What is the kanji for Gohan?

Answered by Jeremy Urbaniak

The kanji for Gohan is 飯. This kanji is pronounced as “han” and it carries the meaning of “meal” or “boiled rice”. It is a commonly used kanji in the Japanese language, particularly when referring to food or rice dishes.

The kanji 飯 is composed of two parts. The top part represents the radical 食 (shoku), which relates to food or eating. It depicts a stylized form of a mouth with a dot inside, symbolizing the act of consuming food. The bottom part of the kanji represents 義 (gi), which means “righteousness” or “morality”. It consists of the radical 羊 (hitsuji), meaning “sheep” or “flock”, and the radical 我 (ware), which means “I” or “me”. Together, these radicals convey the idea of doing what is morally right or just when it comes to food.

In Japanese culture, rice holds great significance as it is a staple food and an integral part of traditional meals. The kanji 飯 specifically refers to boiled rice, which is a fundamental component of a Japanese meal. It represents nourishment, sustenance, and the act of sharing a communal meal.

Personally, I have had the opportunity to experience the importance of rice in Japanese cuisine during my travels to Japan. I vividly remember the aroma of freshly cooked rice wafting through the air, enticing everyone’s taste buds. The care and attention given to each grain of rice, from the cultivation to the cooking process, truly reflect the reverence the Japanese hold for their culinary traditions.

The kanji 飯, pronounced as “han”, is the symbol for Gohan, meaning “meal” or “boiled rice”. Its composition conveys the significance of food and the importance of righteousness in relation to meals. This kanji represents the essence of Japanese cuisine and the cultural value placed on rice as a staple food.