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| 1. War
2. God of War
3. Hachiman: God of War
4. Antiwar / Anti-War
5. Art of War
6. Tactics of War
7. Guandi: God of War
8. Sun Tzu - Art of War
9. Art of War: 5 Points of Analysis
10. Warrior Saint / Saint of War
12. God of Warcraft
13. Guan Gong / Warrior Saint
14. Attack When The Enemy Has Low Morale
15. Value of Warrior Generals
|16. Hunt Foxes with Stealth, Hunt Wolves in the Open
17. Know Thy Enemy, Know Thyself
18. Maintain An Army For 1000 Days, Use It For An Hour
19. Marishiten / Marici
20. Warrior / Musha
21. The one who retreats 50 paces mocks the one to retreats 100
23. Sun Tzu: Regard Your Soldiers as Children
24. Spiritual Warrior
25. Way of Life / Art of Life
26. Marine Corps
27. The More We Sweat in Training,...
29. Respect out of fear is never genuine...
30. Sworn Friend / Ally
|31. Know Your Enemy, Know Yourself, and You Cannot Lose|
32. Hua Mulan
33. Frightful Demon / Asura
34. Kai Zen / Kaizen
35. Flying Tigers AVG
36. Drain the pond to get all the fish
37. Mountain Travels Poem by Dumu
戰 / 戦 means war, battle, or fight.
戰 / 戦 is often used to title various wars. For instance, if you add the character for "2" before this character, you have the Chinese title for WWII.
In certain context, someone can use this word to mean campaign, game, or match.
Note: In Japan, they tend to use the form shown to the right. If you pick the Japanese master calligrapher, you may get/request this version. It should also be noted that this Kanji is seldom used alone in Japanese.
反戰 means antiwar, as in what a pacifist believes in.
China doesn't tend to go to war very often, and Japan has embraced a pacifist ideology, so it's rare to need this word. However, this is the kind of word that war protesters would write on their signs.
There is a modern Japanese version of the second character which has become the standard in Japan after WWII. If you want your calligraphy written in the modern Japanese form, please click on the Kanji shown to the right instead of the button above. Note: Most Japanese and all Chinese people will recognize the form shown in the upper left.
兵法 means "Art of War." It also part of the title of a famous book of tactics by Sun Tzu. These characters could also be translated as "military strategy and tactics," "military skills" or "army procedures." If you are a military tactician, this is the wall scroll for you.
See Also: Military
This can mean "tactics of war," "battle tactics" or simply "tactics" (being that warfare is implied in that English word).
This word is written in the ancient and traditional form of Chinese, Japanese, and Korean.
孫子兵法 is the full title of the most famous book of military proverbs about warfare.
The English title is "Sun Tzu's The Art of War."
The last two characters have come to be known in the west as "The Art of War" but a better translation would be, "military strategy and tactics," "military skills" or "army procedures."
Note: Sometimes the author's name is Romanized as "Sun Zi" or "Sunzi."
It's written the same in Chinese, Japanese Kanji, and Korean Hanja.
See Also: Military
The first chapter of Sun Tzu's Art of War lists five key points to analyzing your situation.
It reads like a 5-part military proverb. Sun Tzu says that to sharpen your skills, you must plan. To plan well, you must know your situation. Therefore, you must consider and discuss the following:
1. Philosophy and Politics: Make sure your way or your policy is agreeable among all of your troops (and the citizens of your kingdom as well). For when your soldiers believe in you and your way, they will follow you to their deaths without hesitation, and will not question your orders.
2. Heaven/Sky: Consider climate / weather. This can also mean to consider whether God is smiling on you. In the modern military, this could be waiting for clear skies so that you can have air support for an amphibious landing.
3. Ground/Earth: Consider the terrain in which the battle will take place. This includes analyzing defensible positions, exit routes, and using varying elevation to your advantage. When you plan an ambush, you must know your terrain, and the best location from which to stage that ambush. This knowledge will also help you avoid being ambushed, as you will know where the likely places in which to expect an ambush from your enemy.
4. Leadership: This applies to you as the general, and also to your lieutenants. A leader should be smart and be able to develop good strategies. Leaders should keep their word, and if they break a promise, they should punish themselves as harshly as they would punish subordinates. Leaders should be benevolent to their troops, with almost a fatherly love for them. Leaders must have the ability to make brave and fast decisions. Leaders must have steadfast principles.
5. [Military] Methods: This can also mean laws, rules, principles, model, or system. You must have an efficient organization in place to manage both your troops and supplies. In the modern military, this would be a combination of how your unit is organized, and your SOP (Standard Operating Procedure).
Notes: This is a simplistic translation and explanation. Much more is suggested in the actual text of the Art of War (Bing Fa). It would take a lot of study to master all of these aspects. In fact, these five characters can be compared to the modern military acronyms such as BAMCIS or SMEAC.
CJK notes: I have included the Japanese and Korean pronunciations but in Chinese, Korean and Japanese, this does not make a typical phrase (with subject, verb, and object) it is a list that only someone familiar with Sun Tzu's writings would understand.
風林火山 is the battle strategy and proverb of Japanese feudal lord Takeda Shingen (1521–1573 A.D.).
This came from the Art of War by Chinese strategist and tactician Sun Tzu (Sunzi).
You can think of this as a sort of abbreviation to remind officers and troops how to conduct battle.
風林火山 is literally a word list: Wind, Forest, Fire, Mountain.
The more expanded meaning is supposed to be...
"Swift as the wind, quiet as the forest, fierce as fire, and immovable as a mountain"
"As fast as the wind, as quiet as the forest, as daring as fire, and immovable as the mountain"
"Move as swift as the wind, stay as silent as a forest, attack as fierce as fire, undefeatable defense like a mountain"
"Move swiftly like the wind, stay silent like the forest, attack fiercely like fire, take tactical position on the mountain"
This Chinese title, Guan Gong means, Lord Guan (The warrior saint of ancient China).
While his real name was Guan Yu / 關羽, he is commonly known by this title of Guan Gong / 關公.
Some Chinese soldiers still pray to Guan Gong for protection. They would especially do this before going into battle. Statues of Guan Gong are seen throughout China.
This literally means: [Just as] soldiers/warriors [are valued for their] quality and not [just] for quantity, [so] generals [are valued] for their tactics, not [just] for [their] bravery.
兵在精而不在多將在謀而不在勇 is a proverb that follows one about how it is better to have warriors of quality, rather than just a large quantity of warriors in your army/force.
See Also: 兵在精而不在多
This Chinese proverb literally translates as: Hunt foxes stealthily, [and] hunt wolves openly [just as they themselves do].
Figuratively, this means:
Different opponents require different appropriate strategies.
闇打狐狸明打狼 is a suggestion that you should know your enemy, and know that each enemy is different, that therefore requires a specialized approach (attack).
This proverb is from Sun Tzu's (Sunzi's) Art of War. It means that if you know and understand the enemy, you also know yourself. There is a secondary four characters that come after this in the Art of War (not included here) which suggest you cannot lose a battle when you follow this philosophy.
In a very literal and somewhat-boring way, this can also be translated as, "Estimate correctly one's strength as well as that of one's opponent."
Nothing could be more true. When I was in the Marine Corps, we trained for years for combat that often lasts only hours.
This Chinese proverb also reminds me of a common phrase used in the military to describe combat: "Weeks of total boredom, punctuated with five minutes of shear terror."
This may have some roots in Sun Tzu's The Art of War. Though I can not find this passage in his writings.
On the subject of the Art of War, if you have a favorite passage, we can create a custom calligraphy scroll with that phrase.
During the Warring States Period of what is now China (475 - 221 B.C.), the King of Wei was in love with war. He often fought with other kingdoms just for spite or fun.
One day, the King of Wei asked the philosopher Mencius, "I love my people, and all say I do the best for them. I move the people from famine-stricken areas to places of plenty, and transport grains from rich areas to the poor. Nobody goes hungry in my kingdom, and I treat my people far better than other kings. But why does the population of my kingdom not increase, and why does the population of other kingdoms not decrease?"
Mencius answered, "Since you love war, I will make this example: When going to war, and the drums beat to start the attack, some soldiers flee for their lives in fear. Some run 100 paces in retreat, and others run 50 steps. Then the ones who retreated 50 paces laugh and taunt those who retreated 100 paces, calling them cowards mortally afraid of death. Do you think this is reasonable?
The King of Wei answered, "Of course not! Those who run 50 paces are just as timid as those who run 100 paces."
Mencius then said, "You are a king who treats his subjects better than other kings treat their people but you are so fond of war, that your people suffer from great losses in battle. Therefore, your population does not grow. While other kings allow their people to starve to death, you send your people to die in war. Is there really any difference?"
This famous conversation led to the six-character proverb shown here. It serves as a warning to avoid hypocrisy. It goes hand-in-hand with the western phrase, "The pot calls the kettle black," or the Biblical phrase, "Before trying to remove a splinter from your neighbor's eye, first remove the plank from your own eye."
視卒如嬰兒故可以與之赴深溪視卒如愛子故可與之俱死 is an entry from the 10th section within the Earth/Terrain chapter of Sun Tzu's Art of War.
視卒如嬰兒故可以與之赴深溪視卒如愛子故可與之俱死 is often translated as, "Regard your soldiers as your children, and they will follow you into the deepest valleys. Look upon them as your own beloved sons, and they will stand by you even unto death."
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.
海軍陸戰隊 is the Chinese way to express "Marine Corps." This could be the Marine Corps of virtually any country that has an amphibious military force.
Let me know you want a more specific title such as British Royal Marines or U.S. Marine Corps.
The Chinese title for Marines is very verbose...
Breaking down each character, this means:
"ocean/sea military/arms shore/land fighting/war/battle corps/team/group."
See Also: Military
There is more than one way to translate this ancient Chinese military proverb. Here are a few interpretations:
A drop of sweat spent in a drill is a drop of blood saved in war.
More practice will give one a better chance of success in real situation.
The more you sweat in training, the less you bleed in battle.
I heard this many times when I was a U.S. Marine but I had no idea at the time that it was actually an old Chinese proverb.
The first character means war, warfare, or battle.
The second character means soldier, officer, man or pawn.
戰士 is how to write "fighter" in Chinese, ancient Japanese Kanji and old Korean Hanja. This word can also mean soldier or warrior but there are better terms for those two ideas. This one is more specifically "fighter" or "one who fights." 戰士 is an odd selection for a wall scroll, unless you are a boxer, ultimate fighter, or otherwise participate in combat sports.
Other translations include combatant or champion.
Note that after WWII, the first Kanji was reformed/simplified. This modern Japanese version is shown to the right. If you want this version, click on the Kanji to the right, instead of the button above.
打怕的人是假的敬怕的人是真的 is a proverb that seems to be aimed at world leaders or others in power. Perhaps a suggestion to avoid the practice of "fear mongering" opting instead for a policy of benevolence and justice.
An example: When the Bush administration told Pakistan they could either join America in the "war on terror," or expect some bombs to be coming their way, Bush gained this kind of "less-than-genuine respect" from Pakistanis.
Leaders in places like North Korea and even Saudi Arabia reap the same bogus respect from their own citizens.
Note that calligraphers do not like to repeat the same characters in exactly the same way in the same piece of artwork. So expect the characters that are repeated to be written in different forms in the real artwork (unlike the way they are displayed to the left).
盟友 means a sworn friend or ally. If you stand on the same side of an issue with someone, and perhaps fight for the same cause together, this is the term you would use to describe such a partner.
There may not be a personal relationship, as this term is also used to describe whole countries that make a coalition, or fight against a common enemy.
This would be most appropriate if you are a high-level military officer, giving this wall scroll to an officer of another country as you join forces together, and go to war.
知彼知己百戰不殆 is from Sun Tzu's (Sunzi's) Art of War. It means that if you know and understand the enemy, you also know yourself, and thus with this complete understanding, you cannot lose.
This proverb is often somewhat-directly translated as, "Know the enemy and know yourself, and you can fight a hundred battles without defeat."
It can also be translated as, "If you know both yourself and your enemy, you can come out of hundreds of battles without danger," or "Know your enemy, know yourself, and your victory will not be threatened."
花木蘭 is the name of the famous Chinese woman warrior Hua Mulan.
She was made famous in the west by Disney's animated movie, "Mulan."
Most of the historical information about her comes from an ancient poem. It starts with a concerned Mulan, as she is told a man from each family is to serve conscription in the army. Her father is too old, and her brother is too young. Mulan decides to take the place of her father. After twelve years of war, the army returns and the best warriors are awarded great posts in the government and riches. Mulan turns down all offers, and asks only for a good horse for the long trip home. When Mulan greets visiting comrades wearing her old clothes, they are shocked to find the warrior they rode into battle with for years was actually a woman.
This demon title comes from the ancient Sanskrit word Asura.
阿修羅 is often used in Buddhism when describing various demons. Sometimes defined as "Fighting and battling giant demon."
In the context of Buddhism: This title originally meant a spirit, spirits, or even the gods (perhaps before 1700 years ago). It now generally indicates titanic demons, enemies of the gods, with whom, especially Indra, they wage constant war. They are defined as "not devas," and "ugly," and "without wine." There are four classes of asuras, separated according to their manner of rebirth. They can be egg-born, womb-born, transformation-born, and spawn- or water-born. Their abode is in the ocean, north of Sumeru but certain of the weaker dwell in a western mountain cave. They have realms, rulers, and palaces, as have the devas.
In terms of power, Asuras rank above humans but below most of the other deities. They live in the area near the coastal foot of Mount Sumeru (on the northern side). Their domain is partially or wholly in the ocean.
改善 means betterment, improvement, to make better, or to improve - specifically incremental and continuous improvement.
This word became very important in post-war Japan when Edwards Deming came to Japan to teach concepts of incremental and continuous improvement (for which the big 3 auto-makers did not want to hear about at the time - even kicking Deming out of their offices). The Japanese workforce absorbed this concept at a time with their culture was in flux and primed for change.
This kaizen term is closely associated with the western title "Total Quality Management." Perhaps dear to my heart since I spent years studying this at university before I moved to China where TQM did not seem to exist. Slowly, this concept has entered China as well (I've actually given lectures on the subject in Beijing).
If you are trying to improve processes at your business or need to remind yourself of your continuous TQM goals, this would be a great wall scroll to hang behind your desk, or in your workplace.
See Also: Kansei
飛虎隊 is the full title of the "Flying Tigers Group." These were the American pilots that volunteered to go to China and fight the Japanese prior to the entry of the USA into World War Two. These fighter pilots were so esteemed in China, that fallen American pilots could always find refuge in villages, and safe passage and escape to areas of China that were not occupied by Japan at that time. Chinese villagers helped such fallen pilots with full knowledge that when the Japanese occupation forces found out, all the men, women, and children in the village would be massacred by Japanese troops (there are more than a few known cases of such massacres).
The Flying Tigers successfully kept supply lines to the Chinese resistance open, and divided Japanese forces at a crucial time while America prepared to officially join WWII.
A wall scroll like this honors the men who risked or gave their lives as noble volunteers, and is a reminder of the best moment in the history of Sino-American relations.
These three characters literally mean "flying tiger(s) group/team/squad."
Note: Hanging these characters on your wall will not make you any friends with Japanese people who are aware or this history (most Japanese have no idea, as Japan's involvement in WWII has all but been erased from school textbooks in Japan).
In 632 BC, Duke Wen of the Kingdom of Jin was about to lead an army against the forces of the Kingdom of Chu.
The Duke asked one of his advisers, Jiu Fan, how they could possibly win the impending battle, as they were drastically outnumbered.
Jiu Fan said, "All is fair in war," and went on to suggest a plan of dishonorable tactics (cheating).
The Duke was not sure of this advice, so he asked another adviser, Yong Ji, who replied, "If you catch fish by draining the pond, you can certainly get all the fish. But there will be no fish the following year. You can cheat this one time in battle but such tactics can only be used once, as the enemy will be wise in future encounters."
The Duke heard the words of his wiser adviser but cheated to gain victory in the battle. However, he rewarded Yong Ji more than Jiu Fan at the victory celebration, stating that while Jiu Fan's advice gained one victory, the wise words of Yong Ji would last forever.
This Chinese idiom/proverb is still used, over 2600 years later to remind people not to burn bridges, cheat, or dishonor oneself in exchange for a short term gain, while sacrificing the future.
竭澤而漁 is very similar to the meaning of the English phrase, "Kill the goose that lays the golden eggs."
This poem was written almost 1200 years ago during the Tang dynasty. It depicts traveling up a place known as Cold Mountain, where some hearty people have built their homes. The traveler is overwhelmed by the beauty of the turning leaves of the maple forest that surrounds him just as night overtakes the day, and darkness prevails. His heart implores him to stop, and take in all of the beauty around him.
First before you get to the full translation, I must tell you that Chinese poetry is a lot different than what we have in the west. Chinese words simply don't rhyme in the same way that English, or other western languages do. Chinese poetry depends on rhythm and a certain beat of repeated numbers of characters.
I have done my best to translate this poem keeping a certain feel of the original poet. But some of the original beauty of the poem in it's original Chinese will be lost in translation.
Far away on Cold Mountain, a stone path leads upwards.
Among white clouds peoples homes reside.
Stopping my carriage I must, as to admire the maple forest at nights fall.
In awe of autumn leaves showing more red than even flowers of early spring.
Hopefully, this poem will remind you to stop, and "take it all in" as you travel through life.
The poet's name is "Du Mu" in Chinese that is: .
The title of the poem, "Mountain Travels" is:
You can have the title, poet's name, and even Tang Dynasty written as an inscription on your custom wall scroll if you like.
More about the poet:
Dumu lived from 803-852 AD and was a leading Chinese poet during the later part of the Tang dynasty.
He was born in Chang'an, a city of central China and former capital of the ancient Chinese empire in 221-206 BC. In present day China, his birthplace is currently known as Xi'an, the home of the Terracotta Soldiers.
He was awarded his Jinshi degree (an exam administered by the emperor's court which leads to becoming an official of the court) at the age of 25, and went on to hold many official positions over the years. However, he never achieved a high rank, apparently because of some disputes between various factions, and his family's criticism of the government. His last post in the court was his appointment to the office of Secretariat Drafter.
During his life, he wrote scores of narrative poems, as well as a commentary on the Art of War and many letters of advice to high officials.
His poems were often very realistic, and often depicted every day life. He wrote poems about everything, from drinking beer in a tavern to weepy poems about lost love.
The thing that strikes you most is the fact even after 1200 years, not much has changed about the beauty of nature, toils and troubles of love and beer drinking.
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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|
|War||戰 / 戦|
|sen||zhàn / zhan4 / zhan||chan|
|God of War||軍神||gunjin / gunshin / ikusagami|
|Hachiman: God of War||八幡神||hachi man jin|
反战 / 反戦
|han sen / hansen||fǎn zhàn / fan3 zhan4 / fan zhan / fanzhan||fan chan / fanchan|
|Art of War||兵法||hyou hou / hyouhou / hyo ho / hyoho||bīng fǎ / bing1 fa3 / bing fa / bingfa||ping fa / pingfa|
|Tactics of War||戰術 / 戦術|
|senjutsu||zhàn shù / zhan4 shu4 / zhan shu / zhanshu||chan shu / chanshu|
|Guandi: God of War||關帝|
|kan tei / kantei||Guān dì / Guan1 di4 / Guan di / Guandi||Kuan ti / Kuanti|
|Sun Tzu - Art of War||孫子兵法|
|son shi hyou hou|
son shi hyo ho
|sūn zǐ bīng fǎ
sun1 zi3 bing1 fa3
sun zi bing fa
|sun tzu ping fa
|Art of War: 5 Points of Analysis||道天地將法|
|dou ten chi shou hou|
do ten chi sho ho
|dào tiān dì jiàng fǎ
dao4 tian1 di4 jiang4 fa3
dao tian di jiang fa
|tao t`ien ti chiang fa
tao tien ti chiang fa
Saint of War
|wǔ shèng / wu3 sheng4 / wu sheng / wusheng|
|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 War Kanji, War Characters, War in Mandarin Chinese, War Characters, War in Chinese Writing, War in Japanese Writing, War in Asian Writing, War Ideograms, Chinese War symbols, War Hieroglyphics, War Glyphs, War in Chinese Letters, War Hanzi, War in Japanese Kanji, War Pictograms, War in the Chinese Written-Language, or War in the Japanese Written-Language.