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3. Dark Sister
4. Dark Angel
黑闇 is the two-character Chinese word for darkness.
The first character alone means black or dark.
The second character has several possible meanings, depending on context; They include: to shut the door, unilluminated, dark, gloomy, hidden, secret.
Together, these two characters will, in most cases, simply be translated as "dark" or "darkness".
闇 is the shortest and universal way (in Chinese, Japanese Kanji, and old Korean Hanja) to write "darkness".
In Chinese this can mean: dark, gloomy, hidden, secret, to shut the door, unilluminated.
In Japanese this can mean: darkness, the dark, black-marketeering, dark, shady, illegal.
In old Korean Hanja this can mean: dark, obscure, hidden, secret.
Note that there is an alternate form of this character. It is used as an alternate in all three languages (that rarely happens). You can see this alternate version to the right. If you want to order that version, please click on that character, instead of the button above.
This is the most natural way to write, "The night is darkest before the dawn", in Chinese.
The words break down this way by meaning this way:
1.黎明 dawn / daybreak
2.前 before / in front / ago / former / previous / earlier / front
3.的 (possessive particle) / of
4.黑暗 dark / darkly / darkness
If you try to understand the Chinese word order and grammar, it's like, "Before dawn, is the darkest [time]".
This Buddhist title means "dark sister", "dark one", or "dark woman".
There are two sisters:
One is the deva, 功德女 ("merit" or "achieving"), who causes people to acquire wealth.
The other is the "dark one", 黑闇女, who causes people to spend and waste.
These sisters always accompany each other.
暗天使 is the shortest way to write, "Dark Angel", in Chinese.
This literally reads, "dark heaven's messenger".
天使 means "heaven's messenger" but is always understood as "angel".
This would be pronounced "kura tenshi" in Japanese. This has the same meaning in Japanese, but not a common title. If you manage to find dark angel written in Japan, it would probably be ダーク エンジェル (Dāku Enjeru), which is a transliteration of the English title into Japanese, or 暗い天使 (kurai tenshi) which is a specifically Japanese title.
This is an ancient Chinese proverb about getting all the information from all sides so that you truly understand a situation.
A man named Wei Zheng lived between 580-643 AD. He was a noble and wise historian and minister in the court of the early Tang Dynasty.
The emperor once asked him, "What should an emperor do to understand the real-world situation and what makes an emperor out-of-touch with reality?"
Wei Zheng replied, "Listen to both sides and you will be enlightened; listen to only one side and you will be left in the dark".
Then Wei Zheng went on to site examples of leaders in history that were victorious after heeding both sides of the story, and other leaders that met their doom because they believed one-sided stories which often came from flattering lips.
Please note that there is an unwritten rule when the same character appears twice in the same phrase, the calligrapher will alter the appearance so that no two characters are exactly alike in the same piece. This calligraphy has two repeating characters that will be written differently than they appear here.
信唸是在黎明前的黑闇中能感到光明的鳥 is a philosophical poem/quote from Indian Poet and Philosopher, Rabindranath Tagore.
Rabindranath Tagore, 1915
This quote is not sourced, and therefore several variations exist in English. Some suggest the original was in the Bengali language.
This, of course, is the Chinese translation which has the meaning of, "Faith is the bird that feels the light and sings when the dawn is still dark".
More about Rabindranath Tagore
The following table may be helpful for those studying Chinese or Japanese...
|Title||Characters||Romaji (Romanized Japanese)||Various forms of Romanized Chinese|
|Darkness||暗黒||an koku / ankoku|
|hēi àn / hei1 an4 / hei an / heian|
|yami||àn / an4 / an|
|The Night is Darkest Before the Dawn||黎明前的黑暗||lí míng qián de hēi àn|
li2 ming2 qian2 de hei1 an4
li ming qian de hei an
|li ming ch`ien te hei an
li ming chien te hei an
|Dark Sister||黑闇女||koku an nyo|
|hēi àn nǚ|
hei1 an4 nv3
hei an nv
|hei an nü
|Dark Angel||暗天使||àn tiān shǐ|
an4 tian1 shi3
an tian shi
|an t`ien shih
an tien shih
|Dark Angel||黑暗天使||hēi àn tiān shǐ|
hei1 an4 tian1 shi3
hei an tian shi
|hei an t`ien shih
hei an tien shih
|Dark Angel||暗い天使||kurai tenshi|
|Listen to Both Sides and be Enlightened, Listen to One Side and be in the Dark||兼聽則明偏聽則暗|
|jiān tīng zé míng, piān tīng zé àn|
jian1 ting1 ze2 ming2, pian1 ting1 ze2 an4
jian ting ze ming, pian ting ze an
|chien t`ing tse ming, p`ien t`ing tse an
chien ting tse ming, pien ting tse an
|Faith is the bird that feels the light when the dawn is still dark||信唸是在黎明前的黑闇中能感到光明的鳥|
|xìn niǎn shì zài lí míng qián de hēi àn zhōng néng gǎn dào guāng míng de niǎo|
xin4 nian3 shi4 zai4 li2 ming2 qian2 de hei1 an4 zhong1 neng2 gan3 dao4 guang1 ming2 de niao3
xin nian shi zai li ming qian de hei an zhong neng gan dao guang ming de niao
|hsin nien shih tsai li ming ch`ien te hei an chung neng kan tao kuang ming te niao
hsin nien shih tsai li ming chien te hei an chung neng kan tao kuang ming te niao
|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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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.
Some people may refer to this entry as Darkness Kanji, Darkness Characters, Darkness in Mandarin Chinese, Darkness Characters, Darkness in Chinese Writing, Darkness in Japanese Writing, Darkness in Asian Writing, Darkness Ideograms, Chinese Darkness symbols, Darkness Hieroglyphics, Darkness Glyphs, Darkness in Chinese Letters, Darkness Hanzi, Darkness in Japanese Kanji, Darkness Pictograms, Darkness in the Chinese Written-Language, or Darkness in the Japanese Written-Language.
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