di4 means 'the earth'


di4 is made up of the two components  tu3 which means 'soil' and  ye3 which in ancient times denoted the 'snake'. Together the meaning becomes 'ground' where the snakes are'. Other meanings of di are 'land', 'soil', 'fields', 'ground', 'floor', 'place', 'locality', 'position', 'situation', 'background' and 'distance'. 

di4qu1 means 'region' and literally translates as 'ground'-'area'.

qu1 graphically represents three mouths (i.e. many people) in a container. When there are many people together you have an 'area'. 

di4wei4 means 'status' or 'social standing' and literally translates as 'ground'-'establish'.

wei4 is actually transformed from . The first character is ren2 which means 'man' (a stick figure of a walking person but when used as a Bushou as is the case here, it is always tilted 45 degrees) and the second is li which means 'stand' or 'establish' (a graphical representation of a big man with two legs firmly planted on the ground). When a man is standing, he has established a place for himself; later on the meaning was extended to 'a seat'.