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| 1. Live For The Day / Seize The Day
2. Live For The Day
3. Live In The Moment / Live In The Now
5. Carpe Diem / Seize the Day
6. Everyday Life
| 7. Birth / Life|
8. Heaven / Sky
9. Learning is Eternal
10. Love Life
11. A sly rabbit has three openings to its den
12. Better Late Than Never
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.
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.
現世 is a very short way to write "live in the moment" or "live in the now" in Japanese.
This short word is open to interpretation. It's used in Japanese Buddhism to mean "the current epoch" or "the current age" (the current age is but a brief moment in the greater scope of existence). When used in that context, this is pronounced "utsushiyo" or "ustusiyo" in Japanese. Otherwise, it's pronounced "gensei" in Japanese.
Other translation possibilities include:
Live for now
This (momentary) reality
Note: This is also a word in Chinese and old Korean Hanja. While the meaning is more or less the same, this is not recommended for a wall scroll if your audience is Chinese or Korean. This selection is best if your audience is Japanese.
日 is how to write "day" in Chinese, Japanese and Korean Hanja.
This can also mean "Sun," the star in the middle of the Solar system in which we live. In Japanese, it can also mean "sunshine" or even "Sunday."
When writing the date in modern Chinese and Japanese, putting a number in front of this character indicates the day of the month. Of course, you need to indicate the month too... The month is expressed with a number followed by the character for the moon. So "three moons ten suns" would be "March 10th" or "3/10."
Note: 日 is also the first character for the proper name of Japan. Remember that Japan is "The land of the rising sun"? Well, the first character for Japan means "sun" the second means "origin" so you get the real meaning now. Sometimes, in China, this sun character can be a short name for Japan or a suffix for something of or from Japan.
This simply means everyday life or regular life. You can also translate it as "Living day to day."
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
This character means "heaven" or "sky" in Chinese, Japanese Kanji, and old Korean Hanja.
The context determines if you are talking about heaven or the sky above (often they are the same concept).
When combined with other characters, words like "today" and "tomorrow" are created. While sometimes the character for "sun" is used to mean "day," often "sky" represents "day" in Asian languages.
Example: 今天 (this sky) = "today," 明天 (next sky) = "tomorrow" in modern Chinese and Japanese.
In Chinese culture, regardless of which religion, it's almost always assumed that God (and any other deities) live up above in the sky. The concept of God living in the sky is likely the reason heaven is associated with this character.
The equation goes something like this: God's domain is the sky, thus, the sky is heaven.
Note: As a single character, this is a little ambiguous, so you might want to choose our Kingdom of Heaven selection instead.
This Chinese philosophy tells of how we continue to learn throughout our lives. This proverb can be translated in a few ways such as "Study has no end," "Knowledge is infinite," "No end to learning," "There's always something new to study," or "You live and learn."
The deeper meaning: Even when we finish school we are still students of the world gaining more knowledge from our surroundings with each passing day.
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.
This speaks to the cunning character of a sly rabbit. Such a rabbit will not have just one hole but rather a few entrances and exits from his liar.
About 2,250 years ago a very rich man told his assistant to go and buy something wonderful that he did not yet posses. He was a man that already had everything, so the assistant went to a local village that owed a great deal of money to the rich man. The assistant told the village elders that all debts were forgiven. All the villagers rejoiced and praised the rich man's name. The assistant returned to the rich man and told him he had purchased "benevolence" for him. The rich man was mildly amused but perhaps a bit confused by the action.
Some time later, the rich man fell from the favor of the Emperor, and was wiped out without a penny to his name. One day he was walking aimlessly and stumbled into the village in which the debts had been forgiven. The villagers recognized the man and welcomed him with open arms, clothed, fed, and gave him a place to live.
Without trying, the man had become like the sly and cunning rabbit. When his exit was blocked, he had another hole to emerge from - and was reborn. This story and idiom comes from a book titled "The Amendment" - it's unclear whether this man actually existed or not. But the book did propel this idiom into common use in China.
Still today this idiom about the rabbit is used in China when suggesting "backup plans" alternate methods, and anyone with a good escape plan.
Long ago in what is now China, there were many kingdoms throughout the land. This time period is known as "The Warring States Period" by historians because these kingdoms often did not get along with each other.
Some time around 279 B.C. the Kingdom of Chu was a large but not particularly powerful kingdom. Part of the reason it lacked power was the fact that the King was surrounded by "yes men" who told him only what he wanted to hear. Many of the King’s court officials were corrupt and incompetent which did not help the situation.
The King was not blameless himself, as he started spending much of his time being entertained by his many concubines.
One of the King’s ministers, Zhuang Xin, saw problems on the horizon for the Kingdom, and warned the King, "Your Majesty, you are surrounded by people who tell you what you want to hear. They tell you things to make you happy, and cause you to ignore important state affairs. If this is allowed to continue, the Kingdom of Chu will surely perish, and fall into ruins."
This enraged the King who scolded Zhuang Xin for insulting the country and accused him of trying to create resentment among the people. Zhuang Xin explained, "I dare not curse the Kingdom of Chu but I feel that we face great danger in the future because of the current situation." The King was simply not impressed with Zhuang Xin’s words.
Seeing the King’s displeasure with him and the King’s fondness for his court of corrupt officials, Zhuang Xin asked permission of the King that he may take leave of the Kingdom of Chu, and travel to the State of Zhao to live. The King agreed, and Zhuang Xin left the Kingdom of Chu, perhaps forever.
Five months later, troops from the neighboring Kingdom of Qin invaded Chu, taking a huge tract of land. The King of Chu went into exile, and it appeared that soon, the Kingdom of Chu would no longer exist.
The King of Chu remembered the words of Zhuang Xin, and sent some of his men to find him. Immediately, Zhuang Xin returned to meet the King. The first question asked by the King was, "What can I do now?"
Zhuang Xin told the King this story:
A shepherd woke one morning to find a sheep missing. Looking at the pen saw a hole in the fence where a wolf had come through to steal one of his sheep. His friends told him that he had best fix the hole at once. But the Shepherd thought since the sheep is already gone, there is no use fixing the hole.
The next morning, another sheep was missing. And the Shepherd realized that he must mend the fence at once. Zhuang Xin then went on to make suggestions about what could be done to reclaim the land lost to the Kingdom of Qin, and reclaim the former glory and integrity in the Kingdom of Chu.
The Chinese idiom shown above came from this reply from Zhuang Xin to the King of Chu almost 2,300 years ago.
It translates roughly into English as...
"Even if you have lost some sheep, it’s never too late to mend the fence."
This proverb is often used in modern China when suggesting in a hopeful way that someone change their ways, or fix something in their life. It might be used to suggest fixing a marriage, quit smoking, or getting back on track after taking an unfortunate path in life among other things one might fix in their life.
I suppose in the same way that we might say, "Today is the first day of the rest of your life" in our western cultures to suggest that you can always start anew.
Note: This does have Korean pronunciation but is not a well-known proverb in Korean (only Koreans familiar with ancient Chinese history would know it). Best if your audience is Chinese.
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The following table may be helpful for those studying Chinese or Japanese...
|Title||Characters||Romaji(Romanized Japanese)||Various forms of Romanized Chinese|
|Live For The Day
Seize The Day
|今を生きる||ima wo i ki ru|
|Live For The Day||活在今天||huó zài jīn tiān
huo2 zai4 jin1 tian1
huo zai jin tian
|huo tsai chin t`ien
huo tsai chin tien
|Live In The Moment
Live In The Now
|gen sei / gensei||xiàn shì / xian4 shi4 / xian shi / xianshi||hsien shih / hsienshih|
|Day||日||hi / nichi||rì / ri4 / ri||jih|
Seize the Day
|把握今日||bǎ wò jīn rì
ba3 wo4 jin1 ri4
ba wo jin ri
|pa wo chin jih
|Everyday Life||日常生活||nichi jou sei katsu|
nichi jo sei katsu
|rì cháng shēng huó
ri4 chang2 sheng1 huo2
ri chang sheng huo
|jih ch`ang sheng huo
jih chang sheng huo
|生||shou / iku / sho / iku / sho/iku||shēng / sheng1 / sheng|
|天||ten||tiān / tian1 / tian||t`ien / tien|
|Learning is Eternal||學無止境|
|xué wú zhǐ jìng
xue2 wu2 zhi3 jing4
xue wu zhi jing
|hsüeh wu chih ching
|rè ài shēng mìng
re4 ai4 sheng1 ming4
re ai sheng ming
|je ai sheng ming
|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.
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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 Live for the Day Kanji, Live for the Day Characters, Live for the Day in Mandarin Chinese, Live for the Day Characters, Live for the Day in Chinese Writing, Live for the Day in Japanese Writing, Live for the Day in Asian Writing, Live for the Day Ideograms, Chinese Live for the Day symbols, Live for the Day Hieroglyphics, Live for the Day Glyphs, Live for the Day in Chinese Letters, Live for the Day Hanzi, Live for the Day in Japanese Kanji, Live for the Day Pictograms, Live for the Day in the Chinese Written-Language, or Live for the Day in the Japanese Written-Language.