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Sunzi's Ten Winning Ways

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  • lawhn
    Let me start off by sending you an article I wrote. Sunzi Ten Winning Strategies Everybody knows, Sunzi¡¯s Art of War has 13 chapters. However, after many
    Message 1 of 1 , Jul 21, 2005
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      Let me start off by sending you an article I wrote.

      Sunzi Ten Winning Strategies

      Everybody knows, Sunzi¡¯s Art of War has 13 chapters.
      However, after many years of studying Sunzi¡¯s Art of War,
      I feel that we can regroup it into 10 winning strategies. In this
      way, maybe it makes it clearer for us to express the view of winning.
      The 10 winning strategies are:
      1. Righteous win
      2. Win first
      3. Holistic win
      4. Knowing win
      5. Crooked win
      6. Cautious win
      7. Speed win
      8. Cause win
      9. Controlling win
      10. Circuitous win

      1. Righteous win

      Quotations of Sunzi:
      o Win with ¡°5 factors¡± and ¡°7 tactics¡± is righteous
      o Generals have 5 ethics: Wisdom, Trustworthiness,
      magnanimity, Bravery and Strictness
      o Those who know how to command the army will discipline them
      with procedures, restrain them with force, keep silent to be ready
      and rule them with righteousness
      According to Sunzi, waging a war is a science, it has its Dao, its
      rules and regulations. To win a war, we must understand the Dao of
      the war. The ¡°5 factors¡± are: Dao, Sky, earth, general and
      systems. The ¡°7 tactics¡± are namely:
      1. Which lord has Dao
      2. Which general is able
      3. Who has the sky and earth
      4. Whose rules and regulations are adhered to
      5. Whose soldiers are strong
      6. Whose soldiers are well-trained
      7. Whose reward and penalty is clearly exercised
      This means that a general should use the Dao of winning a war and
      with these 7 ways of comparing himself and the enemy to assess his
      winning probabilities. If a general does this, his chance of winning
      a war will be greater. Then we keep him in stock. Otherwise, he will
      lose, we can dispose of him.

      2. Win first

      Quotations of Sunzi:

       First be undefeatable, then wait for enemy¡¯s defeatability
       The winning army wins first before fighting, the losing
      army fights first before winning
       Earlier to the fighting ground means relaxed, later to the
      fighting ground means hectic
       Stand undefeatable, meditate Dao and adhere to rules
       The wise lord and able general can move and win, can be
      successful because they know first
      Sunzi thinks that one should prepare himself very well before going
      out for battles. This is the mistake of many a ruthless generals.
      The do not build themselves a strong foundation in the normal days,
      and will fight it out when they meet with contradictions, the
      consequence is obvious an unknown. Sunzi said ¡°Stand
      undefeatable¡±, he means to nurture oneself seriously through
      meditating Dao and adhering to the rules. In this way, even before
      we go out for a battle, we are already in the winning side.

      3. Holistic Win

      Sunzi¡¯s quotations:
       First with the whole nation, then with divided nations;
      first with the whole army, then with divided army; first with the
      whole division, then with divided division; first with the whole
      battalion, then with divided battalion
       A hundred battles a hundred victory is not the best option;
      winning with no war waged is the best option
       To the able commanders, it is not war that subjugate
      others; it is not attacking that befalls a city; it is not lengthy
      time that destroys a nation; it is a hoslistic win, hence the army
      is not worn out, and benefits are wholesome
      This is a superior strategy of Sunzi. He wants to win, but he doesn¡¯
      t want to destroy the enemy in whole. Few generals can achieve this.
      Therefore, when the world is threatened with nuclear warfare, there
      are even people who say that Sunzi is a pacifist, because he said
      win with no wars.

      4. Knowing Win

      Sunzi¡¯s quotations:
      Knowing ownself, knowing the enemy, a hundred battles not
      lost
      Knowing win has 4 aspects:
      1. Knowing to fight or not to fight will win
      2. Knowing how to utilize the majority and the minority will
      win
      3. The top and the bottom with a common purpose will win
      4. To be relaxed and meet the hectic will win
      Knowing, means to know the rules, the rules of winning or losing. If
      we know for sure, we will know whether to fight or not to fight, to
      run or not to run. To run is not a defeat, it is knowing the crucial
      moment, knowing the timing. To wait for the right timing to fight
      will mean a better chance for winning. Hence Sunzi did not say ¡°A
      hundred battles all win¡±, but he said ¡°a hundred battles not
      lost¡±. He emphasized the significance of knowing.

      5. Crooked Win

      Sunzi¡¯s quotations:
       Commanding is deception
       In war, it is encountering in the proper and winning in the
      crooked way
      Sunzi thinks that to wage a war the winning is by deception.
      Deception, is the crooked way, non-ethical way, the cheating way. To
      fight in a war, one has to act on the unexpected, to attack the
      unprepared. Therefore a general need to have a flexible mind,
      changing his tactics incessantly.

      6. Cautious Win

      Sunzi¡¯s quotations:
       A war is a great event of the nation, it is life or death,
      it is a matter of survival, one has to be cautious at it
       There are ways that won¡¯t be trodden, there are cities
      that won¡¯t be seized, there are armies that won¡¯t be attacked,
      there are territories that won¡¯t be annexed
      A war is serious matter, it is about life or death, it is the key to
      survival, hence it must be treated cautiously. Under cautious
      considerations, alternatives will be carefully dealt with ---what
      should and what should not be done. In this way, the hope of winning
      will be enhanced.

      7. Speed Win

      Sunzi¡¯s quotations:
      o It is valuable to win, not to be long
      o The speed is like wind, the slowness is like a forest
      Wars should be fought in a speedy manner, not lasting long. Never
      like the Americans in the Vietnam War, which was fought for so many
      years, so much spent and finally still lost.

      8. Cause Win


      Sunzi¡¯s quotations:
      • Winning because of the enemy
      A war is full of variations, a general must not follow the
      predetermined rules and not changing according to situations.

      9. Controlling Win

      Sunzi¡¯s quotations:
       Controlling others, not to be controlled; revealing others,
      not letting yourself be revealed
      In a war, we must take the initiative, move one step ahead of the
      enemy. In reconnaissance, we must be clear of the enemy¡¯s position,
      and not to let our position be known

      10. Circuitous Win

      Sunzi¡¯s quotations:
      Take the circuitous path to be straight, take the
      unfavorable event to be a benefit
      Avoid its sharpness, attack its lax return, this is using qi
      Let order waits for disorder, let silence waits for noise,
      this is using the heart
      Let the near waits for the far, let the relaxed waits for
      the tired, this is using force
      In a war, normally the circuitous path looks like the long way and
      detested by people, if we think harder, we can turn this path to be
      even faster than the straight path, then it will put the enemy
      totally out of sync, and victory is awaiting us.

      The 13 chapters of Sunzi Art of War converted to become the 10
      winning strategies may prove to be a clearer interpretation of the
      winning strategies.
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