A 'ROUGH GUIDE' TO PRONUNCIATION
OF REIKI SYMBOL 'NAMES'/JUMON
Copyright © 2003/5 James Deacon
is important to remember that Japanese, like any other language
has many different dialects, with slightly different ways of pronouncing
the various wordsounds. Thus, as the title states, what follows
is only a rough guide to pronunciation)
The U in Choku is almost mute. (In Japanese, 'U' is only fully
vocalised when it is the initial syllable)
Choku is pronounced 'Choke' (or somewhere between 'Choke'
and 'Shoke') - but with a very slight pause in the middle:
There is no true 'r' sound in Japanese. On occasion, the letter
'l' has also been used to represent the actual Japanese sound
represented here by the letter 'r'.
For example, the word we now write as 'Reiki',
Takata-sensei wrote as 'Leiki'; however, neither is quite right
(there just isn't an accurate way of representing the Japanese
word-sound using the letters of the English alphabet)
sound identified by 'r' in transliteration is pronounced with
the tip of the tongue and is a sort of a blending of 'r' &
'l' (lah, leh, lih, loh, luh) your tongue briefly touches the
alveolar ridge region of the gum behind your front teeth.
As a general guide, to pronounce the Japanese sound rendered as
"r", essentially pronounce the 'l' sound, - tongue touching
the ridge behind your teeth - but broaden your tongue so
as to achieve as sound somewhere between the English 'I' and 'r'
sounds. [Do not 'roll' the sound as is often done with 'r'.] Sometimes,
depending on how the tongue is positioned, the sound produced
may be perceived to be somewhere between the English 'I' and 'd'.
a pronounced as a cross between 'Ray' & 'Lay' - but with the
slightest imaginable 'echoing' of the Y:
Sei: - as with Rei
HON SHA ZE SHÔ NEN
Hon: - rhymes with 'John'
Sha: - 'a' as in 'father'
- SHAH (or even dJAH)
Ze: - the 'e' is vocalised just like the 'e' in 'bed'
Shô: - the 'o' in Sho is actually a 'long-vowel'
(the O has a 'macron' symbol over it) somewhere between:
SHOW and SHOU (SHEW)
Nen: - like 'pen'
DAI KÔ MYÔ
Dai: - the 'ai' is vocalised just like the I in
Kô: - another 'long-vowel'
Myô: - another 'long-vowel'
M'YOW and M'YOU (M'YEW)