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Fire Water in Chinese / Japanese...

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Personalize your custom “Fire Water” project by clicking the button next to your favorite “Fire Water” title below...

  1. Fire and Water Have No Mercy

  2. Put out a burning wood cart with a cup of water

  3. Five Elements

  4. Shidai / Sida / Mahabhuta

  5. Four Elements


Fire and Water Have No Mercy

China shuǐ huǒ wú qíng
Fire and Water Have No Mercy Vertical Wall Scroll

This Chinese proverb means, "fire [and] water have-not mercy." This serves to remind us that the forces of nature are beyond human control.

Some may also translation this as, "implacable fate."

Put out a burning wood cart with a cup of water

An utterly inadequate measure
China bēi shuǐ chē xīn
Put out a burning wood cart with a cup of water Vertical Wall Scroll

杯水車薪 is a warning against a futile effort.

This proverb literally refers to one who is "trying to put out a burning cart of wood with a cup of water," or "throw a cup of water on a cartload of wood." The lesson to be learned is about using the right measure or tool for the job, and not to waste your effort if you are inadequately equipped for the task at hand - in other words the postscript should be "go get a bucket or a fire hose."

Five Elements

China jīn mù shuǐ huǒ tǔ
Five Elements Vertical Wall Scroll

金木水火土 is a list of the Chinese characters for the five elements in a comfortable order (meaning that they simply "feel right" to a Chinese person who views this arrangement).

The order is metal, wood, water, fire, earth.

Note that sometimes the metal element is translated as gold. And earth refers to soil versus the whole planet earth.

Five Elements

Japan chi sui ka fuu kuu
Five Elements Vertical Wall Scroll

地水火風空 is the specifically-Japanese version of the five elements. 地水火風空 is a little different than the ancient or original Chinese version.

The elements are written in this order:
1. Earth / Terra / Ground
2. Water
3. Fire
4. Wind / Air
5. Sky / Emptiness / Void / Ether

Note: This set of Kanji can also be romanized as "ji sui ka fuu kuu," "jisuikafuukuu," or "jisuikafuku."


These can also be written in the order 地火風水空 (chi ka sui fuu kuu). Let me know when you place your order if you want the Kanji to be in this character order.

Five Elements

China wǔ xíng
Japan gogyou
Five Elements Vertical Wall Scroll

五行 is the title of the five elements which are: wood, fire, water, earth, and metal.

The first character means "5" and the second character is simply "elements."

According to ancient Chinese science, all matter in the world is made up of these elements. One idea presented with the five elements is that when energy is added, matter is believed to expand. When energy is removed, matter contracts. Oddly, this concept is not far from Einstein's theories, and modern science. Just a few thousand years before Einstein.


More info: Wikipedia - Five Elements (Wu Xing).


See Also:  Wood | Fire | Water | Earth | Metal | Five Elements

Shidai / Sida / Mahabhuta

China sì dà
Japan shi dai
Shidai / Sida / Mahabhuta Vertical Wall Scroll

In Buddhism, this is mahābhūta, the four elements of which all things are made: earth, water, fire, and wind.

This can also represent the four freedoms: speaking out freely, airing views fully, holding great debates, and writing big-character posters.

In some context, this can be a university or college offering four-year programs.

To others, this can represent the Tao, Heaven, Earth and King.

Going back to the Buddhist context, these four elements "earth, water, fire, and wind" represent 堅, 濕, 煖, 動, which is: solid, liquid, heat, and motion.

Four Elements

Buddhist Term
China dì shuǐ huǒ fēng
Japan chisuikafuu
Four Elements Vertical Wall Scroll

地水火風 is a Buddhist term that means "earth, water, fire, wind."

地水火風 is often just referred to as "the four elements." There is a more common title (the five elements) which adds wood to the mix. These four elements are used in some sects of Japanese Buddhism (not so much in Chinese).

Many custom options...


Four Elements Vertical Wall Scroll
Four Elements Vertical Wall Scroll
Four Elements Vertical Wall Scroll
Four Elements Vertical Wall Scroll


And formats...

Four Elements Vertical Portrait
Four Elements Horizontal Wall Scroll
Four Elements Vertical Portrait
Dictionary

Lookup Fire Water in my Japanese & Chinese Dictionary




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The following table may be helpful for those studying Chinese or Japanese...

Title CharactersRomaji(Romanized Japanese)Various forms of Romanized Chinese
Fire and Water Have No Mercy水火無情
水火无情
shuǐ huǒ wú qíng
shui3 huo3 wu2 qing2
shui huo wu qing
shuihuowuqing
shui huo wu ch`ing
shuihuowuching
shui huo wu ching
Put out a burning wood cart with a cup of water杯水車薪
杯水车薪
bēi shuǐ chē xīn
bei1 shui3 che1 xin1
bei shui che xin
beishuichexin
pei shui ch`e hsin
peishuichehsin
pei shui che hsin
Five Elements金木水火土jīn mù shuǐ huǒ tǔ
jin1 mu4 shui3 huo3 tu3
jin mu shui huo tu
jinmushuihuotu
chin mu shui huo t`u
chinmushuihuotu
chin mu shui huo tu
Five Elements地水火風空
地水火风空
chi sui ka fuu kuu
chisuikafuukuu
chi sui ka fu ku
chisuikafuku
Five Elements五行gogyou / gogyowǔ xíng / wu3 xing2 / wu xing / wuxingwu hsing / wuhsing
Shidai
Sida
Mahabhuta
四大shi dai / shidaisì dà / si4 da4 / si da / sidassu ta / ssuta
Four Elements地水火風
地水火风
chisuikafuu
chisuikafu
dì shuǐ huǒ fēng
di4 shui3 huo3 feng1
di shui huo feng
dishuihuofeng
ti shui huo feng
tishuihuofeng
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!

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A nice Chinese calligraphy wall scroll

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.

A professional Chinese Calligrapher

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.

Trying to learn Chinese calligrapher - a futile effort

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.

A high-ranked Chinese master calligrapher that I met in Zhongwei

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 Fire Water Kanji, Fire Water Characters, Fire Water in Mandarin Chinese, Fire Water Characters, Fire Water in Chinese Writing, Fire Water in Japanese Writing, Fire Water in Asian Writing, Fire Water Ideograms, Chinese Fire Water symbols, Fire Water Hieroglyphics, Fire Water Glyphs, Fire Water in Chinese Letters, Fire Water Hanzi, Fire Water in Japanese Kanji, Fire Water Pictograms, Fire Water in the Chinese Written-Language, or Fire Water in the Japanese Written-Language.

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