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15. Tea Fate
意見 means idea, thought, opinion, or view in Japanese.
意見 also has a similar meaning in Chinese, just often used in China.
意 is the Chinese, Japanese Kanji, and old Korean Hanja for idea, intention, meaning, thought, wish, desire, intention, feelings, thoughts.
In Buddhism, this is the last of the six means of perception (the others are sight, hearing, smell, taste, touch, and this one represents mind). It does not literally mean "mind", but rather something more like mental powers, intellect, intelligence, faculty of thought, or understanding in the Buddhist context.
思想 means thought, thinking, or idea in Chinese, Japanese Kanji, and old Korean Hanja. Sometimes it can mean ideology, depending on context.
This can refer to someone's personality - like saying, "he is a thinker".
理念 / 理唸 means idea, notion, concept, principle, theory, philosophy*, or doctrine in Chinese, Japanese Kanji, and old Korean Hanja.
理念 / 理唸 is OK for a wall scroll, although it's more commonly used as an oral/informal word in Asia.
* 理念 / 理唸 is not the title for philosophy but rather is about having a certain philosophy or approach to something.
念 is the simplest way to write "mindfulness" in Chinese, Japanese Kanji, and old Korean Hanja.
念 can be defined these ways: To read; to study (a degree course); to read aloud; to miss somebody (keeping them in your mind); idea; remembrance; sense; thought; feeling; desire; concern; attention; recollection; memory; to think on/about; reflect; repeat, intone; a moment.
Obviously, the context in which the character is used determines which definition or meaning is perceived. As a single character, it's open and perhaps ambiguous. Thus, it can be read with any or all of these meanings.
念 is used in a Buddhist context (often written as 正念 or "right mindfulness") with similar meanings of thought and contemplation.
In Japanese, this character is sometimes used as a name "Nen".
An idiom for heart-to-heart communication
This Chinese, Korean, and Japanese Buddhist title relays the idea of "heart-to-heart communication", or "thought transference".
The literal translation is, "holding a flower and subtly smiling", or "the holding of a flower with a subtle smile". It is the visual act and emotion that communicates more volumes than words can say.
隨心而行 is the closest way to express this idea in Chinese. Literally translated, this phrase means, "Allow your heart to dictate your behavior" or "Let your heart guide your conduct" in Chinese. You could also translate this as "follow your heart". Or, with a bit of imagination, it could mean: "let your spirit be your guide".
Note that in some cases, "heart" can mean "mind", "soul" or even "spirit" in Chinese. In ancient China, it was thought that the big pumping organ in your chest was where your thoughts came from, or where your soul resides.
Ancient western thought followed a similar belief. Thus phrases like "I love you with all my heart" and "I give you my whole heart".
The idea of "morality of mind" goes along with "wu de" (martial morality or virtues of the warrior).
Here, the first character is a representation of your heart or mind.
The second character refers to morality or virtue.
This can also be translated as "morality of heart", "virtue of heart", or "virtue of the mind".
Note that since ancient times in Asia, the idea of your mind (the place where your soul resides, and your thought originate from) has been associated with the heart. Just as in western culture where we say "it comes from the heart", or "heartfelt emotions", there is a belief that your heart and mind are one and the same (medical science now begs to differ).
靈感 is the Chinese word that is the closest to hitting the mark for the English word inspiration.
In a more extended context, I have even seen this translated as "brain wave".
The first character means alert, departed soul, efficacious, quick, effective or intelligence.
The second character means to feel, to move, to touch or to affect.
The combined meaning of these two characters changes a bit but I think it's nice to know the individual meanings to give you a better understanding of where a word comes from.
You could describe this word as, "the thought that pops into your head just before you patent the greatest widget ever invented, that everyone in the world will want".
At least, that's the idea.
This term can also mean "intelligent thought" if you were to translate it directly from each of these characters. If you are looking for inspiration or otherwise need to be inspired, this is the word for you.
When the first character was absorbed into Japanese from Chinese, an alternate form became the standard in Japan. The Kanji shown to the right is the form currently used in Japan. This is still considered an alternate form in China to this day. it’s readable by both Chinese and Japanese people but if your audience is Japanese, I recommend the Kanji shown to the right - just click on that Kanji to order that version.
定 is the single-character way to express the idea of Samadhi in Chinese and Japanese.
A single-character title like this is open to a lot of interpretation. So 定 can mean to set, to fix, to determine, to decide, to order, certainly, truly, settle, or composing the mind.
In the Buddhist context, this means, "Perfect absorption of thought into the one object of meditation", "The mind fixed in one direction", "Internal state of imperturbability or tranquility", or "Exempt from all external sensations".
Samyak Samadhi / Samma Samadhi
正定 is one of the Noble Eightfold Paths of Buddhism. Right Concentration, along with Right Effort and Right Mindfulness constitute the path to Concentration or Perfect Thought.
Right Concentration has to do with leaving behind sensuality, unwholesome states, as well as pleasure and pain. 正定 is a complex idea but once you have achieved the shedding of worldly sensation, you can truly concentrate and find a higher level of awareness.
Another definition: Concentration of mind that finds its highpoint in the four absorptions.
This term is exclusively used by devout Buddhists. It is not a common term, and is remains an unknown concept to most Japanese and Chinese people.
A customer asked me to split these Wing Chun maxims into two parts, so he could order a couplet.
It thought this was a good idea, so it's been added here.
Be sure to order both part 1 and part 2 together. They need to be a matched set. It will be incomplete as a single wall scroll. Also, each wall scroll is handmade, so if you order them separately, weeks or months apart, they will vary a little by length, shade of paper, etc.
A customer asked me to split these Wing Chun maxims into two parts, so he could order a couplet. It thought this was a good idea, so it's been added here.
A couplet is a set of two wall scrolls that start and finish one phrase or idea. Often, couplets are hung with the first wall scroll on the right side, and the second on the left side of a doorway or entrance. The order in Chinese is right-to-left, so that's why the first wall scroll goes on the right as you face the door.
Of course, couplets can also be hung together on a wall. Often they can be hung to flank an alter, or table with incense, or even flanking a larger central wall scroll. See an example here from the home of Confucius
Be sure to order both part 1 and 2 together. One without the other is like Eve without Adam.
輪回 / 輪廻 is a universal word in Japanese and Chinese that expresses the Buddhist idea of "reincarnation", "transmigration of souls" or "the eternal cycle of birth and death".
In some context, this can also mean "karma", and others will say it represents "samsara".
The first character means wheel, ring, turn, circle, loop or rotate.
The second character can be thought of as a suffix meaning "-times". This second character can also refer to something that revolves, returns, goes back, or a counter for the number of occurrences of some event.
Together the sum supersedes the parts and it means reincarnation. But knowing the seeing the essence of each character may help you understand some of the meaning behind the word.
Shown to the right is the more common way to write the second character in Japanese. it’s an alternate form of this character in Chinese (so neither way is technically wrong in either language). If you select a Japanese calligrapher, expect that is will look like the Kanji to the right.
身心靈 / 身心霊 is probably the best way to express the idea of "Body, Mind and Spirit" in Chinese and old Korean Hanja. We are actually using the word for "heart" here because for thousands of years, the heart was thought to be the place where your thoughts, feelings and emotions came from. We do something similar in the west when we say "warm-hearted" or "I love you with all of my heart". In this context, heart = mind in Asian language and culture.
The very literal translation of these three characters is "body, heart & spirit" which could also be interpreted as "body mind & soul".
We have arranged these characters in this order because it simply "feels" like the proper order in the Chinese language. Word lists like this are not so common for calligraphy artwork, so we have to be careful to put them in the most natural order. It should be noted that this is not a common title in Asia, nor is it considered an actual phrase (as it lacks a clear subject, verb, and object).
In Japanese Kanji, they use an alternate form of the character for soul or spirit. If you want this using the Japanese alternate, please click on the Kanji shown to the right instead of the button above.
Japanese disclaimer: This is not a natural phrase/list in Japanese. While not totally-natural in Chinese, this word list is best if your audience is Chinese.
茶緣 is a special title for the tea lover. This kind of means "tea fate" but it's more spiritual and hard to define. Perhaps the tea brought you in to drink it. Perhaps the tea will bring you and another tea-lover together. Perhaps you were already there, and the tea came to you. Perhaps it's the ah-ha moment you will have when drinking the tea.
I've been told not to explain this further, as it will either dilute or confuse the purposefully-ambiguous idea embedded in this enigma.
I happen to be the owner of a piece of calligraphy written by either the son or nephew of the last emperor of China, and this is the title he wrote. It was given to me at a Beijing tea house in 2001. 茶緣 is where I learned to love tea after literally spending weeks tasting and studying everything I could about Chinese tea. I did not understand the significance of the authorship, or meaning of the title at all. Some 10 years later, I realized the gift was so profound and had such providence. Only now I realize the value of a gift that it is too late to give proper thanks for. It was also years later that I ended up in this business, and could have the artwork properly mounted as a wall scroll. It has been borrowed for many exhibitions and shows, and always amazes native Chinese and Taiwanese who read the signature. This piece of calligraphy which I once thought just a bit of ink on a thin and wrinkled piece of paper is now one of my most valued possessions. And by fate, it has taught me to be more thankful of seemingly simple gifts.
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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|
|意念 / 意唸|
|yì niàn / yi4 nian4 / yi nian / yinian||i nien / inien|
|意見||i ken / iken||yì jiàn / yi4 jian4 / yi jian / yijian||i chien / ichien|
|意||kokoro||yì / yi4 / yi||i|
|思想||shisou / shiso||sī xiǎng / si1 xiang3 / si xiang / sixiang||ssu hsiang / ssuhsiang|
|理念 / 理唸|
|ri nen / rinen||lǐ niàn / li3 nian4 / li nian / linian||li nien / linien|
|Mindfulness||念||nen||niàn / nian4 / nian||nien|
|Holding Flowers with Subtle Smile||拈華微笑|
|niān huá wēi xiào|
nian1 hua2 wei1 xiao4
nian hua wei xiao
|nien hua wei hsiao
|Listen to Your Heart|
Follow Your Heart
|suí xīn ér xíng|
sui2 xin1 er2 xing2
sui xin er xing
|sui hsin erh hsing
|Morality of Mind||心德||xīn dé / xin1 de2 / xin de / xinde||hsin te / hsinte|
|reikan||líng gǎn / ling2 gan3 / ling gan / linggan||ling kan / lingkan|
|Samadhi||定||sada||dìng / ding4 / ding||ting|
|8. Right Concentration|
|正定||sei jou / seijou / sei jo||zhèng dìng|
|Wing Chun Fist Maxims (Part 2)||步步追形點點朝午以形補手敗形不敗馬腰馬一致心意合一拳由心發動法無形活人練活死功夫|
|Wing Chun Fist Maxims (Part 1)||有手黐手無手問手來留區送甩手直沖怕打終歸打貪打終被打粘連迫攻絕不放鬆來力瀉力借力出擊|
Transmigration of Souls
|輪回 / 輪廻|
|rin ne / rinne||lún huí / lun2 hui2 / lun hui / lunhui|
|Mind, Body and Spirit||身心靈 / 身心霊|
|mi shin rei|
|shēn xīn líng|
shen1 xin1 ling2
shen xin ling
|shen hsin ling
|chá yuán / cha2 yuan2 / cha yuan / chayuan||ch`a yüan / chayüan / cha yüan|
|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.
Some people may refer to this entry as Idea Thought Kanji, Idea Thought Characters, Idea Thought in Mandarin Chinese, Idea Thought Characters, Idea Thought in Chinese Writing, Idea Thought in Japanese Writing, Idea Thought in Asian Writing, Idea Thought Ideograms, Chinese Idea Thought symbols, Idea Thought Hieroglyphics, Idea Thought Glyphs, Idea Thought in Chinese Letters, Idea Thought Hanzi, Idea Thought in Japanese Kanji, Idea Thought Pictograms, Idea Thought in the Chinese Written-Language, or Idea Thought in the Japanese Written-Language.