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さくら: さくらです。
Peter: Peter here.
さくら: 四字熟語
Peter: Lesson 8. Great Trouble from Every Direction.
さくら: Umm…
Peter: So today, we have two incredible expressions, I like the latter one little more. Sakura san, which one do you prefer?
さくら: The former one.
Peter: So 私たちピーターと Sakura san いつまでも異口同音に賛成しません
さくら: そうですね。
Peter: So I said Sakura san and Peter will never unanimously agree.
さくら: 異口同音に賛成っていうのは、ないですね、きっとね  Always different.
Peter: Yes kind of like
さくら: 水と油
Peter: Yes.
さくら: Water and oil.
Peter: Just don’t mix.
さくら: Umm…
Peter: 私は水です
さくら: 私も水です
Peter: I am water.
さくら: No, no, no.
Peter: Hello oil. Sorry, back to where we were going in the first place. Now Yojijukugo are idiomatic phrases that come from four kanji character compounds. So four kanji characters taken together that have a special meaning and in this lesson, we look at two expressions, two phrases. We break them down, we give it a meaning, show you how to use them and finally give you some examples. Now this is the kind of Japanese that will as we mentioned in the previous lesson. Sakura san, what’ that word we used?
さくら: Raise people’s eyebrows.
Peter: Yes and make you sound very
さくら: Sophisticated.
Peter: Exactly. So – and we already had proof coming already of some people really impressing their Japanese teachers. If you want an A in your class, there are two ways to get it. Well, I don’t know if these are the best examples but you get the idea.

Lesson focus

Peter: Okay Sakura san, what do we have first?
さくら: 四苦八苦
Peter: To be in great trouble, to have a lot of trouble doing something or to struggle with something. One more time, break it down.
さくら: しくはっく 四苦八苦
Peter: So the first character is
さくら: 四
Peter: Meaning
さくら: Four.
Peter: The second character
さくら: 苦
Peter: Meaning
さくら: Suffering.
Peter: The third character
さくら: 八
Peter: Meaning
さくら: Eight.
Peter: And finally the fourth character.
さくら: 苦
Peter: Meaning
さくら: Suffering.
Peter: So we have four suffering, eight suffering. The first two character compound is
さくら: 四苦
Peter: Now if you are inside the PDF and looking at the characters, what do these first characters mean?
さくら: Means four sufferings.
Peter: But this is actually what kind of a term?
さくら: It’s Buddhist term.
Peter: And what does that mean?
さくら: Four sufferings, sufferings of birth, getting old, sickness and death.
Peter: How about the latter part, what do we have there?
さくら: 八苦
Peter: Eight sufferings. How do we get the eight sufferings?
さくら: The four sufferings I just mentioned plus another set of four sufferings making them eight.
Peter: But so interested to hear you say it. It sounds so sweet coming from you. Here we have the four sufferings. Here are another four, what are the next set of four?
さくら: Parting from people who you love, having to see people who you hate, being unable to get what you want and pain in your mind or body.
Peter: So altogether, that’s eight and that’s a lot of suffering.
さくら: Lot of sufferings.
Peter: So it seems that first four are a little more physical and the latter four are a little more mental.
さくら: Yes.
Peter: Now how do we use this?
さくら: 四苦八苦する
Peter: To do. So to endure a lot of suffering, to have a lot of problems.
さくら: But I think the best word to describe is just struggle, very hard to do something.
Peter: Maybe a sample sentence will clear things up. What do we have?
さくら: 難しい数学の問題に四苦八苦した
Peter: I had a lot of trouble solving math problems. How about one more sample sentence?
さくら: 新しいソフトの使い方がわからなくて、四苦八苦した
Peter: I didn’t know how to use the new software. So I was in big trouble. Sakura san, is there something like you could tell us from the personal experience that you had, really like you really struggled with?
さくら: 毎日翻訳をするのに四苦八苦しています
Peter: So every day, I am struggling with the translation of things 頑張ってください
さくら: はい
Peter: Okay. On to our next one and these two were chosen for a reason. They share few of the same characters.
さくら: Yes.
Peter: We will cover that in a minute but first let’s cover the phrase Sakura san. What do we have?
さくら: 四方八方
Peter: All directions. Break it down.
さくら: しほうはっぽう 四方八方
Peter: What’s the first character?
さくら: 四
Peter: What does it mean?
さくら: Four.
Peter: Second character
さくら: 方
Peter: What does it mean?
さくら: Direction.
Peter: Third character.
さくら: 八
Peter: What does it mean?
さくら: Eight.
Peter: Fourth character.
さくら: 方
Peter: And what does it mean?
さくら: Direction.
Peter: Again. So you can see similar to the previous phrase, the first and third characters are the same. The first character was four, the third character was eight. Just the second and fourth characters changed. Now this phrase means all directions. It’s pretty intuitive if you know the characters. Now again, we are going to look at two character compounds inside the four. What do we have first?
さくら: 四方
Peter: Which indicates.
さくら: Four directions, east, west, south and north.
Peter: And the second compound.
さくら: 八方
Peter: Which indicates.
さくら: The eight directions.
Peter: So not just east, west, south and north but also
さくら: Northeast, northwest, southeast and southwest.
Peter: So it’s very intuitive, all directions.
さくら: Yes.
Peter: And the usage is going to be interesting. Sakura san, how do we use this?
さくら: You can use it with particles like を に から which are related to directions. For example, 四方八方を探す
Peter: To look for in all directions.
さくら: 四方八方に広がる
Peter: To spread out in all directions.
さくら: 四方八方から来る
Peter: Coming from every direction. Sakura san, can we have some sample sentences.
さくら: 四方八方を探したが見つからない
Peter: I can’t find it even though I looked everywhere for it kind of in all directions. Ah この気持ちよくわかります I can really relate to this.
さくら: Really?
Peter: Yeah.
さくら: なんか探しましたか
Peter: Every day.
さくら: Every day looking for something.
Peter: What do you think it is?
さくら: なんだろう Script, no.
Peter: Yeah it’s not just one thing, it’s a few things.
さくら: そうか
Peter: But probably #1 is 鍵
さくら: 鍵ねー
Peter: The keys.
さくら: はいはいはいはい、ありますね。後cellphone、携帯電話
Peter: But you can use someone else’s to call you.
さくら: 失礼しました
Peter: Okay. What do we have next?
さくら: 警官がきたので、彼らは四方八方に逃げた
Peter: Because the police came, they fled in all directions. And one more,
さくら: 敵が四方八方から襲ってくる
Peter: Enemies are attacking us from all directions.
さくら: Umm どうですか
Peter: どうでしょう
さくら: 怖いですね
Peter: I really like the first one. The four sufferings from the Buddhist term.
さくら: そうそうそう
Peter: Life getting old. Sickness and death.
さくら: ね
Peter: And then the next four parting from the people who you love, having to see the people you hate, being unable to get what you want and pain in the mind and body. It seems so serious but….
さくら: そうそうそう its popular phrase word.
Peter: But again you have to look at the context. We are using with math problems so….
さくら: そうそうそうそう
Peter: It’s a bit watered down these days.
さくら: そうですね。
Peter: I guess like maybe some kids probably even use it nowadays if they go camping and they are with out there like electronic gadgets, you know texting their friends, no internet.
さくら: Oh そうだよね
Peter: 四苦八苦してるよ No internet, no TV.
さくら: そうですね。
Peter: To me, that’s a struggle just to make it.0
さくら: Yes.
Peter: But great phrases. So please make sure you use these with Japanese speakers around you. Really kind of wow!
さくら: そうね Try it out.
Peter: And if you have a really good experience using it, please share it with us.
さくら: よろしくお願いします
Peter: お願いします
さくら: 教えてください


Peter: Okay that’s going to do it for today. Be sure to pick up the PDF. Again inside the PDF, there is a very detailed write up of these two expressions. Nice explanation. That’s going to do for today. Sakura san, 有難うございます。
さくら: 有難うございました。では、また


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