마음: your heart and mind combined

i often try to find the english equivalent for a korean word (or vice versa). oftentimes, a word comes close to capturing the meaning of the other word, but falls short. and sometimes, there just is no real equivalent.

there’s a word i’ve been thinking of recently: 마음. and of course there’s no english equivalent. the closest i can come to preserving the meaning in translation is that it’s a combination of your heart and mind. and that’s pretty powerful.

koreans use it a lot to say that two people’s 마음s “match” or line up. that’s kind of beautiful, if you think about it. even visually, you get this image of two people’s hearts and minds aligning perfectly. not mathematically overlapping in certain parts but not in others like cold and petty venn diagrams, but two hearts and two minds effortlessly aligning or matching. it’s an ideal, i suppose, and a pretty beautiful one at that.

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