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This four-character proverb suggests that you should be practical, realistic, and grounded.
Some translate this as a suggestion to be down-to-earth.
The first character means "feet".
The second means "step on" or "stand".
The third means "solid", "real", or "true".
The last character means "ground", "earth", or "terra".
Literally this means, "[keep your] Feet Standing [on] Solid Ground".
In Chinese and Korean, the first character means "modest". The second means "empty". Together these characters reinforce the ideas of modesty and being empty of ego.
This can also be translated as humbleness or humility.
In Japan, they tend to use a slightly-simplified version of the second Kanji for this word. It also happens to be an alternate/simplified version used in China too. If you want to order the modern Japanese/simplified version, just click in the Kanji image shown to the right, instead of the button above.
See Also: Moderation
In Japanese, first Kanji means "self-effacing", "humble oneself", "condescend", "be modest". The second means "void" or "emptiness".
謙虚 is the most common way to say humble or modest in Japanese without a derogatory meaning (some other words suggest weakness but this version holds a better humble meaning).
See Also: Moderation
謙遜 can also be translated as being modest, humble, or unpretentious.
Being humble is considering others to be as important as yourself. You are thoughtful of their needs and willing to be of service. You don't expect others or yourself to be perfect. You learn from your mistakes. When you do great things, humility reminds you to be thankful instead of boastful.
This Humility title is also used as one of the 8 key concepts of Tang Soo Do. Often romanized as "Kyum Son".
Also sometimes used in Japanese to express humility with an essence of modesty.
This simultaneously means "sense of honor" and "sense of shame" in Korean.
This term is often used as a tenet of Taekwondo where the English terms "integrity" and/or "modesty" are applied.
廉恥 is also a Chinese word, though it is usually read with the "sense of shame" meaning, and is a poor choice for a wall scroll if your audience is Chinese.
The following table may be helpful for those studying Chinese or Japanese...
|Title||Characters||Romaji (Romanized Japanese)||Various forms of Romanized Chinese|
|Keep Your Feet on the Ground||腳踏實地|
|jiǎo tà shí dì|
jiao3 ta4 shi2 di4
jiao ta shi di
|chiao t`a shih ti
chiao ta shih ti
|ken kyo / kenkyo||qiān xū / qian1 xu1 / qian xu / qianxu||ch`ien hsü / chienhsü / chien hsü|
|謙虚||ken kyo / kenkyo||qiān xū / qian1 xu1 / qian xu / qianxu||ch`ien hsü / chienhsü / chien hsü|
|ken son / kenson||qiān xùn / qian1 xun4 / qian xun / qianxun||ch`ien hsün / chienhsün / chien hsün|
|Sense of Shame|
Sense of Honor
|ren chi / renchi||lián chǐ / lian2 chi3 / lian chi / lianchi||lien ch`ih / lienchih / lien chih|
|kenson||qiān xùn / qian1 xun4 / qian xun / qianxun||ch`ien hsün / chienhsün / chien hsün|
|shisso / shiso||zhì sù / zhi4 su4 / zhi su / zhisu||chih su / chihsu|
|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.
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