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空無 is "nothingness" in a Buddhist context.
The first character means empty but can also mean air or sky (air and sky have no form).
The second character means have not, no, none, not or to lack.
Together these characters reinforce each other into a word that means "absolute nothingness."
I know this is a term used in Buddhism but I have not yet figured out the context in which it is used. I suppose it can be the fact that Buddhists believe that the world in a non-real illusion, or perhaps it's about visualizing yourself as "nothing" and therefore leaving behind your desire and worldliness.
Buddhist concepts and titles often have this element of ambiguity or rather "mystery." Therefore, such ideas can have different meanings to different people, and that's okay. If you don't get it right in this lifetime, as there will be plenty more lifetimes to master it (whatever "it" is, and if "it" really exists at all).
Soothill defines this as "Unreality, or immateriality, of things, which is defined as nothing existing of independent or self-contained nature."
無 is the simple way to express "nothing." However, this single character leaves a bit of mystery as to what you might really mean if you hang it as a wall scroll. I'm not saying that's a bad thing; as you can decide what it means to you, and you won't be wrong if you stay within the general context.
More info: 無 is usually used as a suffix or prefix for Chinese and Japanese words (also old Korean). It can be compared to "un-" or "-less" in English. It can also mean "not to have," no, none, not, "to lack," or nothingness.
虛空 means empty space, empty sky, or void.
In the Buddhist context, it can mean "emptiness of the material world." This can also be used as an adjective to modify other words with a meaning of unreal or insubstantial.
This single character means empty, void, hollow, vacant, vacuum, blank, nonexistent, vacuity, voidness, emptiness, non-existence, immateriality, unreality, the false or illusory nature of all existence, being unreal.
In Buddhist context, this relates to the doctrine that all phenomena and the ego have no reality but are composed of a certain number of skandhas or elements, which disintegrate. The void, the sky, space. The universal, the absolute, complete abstraction without relativity. The doctrine further explains that all things are compounds, or unstable organisms, possessing no self-essence, i.e. are dependent, or caused, come into existence only to perish. The underlying reality, the principle of eternal relativity, or non-infinity, i.e. śūnya, permeates all phenomena making possible their evolution.
From Sanskrit and/or Pali, this is the translation to Chinese and Japanese of the title śūnya or śūnyatā.
In Japanese, when pronounced as "ron" (sounds like "roan") this can be a given name. It should be noted that this Kanji has about 5 different possible pronunciations in Japanese: kuu, kara, sora, ron, and uro. This is also an element in the Japanese version of the five elements.
Below are some entries from our dictionary that may match your nothingness search...
If shown, 2nd row is Simp. Chinese
|Simple Dictionary Definition|
| rú / ru2
| as; as if; such as
(Buddhist term) tathata (the ultimate nature of all things); (out-dated or obsolete kana usage) (adverbial noun) like; similar to; same as; (female given name) Yuki; (male given name) Hitoshi; (female given name) Naho
tathā 多陀; 但他 (or 怛他), so, thus, in such manner, like, as. It is used in the sense of the absolute, the 空 śūnya, which is 諸佛之實相 the reality of all Buddhas; hence 如 ru is 賃相 the undifferentiated whole of things, the ultimate reality; it is 諸法之性 the nature of all things, hence it connotes 法性 faxing which is 眞實之際極 the ultimate of reality, or the absolute, and therefore connotes 實際 ultimate reality. The ultimate nature of all things being 如 ru, the one undivided same, it also connotes 理 li, the principle or theory behind all things, and this 理 li universal law, being the 眞實 truth or ultimate reality; 如 ru is termed 眞如 bhūtatathatā, the real so, or suchness, or reality, the ultimate or the all, i. e. the 一如 yiru. In regard to 如 ju as 理 li the Prajñā-pāramitā puṇḍarīka makes it the 中 zhong, neither matter nor nothingness. It is also used in the ordinary sense of so, like, as (cf yathā).
| jiǔ de / jiu3 de
| very low land; (surname) Kuji
The nine lands, i.e. the 欲界 realm of desire or sensuous realm the four 色界 realms of form or material forms; and the four 無色界 formless realms, or realms beyond form; v. 九有, 九有情居, 禪 and 定. The nine realms are:—(1) 欲界五趣地; the desire realm with its five gati, i.e. hells, hungry ghosts, animals, men, and devas. In the four form-realms are:— (2) 離生喜樂地 Paradise after earthly life, this is also the first dhyāna, or subject of meditation, 初禪. (3) 定生喜樂地 Paradise of cessation of rebirth, 二禪. (4) 離喜妙樂地 Land of wondrous joy after the previous joys, 三禪. (5) 捨念淸淨地 The Pure Land of abandonment of thought, or recollection (of past delights), 四禪. The four formless, or infinite realms, catur arūpa dhātu, are:—(6) 空無邊處地 ākāśānantyā-yatanam, the land of infinite space; also the first samādhi, 第一定. (7) 識無邊處地 vijñānānamtyāyatanam, the land of omniscience, or infinite perception, 二定. (8) 無所有處地 ākiñcanyāyatana, the land of nothingness, 三定. (9) 非想非非想處地 naivasaṁjñānā-saṁjñāyatana, the land (of knowledge) without thinking or not thinking, or where there is neither consciousness nor unconsciousness, i.e. above either; this is the 四定. Eitel says that in the last four, "Life lasts 20,000 great kalpas in the 1st, 40,000 in the 2nd, 60,000 in the 3rd, and 80,000 great kalpas in the 4th of these heavens."; nine levels of existence
| sì jié / si4 jie2
shikou / shiko しこう
| (Buddhist term) the four kalpa (formation, existence, destruction, nothingness)
The four kalpas, or epochs, of a world, 成劫 that of formation and completion; 住劫 existing or abiding; 懷劫 destruction; and 空劫 annihilation, or the succeeding void. 倶舍論 12; four eons
| fǎ xìng / fa3 xing4
hosshou / hossho ほっしょう
houshou / hosho ほうしょう
| (Buddhist term) dharmata (dharma nature, the true nature of all manifest phenomena); (personal name) Hosshou; (surname) Houshou
dharmatā. Dharma-nature, the nature underlying all thing, the bhūtatathatā, a Mahāyāna philosophical concept unknown in Hīnayāna, v. 眞如 and its various definitions in the 法相, 三論 (or法性), 華嚴, and 天台 Schools. It is discussed both in its absolute and relative senses, or static and dynamic. In the Mahāparinirvāṇa sūtra and various śāstras the term has numerous alternative forms, which may be taken as definitions, i. e. 法定 inherent dharma, or Buddha-nature; 法住 abiding dharma-nature; 法界 dharmakṣetra, realm of dharma; 法身 dharmakāya, embodiment of dharma; 實際 region of reality; 實相 reality; 空性 nature of the Void, i. e. immaterial nature; 佛性 Buddha-nature; 無相 appearance of nothingness, or immateriality; 眞如 bhūtatathatā; 如來藏 tathāgatagarbha; 平等性 universal nature; 離生性 immortal nature; 無我性 impersonal nature; 虛定界: realm of abstraction; 不虛妄性 nature of no illusion; 不變異性 immutable nature; 不思議界 realm beyond thought; 自性淸淨心 mind of absolute purity, or unsulliedness, etc. Of these the terms 眞如, 法性, and 實際 are most used by the Prajñāpāramitā sūtras; dharma nature
| seikuu / seku せいくう
|| come to nothingness
| kōng jié / kong1 jie2
k`ung chieh / kung chieh
kuugou / kugo くうごう
kuukou / kuko くうこう
| (Buddhist term) the kalpa of nothingness (the final aeon of the universe)
The empty kalpa, v. 劫; eons of nothingness
| wū xiāng / wu1 xiang1
musou / muso むそう
| (surname) Musou
animitta; nirābhāsa. Without form, or sign; no marks, or characteristics; nothingness; absolute truth as having no differentiated ideas; nirvāṇa; devoid of marks
| kyomu きょむ
|| nihility; nothingness
| xū wú / xu1 wu2
Empty, non-existent, unreal, incorporeal, immaterial; nothingness
| bā jiě tuō / ba1 jie3 tuo1
pa chieh t`o / pa chieh to
| aṣṭa-vimokṣa, mokṣa, vimukti, mukti. Liberation, deliverance, freedom, emancipation, escape, release―in eight forms; also 八背捨 and cf. 解脫 and 八勝處. The eight are stages of mental concentration: (1) 内有色想觀外色解脱 Liberation, when subjective desire arises, by examination of the object, or of all things and realization of their filthiness. (2) 内無色想觀外色解脫 Liberation, when no subjective desire arises, by still meditating as above. These two are deliverance by meditation on impurity, the next on purity. (3) 淨身作證具足住解脫 Liberation by concentration on the pure to the realization of a permanent state of freedom from all desire. The above three "correspond to the four Dhyānas". (Eitel.) (4) 空無邊處解脫 Liberation in realization of the infinity of space, or the immaterial. (5) 識無邊處解脫 Liberation in realization of infinite knowledge. (6) 無所有處解脫Liberation in realization of nothingness, or nowhereness. (7) 非想非非想處解脫 Liberation in the state of mind where there is neither thought nor absence of thought. These four arise out of abstract meditation in regard to desire and form, and are associated with the 四空天. (8) 滅受 想定解脫 Liberation by means of a state of mind in which there is final extinction, nirvāṇa, of both sensation, vedanā, and consciousness, saṁjñā; eight kinds of liberation
| jiǔ yǒu qíng jū / jiu3 you3 qing2 ju1
chiu yu ch`ing chü / chiu yu ching chü
ku ujō ko
| (or 九有情處), 九衆生居, 九居, 九門, see also 九有, 九地, 九禪 and 九定; the nine happy abodes or states of sentient beings of the 長阿含經 9; they are the 七識住seven abodes or stages of perception or consciousness to which are added the fifth and ninth below: (1) 欲界之人天 the world and the six deva-heavens of desire in which there is variety of bodies (or personalities) and thinking (or ideas); (2) 梵衆天the three brahma heavens where bodies differ but thinking is the same, the first dhyāna heaven; (3) 極光淨天 the three bright and pure heavens where bodies are identical but thinking diners, the second dhyāna heaven; (4) 遍淨天the three universally pure heavens where bodies and thinking are the same, the third dhyāna heaven; (5) 無想天 the no-thinking or no-thought heaven, the highest of the four dhyāna heavens; (6) 空無邊處 limitless space, the first of the formless realms; (7) 識無邊處 limitless percepton, the second ditto; (8) 無所有處 nothingness, the place beyond things, the third ditto; and (9) 非想非非想beyond thought or non-thought, the fourth ditto; nine abodes of sentient beings
| wū xiāng pú tí / wu1 xiang1 pu2 ti2
wu hsiang p`u t`i / wu hsiang pu ti
| The enlightenment of seclusion, obtained by oneself, or of nirvāṇa, or nothingness, or immateriality; markless enlightenment
| yī wù bù jiāng lái / yi1 wu4 bu4 jiang1 lai2
i wu pu chiang lai
ichi motsu fu shōrai
| A Chan sect idea— not a thing to bring or carry away, empty-handed, i.e. nothingness; to come carrying nothing
| honraimuichimotsu ほんらいむいちもつ
|| (Buddhist term) all things are essentially nothingness; all things come from nothingness; originally, there was nothing; Zen reminder to free oneself from attachments
| wú suǒ yǒu chù dìng / wu2 suo3 you3 chu4 ding4
wu so yu ch`u ting / wu so yu chu ting
mu shousho jō
| akiñcanāyatana. The contemplation of the state of nothingness, or the immaterial, in which ecstasy gives place to serenity; a meditative state in which nothing exists
| wū xiāng fú tián yī / wu1 xiang1 fu2 tian2 yi1
wu hsiang fu t`ien i / wu hsiang fu tien i
musō fukuden e
| The garment of nothingness for cultivating the field of blessing, i.e. the robe, which separates the monk from earthly contamination; monk's robe as a markless field of merit
| ā luō luó jiā lán / a1 luo1 luo2 jia1 lan2
a lo lo chia lan
| Ālāra Kālāma or Ārāḍa Kālāma, the ṛṣi to whom Śākyamuni went on leaving home; another was Udraka Rāmaputra; they had attained to the concept of nothingness, including the non-existence of ideas. Other forms are 阿羅邏迦羅摩; 阿羅?迦邏摩; 阿藍迦; 阿藍 (阿藍伽藍); 阿蘭迦蘭; 羅勒迦藍.
The following table may be helpful for those studying Chinese or Japanese...
|Title||Characters||Romaji(Romanized Japanese)||Various forms of Romanized Chinese|
|kuu mu / kuumu / ku mu / kumu||kōng wú / kong1 wu2 / kong wu / kongwu||k`ung wu / kungwu / kung wu|
|mu||wú / wu2 / wu|
|kokuu / koku||xū kōng / xu1 kong1 / xu kong / xukong||hsü k`ung / hsükung / hsü kung|
|空||kuu / kara / sora / ron|
ku / kara / sora / ron
|kōng / kong1 / kong||k`ung / kung|
|天空||ten kuu / tenkuu / ten ku / tenku||tiān kōng
|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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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 Nothingness Kanji, Nothingness Characters, Nothingness in Mandarin Chinese, Nothingness Characters, Nothingness in Chinese Writing, Nothingness in Japanese Writing, Nothingness in Asian Writing, Nothingness Ideograms, Chinese Nothingness symbols, Nothingness Hieroglyphics, Nothingness Glyphs, Nothingness in Chinese Letters, Nothingness Hanzi, Nothingness in Japanese Kanji, Nothingness Pictograms, Nothingness in the Chinese Written-Language, or Nothingness in the Japanese Written-Language.