How can you love without a ‘heart’?

traditional Chinese character for LOVE- with a HEART.
simplified Chinese character for LOVE-NO HEART!!!!!

I was on the beach near Dulan, in Taiwan, when I started writing I love Taiwan, in Chinese, in the sand. My Taiwanese friend was like ‘NO, don’t write it in simplified, especially not the character for love; let me show you the traditional way of writing it.’ That’s when it dawned on me! In the simplified character for love, there is NO heart. NO HEART, PEOPLE!! When simplifying Chinese characters to help make as many people as possible literate on the mainland, what on EARTH were they thinking when they removed the ‘heart’ component from the character for love?! How can you love without a heart? Is this even possible? It gave me a lot to think about and I started wondering how many other characters out there have also had their main function just stolen from them?! Love without a heart? Nope, not going to happen. But this is why I love Chinese characters…so much analysis can be done with just one character. I’m going to start looking out for other characters with unique stories like the one for ‘love’. But seriously…it’s pretty fascinating hey!

One Comment on “How can you love without a ‘heart’?

    April 17, 2012 at 4:14 pm

    It's beautiful. Unfortunately, that's a pretty rare case of the character making sense.

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