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Quick links to words on this page...
| 1. Initiative / Leadership
2. Initiative / Proactive / Positive
3. Consciousness of Self
5. Mind of the Beginner
7. Qi Gong / Chi Kung
9. Kensho - Initial Enlightenment
15. Old Karate / Tang Hand Way / Tang Soo Do
16. Kensho Jyobutsu - Enlightenment - Path to Buddha
17. New Beginning
18. Worldwide Wish for Peace and Prosperity
19. Never Forget Your First Resolution
20. Wing Chun Fist Maxims
In Chinese, this word means "to take the initiative."
In Japanese and Korean, the meaning varies slightly to a meaning that leans more toward "leadership" (as in one who is leading a group or organization).
This word closely matches the way initiative is often used in English. This word can also mean active, energetic, vigorous, positive (outlook), or proactive in Chinese.
The meaning also includes positive and progressive in Japanese and Korean.
自覺 is the idea of being conscious, self-aware and sometimes "on one's own initiative."
After WWII, they started using a simplified form of the second Kanji for this word in Japan. That version is shown to the right, and you can click on that Kanji if you want the modern Japanese form. Otherwise, the characters shown in the upper left are the correct ones for ancient/old/traditional Chinese, Japanese, and Korean.
虎 is the character for tiger in Chinese, old Korean Hanja, and Japanese Kanji.
Since you already know what a tiger is, here's some trivia: If you look at the Japanese pronunciation, you might remember a movie called "Tora Tora Tora" which was the code word used to initiate the attack on Pearl Harbor. It simply means "Tiger Tiger Tiger."
In Chinese culture, the tiger is considered to be the king of all animals (in much the way we see the lion in western culture).
From the Chinese Zodiac, if you were born in the year of the tiger, you . . .
Have a strong personality.
Are full of self-confidence.
Don't like to obey others.
初心 is often translated in Japanese as "beginner’s mind" or "beginner’s spirit."
In Chinese, the dictionary definition is "one’s original intention."
The first character means first, initial, primary, junior, beginning, or basic.
The second character means heart, mind, soul, or essence.
初心 is one of the five spirits of the warrior (budo), and is often used as a Japanese martial arts tenet. Under that context, places such as the Budo Dojo define it this way: The state of shoshin is that of a beginners mind. It is a state of awareness the remains always fully conscious, aware, and prepared to see things for the first time. The attitude of shoshin is essential to continued learning.
Beyond inspire or inspiration, this Chinese word can mean enlightenment or revelation. 啟示 is used as the Biblical revelation in the Chinese Bible, so it can also mean apocalypse depending on context.
Separately, the first character can mean: to open; to start; to initiate; to enlighten; to awaken; to state; to inform.
The second character alone can mean: to show; to reveal; to indicate; to proclaim.
Qigong is the title of a technique that is somewhere between a medical practice, meditation, and in some cases a religion. The definition is blurred depending on which school of Qigong you are following. In some cases, it is even incorporated with martial arts.
Some people (even Chinese people) mix this title with Tai Chi (Tai Qi) exercises.
Lately in China, people will claim to practice Tai Chi rather than Qigong because the Qigong title was recently used as a cover for an illegal pseudo-religious movement in China with the initials F.G. or F.D. (I can not write those names here for fear of our website being banned in China).
You can learn those names and more here: Further info about Qigong
If you are wondering about why I wrote "Qi Gong" and "Chi Kung" as the title of this calligraphy entry, I should teach you a little about the various ways in which Chinese can be Romanized. One form writes this as "Chi Kung" or "Chikung" (Taiwan). In the mainland and elsewhere, it is Romanized as "Qi Gong" or "Qigong." The actual pronunciation is the same in Taiwan, mainland, and Singapore Mandarin. Neither Romanization is exactly like English. If you want to know how to say this with English rules, it would be something like "Chee Gong" (but the "gong" has a vowel sound like the "O" in "go").
Romanization is a really confusing topic and has caused many Chinese words to be mispronounced in the west. One example is "Kung Pao Chicken" which should actually be more like "Gong Bao" with the "O" sounding like "oh" for both characters. Neither system of Romanization in Taiwan or the Mainland is perfect in my opinion and lead to many misunderstandings.
Generally the same meaning as Satori but referring to the initial state or initial experience of enlightenment. 見性 is a Zen Buddhist term that is not widely known outside of the religion. Used more in Japan than China.
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. Some Japanese people will dispute whether this title is valid in the Japanese language. Only order this if you are sure this title is right for you.
桑普 is a common transliteration to Mandarin Chinese for the name Thumper.
桑普 is a difficult name to transliterate since there are no initial "th" or final "r" sounds in Chinese. This version sounds like "Sung pu."
桑普 is the official Chinese name used for Thumper, the rabbit from the Disney movie Bambi.
啟蒙 is the Chinese word for enlightenment.
The first character means to open, to start, to begin, to commence or to explain. The second character means deception or ignorance. Basically, it suggests that enlightenment is the opening or cutting through what deceives you in the world or the ignorance of the world. This title can also mean "to educate."
The Japanese and Korean version of the first character of this title varies slightly from the Chinese. Please click on the Kanji to the right, instead of the button above, if you want the Japanese/Korean version.
初心流 is often translated in Japanese as "beginner’s mind style" or "beginner’s spirit method."
The first character means first, initial, primary, junior, beginning, or basic.
The second character means heart, mind, soul, or essence.
The third character means style, method, or some will translate it as school.
Please note, there is more than one martial arts school that romanizes as Shoshin-Ryu.
澤維爾 is another way that Xavier can be transliterated into Chinese. Neither way is right or wrong. 澤維爾 is just a tough name because there is no sound in Chinese like an initial X in a word.
If you are wondering, when you see a Romanized Chinese word with an X, it is actually pronounced more like SH but with your tongue at the bottom of your mouth. It's kind of a weird convention of Romanizing Chinese.
唐手道 is the alternate title for Karate-do. This title uses a character which represents the Tang Dynasty of China. Thus, this is often translated as the "Tang Hand Way" or incorrectly, "Tang Fist Way." I have also seen some call it "China Hand Way."
There is not a lot of information on this title but some believe that a simplified form of Kung Fu that started in China, and ended up very popular in Japan used this title initially. It was later changed in Japan to a different Karate title which means "Empty Hand" (as in, without weapons).
In Korean, this title represents a certain style of martial arts. From Korean, this is often romanized as "Tang Soo Do," "Tangsudo," "Dang Su Do," or "Dangsudo." The last two romanizations on that list are the official Korean government romanization, though martial arts schools tend to use other non-standard versions.
啟盛世開太平 means "To bring flourishing peace and security to the world (our current era)."
It's really a wish that a new door leading to peace and prosperity could be opened to mankind.
Character and word breakdown:
啟 to open; to start; to initiate; to enlighten or awaken.
盛世 a flourishing period; period of prosperity; a golden age.
開 to open; to start; to turn on.
太平 peace and security; peace and tranquility; peace; tranquility.
I don't really like to do breakdowns like this, as the words altogether create their own unique meaning (encompassed in the main title above). Please take that into consideration.
初心忘るべからず / 初心忘る可からず is an old Japanese proverb that suggests you try to never forget the enthusiasm you had as a child when you try new things (or even face the day-to-day). Basically avoid having a mundane attitude that many people get with age.
You'll find this Japanese proverb translated a few different ways. Here are some of them:
Don't forget your first resolution.
Never forget your child-like enthusiasm.
Forget not the beginner's mind.
Try never to lose your initial enthusiasm (freshness of attitude).
Note: This is sometimes written as 初心忘る可からず. The one shown above is used about 10x more often. There's only one character difference between the two versions.
Note: Because this selection contains some special Japanese Hiragana characters, it should be written by a Japanese calligrapher.
有手黐手無手問手來留區送甩手直沖怕打終歸打貪打終被打粘連迫攻絕不放鬆來力瀉力借力出擊步步追形點點朝午以形補手敗形不敗馬腰馬一致心意合一拳由心發動法無形活人練活死功夫 is the chant or poem of Wing Chun. I call it a "chant" because it was meant to be a somewhat rhythmic poem to help practitioners memorize many aspects of Wing Chun.
You will see this referred to as, "Wing Chun Kuem Kuit." This Cantonese romanization is popular in the west (and there is no official way to romanize Cantonese, so many variations exist). In Mandarin it would be, "Yong Chun Quan Jue." The last character (kuit or kyut from Cantonese, jue or chüeh from Mandarin) kind of means "secrets of the art." It's a short way to write 口訣, meaning "mnemonic chant" or "rhyme for remembering."
In the west (especially in the military), we often use acronyms to remember things. There's no initials to make acronyms in Chinese, so in ancient times, chants like this are used to remember vast amounts of information.
I will presume you already know the meaning of the 10 maxims, so I will skip that to keep this calligraphy entry from getting too large.
Some think 练拳者必记 is the title but that just says, "Training fist people should remember:." Therefore, I've not included that in the calligraphy. However, you can put a note in the special instructions if you want it added.
Note: On a traditional calligraphy wall scroll, the characters will be written in vertical columns, starting from the right, and proceeding left.
Note: This is an except and variation from a huge 口訣. These 10 maxims are used extensively in Wing Chun training, and you'll find them all over the internet. Just know there is a much longer version out there, along with several variations and excepts like this one. If you know of, or want a different version, just contact me, and I will add it for you.
The following table may be helpful for those studying Chinese or Japanese...
|Title||Characters||Romaji(Romanized Japanese)||Various forms of Romanized Chinese|
|shudou / shudo||jī jí / ji1 ji2 / ji ji / jiji||chi chi / chichi|
|sekkyoku / sekyoku||jī jí / ji1 ji2 / ji ji / jiji||chi chi / chichi|
|Consciousness of Self||自覺|
自觉 / 自覚
|jikaku||zì jué / zi4 jue2 / zi jue / zijue||tzu chüeh / tzuchüeh|
|Tiger||虎||tora||hǔ / hu3 / hu|
|Mind of the Beginner||初心||sho shin / shoshin||chū xīn / chu1 xin1 / chu xin / chuxin||ch`u hsin / chuhsin / chu hsin|
|qǐ shì / qi3 shi4 / qi shi / qishi||ch`i shih / chishih / chi shih|
|kikou / kiko||qì gōng / qi4 gong1 / qi gong / qigong||ch`i kung / chikung / chi kung|
|ěr jié / er3 jie2 / er jie / erjie||erh chieh / erhchieh|
|Kensho - Initial Enlightenment||見性|
|ken shou / kenshou / ken sho / kensho||jiàn xìng
|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.
Successful Chinese Character and Japanese Kanji calligraphy searches within the last few hours...
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Check out my lists of Japanese Kanji Calligraphy Wall Scrolls and Old Korean Hanja Calligraphy Wall Scrolls.
Some people may refer to this entry as Initiative Kanji, Initiative Characters, Initiative in Mandarin Chinese, Initiative Characters, Initiative in Chinese Writing, Initiative in Japanese Writing, Initiative in Asian Writing, Initiative Ideograms, Chinese Initiative symbols, Initiative Hieroglyphics, Initiative Glyphs, Initiative in Chinese Letters, Initiative Hanzi, Initiative in Japanese Kanji, Initiative Pictograms, Initiative in the Chinese Written-Language, or Initiative in the Japanese Written-Language.