#Index4Index - Gather dust into a mountain...



The 8th syllable in the old Japanese "iroha syllabry" is pronounced "chi," and written: "ち". Chi is therefore the initial sound of the eighth proverb in the "Iroha Karuta" card deck.

Here's the proverb in Japanese:

Chiri tsumotte yama to naru

Chiri is "dust" and "yama" is "mountain."

"Tsumotte" is a form of the verb "accumulate" or "pile up" and "to naru" means "will become."

This proverb does not provide any particular challenge for the translator and can be rendered as:

"Dust piled up becomes a mountain"

However, translators often render it as "Even dust piled up can become a mountain."

Origins of the Proverb

The proverb is said to originate in a Buddhist treatise called Daichido-ron, which Wikipedia informs us is "an encyclopedic compendium or summa of Mahayana Buddhist doctrine," and is in turn a commentary on The Sūtra of Transcendental Wisdom in Twenty-five Thousand Lines.

The proverb found its way out of the treatise and into the Iroha Karuta sometime during the Edo era in Japan, which lasted from 1603 until the Meiji Restoration of 1868.


Though one grain of dust may of itself be little, if you keep on piling up those little mites you'll eventually have a "mickle" - or a "great amount": "Many a little makes a mickle," as the old English proverb puts it.

In the Daiso cartoon version of the card a young lady is dreaming of going on an overseas trip as she drops a 500 yen coin into a money box. A 500 yen coin is worth around $3.50, but if she keeps on accumulating her spare 500 yen coins she'll eventually have enough mula saved up to pay for her trip.

Online Business Application

This is where the dust gets gritty!

Do you want to get more subscribers to opt in to your Internet marketing tips newsletter but don't want to invest money in advertising? I don't blame you, but that does mean you'll need to start clicking for credits on traffic exchanges and safelists. Each individual credit you earn, or each click that comes your way, is no more than a grain of dust, but keep on clicking, keep on grinding, keep on putting out those safelist mails, and (if your offer is well targeted and appealing) people will slowly start to opt in to your list.

Now there is another pile of dust for you to accumulate! Each subscriber may be but no more than a small accumulation of dust (for we are all from dust and returning to dust my friends), but keep on grinding and your list will turn into a mountain...

And gradually you may get a sale or two... There is more dust - but this time it could become a mountain of gold dust if you keep going and keep getting better at what you are doing...

What are you doing to pile up dust into a mountain? Let us know in the comments and I'll send some magic crypto dust your way!


David Hurley

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