Ten ni Tsuba Suru (天に唾する – Slander Flings Stones at Itself)

  • Ten ni Tsuba Suru


    Have you ever hurt yourself as a result of trying to harm others?

    Such a situation is expressed with the proverb ten ni tsuba suru (天に唾する).

    Ten (天) means “sky” and tsuba suru (唾する) means “to spit,” so the literal meaning of the combination is “to spit up into the sky.”
    「天」は “sky,” 「唾する」は “to spit” を意味するので、この言葉の文字通りの意味は “to spit up into the sky” になります。

    As you would guess, even if you spit while looking up, you can’t dirty the sky, and your face will get dirty.

    Because of this, this proverb is used to mean what it does now.

    Incidentally, about 20% of Japanese people think that this proverb means “to defile a person in a position higher than oneself.”

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