What is the difference between '礼', '礼儀', '礼に', '敬礼', and 'お辞儀'? More generally, what does '礼' mean when used stand-alone as a noun? Can '礼' be used stand-alone or would that be considered unusual?
Context: I am asking both about in regular (informal) speech, and writing. Could '礼' be used stand-alone as say, a chapter to a book?
As I understand it:
- '礼儀' refers to manners as a whole
- '礼に' refers to politeness or polite acts
- 'お辞儀' refers to bowing as a whole, including specific sub-categories like '座礼', or '敬礼'
Google translates '礼' as "thanks", but that seems somewhat inconsistent (or at least imprecise) when compared to other research. Would it be reasonable to disregard this translation?
Would it be correct to think of '礼' as literally meaning 'bow', or more generally referring to greetings overall?
This question on the difference between "マナー” and "礼儀" gave me an idiomatic sense of what could be called 'courtesy' (or more specifically, the expression 'common courtesy', as separate from politeness) in English.
I'm looking to understand how '礼に' is used (twice) in this karate-do precept - would it be correct to say the author is referring only to politeness or courtesy, and not to the physical act of bowing? I'm not sure.
Karate-do begins and ends with bowing. 一、空手道は礼に始まり礼に終る事を忘るな Hitotsu, karate-do wa rei ni hajimari rei ni owaru koto o wasuruna
I asked a friend about their experience at a Japanese immersion school, and they mentioned classes ending with the instructor saying '礼': the class was expected to bow after hearing this. Does this seem like a typical experience (which would indicate common usage), or does it strike you as unusual?
I have also seen the English word 'bow' translated as: '船首', '会釈', and '一礼' - what do these words mean? How are these words used in general speech? Or do they have limited use outside of conversations specifically about etiquette and forms of bowing?