Power is small things in large numbers

一粒万倍
ichi.ryuu.man.bai

Literally: one – particle – ten thousand – times (as in multiplication)

Alternately: From something tiny, a huge profit. By extension, an admonition not to look down on small or simple things, because even the most humble appearance can hide vast potential. Also, it seems, a metaphorical appellation for the rice plant, which grows from one grain and produces countless more. And finally, this phrase is a Buddhist teaching that one good deed, no matter how small, can produce myriad good results in the world.

Notes: This saying apparently comes to us from a Buddhist sutra known in Japanese as the 『報恩経』(Houon-kyou), short for 『大方便仏報恩経』 (Daihou benbutsu houon-kyou), literally “Great teaching Buddha gratitude sutra” – if it has a more poetic or standard English name, I haven’t found it yet.

IchiRyuuManBaiShin

Now imagine that this is full of rice.

About Confanity

I love the written word more than anything else I've had the chance to work with. I'm back in the States from Japan for grad school, but still studying Japanese with the hope of becoming a translator -- or writer, or even teacher -- as long as it's something language-related.
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