Did Liu Bei truly love the common folk? (Historically)

Join the Romance of the Three Kingdoms discussion with our resident Scholars. Topics relating to the novel and history are both welcome. Don't forget to check the Forum Rules before posting.
Kongming’s Archives: Romance of the Three Kingdoms
Three Kingdoms Officer Biographies
Three Kingdoms Officer Encyclopedia
Scholars of Shen Zhou Search Tool

Did Liu Bei truly love the common folks??

Yes
15
43%
No
13
37%
Hard to tell
7
20%
 
Total votes : 35

Did Liu Bei truly love the common folk? (Historically)

Unread postby Mega Zarak » Tue Mar 04, 2003 4:15 am

I'm having a little debate with Steve at 3k.net and I think perhaps we can have a little opinion poll here (by borrowing the topic of discussion over there).

Now, in your honest opinion, do you think that Liu Bei truly love the common folks? If your answer is yes, please give an example. If your answer is no, please give an example. If your answer is "hard to tell", please state your reason why.

Thanks! :D
User avatar
Mega Zarak
Grand Tutor of Wei
 
Posts: 1113
Joined: Sun Jun 16, 2002 2:38 am
Location: North of the River

Unread postby CK » Tue Mar 04, 2003 4:28 am

As long as the relationship between the ruler and the ruled exist in a power relation of exploitation (at least in the three kingdom era), one would argue that there is no true love. Even if there is love, it was derived from a need for them to CONTRIBUTE to your cause and this could yet be defined as hypocrisy at its best.

Hence, I voted no. Unless you can better explain what is your stand of true love. :wink:
Truth is always partial

Absense of dream creates nothing but dream creates absense if you do nothing
User avatar
CK
Changshi
 
Posts: 399
Joined: Fri Jun 21, 2002 4:30 pm
Location: Singapore

Unread postby Mega Zarak » Tue Mar 04, 2003 4:47 am

madaboutck wrote:As long as the relationship between the ruler and the ruled exist in a power relation of exploitation (at least in the three kingdom era), one would argue that there is no true love. Even if there is love, it was derived from a need for them to CONTRIBUTE to your cause and this could yet be defined as hypocrisy at its best.

Hence, I voted no. Unless you can better explain what is your stand of true love. :wink:

Thank you for your response CK. :D
In order not to complicate matters, I'd just let true love be the type of love a normal parent has for his/her children.

I'll respond to your comments once there're sufficient replies. I hope that people who voted give a simple justification for their vote as it will be really interesting to hear different opinions. Vote, by itself, is pretty meaningless as you can see from the voting system we have these days. :lol:
User avatar
Mega Zarak
Grand Tutor of Wei
 
Posts: 1113
Joined: Sun Jun 16, 2002 2:38 am
Location: North of the River

Unread postby CK » Tue Mar 04, 2003 4:51 am

Great Deer wrote:In order not to complicate matters, I'd just let true love be the type of love a normal parent has for his/her children.


Given such a definition, then I daresay that it contradicts the power relation so much that I would still give no as an answer. Maybe if it is the love of liberating people from hardship, I may concur a bit but certainly not the parental love that you have asserted. :)
Truth is always partial

Absense of dream creates nothing but dream creates absense if you do nothing
User avatar
CK
Changshi
 
Posts: 399
Joined: Fri Jun 21, 2002 4:30 pm
Location: Singapore

Unread postby Hidoshi » Tue Mar 04, 2003 4:53 am

I would argue that said exploitation may not in fact be the intent of the ruler but rather a side effect of the governmental system which is inescapable. Liu Pei, being rather humble by nature it seems, probably did care a great deal about his people. How 'true' his love was can probably be guaged most easily against Sün Ch'uan and Ts'ao Ts'ao and how much they cared for their people. Sün Ch'uan was more power hungry than anything, and Ts'ao Ts'ao was an outright manipulative tyrant. If you use THIS comparison, then yes, Liu Pei could be considered 'truly' loving of his people. Otherwise, I think it may be in fact better to simply excuse the word 'truly' from the debate and ask if Liu Pei loved his people as a ruler. Then I would say yes.
User avatar
Hidoshi
Assistant
 
Posts: 133
Joined: Tue Feb 25, 2003 8:13 am
Location: Ontario, Canada

Unread postby GuangRong » Tue Mar 04, 2003 4:56 am

I wouldn't say he LOVE common folks

But I'll say he atleast have the most emphathy for them amongst rulers ,b'cos of his humble upbringing..

on the other end of the scale..

Emperor Xian, far removed from the common folks, may well regard them as nothing more than his property/tools/cattle/slaves..
Last edited by GuangRong on Tue Mar 04, 2003 5:05 am, edited 2 times in total.
Magister mundi sum!!
User avatar
GuangRong
Langzhong
 
Posts: 490
Joined: Sat Jan 04, 2003 7:45 am
Location: Oblivion

Unread postby Mega Zarak » Tue Mar 04, 2003 5:00 am

So it seems my definition of true love is a bit unrealistic? hehehe..:D

Maybe I should drop it to the level of love to alleviate people from their hardship then.

Hidoshi, your opinion is based on a relative comparison if I understand it correctly. I would like to ask this question:

If Cao Cao and Sun Quan treated their people the same way Liu Bei did, do you now say that Liu Bei (or Cao Cao and Sun Quan for that matter) truly love the common folks?

To put it in another way, I mean to address his acts alone or independently and not based on mutual comparisons. However, it is good to know opinions which are derived on the basis of comparison. :D
User avatar
Mega Zarak
Grand Tutor of Wei
 
Posts: 1113
Joined: Sun Jun 16, 2002 2:38 am
Location: North of the River

Unread postby CK » Tue Mar 04, 2003 5:10 am

While I was showering, I had this sudden urge to ask this question. It is obviously true that Liu Bei never ordered a mass execution of the masses though certain scholars argued that his moving of the people of Xinye was most brutal in nature. I know that Liu Bei killed Liu Feng in SGYY but is there any scenarios of Liu Bei beheading a lot of officers, be they enemies or subordinates? :?:

Let me also say that Hidoshi's argument of exploitation as a result of government is a credible one. However, when we consider that the biggest resource of the three kingdoms era is people as we know it (or at least how I would see it), it is pretty certain that whatever Liu Bei did or considered, there would be some measures of "exploitation" Still maybe exploitation is too harsh a word since it seemed "right" during that time period. Let me replace it with using then. :D
Truth is always partial

Absense of dream creates nothing but dream creates absense if you do nothing
User avatar
CK
Changshi
 
Posts: 399
Joined: Fri Jun 21, 2002 4:30 pm
Location: Singapore

Unread postby Hidoshi » Tue Mar 04, 2003 8:35 am

Exploitation has an ugly sound to it, and while it's true that any government has to do something to that effect in order to function in itself, it should not be misconstrued that said exploitation is necessarily of a malicious kind, but rather a necessary one.

In answer to the question about comparison, even if we take Liu Pei as himself, without comparing him to Sün Ch'uan or Ts'ao Ts'ao, then yes, he still cares for his people. Obviously the novel emphasizes this, but it's quite prevalent even in historical accounts. His empathy, his caring for the common person is evident, so yes, you can say he has a parental love for his people, not so potent as a father and mother to a child might be, but that is understandable. It's a little harder to take care of a family of five thousand than it is five.

And certainly times have changed. We are raised with less and less ethical standards by which to hold ourselves, which I think is a large mistake on our society's part. I am only something of a good man because my Grandparents and Parents provided me with a model by which to live up to. Without that, I would be self-serving and very little but, for I know myself at least that well. This same observation can be applied to a man like Liu Pei, who held himself to a standard of ethics, whereas Ts'ao Ts'ao did not, and Sün Ch'uan did only in a mechanical fashion, rather than a truly conscious one.

To say in simpler terms; Liu Pei followed ethics by his own will. Sün Ch'uan followed ethics out of tradition and was thus swayed by greed. Ts'ao Ts'ao ignored ethics because of his own greed.
User avatar
Hidoshi
Assistant
 
Posts: 133
Joined: Tue Feb 25, 2003 8:13 am
Location: Ontario, Canada

Unread postby Jimayo » Tue Mar 04, 2003 12:26 pm

Well, I must say that people use the dragging around of the people of Xin Ye(and Xiang Yang) as an indication that Liu Bei did not care for the people, but Rafe's opinion agrees with mine in that this was a stupid move, and must of come from his love/concern for the welfare of the people. If he left their ass behind he would of gotten to Jiang Ling ahead of Cao Cao, but instead...
98% of the internet population has a Myspace. If you're part of the 2% that isn't an emo bastard, copy and paste this into your sig.
Jimayo
Lord of the Thirteen Hells
 
Posts: 3308
Joined: Sat Jun 15, 2002 1:38 am
Location: Nothingness. And that's where I'll be returning in oh, about 15 minutes.

Next

Return to Sanguo Yanyi Symposium

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Yahoo [Bot] and 4 guests

Copyright © 2002–2008 Kongming’s Archives. All Rights Reserved