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translation of a scroll

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Looking for help translating this scroll...
img_1622-jpg.20288

Also this was written on the outside, presumably a name?
img_1621-jpg.20289

Thanks!!!
 

Toritoribe

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That's a maxim taken from Tao Te Ching, but the writer dropped the second kanji 常 "always".

無為而無不為
道は常に無為にして而も為さざるは無し
Michi wa tsune ni mui ni shite shikamo nasazaru wa nashi.
"The way" never does anything voluntary, but it can accomplish everything.
(This is not my translation. I took this from this site.)

山路一遊先生筆
Yamaji Kazuyoshi sensei hitsu
written by Yamaji Kazuyoshi (seems like an Imperial Japanese Navy officer)
山路一善 - Wikipedia
(all in Japanese)
 
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Mike Cash

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Considered the father of Japanese naval aviation...that's very impressive!

Sadly, he's also the uncle of a man convicted in this horrifying atrocity, showing once again that on the net you're seldom more than a couple of clicks from something appalling.
 
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Is there any significance to dropping the 'always' character? Do you know how that would change the meaning of the line? A philosophical explanation is fine! =) Thanks again for the great information!
 
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Another translation I found is "The Tao is constant in non-action
Yet there is nothing it does not do".
So if 'always' and 'constant' can be interchanged, could the omission of 'always' just leave is as "the Tao is non-action"? Or at least make it not as concrete/definite of a statement?
Just some ideas, not sure if that's even close. =P
 
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I think more likely it is just an error on the calligrapher's part. Omitting 「常」 doesn't really add any philosophical twist to the phrase, and it would be hard to imagine that even if it did it would be an improvement upon the original to the point where someone would wish to write the new version on a scroll.
 
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That makes sense, I know nothing about the Japanese language or calligraphy so just let my imagination run with it. =P Thanks so much for the reply!
 

Toritoribe

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I completely agree with Majestic-san. Even though 常 isn't there, the meaning doesn't change. Plus, 無為而無不為 is a famous maxim that is also used in other chapters, so his memory would be faulty, I assume.

Considered the father of Japanese naval aviation...that's very impressive!

Sadly, he's also the uncle of a man convicted in this horrifying atrocity, showing once again that on the net you're seldom more than a couple of clicks from something appalling.
Yeah, it's also impressive that he was 秋山真之's contemporary at the Naval Academy.
I've read 海と毒薬 by 遠藤周作...
 

Mike Cash

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I completely agree with Majestic-san. Even though 常 isn't there, the meaning doesn't change. Plus, 無為而無不為 is a famous maxim that is also used in other chapters, so his memory would be faulty, I assume.


Yeah, it's also impressive that he was 秋山真之's contemporary at the Naval Academy.
I've read 海と毒薬 by 遠藤周作...
Do you recommend it? I've read 父親 and 快男児・怪男児 by him and liked them.
 

Toritoribe

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It was in my high school days, so it's a bit long ago for me to recall, but if you like other works by Endo, yeah, I recommend it.
 
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