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義 is about doing the right thing or making the right decision, not because it's easy but because it's ethically and morally correct.
No matter the outcome or result, one does not lose face if tempering proper justice.
義 can also be defined as righteousness, justice, morality, honor, or "right conduct." In more a more expanded definition, it can mean loyalty to friends, loyalty to the public good, or patriotism. This idea of loyalty and friendship comes from the fact that you will treat those you are loyal to with morality and justice.
義 is also one of the five tenets of Confucius doctrine.
There's also an alternate version of this character sometimes seen in Bushido or Korean Taekwondo tenets. It's just the addition of a radical on the left side of the character. If you want this version, click on the image to the right instead of the button above.
This is also a virtue of the Samurai Warrior
See our page with just Code of the Samurai / Bushido here
一視同仁 is how to write "universal benevolence." 一視同仁 is also how to express the idea that you see all people the same.
If you are kind and charitable to all people, this is the best way to state that virtue. It is the essence of being impartial to all mankind, regardless of social standing, background, race, sex, etc. You do not judge others but rather you see them eye to eye on the same level with you.
This Chinese, Japanese, and Korean word holds the dictionary definition of "determination" but literally means, "determined heart."
The first character means "to determine" or "determined."
The second character means "heart," "mind" or "soul," so you can imagine that this form of "determination" partially means to put your heart into something. It can also be translated as resolve, resolution, or decision (as in a decision made and followed).
Sometimes this is translated by others as "Look before you leap" but the more accurate and direct translation is the one I used in the title.
While somewhat military in its origin, this proverb can apply to any situation where a decision needs to be made, but perhaps there are still some "unknowns."
This phrase suggests that in our "action based" world, sometimes the "smarter move" is "no move at all."
我的生活我做主 is a Chinese phrase that can be translated as, "My life, my rules," or "My life, I call the shots."
The first four characters just say, "my life".
The fifth character is I, me, and/or my.
The last two characters can be interpreted a variety of ways, just as, to make the decision, to take charge of, to call the shot, or to make the rule.
This concept has existed for thousands of years that humans have the ability to understand right and wrong, then make a decision one way or the other (thus affecting their own fate).
Sources such as Confucius, Buddhist scriptures, the Qur'an and the Bible all address this idea.
As for the characters shown here, the first two mean free, freedom, or liberty. The last two simply mean "will."
This Chinese proverb can be translated a few different ways. Here are some examples:
Honor does not allow one to glance back.
Duty-bound not to turn back.
To pursue justice with no second thoughts.
Never surrender your principles.
This proverb is really about having the courage to do what is right without questioning your decision to take the right and just course.
觀世音 is the longer, and perhaps more formal title for the Buddhist deity known as the Goddess of Mercy or Bodhisattva of Compassion.
The longer title of this bodhisattva is Romanized in the following ways:
Mandarin Chinese: Guanshi Yin, Kuan-shih Yin.
Sanskrit: Bodhisattva Avalokitesvara.
Vietnamese: Quan Thế Âm.
Thai: Prah Mae Kuan Eim.
English: Bodhisattva of Mercy and Salvation, Goddess of Compassion, Buddha of Mercy, et al.
Please view our more common and shorter version "Guan Yin" before you make a decision. Also, note that the first character has a slight variation in Japanese. If your audience is specifically Japanese, you may want to select that version.
This Chinese proverb comes from an old story from some time before 476 BC. About a man named Qi Huangyang, who was commissioned by the king to select the best person for a certain job in the Imperial Court.
Qi Huangyang selected his enemy for the job. The king was very confused by the selection but Qi Huangyang explained that he was asked to find the best person for the job, not necessarily someone that he personally liked or had a friendship with.
Later, Confucius commented on how unselfish and impartial Qi Huangyang was by saying "Da Gong Wu Si" which if you look it up in a Chinese dictionary, is generally translated as "Unselfish" or "Just and Fair."
If you translate each character, you'd have something like,
"Big/Deep Justice Without Self."
Direct translations like this leave out a lot of what the Chinese characters really say. Use your imagination, and suddenly you realize that "without self" means "without thinking about yourself in the decision" - together, these two words mean "unselfish." The first two characters serve to really drive the point home that we are talking about a concept that is similar to "blind justice."
One of my Chinese-English dictionaries translates this simply as "just and fair." So that is the short and simple version.
Note: This can be pronounced in Korean but it's not a commonly used term.
The following table may be helpful for those studying Chinese or Japanese...
|Title||Characters||Romaji(Romanized Japanese)||Various forms of Romanized Chinese|
|gi||yì / yi4 / yi||i|
|Impartial and Fair to the|
Brotherhood and Sisterhood of the World
|yí shì tóng rén|
yi2 shi4 tong2 ren2
yi shi tong ren
|i shih t`ung jen
i shih tung jen
|kesshin / keshin||jué xīn / jue2 xin1 / jue xin / juexin||chüeh hsin / chüehhsin|
|mù shèng / mu4 sheng4 / mu sheng / musheng|
|A Deliberate Inaction|
Is Better Than A Blind Action
|yí dòng bù rú yí jìng|
yi2 dong4 bu4 ru2 yi2 jing4
yi dong bu ru yi jing
|i tung pu ju i ching
|My Life, My Rules||我的生活我做主||wǒ de shēng huó wǒ zuò zhǔ|
wo3 de sheng1 huo2 wo3 zuo4 zhu3
wo de sheng huo wo zuo zhu
|wo te sheng huo wo tso chu
|Free Will||自由意志||jiyuu ishi / jiyuuishi / jiyu ishi / jiyuishi||zì yóu yì zhì|
zi4 you2 yi4 zhi4
zi you yi zhi
|tzu yu i chih
|yì wú fǎn gù|
yi4 wu2 fan3 gu4
yi wu fan gu
|i wu fan ku
|Goddess of Mercy and Compassion||觀世音|
|guān shì yīn|
guan1 shi4 yin1
guan shi yin
|kuan shih yin
|Unselfish: Perfectly Impartial||大公無私|
|dà gōng wú sī|
da4 gong1 wu2 si1
da gong wu si
|ta kung wu ssu
|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.
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