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Senshin in Chinese / Japanese...

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Purified Spirit / Enlightened Attitude

A Japanese martial arts title/concept
China xǐ xīn
Japan sen shin
Purified Spirit / Enlightened Attitude Vertical Wall Scroll

The first Kanji alone means to wash, to bathe, primness, cleanse or purify.

The second Kanji means heart, mind, soul, or essence.

Together, these two Kanji create a word that is defined as "purified spirit" or "enlightened attitude" within the context of Japanese martial arts.

洗心 is one of the five spirits of the warrior (budo), and is often used as a Japanese martial arts tenet. Under that context it's often defined this way: A spirit that protects and harmonizes the universe. Senshin is a spirit of compassion that embraces and serves all humanity and whose function is to reconcile discord in the world. It holds all life to be sacred. It is the Buddha mind.

This title will only be familiar to Japanese who practice certain martial arts. Others may not recognize this word at all.

洗心 does not show up as a word in too many Chinese dictionaries but it can be read and has the same meaning in Chinese.

先心 There is an issue with the first character. The original, and probably most correct version is shown above. However, many dojo documents and other sources have used a more simple first character. Arguments ensue about which version is correct. If you want to be correct in the Japanese language, use the "Select and Customize" button above. If you want to match the Kanji used by your dojo, click the Kanji shown to the right. There is a slightly different meaning with this first character which means before, ahead, previous, future, precedence.

Devotion / Dedication / Attentive / Focused

China zhuān xīn
Japan sen shin
Devotion / Dedication / Attentive / Focused Vertical Wall Scroll

The first character means "for a particular person, occasion, or purpose," "focused on one single thing," "concentrated" and sometimes, "special."

The second character means "heart" or "mind" by itself.

Together, these two characters make a word that means, "paying attention with your heart." It's often translated as, "dedication," as in "be absorbed in" or "concentrate one's efforts." It's also used to mean, "with single mind," "whole-heartedly," "paying attention," "undivided attention," "concentration (-ed)," "engrossed," "devotionally (listening/watching)," and/or "attentive."

My favorite translation, which comes from the Oxford Advanced Chinese/English Dictionary is, "wholehearted devotion."

If it seems like the meaning of this word is quite open, you are correct. The context in which the word is used matters a lot. It can mean different things depending on how you use it. This makes it kind of nice as you can decide what this means to you (within some limits). This word is always positive in meaning, so even if a Chinese person reads it differently than you, it will still have a good meaning.

専In Japanese, they tend to use a variation of the second character which has one less stroke. If you want your calligraphy written this Japanese form, please click on the Kanji shown to the right instead of the button above. Note: Japanese and Chinese people will recognize either form.

See Also:  Faith | Devotion

Not the results for senshin that you were looking for?

Below are some entries from our dictionary that may match your senshin search...


If shown, 2nd row is Simp. Chinese

Simple Dictionary Definition


see styles
Mandarin xiān qín / xian1 qin2
Taiwan hsien ch`in / hsien chin
Japanese senshin / せんしん
Chinese pre-Qin, Chinese history up to the foundation of the Qin imperial dynasty in 221 BC
Japanese (See 秦) pre-Qin period (of Chinese history)



see styles
Mandarin xiān jìn / xian1 jin4
Taiwan hsien chin
Japanese senshin / せんしん
Chinese advanced (technology); to advance
Japanese (noun - becomes adjective with の) seniority; advance; leadership
先輩 Of earlier, or senior rank or achievement.


see styles
Japanese senshin / せんしん Japanese (noun/participle) undivided attention; concentration



see styles
Mandarin zhuān xīn / zhuan1 xin1
Taiwan chuan hsin
Japanese senshin
Chinese to concentrate; absorption; concentration; engrossed
With single mind; whole-heartedly; single-mindedly



see styles
Mandarin qiǎn shēn / qian3 shen1
Taiwan ch`ien shen / chien shen
Japanese senshin
Chinese depth (archaic)
shallow and deep



see styles
Mandarin qián xīn / qian2 xin1
Taiwan ch`ien hsin / chien hsin
Japanese senshin / せんしん
Chinese to concentrate fully on something; single-minded
Japanese (out-dated kanji) meditation


see styles
Japanese senshin / せんしん Japanese meditation


see styles
Japanese senshin / せんしん Japanese {sports} line judge; linesman



see styles
Mandarin rú shì èr xīn xiān xīn nán / ru2 shi4 er4 xin1 xian1 xin1 nan2
Taiwan ju shih erh hsin hsien hsin nan
Japanese nyoze nishin senshin nan
it is difficult to tell which of these mental states comes first


see styles
Japanese senshin / せんしん Japanese meditation

Search for Senshin in my Japanese & Chinese Dictionary

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

Title CharactersRomaji(Romanized Japanese)Various forms of Romanized Chinese
Purified Spirit
Enlightened Attitude
sen shin / senshinxǐ xīn / xi3 xin1 / xi xin / xixinhsi hsin / hsihsin
專心 / 専心 / 耑心
sen shin / senshinzhuān xīn
zhuan1 xin1
zhuan xin
chuan hsin
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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A nice Chinese calligraphy wall scroll

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

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Senshin was last searched for by someone else on Apr 28th, 2018