Gi-wo Mite Sezaru-wa Yuunaki Nari (義を見てせざるは勇なきなり)
(The Proverb Written by A Professional Calligrapher)
Gi (義・ぎ): what is ethically right
Mite (見て・みて) > Miru (見る・みる): look; watch
Sezaru (せざる): do not do
Yuu (勇・ゆう): courage
Naki (無き・なき) > Nashi (無し・なし): lack
Nari (なり): affirmative ending
To see what is right and not to do it is a want of courage./ Knowing what is right without practicing it betrays one’s cowardice.
In traditional Japanese society, “Gi” is one of the virtues of decent human beings. Accordingly, you were regarded as a coward (big shame!) if you didn’t stood up for what you believed was ethically right.