‘If You Fall Down Seven Times, Stand Up Eight’ Kanji Poster
If you fall down seven times, stand up eight! These kanji and hiragana characters are pronounced ‘nana korobi ya oki’ and literally mean ‘seven fall down, eight get up.’
This proverb is commonly associated with daruma dolls, the rounded, legless dolls with a hollow core that are ubiquitous in Japan and represent the Bodhidharma, founder of zen Buddhism.
The characters here are read vertically from right to left in the traditional fashion. 七転び八起き. 七 is seven, 八 is eight.
Daruma dolls always right themselves immediately when you poke them, and this idiom conveys the same spirit.
When life inevitably gets you down, whatever it was that overwhelmed you isn’t as important as your response to it. The response called for in this sage, inspiring proverb is resilience and determination, qualities that often loom larger in importance in Japan than the ultimate result of one’s endeavors. This fall down 7 times get up 8 quote is a simple, powerful reminder of ‘right action’ in the face of setbacks.
Process is what counts, and focusing on the things you can control, namely your response to a challenging situation rather than on the past or future.
Brush artist Hiro created this work at his studio in Kyoto by hand. Then we scanned it to offer here. Hiro’s red name stamp is in the lower corner, adding an elegant splash of color to this motif.
We also offer this design in our zazzle shop as a folded card and on various other items, so please have a look.
Nana korobi ya oki! If you fall down seven times, stand up eight!