Lu Bu or Liu Bei: who is the bigger traitor?

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Unread postby Zhilong » Thu Sep 25, 2003 6:09 am

Cao Cao might have done the act but Liu Bei was the one who actually decides to kill him. Liu Bei told Cao Cao to kill Lu Bu.

:shock:
In the novel Liu Bei states what Lu Bu has done. Lu Bu killed Ding Yuan & Dong Zhou. Apparently Cao Cao's does not wish to end up with the same fate so orders him killed. If Cao Cao does not want to execute him then Lu Bu will not die. If Lu Bu had not killed Ding Yuan & Dong Zhou then maybe Cao Cao would have been more forgiving. The ultimate decision lay with Cao Cao seemingly based on Lu Bu's deeds.

Thus, how can the bulk of the blame lie with Liu Bei rather than Cao Cao or indeed Lu Bu himself?
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Unread postby Mega Zarak » Thu Sep 25, 2003 6:34 am

Zhilong wrote:In the novel Liu Bei states what Lu Bu has done. Lu Bu killed Ding Yuan & Dong Zhou. Apparently Cao Cao's does not wish to end up with the same fate so orders him killed. If Cao Cao does not want to execute him then Lu Bu will not die. If Lu Bu had not killed Ding Yuan & Dong Zhou then maybe Cao Cao would have been more forgiving. The ultimate decision lay with Cao Cao seemingly based on Lu Bu's deeds.

Thus, how can the bulk of the blame lie with Liu Bei rather than Cao Cao or indeed Lu Bu himself?


Cao Cao was undecided and Liu Bei helped him made up his mind.
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Unread postby GuangRong » Thu Sep 25, 2003 7:29 am

My impession of the whole thing is,

Cao Cao assumed Lu Bu would not yield and killing him is a forgone conclusion, given his reputation as a brave and fierce warrior..
He never expected Lu Bu to yield so easily on his own accord ,and was very tempted and simply overwhelmed.., at the moment he might juz acceded to Lu Bu's request..,

I think by then, he ready to spare Lu Bu's life..
The why Cao Cao would ask Liu Bei's oppinion ? not that he trust Liu Bei ..

the reason I think is b'cos .. he was in cloud nine and want to show off /intimidate Liu Bei..

Liu Bei , in a stroke of genius merely reminded Cao Cao of Lu Bu's past.., the genius is that he didn't go on and on to badmouth Lu Bu..,which would have arouse Cao Cao's suspicions..

Liu Bei's words and delivery hit the right spot
and Cao Cao make the rash decison to kill Lu Bu on the spot...

if he had take some time to think about it , there are ways to make good use of Lu Bu without endangering his own life..
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Unread postby Mengdez New Book » Thu Sep 25, 2003 1:54 pm

Great Deer wrote:Cao Cao was undecided and Liu Bei helped him made up his mind.

There is another source indicate that it was not Liu Bei's word that cause Lu Bu's death. According to Xian Di Chun Qiu (献帝春秋), when Lu Bu was captured by Cao Cao, he did ask Liu Bei for help. However, Liu Bei didn't really voice up any opinion and Cao Cao wanted to let Lu Bu free. Then, Cao Cao Zhu Bu [(主簿) - one of the post during that time, it is like the secretary of today], Wang Bi (王必) advised Cao Cao not to do so. As a result, Lu Bu was executed. Well, if you base on this source, it seem like Lu Bu was quite good at literacy, he used the example where Huan Gong free Guan Zhong* to persuade Cao Cao let him free. IMO, at least he knew something about Chun Qiu (Spring/Autumn period) and maybe read some of the books too like Zuo Shi Chun Qiu (左氏春秋) etc.

Huan Gong free Guan Zhong:
This is the story during Spring/Autumn period in Chinese history. Well, this is quite a long story. Duke of Xiang of Qi had two sons, they were Prince Xiao Bai and Prince Jiu. Guan Zhong was serving Prince Jiu while his friend Bao Shuya serving Prince Xiao Bai. Then, Duke of Xiang was murdered. He was replaced by Gongsun Wuzhi (公孙无知). However, after a while, Gongsun Wuzhi was again murdered by Duke of Xiang's followers. Qi became chaos and Prince Xiao Bai and Jiu became the candidate to become the next Duke of Qi. The followers of Duke of Xiang went to Lu to invite Prince Jiu back in order to usurp the throne. Guan Zhong who served Prince Jiu afraid that Prince Xiao Bai might arrive earlier than Prince Jiu and took the throne, so he went to assassinate Prince Xiao Bai. He shot (?) Prince Xiao Bai with an arrow and thought that Prince Xiao Bai was dead. Unfortunately, Prince Xiao Bai was alive and back to Qi and became the next Duke (Duke of Huan). Under the advise of Bao Shuya, he spared Guan Zhong's life and promoted him. Finally, with Guan Zhong's talent, Prince Xiao Bai (Duke of Huan) became one of the superior warlord during Spring/Autumn period.

As you can see, Lu Bu labelled himself as Guan Zhong (Lu Bu talent is like Zhuge Liang :lol: ) where he could help Cao Cao to acheive his dream.

Btw, which sources do you guys prefer? Liu Bei was a 'bad guy' or the bad guy name given to Wang Bi? :roll:
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Unread postby Danktrees » Fri Sep 26, 2003 1:57 am

Ok I am a shuist so my opinions may be biased but i do have facts to support it so i aint just making groundless claims. I also love lu bu so my opinions on him may be biased.

I dont think lu bu really betrayed too many people. Ding Yuan only raised him to be a warrior and bodyguard (evident from lu bu being a complete illiterate) so if he really cared about lu bu he'd help him train in other things instead of pure fighting skills. basically he trained lu bu into a brute and that caused lu bu to be less than bright. so i dont blame him for killing ding yuan. if ding yuan had trained him to use his head like a father/step-father should, then lu bu wouldnt be as dumb as he was. Dong Zhuo tried to kill him....nuff said. lu bu wasnt going to kill dong zhuo until he remembered dong zhuo threw his halberd at him. basically when u throw a weapon at someone on purpose, you have severed all relations with that person.

Liu Bei you argue was a traitor since he betrayed cao cao, yuan shao, liu biao, and liu zhang. i disagree. firstly, the whole time he was with cao cao, cao cao had wanted to kill him. such is evident when cao cao ordered liu bei to guard against lu bu. his intention was to have liu bei killed by lu bu or if liu bei was defeated by lu bu, cao cao would have justification in killing him. there were many other examples which i wont bother posting right now of cao cao's intention to kill liu bei. liu bei left as soon as he could, cao cao only forged an alliance in fear of lu bu, once lu bu was out of the way, cao cao would focus on liu bei so liu bei was forced to leave...not really a betrayal, i doubt you'd stay in someone's house if they tried to kill you repeatedly. liu bei told cao cao not to spare lu bu cuz he didnt want lu bu to add to cao cao's strength. cao cao wasnt stupid like lu bu's previous masters and he would have been able to control him. so liu bei was protecting against that.

as for betraying yuan shao, nothing could be farther from the truth. after the death of wen chou, yuan shao wanted to kill liu bei because he thought liu bei had a hand in it. it was zhao yun who intervened. liu bei then decided to leave before he gets killed. this is not what was written in sgyy but is actually what happened, when liu bei left, zhao yun followed him, hence the ox head hill thing with pei yuan shao never happened.

as for betraying liu biao, he did no such thing. even after liu zong submitted to cao cao liu bei did not attack though his reason would have been justified since the land no longer belonged to liu biao or his heirs. he took it much later when almost everyone associated with liu biao had disappeared.

and about liu zhang, i dont see how that is a betrayal, he never served liu zhang nor did he promise anything to liu zhang. his main objective was already to take over shu so i dont see how that was a betrayal.
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Unread postby Mega Zarak » Fri Sep 26, 2003 2:00 am

Mengdez New Book wrote:
Great Deer wrote:Cao Cao was undecided and Liu Bei helped him made up his mind.

There is another source indicate that it was not Liu Bei's word that cause Lu Bu's death. According to Xian Di Chun Qiu (献帝春秋), when Lu Bu was captured by Cao Cao, he did ask Liu Bei for help. However, Liu Bei didn't really voice up any opinion and Cao Cao wanted to let Lu Bu free. Then, Cao Cao Zhu Bu [(主簿) - one of the post during that time, it is like the secretary of today], Wang Bi (王必) advised Cao Cao not to do so. As a result, Lu Bu was executed. Well, if you base on this source, it seem like Lu Bu was quite good at literacy, he used the example where Huan Gong free Guan Zhong* to persuade Cao Cao let him free. IMO, at least he knew something about Chun Qiu (Spring/Autumn period) and maybe read some of the books too like Zuo Shi Chun Qiu (左氏春秋) etc.

Huan Gong free Guan Zhong:
This is the story during Spring/Autumn period in Chinese history. Well, this is quite a long story. Duke of Xiang of Qi had two sons, they were Prince Xiao Bai and Prince Jiu. Guan Zhong was serving Prince Jiu while his friend Bao Shuya serving Prince Xiao Bai. Then, Duke of Xiang was murdered. He was replaced by Gongsun Wuzhi (公孙无知). However, after a while, Gongsun Wuzhi was again murdered by Duke of Xiang's followers. Qi became chaos and Prince Xiao Bai and Jiu became the candidate to become the next Duke of Qi. The followers of Duke of Xiang went to Lu to invite Prince Jiu back in order to usurp the throne. Guan Zhong who served Prince Jiu afraid that Prince Xiao Bai might arrive earlier than Prince Jiu and took the throne, so he went to assassinate Prince Xiao Bai. He shot (?) Prince Xiao Bai with an arrow and thought that Prince Xiao Bai was dead. Unfortunately, Prince Xiao Bai was alive and back to Qi and became the next Duke (Duke of Huan). Under the advise of Bao Shuya, he spared Guan Zhong's life and promoted him. Finally, with Guan Zhong's talent, Prince Xiao Bai (Duke of Huan) became one of the superior warlord during Spring/Autumn period.

As you can see, Lu Bu labelled himself as Guan Zhong (Lu Bu talent is like Zhuge Liang :lol: ) where he could help Cao Cao to acheive his dream.

Btw, which sources do you guys prefer? Liu Bei was a 'bad guy' or the bad guy name given to Wang Bi? :roll:


Thanks pal for the great information. However, if you realised, we were talking about the novel. :wink: In any case, I don't think Lu Bu was a Guan Zhong. If he did label himself as Guan Zhong, then he must be out of his mind.
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Unread postby Mengdez New Book » Fri Sep 26, 2003 4:21 am

Great Deer wrote:Thanks pal for the great information. However, if you realised, we were talking about the novel. :wink: In any case, I don't think Lu Bu was a Guan Zhong. If he did label himself as Guan Zhong, then he must be out of his mind.

It seem like i miss the whole point again. :?
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Unread postby Lady Wu » Fri Sep 26, 2003 4:29 am

Mengdez New Book wrote:Well, if you base on this source, it seem like Lu Bu was quite good at literacy

Don't forget that Lu Bu started out as Ding Yuan's Chief Secretary (主簿) in history! :D Maybe he's no Xun Yu, but he cannot be illiterate.

Here's my defence for Lu Bu. Ok, so Lu Bu betrayed Ding Yuan and Dong Zhuo. Let's see how this looks like in history first. In history, Lu Bu was never Ding Yuan's adopted son. When Dong Zhuo entered the capital, he held a higher position than Ding Yuan, and if Lu Bu killed Ding Yuan at Dong's command, he was just obeying someone with even higher authority. It was probably a heartless act, but hardly outside the realm of proper behaviour. What about Dong Zhuo? Sure enough they made a pact to be as father and son, but did Dong honour this pact when he threw the lance at Lu Bu for no reason? Surely Lu Bu can be excused for not playing his part as a son after this incident -- there was no more father-son tie to be betrayed. Compounded with the fact that killing Dong Zhuo was for a good cause, Lu Bu's "betraying" of Dong can be excused.

Novel now. It's true that Lu Bu's killing Ding Yuan was painted more negatively -- they were sworn father and son, and Ding Yuan was bold enough to stand up to Dong Zhuo, and there is no way to make Lu Bu innocent. But consider this point to Lu Bu's favour. Lu Bu had said to Li Su, "I have been Ding Yuan's man, it's true. But out of necessity more than choice." From this it seems that Ding Yuan hadn't been treating Lu Bu too nicely (note that Li Su hadn't even mentioned the more powerful person's name yet). So Lu Bu was perhaps 80% at fault, but he didn't betray someone who did him nothing but good. As for Dong Zhuo, the case is clear. As far as Lu Bu knows, Dong Zhuo committed an incestuous deed by taking his son's wife for himself. Of course, he was deluded by Wang Yun. However, given what he knew, Dong Zhuo's behaviour violated all codes of humanity and decency, unacceptable by heaven or earth. Furthermore, as far as Lu Bu's concerned, he did nothing wrong, and yet his "father" attempted to spear him through with a lance. Again, just as in the historical case, the father-son tie has been severed by Dong Zhuo, and Lu Bu should not be obligated to honour it. I would assign 50% guilt to Lu Bu in this affair, but I would also cancel it by the fact that even if Lu Bu betrayed Dong Zhuo, he saved the country.

Now let's consider what Lu Bu did after he went to Xuzhou (novel now). People argue that Lu Bu betrayed Liu Bei's trust by taking over Xuzhou. But consider this. Xuzhou at that time was under the care of Zhang Fei, who apparently didn't do a very good job in governing it (getting drunk and beating up his own guys). So Lu Bu's taking over Xuzhou may have been a breach of trust, but it was better for the people there! Note also that the take-over in the novel was bloodless. Lu Bu even treated Liu Bei's family, his captives, very well (whether he had ulterior motives is irrelevant), and returned them promptly when Liu Bei came for them. In a way, he was taking better guard of Liu Bei's land when Liu Bei was away! Considering also the fact that Lu Bu did return a piece of land to Liu Bei, and furthermore saved his butt from Ji Ling, I would say that Lu Bu's betrayal of Liu Bei was minimal.

All in all, Lu Bu betrayed at most 1.8 people -- 0.8 of Ding Yuan, 0.5 Dong Zhuo, 0.5 Liu Bei. Against this, he saved a lot of people by killing Dong Zhuo, and had no deed of misgovernment during his time at Xuzhou (incompetent maybe, but he certainly did not overtax the people in any way). He also must have treated his officers well (whether he listened to them is a separate issue), since even people like Gao Shun, Zhang Liao, and Chen Gong were willing to die for him.

Now look at Liu Bei. First, even though he nodded when Lu Bu entrusted him with saying a good word for him, his sly remark killed Lu Bu right away. Not considering the Ji Ling incident, or Lu Bu's good treatment of his family. Betrayal #1. He then betrayed Cao Cao by killing Che Zhou and taking Xuzhou for his own (nevermind that some in Cao's camp was ready to kill Liu Bei; the fact is, Cao never did Liu Bei any harm and yet Liu Bei killed his guys and stole his land). Betrayal #2. Liu bei was ordered by the Emperor to help restore Han, but what did he really do to that effect? The girdle mandate did Liu Bei a whole lot of good by granting him legitimacy, but it's unclear what Liu Bei contributed to the cause. Betrayal #3. Skipping over Yuan Shao, we come to Liu Biao. Liu Biao asked him to take care of the land after his death, but Liu Bei refused, and neither did he use his power as uncle and a trusted general of Liu Biao's to help Biao's heir to safeguard the province. He then caused the deaths of many civilians by having them follow him flee. Betrayal of Liu Biao the Jingzhou people is #4. #5 and 6 would be Liu Zhang and Sun Quan (for Ba/Shu and Jingzhou), but those are debated elsewhere so I won't go into them. Ok, last one -- Yiling. Liu Bei certainly did not betray his brotherly oath when he went to exact revenge for Guan Yu, but he betrayed the Shu people's trust in him as a leader. He led his 750,000 men into destruction, and shattered any hope for Shu to unify China.

So this is my verdict -- Lu Bu betrayed maybe 2 or 3 men, but Liu Bei betrayed the people 3 or 4 times over. Who is the bigger traitor?
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Unread postby GuangRong » Fri Sep 26, 2003 5:45 am

Even if we're talking about the Novel,

on the personal front,
you can see tha Lu Bu is "better" person than Liu Bei in many ways...
juz look at the way the 2 treat their wives and children..

Lu Bu is wiiling to risk his career and may be life for Diao Chan..

while Liu bei , may times in the novel showed that he care more about his good name and career than his family's life or the greater good..

Lu Bu main fault is that he's greedy and abit naive..., all those traitorous things he done have always be instigated by someone..
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Lui Bei vs Lu Bu

Unread postby Iain » Fri Sep 26, 2003 1:40 pm

I think is is easier to act benevolent from a position of power (As Lu Bu was)than in a harrased pursued position(which Lui Bei definitely was)any deeds that were done by desperate armies are not always the acts of evil.
I also feel that Lui Bei was a fairly good ruler to his people but his brother Zhang Fei was not a man to leave in charge for too long and that was just bad timeing with Lu Bu's relative, had Lui Bei left Guan Yu to watch over things while he was gone Lu Bu wouldnt have had a chance to charge in and take over.
That take over was Lu Bu doing what he did best, bullying Spareing Lui Bei's family was just his way of saying 'now you owe me one' and takeing the town off him was simple expansioism, he had designs on Cao Cao's empire too when his back was turned.
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