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Strength From Within in Chinese / Japanese...

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Start your custom "Strength From Within" project by clicking the button next to your favorite "Strength From Within" title below...

  1. Inner Strength
  2. Inner Strength is Better than Outward Appearance
  3. Inner Strength / Self-Improvement
  4. Inner Strength is Better than...
  5. Always Striving for Inner Strength
  6. Perseverance / Fortitude
  7. Strength and Love in Unity
  8. Inner Strength / Inner Well-Being and Health
  9. Stay Strong / Iron Will

Inner Strength

China nèi lì
Japan nai ryoku
Inner Strength

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.

Inner Strength

China nèi zài lì liàng
Inner Strength

內在力量 is the slightly-verbose way to say inner-strength. The first two characters mean "intrinsic" or "inner." The second two characters mean "power," "force" or "strength" (especially physical strength). 內在力量 is more a short phrase rather than just a word in Chinese and Korean. This can sort of be understood in Japanese but it's not normal/proper Japanese.

Inner Strength is Better than Outward Appearance

China biǎo zhuàng bù rú lǐ zhuàng
Inner Strength is Better than Outward Appearance

表壯不如里壯 literally translates as: [Better to be] strong inside than [to be] strong outside.

The ancient original meaning was:
[An] able [husband] outside [working to support a family is] not as good as [an] able [wife] inside [working and saving to take care of the family].

The current meaning is:
Inner strength is more important than outward appearance.

Inner Strength / Self-Improvement

China zì qiáng
Inner Strength / Self-Improvement

自強 is the kind of inner-strength that applies to a person who has will-power and can inspire themselves to do great things.

自強 can also be the creed of a person that always pursues self-improvement.

Other translations: self-strengthening, striving for improvement, self-improvement, strive to become stronger, and self-renewal.

Inner Strength is Better than
Outward Appearance

Japan naimen no tsuyosa ha gaiken no yosa ni masaru
Inner Strength is Better than / Outward Appearance

This Japanese proverb literally translates as "inner/internal strength/power [versus] outward-appearance [the] merit/virtue/good quality [does] excel/surpass/exceed/outweigh."

More naturally in English, this would be "Inner Strength Outweighs Outward Appearance."


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

Always Striving for Inner Strength

China zì qiáng bú xī
Always Striving for Inner Strength

This proverb or idiom suggests that the pursuit self-improvement is eternal. It can also be a suggestion to strive unremittingly in life.

The first two characters mean inner-strength with the idea of self-improvement. The last two characters mean "never rest" or "striving without giving up."

Some will translate these four characters as, "Exert and strive hard without any let up."

Perseverance / Fortitude

China jiǎn rěn
Japan ken nin
Perseverance / Fortitude

The first character means "strong," "solid," "firm," "unyielding" or "resolute."
The second character means "to beat," "to endure," or "to tolerate."
Together they speak of the strength from within yourself. Some may also translate this as "long-suffering" in a more Biblical sense.

堅忍 is a common term in Chinese and Korean Hanja but a little less commonly used in modern Japanese Kanji. For that reason, this selection is best if your audience is Chinese or Korean.


忍忍 Note that when writing this as Kanji, Japanese will tend to write the second Kanji a little differently. If you select our Japanese master calligrapher, please expect the form where the little horizontal stroke crosses the vertical stroke. See differences in the images to the right. Technically, they are both the same character, and will be read the same in either language.

Strength and Love in Unity

Japan riki ai fu ni
Strength and Love in Unity

This proverb literally means:
"Strength [and] Love [are] Not Two [separate ideas/concepts/things]."

You'll find this proverb translated from Japanese to English as:
Love and strength are not separate.
Power and love are indivisible.
Strength and love in harmony.
Strength and love stand together.

Old Japanese grammar is quite different than English, and so this proverb says a lot within the brevity of just 4 characters. If you just read these characters directly as, "Strength Love Not Two," you'd probably miss the real meaning.


According to the Swedish Shorinji Kempo Federation, this is the second characteristic of Shorinji Kempo.

This post really explains the concept best in my opinion: Bushido by MS: Riki Ai Fu Ni, which states: "Riki Ai Funi" is the philosophy that power (Riki) and love (Ai) are indivisible. More concretely, a person, who is powerful but does not have love, cannot control and misuse his/her power; on the other hand, a person, who has loved ones but is not powerful enough, cannot protect himself/herself nor loved ones.

Inner Strength / Inner Well-Being and Health

China nèi jiàn
Inner Strength / Inner Well-Being and Health

內健 is an old Chinese word meaning inner strength, or inner health. It's the idea of health and well-being starting or residing from inside yourself. Also defined as fortitude within the context of good health.

Stay Strong / Iron Will

Japan tesshin sekichou
Stay Strong / Iron Will

鉄心石腸 is a Japanese proverb which suggest 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."

Search for Strength From Within in my Japanese & Chinese Dictionary




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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
Inner Strength內在力量
内在力量
nèi zài lì liàng
nei4 zai4 li4 liang4
nei zai li liang
neizaililiang
nei tsai li liang
neitsaililiang
Inner Strength is Better than Outward Appearance表壯不如里壯
表壮不如里壮
biǎo zhuàng bù rú lǐ zhuàng
biao3 zhuang4 bu4 ru2 li3 zhuang4
biao zhuang bu ru li zhuang
biaozhuangburulizhuang
piao chuang pu ju li chuang
piaochuangpujulichuang
Inner Strength
Self-Improvement
自強
自强
zì qiáng / zi4 qiang2 / zi qiang / ziqiangtzu ch`iang / tzuchiang / tzu chiang
Inner Strength is Better than
Outward Appearance
内面の強さは外見の良さに勝るnaimen no tsuyosa ha gaiken no yosa ni masaru
Always Striving for Inner Strength自強不息
自强不息
zì qiáng bú xī
zi4 qiang2 bu2 xi1
zi qiang bu xi
ziqiangbuxi
tzu ch`iang pu hsi
tzuchiangpuhsi
tzu chiang pu hsi
Perseverance
Fortitude
堅忍
坚忍
ken nin / kenninjiǎn rěn / jian3 ren3 / jian ren / jianrenchien jen / chienjen
Strength and Love in Unity力愛不二
力爱不二
riki ai fu ni
rikiaifuni
Inner Strength
Inner Well-Being and Health
內健nèi jiàn / nei4 jian4 / nei jian / neijiannei chien / neichien
Stay Strong
Iron Will
鉄心石腸tesshin sekichou
tesshinsekichou
teshin sekicho
teshinsekicho
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.



Successful Chinese Character and Japanese Kanji calligraphy searches within the last few hours...

4 Noble Truths
Adoring Love
Autumn
Bamboo
Bamboo Moon
Believe
Benevolence
Bodhidharma
Brave
Bravery
Buddhism
Cancer
Cherry Blossom
Clarity
Destiny That Brings Lovers Together
Devil
Dream
Faith
Faith in God
Family
Fierce
Fire
Follow Your Dreams
Forgive and Forget
Friend
Geisha
Generosity
Glory
Gold
Guan Gong
I Love You Forever and Always
Indomitable Spirit
Integrity
Kanji Symbol Courage
Karate
Kindness
Lion
Love
Luck
Mommy
Mono No Aware
Moon
Never Forget
Never Give Up
Power
Powerful
Protect
Pure
Sadness
Sakura
Samurai
Shimabukuro
Soccer
Storm
Thunder Lightning in Kanji
Tran
Truth
Welcome
Will Power
Wind

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.

Some people may refer to this entry as Strength From Within Kanji, Strength From Within Characters, Strength From Within in Mandarin Chinese, Strength From Within Characters, Strength From Within in Chinese Writing, Strength From Within in Japanese Writing, Strength From Within in Asian Writing, Strength From Within Ideograms, Chinese Strength From Within symbols, Strength From Within Hieroglyphics, Strength From Within Glyphs, Strength From Within in Chinese Letters, Strength From Within Hanzi, Strength From Within in Japanese Kanji, Strength From Within Pictograms, Strength From Within in the Chinese Written-Language, or Strength From Within in the Japanese Written-Language.