The expression ために (
for the purpose of,
in order to,
in such a way as to.
ために is used to indicate a reason or purpose that leads to a certain action. ために can also be used to indicate a cause, something that caused an event to happen (
In this post we learn more about the meaning of ために, how it is formed, and when ために is used through real example sentences.
How ために is formed
ために consists of:
- Noun ため (為), meaning
- Particle に, which indicates the direction (
toward that purpose...)
ために can follow verbs in their dictionary form, adjectives, and nouns. When following an adjective ending in な, you need to add な, while when following a noun, you need to add の:
ために can also be found in its kanji form 為に.
I'm saying this for your own good!
ために to indicate a purpose
ために is used to express a purpose or objective that someone wants to achieve with all their strength.
For this reason, ために must be used with volitional verbs, which express the direct intention to perform an action (unlike ように).
To pass the test, I studied.
From the example we see how the action of
study (勉強する) was intentionally performed by the speaker in order to pass the
test (試験). ために in this case shows the intention aimed at achieving the specified goal.
ために to indicate a cause
The second use of ために is to indicate a cause that led to a certain result. In this case ために translates as
In this usage, ために can also follow past tense verbs (た):
If ために is preceded by a verb in the past tense (た) or in the form ている, then ために indicates a cause (and not a purpose as seen above).
Due to the heavy rain there was some flooding.
When ために indicates a cause, the first part of the sentence indicates the direct cause that led to the event of the second part of the sentence.
In the example we see how the
falling rain (雨が降った) is the direct cause of
flooding (洪水). ために specifies this cause and effect relationship.
ため: goal or objective
It is important to remember that ため (without the に particle) indicates a
purpose. For this reason, it is possible to find ため in combination with other particles, such as:
- ための: ため in this case modifies the noun that follows,
something for the purpose of...
- ためには: the particle は indicates the topic, this expression translates as
as for reaching the goal...
- ためにも: similar to は, but using も we indicate
also for, translated as
also to reach the goal,
- ためにと: と is used to quote something, translated as
thinking it would lead to...,
thinking for the purpose of...
- ためだけに: using the particle だけ (
only) indicates something that was done
only for the sake of. ..,
only for the purpose of...
- ためなら: なら is a conditional (
se), with ために translates into
if it is for the purpose of...,
if the goal is...
This is a computer for the children.
I don't want to work just for money.
If he's going to get a promotion then he has to take any job.
Examples of ために
Do it for your younger sister too!
The car broke down due to the cold.
In order to study in Japan, I saved up money.