Love with all your heart

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Are you familiar with the bible? I am sure you will remember that Jesus once said, "Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul." It is the most important commandment of all. Often, we hear people say, "Honey, I love you with all my heart!"

It is no doubt how closely love and heart are related. Guess what? When you pay close attention to the Chinese character, or Hanzi, for Love you will notice a heart right in the middle of it! Amazing, isn't it? Also, it is very easy to pronounce. It sounds like the English word "I", or "Ai", in both Mandarin Chinese and Japanese.

Sometimes you might find Love written resembling Figure 3 below. What happened to the heart?

It is gone! This kind of character is a simplified character. It is new, but not necessarily better, at least in this case.

The Chinese have been using the traditional characters for several thousand years. About 50 years ago the Communist Party gained control and changed the writing system. It was a stepping-stone towards eliminating characters and eventually replacing them with the Western Roman alphabet. Fortunately, this plan is no longer in place. However, simplified characters are here to stay.

Simplified characters are fewer in number and are designed to be easier to learn because the characters have fewer strokes. At this time, simplified characters are used officially in China and Singapore. The traditional characters are still in use in Taiwan, Hong Kong, Japan (Kanji), and most Chinese communities in North America. Unless otherwise specified, Good Characters‘ uses traditional characters for their classic and artistic value.

1. Self-inking stamp: Love
2. Simplified love

Chinese character for Love

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