Romance of the Three Kingdoms
All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy. So, today’s post will be slightly more whimsical in nature. Most of you personally know me, so it will be no surprise to you that the good looking chap on the left hand side doesn’t resemble me even vaguely [sigh!].
So, who is he? Well, he’s one of the smartest blokes during a very chaotic time in China in the Romance of the Three Kingdoms. He’s known as the Sleeping Dragon or Zhuge Liang, the famed strategist to the Warlord Liu Bei of the Shu Kingdom. Even though I don’t even have 1% of his intellect, it does no harm to strive to try to emulate some of his strategies and wisdom in life.
The Romance of the Three Kingdoms is an interesting book set during a turbulent time in China which begins with the fall of the Han Dynasty. The part fiction, part historical novel describes the intrigue, wars, generals and strategists vying for power and covers a span of almost fifty years. During this time, the Han Dynasty disintegrated and China was split into many warring factions.
In the end, three major factions rose to power:
(a) Wei Kingdom led by Cao Cao
Cao Cao was a kickass charismatic bad dude that steamrolled over everybody. Fortunately, this dude was smart enough to recruit enough really muscular muscle man and braniacs to help him take over half the kingdom. He was on the verge of reuniting China but suffered a huge setback at the Battle of Red Cliff. The golden opportunity for him to reunite was lost. Cao Cao also recruited this really smart and savvy dude by the name of Sima Yi which gave his descendants a lot of grief in the end.
(b) Shu Kindom led by Liu Bei
Liu Bei was the charismatic sissy, who was lucky enough to be surrounded by brawny dudes such as Guan Yu and Zhang Fei. Over the years during his nomad journey, he managed to convince handsome chaps like Ma Chao & Zhao Yun and an old kickass dude like Huang Zhong to join him. He managed to also con master strategists to join him including Zhuge Liang and Pang Tong. Unfortunately, it was all for naught and his bumbling escapades allowed him to repeatedly snatch defeat from the jaws of victory.
(c) Wu Kingdom led by Sun Jian and Sun Quan
Sun Jian and Sun Quan were capable leaders that strengthened their hold over Southern China. As their territories were separated by a huge river, they manage to repel Cao Cao due to their superior naval armies and capable leaders. However, their succession policy sucked big time and their last Ruler capitulated to Wei without a fight after the fall of the Shu Kingdom.
To cut a long story short, in the end, all three of them got sh*ft*d by Sima Yi and his descendants. Sima Yi and company overthrew Cao Cao’s descendants and took over the Wei Kingdom. They, then subjugated the Shu Kingdom and Wu Kingdom in short succession and formed the Jin Dynasty.
In my next interlude, I’ll be looking at the stratagems used by the different factions during their struggle for power. The first stratagem is my favourite:
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By the way, I apologize if anyone of you tried to visit my blog during the weekends. It seems the kind people of Google thought my blog was a spam blog (aka splog) and deactivated my blog. Right now, it’s been activated again. Hopefully it stays this way and the problem doesn’t recur again!