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Lesson Transcript

さくら: さくらです。
Peter: Peter here.
さくら: Yojijukugo.
Peter: Idiomatic phrases, Lesson 2. Sakura san,
さくら: 四字熟語
Peter: さくらさん
さくら: はい
Peter: ようこそ So welcome to this series. Now this series focuses on of course idiomatic phrases taken from phrases made up of four Chinese characters.
さくら: Yes.
Peter: Four kanji and the goal here is to provide insight into the way Japanese people think and also to introduce people and get people familiar with kanji.
さくら: Yes.
Peter: And you are the ideal person to do that. So Sakura san, you know the format. Each lesson will cover two Yojijukugo.

Lesson focus

Peter: Today’s lesson, what is our first candidate?
さくら: 一念発起
Peter: To make up one’s mind strongly, to accomplish something, to make up one’s mind to do something.
さくら: Yes.
Peter: Can we have it one more time, one time slow and then one more time nice and fast.
さくら: Okay 一念発起  (slow) いちねんほっき (natural speed)一念発起
Peter: Now let’s take a look at the four characters. The first character is
さくら: 一
Peter: Meaning one.
さくら: Yes.
Peter: Second
さくら: 念
Peter: Wish. Third,
さくら: 発
Peter: To start from and finally
さくら: 起
Peter: Rouse, wake up, stir.
さくら: But 発 becomes ほ when it’s combined with きnot はつき but ほっき
Peter: So one more time altogether
さくら: 一念発起
Peter: One wish start from rouse. Now this is originally a Buddhist word or phrase meaning to make up one’s mind, to take refuge in the Buddha and find enlightenment.
さくら: Yes religious なのね
Peter: Yeah and then it kind of changed and it kind of evolved to mean to make up one’s mind and strongly to accomplish something.
さくら: And many Yojijukugo comes from this Buddhist concepts or words.
Peter: And many derived from China.
さくら: Yes.
Peter: So now that we have this, what does it mean Sakura san?
さくら: Umm…
Peter: Well that’s what we are going to work on today. That’s not – also, we want to introduce you to these things.
さくら: Yes.
Peter: But we also want to show you how to use them.
さくら: Yes.
Peter: So how would we use this? There is four characters in a row. How could we use it?
さくら: You can add suru.
Peter: The verb to do.
さくら: Yes and say 一念発起する
Peter: So to make up one’s mind, to accomplish something difficult. So Sakura san, can we have an example?
さくら: 僕は学生時代ほとんど勉強しなかったが、一念発起して勉強し、弁護士になった。ちょっと長かったかな。
Peter: Yeah that’s a little long.
さくら: Long.
Peter: But I think it’s okay if we break it down but first let’s just go over the meaning. Now, although I didn’t study when I was a student, I made up my mind to study and be a lawyer and I made it.
さくら: Yes.
Peter: So it kind of represents you know, really determining to do something.
さくら: Yes.
Peter: And following through or I don’t know about following through but at least trying, giving it a try.
さくら: そうですね。 You start something.
Peter: Okay and now let’s just go back into there one more time and get a look at it. What do we have for the first part?
さくら: 僕は
Peter: So I
さくら: 学生時代
Peter: When I was a student, at the time I was a student.
さくら: ほとんど
Peter: Usually or hardly.
さくら: 勉強しなかった
Peter: Didn’t study.
さくら: が
Peter: But.
さくら: 一念発起して
Peter: I made up my mind.
さくら: 勉強し
Peter: Studied.
さくら: 弁護士になった
Peter: And became a lawyer. So it’s funny. It sounds like – the いちねん there sounds like one year 一念発起して. It sounds like…
さくら: そうか Yeah.
Peter: It sounds to me like I took the year off.
さくら: そう。ねんがね。
Peter: 一年をほうきして
さくら: 放棄して
Peter: Yeah.
さくら: 放棄is like discard.
Peter: Yeah.
さくら: Yeah.
Peter: Interesting.
さくら: Different, でねcompletely different でね
Peter: Completely different.
さくら: そう
Peter: We have a pause in here 一念発起
さくら: そう。ほっき
Peter: 面白いです
さくら: 面白い
Peter: How about another example?
さくら: 私は一念発起して脱サラし、自分の会社を設立した。
Peter: I made up my mind to quit the salaried lifestyle and establish my own company. So again, we notice this expression is used with the pseudoverb in the te form して
さくら: して
Peter: 一念発起して something, something.
さくら: Yes.
Peter: So make up one’s mind, I made up my mind to quit the salaried life and start my own company. Again this is you know, kind of a very big decision.
さくら: Yes.
Peter: You know, in the previous one, we had decided to study and become a lawyer.
さくら: そうですね。
Peter: Then we had decided to start my own company. So kind of a life altering decision.
さくら: そうですね。
Peter: Now inside the PDF, there will be one more example. So be sure to get the PDF.
さくら: Yes.
Peter: Now, to be perfectly honest Sakura san, I’ve never used this one.
さくら: Ah maybe you never made such decision in your life.
Peter: What are you trying to say?
さくら: But maybe japanesepod101 listeners might have made this 一念発起 to study Japanese 一念発起して日本語を勉強している
Peter: So I made up my mind, studied Japanese.
さくら: Yes.
Peter: So really seriously like zone in on it.
さくら: Yes.
Peter: Okay. Next we have
さくら: 一目瞭然
Peter: Obvious at a glance.
さくら: Yes.
Peter: Yes.
さくら: これは More popular ね
Peter: Let’s get the phrase one more time.
さくら: 一目瞭然
Peter: Okay let’s break it down by character. What do we have first?
さくら: 一
Peter: One.
さくら: 目
Peter: I.
さくら: 瞭
Peter: Clear.
さくら: 然
Peter: Well. Altogether
さくら: 一目瞭然
Peter: One I clear well. So obvious at a glance. So we just looked at each character individually but let’s pair them together and look at what the pairs mean. What do we have first?
さくら: 一目
Peter: So one eye means to take a glance together. Then we have
さくら: 瞭然
Peter: Which means
さくら: Obvious.
Peter: As in very clear or completely clear.
さくら: Yes.
Peter: So when we put them together, it becomes obvious at a glance. Now let’s go over the usage.
さくら: はい。
Peter: Well, what do we have first? How do we use this?
さくら: Something は、一目瞭然だ
Peter: So something is obvious. So this Yojijukugo is followed by the copula
さくら: だ
Peter: Depending on the politeness level. So it could just end the sentence or it could be followed by だ, it could be followed by des, but it comes after explaining what is obvious. So can we have a sample sentence?
さくら: 彼の顔を見たら嘘をついているのは、一目瞭然だ
Peter: Ah it’s obvious that he is lying when you look at his face.
さくら: You can tell from his look.
Peter: It’s obvious. I like this expression. One more time,
さくら: 彼の顔を見たら嘘をついているのは、一目瞭然だ
Peter: Now the grammar here is a little difficult but again inside the PDF, you can see the sentences. Also if you use the grammar bank, you can work your way through these sentences if you don’t understand them but again what we are focusing on here is the Yojijukugo. Okay can we have another example?
さくら: その商品のウエブサイトを見れば、どんな商品か一目瞭然だ
Peter: When you visit the website of that product, you can clearly see what kind of product it is. Okay again, this is inside the PDF. Now I want to ask Sakura san.
さくら: はい。
Peter: Give me an example of how you use this or when was the last time you used it, frequency, how often.
さくら: そうですね。何だろう。例えば、今日の文法はPDFを見れば一目瞭然です。とかね。
Peter: Ah so today’s grammar point, if you look at the PDF, it’s obvious.
さくら: Yes.
Peter: Or it’s clear.
さくら: すごいプレッシャーを
Peter: Okay. So we had two expressions. Now what we are going to do now is a little bit of a wrap up. Now Sakura san, we covered two expressions.
さくら: Yes.
Peter: The first one was
さくら: 一念発起
Peter: To make up one’s mind, to do something difficult. Now on a frequency level meaning how often it’s used, what would you say? Out of 5 stars, what would you give this one?
さくら: そうね 2.
Peter: Two. Yeah I guess because you don’t do it that often.
さくら: そうなの、そうなのYes.
Peter: But it will appear in magazines and other things.
さくら: Yes.
Peter: But not used very often. How about the second one we covered today?
さくら: Four maybe.
Peter: So you use it pretty often.
さくら: そうですね。
Peter: I want to use the second one.
さくら: Ah…
Peter: I am having a little trouble remembering it though. 一目 is very clear, one glance but the second one is, I don’t know. I need some kind of pneumatic to remember it.
さくら: 瞭然
Peter: 瞭然Huh think about that. Anybody have any ideas, we would love to hear them.
さくら: そうですね。


Peter: Okay so that is going to wrap up this lesson. Be sure to pick up the PDF. Again, inside the PDF, we have a very detailed explanation of the characters that make it up. The compounds found inside, the four letter combination itself plus example sentences.
さくら: はい
Peter: Everything we covered today.
さくら: 今日のレッスンのPDFを見れば、今日のレッスンの内容は一目瞭然ですね。
Peter: Umm yes if you take a look at the PDF of this lesson, what we covered is obvious.
さくら: Yes.
Peter: Umm okay.
さくら: Yes.
Peter: That is going to do it for today.
さくら: はい、またね。


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