Adaptable in Chinese / Japanese...

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Soldiers Adapt Actions to the Situation

bīng lái jiàng dǎng shuǐ lái tǔ yǎn
Soldiers Adapt Actions to the Situation Scroll

This Chinese military proverb means, counter soldiers with arms, and counter water with an earthen dam.

This is about how different situations call for different action. You must adopt measures appropriate to the actual situation.

To explain the actual proverb, one would not attack a flood of water with gunfire, nor would you counter-attack soldiers by building an earth weir. You must be adaptable and counter whatever threatens with relevant action.

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


If shown, 2nd row is Simp. Chinese

Simple Dictionary Definition


see styles
shí dé
    shi2 de2
shih te
The ten virtues, powers, or qualities, of which there are several groups, e.g. in the 華嚴經,十地品 there are 法師十德 the ten virtues of a teacher of the Law, i.e. he should be well versed in its meaning; able widely to publish it; not be nervous before an audience; be untiring in argument; adaptable; orderly so that his teaching can be easily followed; serious and dignified; bold and zealous; unwearied; and enduring (able to bear insult, etc.). The 弟子十德 ten virtues or qualities of a disciple according to the 大日經疏 4, are faith; sincerity; devotion to the trikāya; (seeking the) adornment of true wisdom; perseverance; moral purity; patience (or bearing shame); generosity in giving; courage; resoluteness.


see styles
xiǎo shèng
    xiao3 sheng4
hsiao sheng
Hinayana, the Lesser Vehicle; Buddhism in India before the Mayahana sutras; also pr. [Xiao3 cheng2]
Hīnayāna 希那衍. The small, or inferior wain, or vehicle; the form of Buddhism which developed after Śākyamuni's death to about the beginning of the Christian era, when Mahāyāna doctrines were introduced. It is the orthodox school and more in direct line with the Buddhist succession than Mahāyānism which developed on lines fundamentally different. The Buddha was a spiritual doctor, less interested in philosophy than in the remedy for human misery and perpetual transmigration. He "turned aside from idle metaphysical speculations; if he held views on such topics, he deemed them valueless for the purposes of salvation, which was his goal" (Keith). Metaphysical speculations arose after his death, and naturally developed into a variety of Hīnayāna schools before and after the separation of a distinct school of Mahāyāna. Hīnayāna remains the form in Ceylon, Burma, and Siam, hence is known as Southern Buddhism in contrast with Northern Buddhism or Mahāyāna, the form chiefly prevalent from Nepal to Japan. Another rough division is that of Pali and Sanskrit, Pali being the general literary language of the surviving form of Hīnayāna, Sanskrit of Mahāyāna. The term Hīnayāna is of Mahāyānist origination to emphasize the universalism and altruism of Mahāyāna over the narrower personal salvation of its rival. According to Mahāyāna teaching its own aim is universal Buddhahood, which means the utmost development of wisdom and the perfect transformation of all the living in the future state; it declares that Hīnayāna, aiming at arhatship and pratyekabuddhahood, seeks the destruction of body and mind and extinction in nirvāṇa. For arhatship the 四諦Four Noble Truths are the foundation teaching, for pratyekabuddhahood the 十二因緣 twelve-nidānas, and these two are therefore sometimes styled the two vehicles 二乘. Tiantai sometimes calls them the (Hīnayāna) Tripiṭaka school. Three of the eighteen Hīnayāna schools were transported to China: 倶舍 (Abhidharma) Kośa; 成實 Satya-siddhi; and the school of Harivarman, the律 Vinaya school. These are described by Mahāyānists as the Buddha's adaptable way of meeting the questions and capacity of his hearers, though his own mind is spoken of as always being in the absolute Mahāyāna all-embracing realm. Such is the Mahāyāna view of Hīnayāna, and if the Vaipulya sūtras and special scriptures of their school, which are repudiated by Hīnayāna, are apocryphal, of which there seems no doubt, then Mahāyāna in condemning Hīnayāna must find other support for its claim to orthodoxy. The sūtras on which it chiefly relies, as regards the Buddha, have no authenticity; while those of Hīnayāna cannot be accepted as his veritable teaching in the absence of fundamental research. Hīnayāna is said to have first been divided into minority and majority sections immediately after the death of Śākyamuni, when the sthāvira, or older disciples, remained in what is spoken of as "the cave", some place at Rājagṛha, to settle the future of the order, and the general body of disciples remained outside; these two are the first 上坐部 and 大衆部 q. v. The first doctrinal division is reported to have taken place under the leadership of the monk 大天 Mahādeva (q.v.) a hundred years after the Buddha's nirvāṇa and during the reign of Aśoka; his reign, however, has been placed later than this by historians. Mahādeva's sect became the Mahāsāṅghikā, the other the Sthāvira. In time the two are said to have divided into eighteen, which with the two originals are the so-called "twenty sects" of Hīnayāna. Another division of four sects, referred to by Yijing, is that of the 大衆部 (Arya) Mahāsaṅghanikāya, 上座部 Āryasthavirāḥ, 根本說一切有部 Mūlasarvāstivādaḥ, and 正量部 Saṃmatīyāḥ. There is still another division of five sects, 五部律. For the eighteen Hīnayāna sects see 小乘十八部; small vehicle



see styles
jī dòng
    ji1 dong4
chi tung
 kidou / kido
locomotive; motorized; power-driven; adaptable; flexible (use, treatment, timing etc)
(1) maneuver (usu. of military force); manoeuvre; (can act as adjective) (2) (See 機動隊) mobile; nimble; agile; quick to respond; (surname) Kidou



see styles
jī biàn
    ji1 bian4
chi pien
improvisation; flexible; adaptable; pragmatic


see styles
huó fan
    huo2 fan5
huo fan
flexible; adaptable


see styles
(adjectival noun) adaptable; flexible; versatile; unfixed



see styles
suí zhuǎn
    sui2 zhuan3
sui chuan
(隨轉理門) The sects or teaching of adaptable philosophies not revealed by the Buddhas and bodhisattvas, in contrast with the 眞實 (眞實隨轉) the truth as revealed by them; that which comes into being attached to, accompanying, or according to something else


see styles
(adj-no,adj-na) (slang) (feminine speech) (abbreviation) (See フットワークが軽い) quickly adaptable (of a person); pro-active



see styles
dāng jī zhòng
    dang1 ji1 zhong4
tang chi chung
 tōki shu
Those hearers of the Lotus who were adaptable to its teaching, and received it; one of the 四衆 q.v; those with the appropriate faculties


see styles
(adjectival noun) (1) (yoji) suave; tactful; smooth; (adjectival noun) (2) versatile; adaptable


see styles
 hentsuujizai / hentsujizai
(n,adj-na,adj-no) (yoji) freely adaptable, very flexible, nimble in adaptation


see styles
 yuuzuumuge / yuzumuge
(noun or adjectival noun) (yoji) free, unfettered and flexible; versatile; adaptable



see styles
róng tōng wú ài
    rong2 tong1 wu2 ai4
jung t`ung wu ai
    jung tung wu ai
 yūtsū muge
(noun or adjectival noun) (yoji) free, unfettered and flexible; versatile; adaptable
interpenetration and non-obstruction



see styles
shí shí tōng biàn
    shi2 shi2 tong1 bian4
shih shih t`ung pien
    shih shih tung pien
understanding and adaptable



see styles
suí zhuǎn lǐ mén
    sui2 zhuan3 li3 men2
sui chuan li men
 zui tenri mon
sects or teaching of adaptable philosophies not revealed by the buddhas and bodhisattvas; sects or teaching of adaptable philosophies not revealed by the buddhas and bodhisattvas



see styles
òu hé jù shè luó
    ou4 he2 ju4 she4 luo2
ou ho chü she lo
(or 傴和倶舍羅) (or 漚和拘舍羅) (or 傴和拘舍羅) upāyakauśalya, intp. by 方便善巧 expediency and skill, adaptable, suited to conditions, opportunist, the adaptation of teaching to the capacity of the hearer.


see styles
 futtowaakugakarui / futtowakugakarui
(exp,adj-i) (idiom) quickly adaptable; pro-active


see styles
 yuuzuumuge; yuuzuumuge / yuzumuge; yuzumuge
    ゆうずうむげ; ゆうづうむげ
(noun or adjectival noun) (yoji) free, unfettered and flexible; versatile; adaptable



see styles
jiàn rén shuō rén huà , jiàn guǐ shuō guǐ huà
    jian4 ren2 shuo1 ren2 hua4 , jian4 gui3 shuo1 gui3 hua4
chien jen shuo jen hua , chien kuei shuo kuei hua
(fig.) adaptable; able to deal with various kinds of people and situations; (derog.) insincere; two-faced


see styles
(exp,v5k) (1) to have a short turning radius (e.g. car); (exp,v5k) (2) to be adaptable; to be quick to respond to shifting circumstances

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

Title CharactersVarious forms of Romanized Chinese
Soldiers Adapt Actions to the Situation兵來將擋水來土掩
bīng lái jiàng dǎng shuǐ lái tǔ yǎn
bing1 lai2 jiang4 dang3 shui3 lai2 tu3 yan3
bing lai jiang dang shui lai tu yan
ping lai chiang tang shui lai t`u yen
ping lai chiang tang shui lai tu yen
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.

Many custom options...

Soldiers Adapt Actions to the Situation Scroll
Soldiers Adapt Actions to the Situation Scroll
Soldiers Adapt Actions to the Situation Scroll
Soldiers Adapt Actions to the Situation Scroll

And formats...

Soldiers Adapt Actions to the Situation Vertical Portrait
Soldiers Adapt Actions to the Situation Horizontal Wall Scroll
Soldiers Adapt Actions to the Situation Vertical Portrait

Lookup Adaptable in my Japanese & Chinese Dictionary

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

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A nice Chinese calligraphy wall scroll

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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.

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