vie" or "C'est la vie."

This is Life

China zhè jiù shì shēng huó
This is Life Wall Scroll

這就是生活 is a Chinese phrase that means, "這就是生活 is life," or "Such is life."

If you are looking for the French, "C'est la vie," this is a close match.

Thug Life

China bào tú shēng huó
Japan bou to sei katsu
Thug Life Wall Scroll

暴徒生活 is probably the best way to say "Thug Life" in Chinese, Japanese, and Korean.

It's a strange title to be sure, so expect native Asian people to be confused when they see your Thug Life calligraphy.

The first two characters mean bandit, thug, ruffian, insurgent, rioter, or mob.

The last two characters mean life, live, or living.

Way of Life / Art of Life

China shēng huó fǎ
Japan seikatsuhou
Way of Life / Art of Life Wall Scroll

生活法 is a Japanese and Chinese title meaning, "art of living" or "way of life."

This can also be translated a few other ways, such as, "rule of life" and "the act of living."

The "art" title kind of comes from the fact that the last character is the same as the book, "The Art of War." So when you write your book, this is the title for, "The Art of Life," in Chinese and Japanese.

Eternal Wheel of Life

China fǎ lún
Japan hourin / horin
Eternal Wheel of Life Wall Scroll

法輪 is the Chinese, Japanese Kanji, and old Korean Hanja title, "The Eternal Wheel of Life," in Buddhism.

Also known as the wheel of the law, or Buddha-truth which is able to crush all evil and all opposition. It is likened to Indra's wheel which rolls on from man to man, place to place, age to age.

Colloquially used in some sects to mean preaching or spreading Buddha-truth.

Jesus is My Life

China yē sū shì wǒ de shēng mìng
Jesus is My Life Wall Scroll

耶穌是我的生命 means Jesus is my life in Chinese.

The first two characters are a transliteration of the name Jesus into Mandarin Chinese.
The third character means, is.

The fourth and fifth mean, my or mine.

The last two characters mean life, as in lifespan, or from birth to death.

耶穌是我的生命 is not a common phrase for Chinese Christians, but this is the best way to translate this idea from English to Mandarin Chinese.

My Life, My Rules

My life, I call the shots
China wǒ de shēng huó wǒ zuò zhǔ
My Life, My Rules Wall Scroll

我的生活我做主 is a Chinese phrase that can be translated as, "My life, my rules," or "My life, I call the shots."

The first four characters just say, "my life".

The fifth character is I, me, and/or my.

The last two characters can be interpreted a variety of ways, just as, to make the decision, to take charge of, to call the shot, or to make the rule.

Optimism / Happy With Your Fate

China lè tiān
Japan raku ten
Optimism / Happy With Your Fate Wall Scroll

樂天 is about being optimistic and also making the best of whatever life throws at you.

This word is hard to define. One dictionary defines this as, "acceptance of fate and happy about it." There is one English word equivalent which is sanguinity or sanguinary.

You can also say that this means, "Be happy with whatever Heaven provides," or "Find happiness in whatever fate Heaven bestows upon you." 樂天 suggests being an optimist in life.

Note: 樂天 / 楽天 is sometimes a given name in China.


楽 Please note that Japanese tend to write the first character in a slightly-different form (as seen to the right). Let us know if you have a preference when you place your order.

The Tree of Enlightenment
The Bodhi Tree

China pú tí shù
Japan bodaiju
The Tree of Enlightenment / The Bodhi Tree Wall Scroll

These three characters are the full title of the Bodhi tree (a fig tree) under which Siddhartha Gautama (the legendary man and who established the Buddhist religion), achieved enlightenment. Sometimes this is referred to as "the tree of enlightenment." If you don't have a Bodhi tree to sit under, maybe you can achieve your enlightenment under a wall scroll with this title.

Triple Truth of Japanese Buddhism

Japan ningensei o saisei suruno wa kanyou na kokoro shinsetsu na kotoba houshi to omoi yari no seishin
Triple Truth of Japanese Buddhism Wall Scroll

The Buddha ordered that all should know this triple truth...
A generous heart, kind speech, and a life of service and compassion are the things which renew humanity.

人間性を再生するのは寛容な心親切な言葉奉仕と思いやりの精神 is the English translation most commonly used for this Japanese Buddhist phrase. You might have seen this on a coffee cup or tee-shirt.


Note: Because this selection contains some special Japanese Hiragana characters, it should be written by a Japanese calligrapher.

Carpe Diem / Seize the Day

China bǎ wò jīn rì
Carpe Diem / Seize the Day Wall Scroll

把握今日 is the closest and most natural way to express this proverb in Chinese.

The first two characters mean "to seize" but can also be translated as "take control of."

The last two characters mean "today."

Die Without Regret

China sǐ ér wú huǐ
Die Without Regret Wall Scroll

死而無悔 is how to say "die with no regrets" in Mandarin Chinese.

This proverb comes from the Analects of Confucius.


See Also:  No Regrets

Eat Drink and Be Merry

China chī hē wán lè jí shí xíng lè
Eat Drink and Be Merry Wall Scroll

喫喝玩樂及時行樂 is just about the closest proverb to match the western idea of "Eat, drink, and be merry."

This Chinese proverb more literally means, "Eat, drink, play, be merry, enjoy everything as long as you can."

It's basically a suggestion that you try to enjoy everything in life, as long as you live, or as long as you are able.

First Born Daughter

China zhǎng
Japan choujo
First Born Daughter Wall Scroll

長女 is a Chinese, old Korean Hanja, and Japanese Kanji title for eldest daughter or first born daughter.

This can also be a given name "Osame" in Japanese.

First Born Son

China zhǎng nán
Japan chounan
First Born Son Wall Scroll

長男 is a Chinese, old Korean Hanja, and Japanese Kanji title for eldest son (may be the only son), first born son.

This can also be the Japanese personal name "Nobuo."

First Born

Japan souryou
First Born Wall Scroll

惣領 is a Japanese title for the eldest child, the oldest child, first born child, or child who carries on the family name.

In more ancient times, this was used to refer to the head of a warrior clan. It can also be a place name or given name "Souryou" or "Soryo" in Japanese.

Rise and Fall / Ups and Downs

Eiko-Seisui
Japan ei ko sei sui
Rise and Fall / Ups and Downs Wall Scroll

This Japanese proverb can be translated as, "flourish and wither, prosper and perish," "life is full of fortune and misfortune," or simply "vicissitudes of life."

栄枯盛衰 / 榮枯盛衰 is about the rise and fall of human affairs, or the ups and downs of life. Prosperity comes and goes, everything is fleeting and temporary but like waves, another swell of prosperity may come.

Here's how the Kanji break down in this proverb:
栄 = prosper. thrive. flourish. boom.
枯 = wither. die.
盛 = prosperous. flourishing. thriving. successful. active. energetic. vigorous. lively. enthusiastic. popular.
衰 = become weaker. decline. get weak. die down. subside. abate. fail.


Notes:
榮The original version of the first character looks like the image to the right. In modern Japan, they simplified that Kanji a bit into the version shown above. If you have a preference for which style is used for your calligraphy, please let me know when you place your order.

Apparently, with that original version of the first character, this is also used in Korean Hanja. However, I have not confirmed that it's used in the same way or is widely-known in Korean. Korean pronunciation is shown above for reference only.

Healthy Living

China jiàn kāng shēng huó
Japan kenkou seikatsu
Healthy Living Wall Scroll

If you are into healthy living, this might be an excellent selection for a wall scroll to hang in your home.

The first two characters speak of health, vitality, vigor, and being of sound body. The second two characters mean living or life (daily existence).


See Also:  Strength | Vitality | Health

We are not born with knowledge,
how does one achieve maturity?

China rén fēi shēng ér zhī zhī zhě shú néng wú huò
We are not born with knowledge, / how does one achieve maturity? Wall Scroll

This figuratively means, "Without a teacher, how can we learn/mature?"

人非生而知之者熟能無惑 is a philosophic pondering by Han Yu, a Tang Dynasty essayist and philosopher (618–907 A.D.). This Chinese proverb can be translated as, "Knowledge is not innate to man, how can we overcome doubt?" or, "We are not born with knowledge, how does one achieve maturity?."

This infers that we need the guidance of a teacher if we wish to learn, mature, and become better.

Live For The Day

China huó zài jīn tiān
Live For The Day Wall Scroll

活在今天 is not really an eastern concept, so it does not translate into a phrase that seems natural on a wall scroll. However, if this is your philosophy, the characters shown here do capture your idea of living for today or living in the moment. These characters literally say "Live in today" and they are grammatically correct in Chinese.


Note: This kind of makes sense in Korean Hanja but the grammar is Chinese, so it's not that natural in Korean.

Live For The Day / Seize The Day

Japan ima wo i ki ru
Live For The Day / Seize The Day Wall Scroll

This Japanese phrase can be translated as "live for the day," "live for the moment," "seize the day," or "make the most of the present." You can think of this as the Japanese version of "Carpe Diem."


Note: Because this selection contains some special Japanese Hiragana characters, it should be written by a Japanese calligrapher.

Live for What You Love

Japan jin sei ou ka
Live for What You Love Wall Scroll

人生謳歌 means, "live for what you love" in Japanese.

The first two characters mean "human life" or simply "living." The last two characters mean, "merit," "prosperity," or "what you enjoy." This phrase can suggest working or staying busy for your own goals (in your career).


See Also:  Prosperity

Live Laugh Love

China xiào ài shēng huó
Live Laugh Love Wall Scroll

In English, the word order shown in the title is the most natural or popular. In Chinese, the natural order is a little different:

The first character means laugh (sometimes means smile).

The second character means love.

The last two characters mean "live" as in "to be alive" or "pursue life."

Please note: 笑愛生活 is not a normal phrase, in that it does not have a subject, verb, and object. It is a word list. Word lists are not common in Asian languages/grammar (at least not as normal as they are in English). We only added this entry because so many people requested it.

We put the characters in the order shown above, as it almost makes a single word with the meaning, "A life of laughter and love." It's a made-up word but it sounds good in Chinese.


We removed the Japanese pronunciation guide from this entry, as the professional Japanese translator deemed it "near nonsense" from a Japanese perspective. Choose this only if your audience is Chinese and you want the fewest-possible characters to express this idea.

In Korean, this would be 소애생활 or "so ae saeng hwar" but I have not confirmed that this makes sense in Korean.

Live Without Regret

China shēng ér wú huǐ
Live Without Regret Wall Scroll

生而無悔 is how to say "live without regrets" in Mandarin Chinese.


Note: There is some debate about whether this makes sense in Japanese. It would be read, "nama ji mu ke," and be understood in Japanese. But, a Japanese person will probably think it's Chinese (not Japanese).


See Also:  Live for Today

Live Without Regret

Japan jinsei kui nashi
Live Without Regret Wall Scroll

人生悔い無し is how to say "live without regrets" in Japanese.


Note: Because this selection contains some special Japanese Hiragana characters, it should be written by a Japanese calligrapher.


See Also:  Live for Today

Live Laugh Love

Japan ai to warai no seikatsu
Live Laugh Love Wall Scroll

Because a word list of "Live Laugh Love" is not natural in Japanese, this takes the concept and incorporates it into a proper phrase.

This can be translated as, "A life of love and laughter" or "Live life with love and laughter."


Note: Because this selection contains some special Japanese Hiragana characters, it should be written by a Japanese calligrapher.

New Beginning

China xīn de kāi shǐ
New Beginning Wall Scroll

This literally means "new beginning" in Chinese characters.

The character means "new."

The second is a possessive article connecting the ideas of new & beginning.

The last two characters can mean "to begin," "beginning," "to start," "initial," "commencement," or "initiation."

New Beginning

China yī shǐ
New Beginning Wall Scroll

伊始 is a short version of "new beginning" or simply "beginning" in Chinese characters.

You can also translated this as "from this moment on," "starting now" or "henceforth."

In day-to-day speech, this word can apply to starting new job, beginning a new career, entering a new chapter of your life, or taking a new position (in politics, scholarship, etc).

New Beginning

Japan arata na hajimari
New Beginning Wall Scroll

新たな始まり is a Japanese word that means "new beginning" or "new start."

Here's the character breakdown:
新た (arata) = new; fresh; novel; newly; freshly; or this can be like the prefix "re-" like "re-start" or "reset."
な (na) is kind of a connecting article. This glues "new" to "beginning."
始まり (hajimari) = origin; beginning.


Note: Because this selection contains some special Japanese Hiragana characters, it should be written by a Japanese calligrapher.

Freedom from Anger and Worry Yields Longevity

China bù qì bù chóu huó dào bái tóu
Freedom from Anger and Worry Yields Longevity Wall Scroll

This Chinese proverb means, "Without anger or worry, you will have a long life, until after all your hair is white."

It more literally reads, "Don't get angry or worried [and you will] live [long] till [all your] hair [becomes] white."

No Regrets

China wú huǐ
Japan mu ke
No Regrets Wall Scroll

無悔 is how to say "no regrets" in Mandarin Chinese. This also makes sense in Japanese though not the most common way to express "no regrets" in Japanese.


See Also:  Live for Today

No Regrets

Japan kou kai na shi
No Regrets Wall Scroll

後悔無し is how to say "no regrets" in Japanese.


See Also:  Live for Today

5. Right Living / Right Livelihood / Perfect Livelihood

Samyag Ajiva / Samma Ajiva
China zhèng mìng
Japan sei myou
5. Right Living / Right Livelihood / Perfect Livelihood Wall Scroll

正命 (right living) is one of the Noble Eightfold Paths of Buddhism.

Right Living, along with Right Speech and Right Action constitute the path to Virtue.

Right Living means that a Buddhist should only take a job or pursue a career in a field that does no harm. Buddhists should not work in the arms trade, as pimps or in the field of prostitution, as a butcher or in a shop that kills or sells meat, in a laboratory that does animal research, or any other business that involves scheming or unethical behavior.

Another definition: Avoidance of professions that are harmful to sentient beings, such as slaughterer, hunter, dealer in weaponry or narcotics, etc.


This term is exclusively used by devout Buddhists. It is not a common term, and is remains an unknown concept to most Japanese and Chinese people.


See Also:  Buddhism | Enlightenment

Re-Birth / Renaissance

China chóng shēng
Re-Birth / Renaissance Wall Scroll

重生 is the Chinese word for rebirth. This can be used literally or metaphorically. As a metaphor, you could use this to say something like "We are watching the rebirth of New Orleans after the disaster of Katrina."

重生 is sometimes translated as "renaissance."

Note: 重生 is not the Buddhist concept of reincarnation or re-birth.


See Also:  Reincarnation

Resurrection / Re-Birth

China fù huó
Japan hukkatsu
Resurrection / Re-Birth Wall Scroll

復活 is the Chinese, Japanese and Korean word for resurrection or rebirth. Basically this means "return to life."

It is the term used in most Asian Bibles to refer to the resurrection of Christ. In Japanese, it is sometimes used to mean a Christian Revival. In some context it can mean resuscitation.


See Also:  Christianity | Jesus Christ | God of Abraham

Sacrifice

China xī shēng
Japan gi sei
Sacrifice Wall Scroll

犧牲 / 犠牲 means sacrifice in Chinese, Japanese Kanji, and old Korean Hanja.

There is a suggestion in this word that this regards sacrificing your life.

Note: Depending on context, this can also mean victim or scapegoat in Japanese.

In original and ancient Chinese, this word referred to sacrificial animals. It can still have this meaning in a Buddhist context.


犠The version of the first character used in modern Japan looks like the image to the right. If you order this from the Japanese master calligrapher, it will be written in this Japanese version.

Soul Mates

China líng hún bàn lǚ
Japan reikon hanryo
Soul Mates Wall Scroll

靈魂伴侶 is the literal translation of "Soul Mates."

靈魂伴侶 is kind of the western way to express "soul mates" but translated into Chinese, Japanese Kanji, and old Korean Hanja.
The first two characters mean "soul" or "spirit."
The second two characters mean "mate," "companion" or "partner."

Although not the most common title, these characters have good meaning and will be received well in Chinese, Japanese, and Korean. It's a universal title!

Vitality

China shēng mìng lì
Japan seimeiryoku
Vitality Wall Scroll

This word can mean "vitality" or "libido." The first two characters mean "life" or "life force." The last character is a common word that means "strength." So together you get the meaning "life strength" which is the essence of vitality. Some will also translate this word as "good health."


See Also:  Life Force | Health




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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
Living
Live Life
生活sei katsu / seikatsushēng huó
sheng1 huo2
sheng huo
shenghuo
Birth
Life
shou / iku / sho / iku / sho/ikushēng / sheng1 / sheng
Alive 活著
活着
huó zhe / huo2 zhe / huo zhe / huozhe huo che / huoche
Beautiful Life
Life in Perfect Harmony
和美wa mi / wamihé měi / he2 mei3 / he mei / hemei ho mei / homei
Choose Life 選擇生活
选择生活
xuǎn zé shēng huó
xuan3 ze2 sheng1 huo2
xuan ze sheng huo
xuanzeshenghuo
hsüan tse sheng huo
hsüantseshenghuo
Embrace Life
Embrace Living
擁抱生活
拥抱生活
yōng bào shēng huó
yong1 bao4 sheng1 huo2
yong bao sheng huo
yongbaoshenghuo
yung pao sheng huo
yungpaoshenghuo
Embrace Life 人生を享受するjinsei o kyouju suru
jinseiokyoujusuru
jinsei o kyoju suru
jinseiokyojusuru
Enjoy Life 享受生活xiǎng shòu shēng huó
xiang3 shou4 sheng1 huo2
xiang shou sheng huo
xiangshoushenghuo
hsiang shou sheng huo
hsiangshoushenghuo
Enjoy Life 人生を楽しみにしているjin sei o tano shi mi ni shi te i ru
Eternal Life
Everlasting Life
Immortality
永生eiseiyǒng shēng
yong3 sheng1
yong sheng
yongsheng
yung sheng
yungsheng
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.