Asian Art Gallery

Adventures in Asian Art



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Fate / Destiny in Chinese / Japanese...

Buy a Fate / Destiny calligraphy wall scroll here!

Start your custom "Fate / Destiny" project by clicking the button next to your favorite "Fate / Destiny" title below...

Quick links to words on this page...

  1. Destiny / Fate
  2. Fate / Chance Meeting
  3. Fate / Opportunity / Chance
  4. Destiny / Fate
  5. The Karma/Fate/Destiny...
  6. Destiny Determined by Heaven
  7. Predestined Love / Love by Fate
  8. The Red String
  9. The Mysterious Bond Between People


Destiny / Fate

China yùn mìng
Japan un mei
knob
ribbon top
knob

These two characters contain the ideas of "fate", "destiny", "fortune" and "luck" in Chinese, Japanese Kanji, and old Korean Hanja. This is often defined as "a person's fate" in various dictionaries.

These two characters can be reversed (written in either order) and yield roughly the same meaning.

This particular character order happens to be more common in old Korean and less common in modern Chinese.


See Also...  Good Fortune | Good Luck

Fate / Chance Meeting

China yuán fèn
knob
ribbon top
knob

These two characters contain the ideas of fate. But this is specifically the fate or destiny that brings two people together.

This is like the chance meeting of two people that leads some time later to marriage.

This could also be the chance meeting of two business people, who become partners and build a huge and successful company.

Basically, this is an idea often associated with a fateful meeting leading to good fortune.

Some will define this word as, "The destiny brings you two together", or "Meant to be".


分 Note: Second character can also be written without the left radical, as shown to the right. If you have a preference, please let use know in the special instructions for your project. There is no difference in meaning or pronunciation, just two (alternate) ways to write the same character.


See Also...  Soulmates | Good Fortune

Fate / Opportunity / Chance

Buddhist idea of Fate
China yīn yuán
Japan in nen
knob
ribbon top
knob

This is the Buddhist concept of a chance meeting or an opportunity that presents itself by fate.

Sometimes this is used to describe a cosmic chain of events or cause and effect.

It also is used to describe predestined relationships between people - and sometimes married couples (although if you want one about marriage, try this: Fate / Destiny of Lovers.

This word can also be translated as origin, karma, destiny, affinity, connection, and relation. This all depends on context - seen alone on a wall scroll, this will be read with a "fate / chance" meaning by a Chinese person, or a Korean person who can read Hanja.

The more complex definition of this word would be, "Direct causes and indirect conditions, which underlie the actions of all things".

This concept is known as nidana in the original Sanskrit. Also sometimes presented as hetupratyaya (or "hetu and prataya") which I believe is Pali.


Note: Japanese will tend to use this version of the second Kanji: 縁
If you order this from the Japanese master calligrapher, expect that you'll get this version. However, this word often carries a negative connotation in Japanese (bad things happen), as it is used that way in a certain Japanese idiom. Therefore, this may not be the best choice if Japanese is your target language.


See Also...  Buddhism | Opportunity

Destiny / Fate

China mìng yùn
knob
ribbon top
knob

These two characters contain the ideas of "fate", "destiny", "fortune" and "luck". You can also say that it means "what life throws at you" or "your lot in life" because the first character contains the idea of "life" or "living".

This version is really only used in Chinese. There's another version with just the characters reversed that is more universal. In fact, just skip this one. The opposite character order is better.

Destiny / Fate

(single character)
China mìng
Japan inochi / mei
knob
ribbon top
knob

This character is often translated as "destiny". Sometimes this character is simply translated as "life", but more in terms of one's lot in life. In certain context, this can mean command or decree (generally from a king or emperor). Of course, such a decree are part of fate and lead you to fulfill your destiny.

In Chinese this word leans toward the fate or destiny definition.
In Korean, it is usually read simply as "life".
In Japanese, it can mean all definitions shown above, depending on context.


See Also...  Good Fortune

The Karma/Fate/Destiny
that Brings Lovers Together

China yīn yuán
knob
ribbon top
knob

These two characters mean, "Destiny that brings lovers together". It can also be translated technically as, "Predestined matrimonial affinity" (wow, talk about taking the romance out of this word - that was from the Oxford C-E dictionary).

Basically, this is talking about the fate (or karma) that brings a husband and wife together. I would translate this as "Together by fate" or "Joined by destiny", but in the context of marriage. You could use this for non-married lovers, but the first character has a suggestion that this refers to those that are married.

Destiny Determined by Heaven

China tiān yì
Japan teni
knob
ribbon top
knob

This is a way to express destiny in a slightly religious way. Literally this means "Heaven's Wish" or "Heaven's Desire" with the idea of fate and destiny being derived as well. It suggests that your destiny comes from God / Heaven and that your path has already been chosen by a higher power.

My Japanese dictionary defines this word as "divine will" or "providence" but it also holds the meaning of "the will of the emperor". Therefore I don't suggest this phrase if your audience is Japanese - it feels a little strange in Japanese anyway.

Predestined Love / Love by Fate

China qíng yuán
knob
ribbon top
knob

This Chinese word means predestined love, or love affinity.

This can be the fate, karma, or bond that brings two lovers together.

The Red String

Thread of Lover's Destiny / Fate
Japan akai ito
knob
ribbon top
knob

This literally translates as, "the red string" in Japanese, but the real meaning is much deeper...

In Japanese culture, it's believed that fate, destiny, or karma joins lovers by an unseen string, tied around one little finger of each. This is how soul mates fine and are drawn to each other.

The Mysterious Bond Between People

The invisible force that brings people together forever
China yuán
Japan en
knob
ribbon top
knob

This is a complicated single character. It can mean a lot of different things depending on how you read it.

In Japanese, it can mean fate; destiny; a mysterious force that binds two people together; a relationship between two people; bond; link; connection; family ties; affinity; opportunity; chance (to meet someone and start a relationship). It can also mean "someone to rely on", relative, reminder, memento, or the female given name, Yori.

It's basically the same in Chinese, where it's defined as cause, reason, karma, fate, or predestined affinity.

In Buddhist context, it's Pratyaya. This is the concept of indirect conditions, as opposed to direct causes. It's when something happens (meeting someone) by circumstance, or a contributing environment. Instead of a direct cause or act, it is a conditioning cause without direct input or action by the involved people.

Occasionally, this character is used in a facetious way to say hem, seam, or edge of clothing. In this case, it's the seam that brings or holds the clothing together.


縁Note: Japanese will tend to use the variant of this Kanji shown to the right. If you want this version (and are ordering this from the Japanese master calligrapher), click on the Kanji at the right instead of the button above.


Check dictionary for fate / destiny
A nice Chinese calligraphy wall scroll

The scroll that I am holding in this picture is a "medium size"
4-character wall scroll.
As you can see, it is a great size to hang on your wall.
(We also offer custom wall scrolls in larger sizes)

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.




If your search is not successful, just post your request on our forum, and we'll be happy to do research or translation for any reasonable request.

Successful Chinese Character and Japanese Kanji calligraphy searches within the last few hours...

Aikido
Ambition
Autumn
Axel
Balanced Life
Bamboo
Be Happy
Bear
Beautiful
Beautiful Princess
Beautiful Woman
Beauty
Beloved Son
Best Love
Bird
Black Belt
Bless and Protect
Blossom
Bodhi
Brother
Brotherhood
Brotherly Love
Cause and Effect
Charles
Cherry Blossom
Christian
Death Before Surrender
Determination
Double Happiness
Dragon
Dragon Tiger
Drink
Enlightenment
Erin
Faith Love Hope
Falcon
Fall
Feelings
Feet On the Ground
Fight
Fish
Flowers
Free Spirit
Frog
Geisha
Ghost
Girl
God is Always With You
God is Love
Gold Fish
Golden
Good Fortune
Good Luck
Grace
Grace from Heaven
Great
Great Ambitions
Guan Gong
Happiness
Harmony
Hazel
Heart
Horse
I Love You
I Need You
Infinite
Inner Beauty
Iris Flower
Jasmine
John
Kirin
Koi Fish
Live for the Day
Live for the Moment
Live for Today
Live in Prosperity
Live the Moment
Longevity
Lotus
Love
Love Always
Love and Respect
Love Forever
Love You Forever
Luck
Miguel
Miles
Mirror
Moon
Mountain
Mountains
Nothing
Nothingness
One Life One Chance
One True Love
Peace
Peace of Mind
Pearl
Plum
Precious
Rain and Wind
Regina
Remember
River
Roberto
Saint
Sakura
Scorpio
Serena
Sexy
Steve
Strength
Strong
Strong Will
Talent
The Saint
Three
Tiger
Tigers
Warrior
Water
Wisdom from Hard Knocks
Wolf
Year of the Dragon
Yin Yang

With so many searches, we had to upgrade to our own Linux server.
Of course, only one in 500 searches results in a purchase - Hey buy a wall scroll!!!



See: Our list of specifically Japanese Kanji Calligraphy Wall Scrolls. And, check out Our list of specifically old Korean Hanja Calligraphy Wall Scrolls.

The following table is only helpful for those studying Chinese (or Japanese), and perhaps helps search engines to find this page when someone enters Romanized Chinese or Japanese

Title
Characters 
Simplified
Traditional
Japanese Romaji
(Romanized Japanese)
Various forms of Romanized Chinese
Destiny / Fate运命
運命
un mei
unmei
yùn mìng
yun ming
yün ming
yun4 ming4
yunming
Fate / Chance Meeting缘份 / 缘分
緣份 / 緣分
n/ayuán fèn
yuan fen
yüan fen
yuan2 fen4
yuanfen
Fate / Opportunity / Chance因缘 / 因縁
因緣
in nen
innen
yīn yuán
yin yuan
yin yüan
yin1 yuan2
yinyuan
Destiny / Fate命运
命運
n/amìng yùn
ming yun
ming yün
ming4 yun4
mingyun
Destiny / Fate
inochi / meimìng
ming
ming4
The Karma/Fate/Destiny / that Brings Lovers Together姻缘
姻緣
n/ayīn yuán
yin yuan
yin yüan
yin1 yuan2
yinyuan
Destiny Determined by Heaven天意
天意
tenitiān yì
tian yi
t`ien i
tian1 yi4
tianyi
tieni
tien i
Predestined Love / Love by Fate情缘
情緣
n/aqíng yuán
qing yuan
ch`ing yüan
qing2 yuan2
qingyuan
chingyüan
ching yüan
The Red String赤い糸
赤い糸
akai ito
akaiito
n/a
The Mysterious Bond Between People
緣 / 縁
enyuán
yuan
yüan
yuan2

If you have not set up your computer to display Chinese, the characters in this table probably look like empty boxes or random text garbage.
This is why I spent hundreds of hours making images so that you could view the characters in the "fate / destiny" listings above.
If you want your Windows computer to be able to display Chinese characters you can either head to your Regional and Language options in your Win XP control panel, select the [Languages] tab and click on [Install files for East Asian Languages]. This task will ask for your Win XP CD to complete in most cases. If you don't have your Windows XP CD, or are running Windows 98, you can also download/run the simplified Chinese font package installer from Microsoft which works independently with Win 98, ME, 2000, and XP. It's a 2.5MB download, so if you are on dial up, start the download and go make a sandwich.

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