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Have Strength in Chinese / Japanese...

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  1. Inner Strength

  2. God Give Me Strength

  3. Strength: Strong and Solid

  4. Indomitable / Unyielding

  5. God Give Me Strength

  6. Strong and Beautiful

  7. Strong Hearted / Strong Willed

  8. Perseverance

  9. Body and Earth in Unity

10. Daodejing / Tao Te Ching - Chapter 33

11. Dragon

12. Stay Strong / Iron Will

13. Carry On, Undaunted


Inner Strength

nèi lì
nai ryoku
Inner Strength Scroll

內力 is the shorter version of inner-strength (can also be translated as "internal force"). The first character holds the meaning of "inner" or "internal". The second character means "power", "force" or "strength".

內力 is kind of a Kung Fu way of talking about an inner power or strength from within. 內力 is sort of a way to express "inner-chi". 內力 is clearly something that you might hear in a real Chinese Kung Fu movie.

While understood in both Chinese and Japanese, this can have a secondary meaning of "inner stress" in Japanese.

God Give Me Strength

kami ga watashi ni chikara o atae te kudasai
God Give Me Strength Scroll

神が私に力を与えてください is "God give me strength" in Japanese.

This is the long and formal version. We also have a short version.


Note: Because this selection contains some special Japanese Hiragana characters, it should be written by a Japanese calligrapher.

Strength: Strong and Solid

qiáng gù
kyouko
Strength: Strong and Solid Scroll

強固 means firmness, stability, security, and strength in Japanese.

It's not used commonly in China but it means "powerful", "firm", "solid", "strong" or "better than others" in Chinese. There is a slight variation in the top of the first character between Chinese and Japanese. Because this is more a Japanese word, we are showing the Japanese form here.

強固 is also a Korean word but Korean Hanja uses the Chinese form of the first character (one tiny stroke is a little different), so just let me now if your audience is Korean when you place your order, and we'll have it written in the Chinese/Korean version.

Indomitable / Unyielding

bù qū bù náo
fukutsu futou
Indomitable / Unyielding Scroll

不屈不撓 means "Indomitable" or "Unyielding".

不屈不撓 is a long word by Chinese standards. At least, it is often translated as a single word into English. It's actually a proverb in Chinese.

If you want to break it down, you can see that the first and third characters are the same. Both meaning "not" (they work as a suffix to make a negative or opposite meaning to whatever character follows).

The second character means "bendable".

The last means "scratched" or "bothered".

So this really means "Won't be bent, can't be bothered". I have also seen it written as "Will not crouch, will not submit". This comes from the fact that the second character can mean, "to crouch" and the last can mean "to submit" (as in "to give in" such as "submitting to the rule of someone else"). This may explain better why these four characters mean "indomitable".

Notes:
Some will translate this as "indomitable spirit"; however, technically, there is no character to suggest the idea of "spirit" in this word.
The first two characters can be a stand-alone word in Chinese.
In Japanese, this is considered to be two words (with very similar meanings).
The same characters are used in Korean, but the 2nd and 4th characters are swapped to create a word pronounced "불요불굴" in Korean.
Just let me know if you want the Korean version, which will also make sense in Japanese, and though not as natural, will also make sense in Chinese as well.


See Also:  Tenacity | Fortitude | Strength | Undaunted

God Give Me Strength

yuàn shàng dì gěi wǒ lì liàng
God Give Me Strength Scroll

This is a wish or a prayer that you might call out at a desperate time.

Translated by us for a military serviceman in Iraq - obviously, he may have a need to use this phrase often, though I am not sure where he's going to find a place to hang a wall scroll.

Strong and Beautiful

jiàn měi
takemi
Strong and Beautiful Scroll

We don't really have a word like this in English but these two characters create a word that means "strong and beautiful". It could also be translated as "healthy and beautiful".

Note: 健美 is a word in Chinese and Korean but it's also the family name Takemi in Japanese. The characters hold the same meaning in Japanese but It's kind of like having the English name Stillwell, when few people would perceive the meanings of still and well.

Strong Hearted / Strong Willed

yì zhì jiān qiáng
Strong Hearted / Strong Willed Scroll

This phrase can mean either "strong hearted", "strong willed" or "determination".

The first two characters can be translated as "will", "willpower", "determination", "volition", "intention", or "intent". But, it should be noted that this first part possess the element of "heart" in the lower portion of both characters (they also partially carry the meaning "with whole heart").

The last two characters mean "strong" or "staunch".

Chinese word order and grammar is a bit different than English, so in this case, they are in reverse order of English but have the correct meaning in a natural form.


See Also:  Strong Willed | Discipline | Will-Power

see note
Perseverance Scroll

毅 is the simplest way to express perseverance in Chinese and Korean Hanja.
This single-character version leaves a bit of mystery about what kind of perseverance you might want to convey.

In Korean, this is usually associated with "strength of character".

In Japanese, this character can be pronounced about a dozen different ways (so we have left out the Japanese pronunciation guide that normally appears above). In Japanese this Kanji would usually be translated "strong" (perhaps strong-willed).


See Also:  Tenacity | Fortitude | Strength | Undaunted

Body and Earth in Unity

shindofuni / shindofuji
Body and Earth in Unity Scroll

身土不二 (Shindofuni) is originally a Buddhist concept or proverb referring to the inseparability of body-mind and geographical circumstances.

身土不二 literally reads, "Body [and] earth [are] not two".

Other translations or matching ideas include:
Body and land are one.
Body and earth can not be separated.
Body earth sensory curation.
You are what you eat.
Indivisibility of the body and the land (because the body is made from food and food is made from the land).

Going further, this speaks of our human bodies and the land from which we get our food being closely connected. This phrase is used often when talking about natural and organic vegetables coming directly from the farm to provide the healthiest foods in Japan.

Character notes: 身(shin) in this context does not just mean your physical body rather a concept including both body and mind.
土 (do) refers to soil, earth, clay, land, or in some cases, locality. It's not the proper name of Earth, the planet. However, in can refer to the land or realm we live in.

Japanese note: This has been used in Japan, on and off since 1907 as a slogan for a governmental healthy eating campaign (usually pronounced as shindofuji instead of the original shindofuni in this context). It may have been hijacked from Buddhism for this propaganda purpose, but at least this is "healthy propaganda".

Korean note: The phrase 身土不二 was in use by 1610 A.D. in Korea where it can be found in an early medical journal.
In modern South Korea, it's written in Hangul as 신토불이. Korea used Chinese characters (same source for Japanese Kanji) as their only written standard form of the language until about a hundred years ago. Therefore, many Koreans will recognize 身土不二 as a native phrase and concept.


See Also:  Strength and Love in Unity

Daodejing / Tao Te Ching - Chapter 33

zhī rén zhě zhī yě zì zhī zhě míng yě shèng rén zhě yǒu lì yě zì shèng zhě qiáng yě zhī zú zhě fù yě qiáng xíng zhě yǒu zhì yě bù zhī qí suǒ zhě jiǔ yě sǐ ér bù wáng zhě shòu yě
Daodejing / Tao Te Ching - Chapter 33 Scroll

This is referred to as passage or chapter 33 of the Dao De Jing (often Romanized as "Tao Te Ching").

These are the words of the philosopher Laozi (Lao Tzu).

The following is one translation of this passage:
To know others is wisdom;
To know oneself is acuity/intelligence.
To conquer others is power,
To conquer oneself is strength.
To know contentment is to have wealth.
To act resolutely is to have purpose.
To stay one's ground is to be enduring.
To die and yet not be forgotten is to be long-lived.
Another translation:
To understand others is to be knowledgeable;
To understand yourself is to be wise.
To conquer others is to have strength;
To conquer yourself is to be strong.
To know when you have enough is to be rich.
To go forward with strength is to have ambition.
To not lose your place is to be long lasting.
To die but not be forgotten -- that's true long life.
A third translation of the second half:
He who is content is rich;
He who acts with persistence has will;
He who does not lose his roots will endure;
He who dies physically but preserves the Dao
will enjoy a long after-life.


Notes:

During our research, the Chinese characters shown here are probably the most accurate to the original text of Laozi. These were taken for the most part from the Mawangdui 1973 and Guodan 1993 manuscripts which pre-date other Daodejing texts by about 1000 years.

Grammar was a little different in Laozi’s time. So you should consider this to be the ancient Chinese version. Some have modernized this passage by adding, removing, or swapping articles and changing the grammar (we felt the oldest and most original version would be more desirable). You may find other versions printed in books or online - sometimes these modern texts are simply used to explain to Chinese people what the original text really means.

This language issue can be compared in English by thinking how the King James (known as the Authorized version in Great Britain) Bible from 1611 was written, and comparing it to modern English. Now imagine that the Daodejing was probably written around 403 BCE (2000 years before the King James Version of the Bible). To a Chinese person, the original Daodejing reads like text that is 3 times more detached compared to Shakespeare’s English is to our modern-day speech.

Extended notes:

While on this Biblical text comparison, it should be noted, that just like the Bible, all the original texts of the Daodejing were lost or destroyed long ago. Just as with the scripture used to create the Bible, various manuscripts exist, many with variations or copyist errors. Just as the earliest New Testament scripture (incomplete) is from 170 years after Christ, the earliest Daodejing manuscript (incomplete) is from 100-200 years after the death of Laozi.

The reason that the originals were lost probably has a lot to do with the first Qin Emperor. Upon taking power and unifying China, he ordered the burning and destruction of all books (scrolls/rolls) except those pertaining to Chinese medicine and a few other subjects. The surviving Daodejing manuscripts were either hidden on purpose or simply forgotten about. Some were not unearthed until as late as 1993.

We compared a lot of research by various archeologists and historians before deciding on this as the most accurate and correct version. But one must allow that it may not be perfect, or the actual and original as from the hand of Laozi himself.

Dragon

Year of the Dragon / Zodiac Sign
lóng
ryuu / tatsu
Dragon Scroll

龍 is the character for dragon in Chinese, old Korean Hanja, and Japanese Kanji.

The dragon is the creature of myth and legend that dominates Chinese, Japanese, and even European folklore. In China, the dragon is the symbol of the Emperor, strength and power, and the Chinese dragon is known as the god of water.

From the Chinese Zodiac, if you were born in the year of the Dragon, you . . .

Have a strong body and spirit.
Are full of energy.
Have vast goals.
Have a deep level of self-awareness.
Will do whatever you can to "save face".


See also our Chinese Zodiac or Dragon Calligraphy pages.

Stay Strong / Iron Will

tesshin sekichou
Stay Strong / Iron Will Scroll

鉄心石腸 is a Japanese proverb which suggests you should have the inner-strength and will as hard and steadfast as iron.

It's the Japanese way to say, "stay strong". 鉄心石腸 is an especially uplifting thing to say to a person in distress or recovering from a disaster. It's kind of the survivor's creed.

If you literally translate this, it means, "iron will, stone guts" or "iron heart, rock-hard bowels".

Carry On, Undaunted

qián fù hòu jì
Carry On, Undaunted Scroll

This Chinese proverb figuratively means, "to advance dauntlessly in wave upon wave".

It suggests that you should or can carry on, and have the strength to keep going.

While this proverb is a little bit militaristic, it suggests that in spite of a fallen comrade (or perhaps a loved one), you should keep going and work towards the goal they intended.




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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
Inner Strength內力
内力
nai ryoku / nairyokunèi lì / nei4 li4 / nei li / neili
God Give Me Strength神が私に力を與えてください
神が私に力を与えてください
kami ga watashi ni chikara o atae te kudasai
Strength: Strong and Solid強固
强固
kyouko / kyokoqiáng gù / qiang2 gu4 / qiang gu / qiangguch`iang ku / chiangku / chiang ku
Indomitable
Unyielding
不屈不撓
不屈不挠
fukutsu futou
fukutsufutou
fukutsu futo
fukutsufuto
bù qū bù náo
bu4 qu1 bu4 nao2
bu qu bu nao
buqubunao
pu ch`ü pu nao
puchüpunao
pu chü pu nao
God Give Me Strength願上帝給我力量
愿上帝给我力量
yuàn shàng dì gěi wǒ lì liàng
yuan4 shang4 di4 gei3 wo3 li4 liang4
yuan shang di gei wo li liang
yuanshangdigeiwoliliang
yüan shang ti kei wo li liang
yüanshangtikeiwoliliang
Strong and Beautiful健美takemijiàn měi / jian4 mei3 / jian mei / jianmeichien mei / chienmei
Strong Hearted
Strong Willed
意志堅強
意志坚强
yì zhì jiān qiáng
yi4 zhi4 jian1 qiang2
yi zhi jian qiang
yizhijianqiang
i chih chien ch`iang
ichihchienchiang
i chih chien chiang
Perseverancesee note / seenote / se note / senoteyì / yi4 / yii
Body and Earth in Unity身土不二shindofuni / shindofuji
Daodejing
Tao Te Ching - Chapter 33
知人者知也自知者明也勝人者有力也自勝者強也知足者富也強行者有志也不失其所者久也死而不亡者壽也
知人者知也自知者明也胜人者有力也自胜者强也知足者富也强行者有志也不失其所者久也死而不亡者寿也
zhī rén zhě zhī yě zì zhī zhě míng yě shèng rén zhě yǒu lì yě zì shèng zhě qiáng yě zhī zú zhě fù yě qiáng xíng zhě yǒu zhì yě bù zhī qí suǒ zhě jiǔ yě sǐ ér bù wáng zhě shòu yě
zhi1 ren2 zhe3 zhi1 ye3 zi4 zhi1 zhe3 ming2 ye3 sheng4 ren2 zhe3 you3 li4 ye3 zi4 sheng4 zhe3 qiang2 ye3 zhi1 zu2 zhe3 fu4 ye3 qiang2 xing2 zhe3 you3 zhi4 ye3 bu4 zhi1 qi2 suo3 zhe3 jiu3 ye3 si3 er2 bu4 wang2 zhe3 shou4 ye3
zhi ren zhe zhi ye zi zhi zhe ming ye sheng ren zhe you li ye zi sheng zhe qiang ye zhi zu zhe fu ye qiang xing zhe you zhi ye bu zhi qi suo zhe jiu ye si er bu wang zhe shou ye
chih jen che chih yeh tzu chih che ming yeh sheng jen che yu li yeh tzu sheng che ch`iang yeh chih tsu che fu yeh ch`iang hsing che yu chih yeh pu chih ch`i so che chiu yeh ssu erh pu wang che shou yeh
chih jen che chih yeh tzu chih che ming yeh sheng jen che yu li yeh tzu sheng che chiang yeh chih tsu che fu yeh chiang hsing che yu chih yeh pu chih chi so che chiu yeh ssu erh pu wang che shou yeh
Dragon
ryuu / tatsu
ryu / tatsu
ryu / tatsu
lóng / long2 / longlung
Stay Strong
Iron Will
鉄心石腸tesshin sekichou
tesshinsekichou
teshin sekicho
teshinsekicho
Carry On, Undaunted前赴後繼
前赴后继
qián fù hòu jì
qian2 fu4 hou4 ji4
qian fu hou ji
qianfuhouji
ch`ien fu hou chi
chienfuhouchi
chien fu hou chi
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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Carry On, Undaunted Scroll
Carry On, Undaunted Scroll
Carry On, Undaunted Scroll
Carry On, Undaunted Scroll


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Carry On, Undaunted Vertical Portrait
Carry On, Undaunted Horizontal Wall Scroll
Carry On, Undaunted Vertical Portrait
Dictionary

Lookup Have Strength in my Japanese & Chinese Dictionary


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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.


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.

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