Sunday, 12 February 2012

Lessons from Chinese Calligraphy

My prized and favourite collection.

Collecting Chinese Calligraphy and practicing Chinese Calligraphy are my favourite past time. From the theme fonts of the calligraphy and the words inscribed, usually in the form of poems or verses, we can learn a big deal about the richness of the Chinese language and also lessons for life.

Like Roman Character with different theme fonts, Chinese character were also written in different theme fonts or some calligrapher developed their own font style. Most of the time, the words used are hard to translate into English or when translated, the whole meaning of a verse might be different.


My own way of writing "道" which means "the way" and Chinese brushes craved with my name that I use for my writing.

As you have read in my previous post, I learned to write Chinese Calligraphy from my Chinese tutor in New Zealand. I found that practicing calligraphy at night is the best time for me to relax, reflect on what I’ve done for day, and memorize Chinese characters and poems. But the most important of all, I found that it taught me to be patient as you need to write a character stroke by stroke.

Throughout my many visits to Beijing and other parts of China, I have collected a great deal of calligraphies from famous masters to calligraphers at the night market. Usually I will dictate the words that I would like them to write but occasionally I buy their famous work like Master Bai Shuan's (白树安) 舍得诗 (Generosity Poem).
Not to miss out my other favourite calligrapher: my idol – Chairman Mao. The Chairman’s calligraphy is a very unique one with his own style that others can’t copy. I can only admire his calligraphy from pictures. How I wish I have a copy of his work !!
Those who have been to my house knew that most of the spaces available are filled by calligraphies or Chinese paintings. I will usually rotate them like museum displays.  On this blog, I am going to share with you one of my favourite calligraphy with Generosity poem (舍得诗)
舍得
舍得, 舍得,有舍才有得。
没得舍不在,无舍不见得。
只有舍得舍,才能得到得。
只得不舍,有违道德;
只舍不得,不合规则。
有舍有得,心安理得,必有所得;
积小得为大得,终有所得。


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