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紀律 is a Chinese and Korean word that conveys the idea of extreme self-control and perhaps self-sacrifice, and obedience.
This word matches the kind of “discipline” I was in the Marine Corps. There is also an additional idea of maintaining order or being orderly in your tasks.
This idea would also fit an athlete training for the Olympics who gives up many pleasures to stay focused on their training.
規律 is a Japanese word for discipline that relays the ideas of keeping order, and observance (of rules, laws, regulations).
This is also a word in Chinese and old Korean Hanja where it suggests that you are one who follows a certain law of behavior or has a regular and dependable pattern of behavior, personal regime, or rhythm.
磨鍊 is a form of discipline which suggests training of the mind and character, aimed at producing self-control, obedience, etc.
One of my Chinese-English dictionaries even translates this as “tempering oneself” or turning yourself into hardened steel.
In old Korean Hanja, they use these characters in reverse order but with the same meaning. If you want the Korean version, please click this link instead of the button above: Korean version.
鍛練 is the Japanese Kanji and Korean Hanja word used for discipline.
This has a meaning like “forging or creating something from lots of training and practice.” My Japanese dictionary translates this as “tempering, forging, hardening, disciplining, training.”
This is for Japanese and Korean only. In Chinese, these characters might be translated as (physical) “exercise.”
The modern form of the second Japanese Kanji looks like the first image to the right. There’s also an alternate modern form after that, and finally, an alternate traditional form. Because calligraphy is an art, the calligrapher could choose any of these possible forms. Let us know if you have a preference.
自律 means self-discipline and self-control.
It is doing what you really want to do rather than being tossed around by your feelings like a leaf in the wind. You act instead of reacting. You get things done in an orderly and efficient way. With self-discipline, you take charge of yourself.
Not sure if this one works for a Japanese audience.
Special Military Term
When reading an account of some battles in China, I came across the Chinese word, 嚴整. As it turns out, 嚴整 is only used in military circles to describe neat, orderly, and well-disciplined troops. Perhaps this is actually closer to the meaning I was taught while in the U.S. Marines.
The first character literally means stern, serious, strict, or severe (it can also mean airtight or watertight.
The second character means exact, in good order, whole, complete, and orderly.
Together, these two characters multiply each other into a word that expresses the highest military level of discipline.
意志力 is a form of willpower or self-control and is about having the determination or tenacity to keep going.
In Japanese, this is the power of will, the strength of will, volition, intention, intent, or determination.
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The following table may be helpful for those studying Chinese or Japanese...
|Romaji (Romanized Japanese)
|Various forms of Romanized Chinese
|jì lǜ / ji4 lv4 / ji lv / jilv
|chi lü / chilü
|guī / gui1 lu:4 / gui lu: / guilu:
|kuei lü / kueilü
|磨練 / 磨鍊 / 磨鍊
|mó liàn / mo2 lian4 / mo lian / molian
|mo lien / molien
|鍛練 / 鍛錬
|tan ren / tanren
|zì zhì / zi4 zhi4 / zi zhi / zizhi
|tzu chih / tzuchih
|zì jǐ yì zhì
zi4 ji3 yi4 zhi4
zi ji yi zhi
|tzu chi i chih
|zì lǜ / zi4 lv4 / zi lv / zilv
|tzu lü / tzulü
|ishi ryoku / ishiryoku
|yì zhì lì
yi4 zhi4 li4
yi zhi li
|i chih li
|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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