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chriscorino
04-19-2009, 08:38 PM
My husband after a very long prescription drug battle, over 15 years, he is now clean for 6 months, and I am painting him a ceramic plate and mug for him. He loves "kanji" writing, and I see that some people say that isnt a language, so if anyone can explain that for me I would love that! I feel silly that I dont know.
Any way, I am trying to do the serenity prayer which is as follows...

God grant me the serenity
to accept the things I cannot change;
courage to change the things I can;
and wisdom to know the difference.

Now I know that it a LOT of lettering, so I was thinking that if it just would be overwhelming I could write it in english and use some of the words around the edges(or symbols should I say) So if anyone has any ideas that would be wonderful! His 6 month is in one week so unfortunately I am in a time crunch.thank you so very much in advance... Chris:D

oisin bourke
04-19-2009, 10:29 PM
Others with greater ability and time than myself may help you with your translation, but if your husband likes Kanji (Which is pictorial writing system), he may enjoy the following, much-loved Japanese poem by Miyazawa Kenji.

The first three lines are often quoted and may be suitable for a mug.
I provided a phonetic reading of the first three lines.

The English translation is by David Sulz and is available at:
http://www.kenji-world.net/english/download/works/Rain.html

If you enjoy the poem you may want to say thanks.

Best of luck to you and your husband!

雨にも負けず
宮沢賢治

雨にも負けず
Ame ni mo makezu
風にも負けず
Kaze ni mo makezu
雪にも夏の暑さにも負けぬ
Yuki ni mo natsu no atsusa ni mo makenu

丈夫な体を持ち
欲はなく
決して怒らず
いつも静かに笑っている
一日に玄米4合と
味噌と少しの野菜を食べ
あらゆることを
自分を勘定に入れずに
よく見聞きし解り
そして忘れず
野原の松の林の蔭の
小さなカヤブキの小屋に居て
東に病気の子供があれば
行って看病してやり
西に疲れた母あれば
行って その稲の束を負い
南に死にそうな人あれば
行って 怖がらなくてもいいと言い
北に喧嘩や訴訟があれば
つまらないから止めろと言い
日照りのときは涙を流し
寒さの夏はオロオロ歩き
皆にデクノ坊と呼ばれ 
ほめられもせず
苦にもされず
そういうものに
私はなりたい

Be not Defeated by the Rain Written by Kenji Miyazawa
Translated by David Sulz

Be not defeated by the rain, Nor let the wind prove your better.
Succumb not to the snows of winter. Nor be bested by the heat of summer.

Be strong in body. Unfettered by desire. Not enticed to anger. Cultivate a quiet joy.
Count yourself last in everything. Put others before you.
Watch well and listen closely. Hold the learned lessons dear.

A thatch-roof house, in a meadow, nestled in a pine grove's shade.

A handful of rice, some miso, and a few vegetables to suffice for the day.

If, to the East, a child lies sick: Go forth and nurse him to health.
If, to the West, an old lady stands exhausted: Go forth, and relieve her of burden.
If, to the South, a man lies dying: Go forth with words of courage to dispel his fear.
If, to the North, an argument or fight ensues:
Go forth and beg them stop such a waste of effort and of spirit.

In times of drought, shed tears of sympathy.
In summers cold, walk in concern and empathy.

Stand aloof of the unknowing masses:
Better dismissed as useless than flattered as a "Great Man".

This is my goal, the person I strive to become.

Chris Li
04-19-2009, 11:11 PM
My husband after a very long prescription drug battle, over 15 years, he is now clean for 6 months, and I am painting him a ceramic plate and mug for him. He loves "kanji" writing, and I see that some people say that isnt a language, so if anyone can explain that for me I would love that! I feel silly that I dont know.
Any way, I am trying to do the serenity prayer which is as follows...

God grant me the serenity
to accept the things I cannot change;
courage to change the things I can;
and wisdom to know the difference.

Now I know that it a LOT of lettering, so I was thinking that if it just would be overwhelming I could write it in english and use some of the words around the edges(or symbols should I say) So if anyone has any ideas that would be wonderful! His 6 month is in one week so unfortunately I am in a time crunch.thank you so very much in advance... Chris:D

It's fairly well known in Japan - the best known translation is available at:

http://home.interlink.or.jp/~suno/yoshi/poetry/p_niebuhr.htm

Best,

Chris

Michael Varin
04-19-2009, 11:47 PM
Regarding your first question: Kanji is not a language. It is merely one of the written forms incorporated into the Japanese language.

Regarding the translation and lettering: That's quite an endeavor. Might I suggest limiting yourself to "serenity," "courage," and "wisdom." Maybe vertically down the center of the plate, and equally spaced side by side around the mug. The kanji can be larger, and I think it will be more aesthetically pleasing.

Serenity - 静 (jou, shizumeru)
Courage - 勇 (yuu, isamu)
Wisdom - 叡 (ei, akiraka)

Note: Please, double check my characters before using them, and really, you should learn the proper stroke order if you want your kanji to look good. I'm sure you can find larger examples of the necessary kanji online or in a Japanese calligraphy (shodo) book.

Eva Antonia
04-20-2009, 03:20 AM
There is a site www.saiga-jp.com where you can find a very helpful demonstration of brush strokes for every kanji. On wikipedia, you find it for the hiragana and katakans letters.

Best regards,

Eva

chriscorino
04-20-2009, 09:56 AM
Regarding your first question: Kanji is not a language. It is merely one of the written forms incorporated into the Japanese language.

Regarding the translation and lettering: That's quite an endeavor. Might I suggest limiting yourself to "serenity," "courage," and "wisdom." Maybe vertically down the center of the plate, and equally spaced side by side around the mug. The kanji can be larger, and I think it will be more aesthetically pleasing.

Serenity - 静 (jou, shizumeru)
Courage - 勇 (yuu, isamu)
Wisdom - 叡 (ei, akiraka)

Note: Please, double check my characters before using them, and really, you should learn the proper stroke order if you want your kanji to look good. I'm sure you can find larger examples of the necessary kanji online or in a Japanese calligraphy (shodo) book.
Thank you so much for your response about the Serenity Prayer. I do agree that using fewer letters would be both easier, and not as cluttered, but easy to also share with others as the whole plate wouldnt need to have both languages. Thank you for your time. Chris

chriscorino
04-20-2009, 09:58 AM
I surely thank you all for your time and your help. I much appreciate it, and wish you all best of luck. Chris