Three Kingdoms Questions (You Ask, We Answer)

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Re: Three Kingdoms Questions (You Ask, We Answer)

Unread postby Sun Fin » Wed Oct 18, 2017 7:15 am

Yeah that makes sense, the man really is a fool. There's Lu Kang and Xu Gong as well! :lol:
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Re: Three Kingdoms Questions (You Ask, We Answer)

Unread postby Dong Zhou » Wed Oct 18, 2017 11:57 am

Han wrote:
Liu Bei put on a play mocking the scholars


Source?


Farmer's book on Qiao Zhou, following brief bio's of Jing scholars Hu Qian and Xu Ci
According to Chen Shou, both men were conceited and bickered constantly. In their official duties as collators of texts, they were said to have withheld documents from another and even come to psychical blows. Liu Bei was reported to have been so disturbed by their petty behaviour that he ordered actors to mock the two scholars at a large court gathering.


ValHellen wrote:Maybe that's why I shouldn't trust Wikipedia so fast. I read there that Mi Zhu, Sun Qian, Jian Yong and Yi Ji wrote essays that supported Liu Bei's government as Confucian, which went popular with the masses and propped his popularity. Did that not happen?


It didn't.

I'm not sure Liu Bei in his own time was particularly associated with Confucianism and by time Yi Ji joined him, wouldn't have been that good an idea for Liu Bei to go down that route as the gentry/officer core had varied beliefs that Liu Bei might not want to start a discussion on and I doubt the populace cared. Liu Bei the famous, Liu Bei the kindly, Liu Bei the generous, Liu Bei the good governance, Liu Bei "I'm justified in doing this becuase" would be more effect then Liu Bei the Confucian.
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Re: Three Kingdoms Questions (You Ask, We Answer)

Unread postby ValHellen » Thu Oct 19, 2017 1:45 am

Hmm, alrighty then.

I forgot to question the Liu Bei's odds with his own scholars bit Dong Zhou brought up, and forgot to thank Han for clearing that up. Thank you Han.

I now have a collection of questions.

1) What is Zhu Zhi's relationship to Zhu Huan? The Zhu character is the same for both of them, but I can't find anything on their relationship.

It's a little odd just like Jia Kui and Jia Xu, but at least for those two I did manage to find a discussion about them here on Shen Zhou. Nothing on Zhu Zhi and Zhu Huan though.

2) Neither SGZ nor Comprehensive bios of Zhao Yun in Kongming mentioned anything about the extended info featured on the bottom his page on Kongming, which included stories like how he captured Xiahou Lan. Wikipedia also stated the same story of his capture of Xiahou Lan with citation referring to an annotation in SGZ. Is this a solid account?

I did remember reading somewhere that his feat of rescuing Huang Zhong during Cao Cao's counterattack may have been fictional but I don't remember where. Was it likely real or not?

3) It's mentioned in Zhao Yun's bio that his son Zhao Tong was a Rapid as Tigers Imperial Guard. Was Rapid as Tigers an elite unit of bodyguards? Or is it just part of the name for the rank?
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Re: Three Kingdoms Questions (You Ask, We Answer)

Unread postby Lord_Cao_Cao » Thu Oct 19, 2017 6:47 am

Don't think there's any relation between Zhu Zhi and Zhu Huan. Just as two Mr. Smiths working in the same company don't have to be related either. :mrgreen:
They are also from different places, Zhu Zhi came from Danyang and Zhu Huan from Wu. Just as Jia Xu came from somewhere around Wuwei in the northwest I believe and Jia Kui from Hedong in the Central Plains.

I don't know about the other two questions though.
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Re: Three Kingdoms Questions (You Ask, We Answer)

Unread postby Dong Zhou » Thu Oct 19, 2017 7:45 am

1) Assume no relationship unless source says they are related

2) Yes, Xiahou Lan is in annotations here, annotation 2. Huang Zhong rescue is annotation 3. Xiahou Lan is generally accepted as historical but people have a mixed view on Zhao Yun Bie Zhuan as a source so people don't always agree with the Huang Zhong rescue as real

3) No idea
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Re: Three Kingdoms Questions (You Ask, We Answer)

Unread postby waywardauthor » Thu Oct 19, 2017 8:34 am

Sun Fin wrote:Thanks for the answer Wayward! As far as you're aware has anyone translated any of Han Feizi or Lord Shangs work?

Some, but not too much. Professor Yan did some translation work from Tsinghua University, and I'm sure others have as well. Yan Xuetong is picky about how he approaches them, mostly seeing if he can adapt them to the concept of international relations through the eyes of China's warring states period. I'll do some more extensive searching soon enough, but right now here's some from Han Feizi:
Han Fei Zi

The Five Vermin

COMMENTARY
In Han Fei Zi’s view, in ancient times as resources were abundant, while the world was only sparely populated, one could rule the world on the basis of moral virtue. As populations increased though, resources became scarce, and not only could rule not be based on moral virtue, applying moral virtue would lead to state decline. As the times changed, international competition and its reliance on power also changed. In ancient times, the battle for moral virtue was most critical, in the middle ages enlightened strategy was key, while in modern times (in Han Fei Zi’s time of the Warring States Period), the struggle turned to focus on raw power. In Han Fei Zi’s view, the international system in the Warring States period lacked credibility, alliances were not dependable, and the strategic maneuvering would lead to national destruction. National security and prospects for national society might only be improved by increasing one’s power, while diplomacy was not a dependable tool.
The argument of realism that power is the essential means of ensuring national survival basically parallels the views of Han Fei Zi. However, it is not the case that realists believe that a situation of plentiful resources is sufficient to reduce the struggle between states. Realists argue that at the center of the struggle between states is power, and such a struggle is not dependant on the scarcity of resources. As one particular type of resource becomes more abundant, states will struggle more intensely to improve their positions in a wider range of areas. The contemporary international relations theories do not consider whether moral virtue, strategy and power differ in terms of their effects in different international contexts. The theory that power cannot be transferred holds that states must maintain national power in order to develop evenly.

TEXT
In the most ancient times, there were few people and more creatures and human beings could not conquer birds, beasts, insects and reptiles. Then a sage appeared who fashioned nests of wood to protect men from harm. The people were delighted and made him ruler of the world, calling him the Nest Builder. The people lived on fruits, berries, mussels, and clams—things rank and evil-smelling that hurt their bellies, so that many of them fell ill. Then a sage appeared who drilled with sticks and produced fire with which to transform the rand and putrid food. The people were delighted and made him ruler of the world, calling him the Drill Man.
In the age of middle antiquity there was a great flood, but Gun and Yü of the Xia dynasty opened up channels for the water. In the age of recent antiquity Jie and Zhou ruled in a violent and perverse way, but Tang of the Yin dynasty and Wu of the Zhou dynasty overthrew them.
Now if anyone had built wooden nests or drilled for fire in the time of the Xia dynasty, Gun and and Yü would have laughed at him, and if anyone had tried to open channels for the water during the Yin or Zhou dynasties, Tang and Wu would laughed at him. This being so, if people in the present age go about exalting the ways of Yao, Shun, Yü, Tang and Wu, the sages of today are bound to laugh at them. For the sage does not try to practice the ways of antiquity or to abide by a fixed standard, but examines the affairs of the age and takes what precautions are necessary.
There was a farmer of Song who tilled the land, and in his field was a stump. One day a rabbit, racing across the field, bumped into the stump, broke its neck and died. Thereupon the farmer laid aside his plow and took up watch beside the stump, hoping that he would get another rabbit in the same way. But he got no more rabbits, and instead became the laughing stock of Song. Those who think they can take the ways of the ancient kings and use them to govern the people of today all belong in the category of stump-watchers!
In ancient times husbands did not have to till the fields, for the seeds of grass and the fruit of the trees were enough for people to eat. Wives did not have to weave, for the skins of birds and beasts provided sufficient clothing. No one had to struggle to keep himself supplied. The people were few, there was an abundance of goods, and so no one quarreled. Therefore, no rich rewards were doled out, no harsh punishments were administered, and yet the people of themselves were orderly. But nowadays no one regards five sons as a large number, and these five sons in turn have five sons each, so that before the grandfather has died, he has twenty-five grandchildren. Hence the number of people increases, goods grow scarce, and men have to struggle and slave for a meager living. Therefore they fall to quarreling, and though rewards are doubled and punishments are piled on, they cannot be prevented from growing disorderly.

In ancient times King Wen lived in the area between Feng and Hao, his domain no more than a hundred li square, but he practiced benevolence and righteousness, won over the Western Barbarians, and eventually became ruler of the world. King Yan of Xu lived east of the Han River in a territory five hundred li square. He practiced benevolence and righteousness, and thirty-six states came with gifts of territory to pay him tribute, until King Wen of Chu, fearing for his own safety, called out his troops, attacked Xu, and wiped it out. Thus King Wen practiced benevolence and righteousness and became ruler of the world, but King Yan practiced benevolence and righteousness and destroyed his state. This is because benevolence and righteousness served for ancient times, but no longer serve today. So I say that circumstances differ with the age.
In the time of Shun the Miao tribes were not submissive, and Yü proposed to attack them. But Shun said, “That will not do! To take up arms while the virtue of the ruler is not yet perfected would be a violation of the Way.” Shun taught the ways of good government for the following three years, and then took up shield and battle-ax and performed the war dance, and the Miao submitted. But in the war with the Gonggong, men used iron lances with steel heads that reached to the enemy, so that unless one was protected by a stout helmet and armor he was likely to be wounded. Hence shields and battle-axes served for ancient times, but no longer serve today. So I say that as circumstances change the ways of dealing with them alter too.
Men of high antiquity strove for moral virtue; men of middle times sought out wise schemes; men of today vie to be known for strength and spirit. Qi was once planning an attack on Lu. Lu dispatched Zigong to dissuade the men of Qi, but they replied, “Your words are eloquent enough. But what we want is territory, and that is the one thing you have not mentioned.” So in the end Qi called out its troops, attacked Lu, and fixed its boundary line only ten li away from the Lu capital gate.
King Yan practiced benevolence and righteousness and the state of Xu was wiped out; Zigong employed eloquence and wisdom and Lu lost territory. So it is obvious that benevolence, righteousness, eloquence and wisdom are not the means by which to maintain the state. Discard the benevolence of King Yan and put an end to Zigong’s wisdom; build up the might of Xu and Lu until they can stand face to face with a state of ten thousand war chariots—then Qi and Chu will no longer be able to do with them as they please!

But this is not the way things are now. Without the state the people behave as they please, while the speechmakers work to spread their influence abroad. With those at home and abroad both up to mischief and hoping for the intervention of powerful enemy states, how can the state escape danger? When the ministers speak on foreign affairs, they are either acting as spokesmen for the Horizontal or Vertical alliances or trying to enlist eh aid of the state to avenge some personal wrong. But neither the Vertical Alliance, in which one joins with a number of weak states in hopes of attacking a strong one, nor the Horizontal Alliance, in which one serves a strong state for the purpose of attacking a number of weak ones, can insure the survival of one’s own state.
Those ministers who urge the Horizontal Alliance all say, “If we do not enter the service of a powerful state, we will be attacked by enemies and will face disaster!” Now when you enter the service of a powerful state, you cannot yet be certain of the practical advantages, and yet you must hand over all the maps of your territory and present your official seals when you request military aid. Once the maps have been presented, you will be stripped of territory, and once your official seals have been put into the hands of another, your prestige will vanish. If your territory is stripped away, the government will fall into disorder. So you gain no benefit by entering the Horizontal Alliance in the service of a powerful state, but merely lose territory and undermine the government.
Those ministers who urge the Vertical Alliance all say, “If we do not rescue the smaller states and attack the powerful one, the whole world will be lost and, when the rest of the world is lost, our own state will be in peril and our ruler will face contempt!” Now you are not yet certain that you can actually save the smaller states, and yet you must call out your troops and face a powerful enemy. When you try to save the smaller states, you cannot always be sure of preserving them from destruction; and when you face a powerful enemy, you cannot always be sure that your allies will remain loyal. And if your allies break with you, you will be at the mercy of the powerful state. Then if you send out troops to battle, your armies will be defeated, and if you withdraw and try to protect your own realm, your cities will fall. So you gain no benefit by entering the Vertical Alliance in an attempt to save the smaller states, but lose your own lands and destroy your own army.
Hence, if you enter the service of a powerful state, it will dispatch its own men of authority to take over the offices in your government; and if you work to rescue the smaller states, your own important ministers will take advantage of the situation to further their interests abroad. No benefit will come to the state as a whole, but only fiefs and rich rewards for its ministers. They will enjoy all the honor, while the ruler is stripped of its lands. If their schemes succeed, they will use their power to prolong their eminence; if their schemes fail, they will retire with all their wealth intact.
But if the ruler, when he heeds such urgings, honors his ministers and rewards them with titles and stipends before their advice has produced successful results, and fails to punish them when it has proved unsuccessful, then who among the wandering theorists will not come forward with some hit-or-miss scheme in hopes of benefiting by a stroke of luck?
Why do the rulers listen to the wild theories of the speechmakers, and bring destruction to the state and ruin to themselves? Because they do not distinguish clearly between public and private interests, do not examine the aptness of the words they hear, and do not make certain that punishments are meted out where they are deserved.
Each ruler says, “By attending to foreign affairs I can perhaps become a king, and if not I will at least ensure security for myself.” A true king is one who is in a position to attack others, and a ruler whose state is secure cannot be attacked. But a powerful ruler can also attack other, and a ruler whose state is well ordered likewise cannot be attacked. Neither power nor order, however, can be sought abroad—they are wholly a matter of internal government. Now if the ruler does not apply the proper laws and procedures within his state, but stakes all on the wisdom of his foreign policy, his state will never become powerful and well ordered.
The proverb says, “If you have long sleeves, you’ll be good at dancing; if you have lots of money, you’ll be good at business.” This means that it is easy to become skillful when you have ample resources. Hence, it is easy to scheme for a state that is powerful and orderly but difficult to make any plan for one that is weak and chaotic. Those who scheme for the state of Qin can make ten changes and still their plans will seldom fail; but those who plan for the state of Yan can scarcely make one change and still hope for success. It is not that those who plan for Qin are necessarily wise and those who plan for Yan are stupid—it is simply that the resources they have to work with—order in one case, disorder in the other—are difficult.
Zhou deserted the side of Qin and joined the Vertical Alliance, and within a year it had lost everything. Wey turned its back on Wei to join the Horizontal Alliance, and in half a year it was ruined. Thus Zhou was ruined by the Vertical Alliance and Wey was destroyed by the Horizontal Alliance. Instead of being so hasty in their plans to join an alliance, they should have worked to strengthen the order within their domains, to make their laws clear and their rewards and punishments certain, to utilize the full resources of the land in building up stores of provisions, and to train their people to defend the cities to the point of death, thus ensuring that any other ruler would gain little profit by trying to seize their lands, but on the contrary would suffer great injury if he attempted to attack their states, In that case, even the ruler of a state of ten thousand war chariots would have been unwilling to wear out his armies before their strong walls and, in his exhausted condition, invite the attack of powerful enemies. This would have been the way to escape destruction. To abandon a way which assures escape from destruction, and follow instead a path that leads to certain downfall, is the greatest error one can make in governing a state. Once the wisdom of its foreign policy is exhausted and its internal government has fallen into disorder, no state can be saved from ruin.
Alone I lean under the wispy shade of an aged tree,
Scornfully I raise to parted lips a cup of warm wine,
Longingly I cast an empty vessel aside those exposed roots,
And leave behind forgotten memories and forsaken dreams.
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Re: Three Kingdoms Questions (You Ask, We Answer)

Unread postby wk123 » Thu Oct 19, 2017 8:48 am

ValHellen wrote:Hmm, alrighty then.

I forgot to question the Liu Bei's odds with his own scholars bit Dong Zhou brought up, and forgot to thank Han for clearing that up. Thank you Han.

I now have a collection of questions.

1) What is Zhu Zhi's relationship to Zhu Huan? The Zhu character is the same for both of them, but I can't find anything on their relationship.

It's a little odd just like Jia Kui and Jia Xu, but at least for those two I did manage to find a discussion about them here on Shen Zhou. Nothing on Zhu Zhi and Zhu Huan though.

2) Neither SGZ nor Comprehensive bios of Zhao Yun in Kongming mentioned anything about the extended info featured on the bottom his page on Kongming, which included stories like how he captured Xiahou Lan. Wikipedia also stated the same story of his capture of Xiahou Lan with citation referring to an annotation in SGZ. Is this a solid account?

I did remember reading somewhere that his feat of rescuing Huang Zhong during Cao Cao's counterattack may have been fictional but I don't remember where. Was it likely real or not?

3) It's mentioned in Zhao Yun's bio that his son Zhao Tong was a Rapid as Tigers Imperial Guard. Was Rapid as Tigers an elite unit of bodyguards? Or is it just part of the name for the rank?
I think Jia Chong is Jia Kui's son. But no relation to Jia Xu

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Re: Three Kingdoms Questions (You Ask, We Answer)

Unread postby ValHellen » Thu Oct 19, 2017 9:01 am

Right. Dammit I forgot about that annotation in one of the SGZ bios. Still I needed to ask which of the annotations was trustworthy. Seems the Zhao Yun Bie Zhuan at least is sketchy then.

This is just like earlier when I forgot about the remark on Mi Zhu's SGZ bio that said he's descendant from a family of merchants. By deduction it was likely he was one himself too. Oh well.

Thank you everyone who answered me.
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Re: Three Kingdoms Questions (You Ask, We Answer)

Unread postby Sun Fin » Thu Oct 19, 2017 9:12 am

Thank you waywardauthor! That's great - I'll read that later :D.
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Re: Three Kingdoms Questions (You Ask, We Answer)

Unread postby Elitemsh » Thu Oct 19, 2017 7:46 pm

ValHellen wrote:Right. Dammit I forgot about that annotation in one of the SGZ bios. Still I needed to ask which of the annotations was trustworthy. Seems the Zhao Yun Bie Zhuan at least is sketchy then.

This is just like earlier when I forgot about the remark on Mi Zhu's SGZ bio that said he's descendant from a family of merchants. By deduction it was likely he was one himself too. Oh well.

Thank you everyone who answered me.


I see no reason to distrust Zhao Yun Bie Zhuan. I don't see how it's any less reliable than his core SGZ. At least there's a name for that source. Also Chen shou apparently used local biographies as one of his sources when compiling his SGZ.
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