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1. Sun Tzu said: The art of war recognizes
nine varieties of ground: (1) Dispersive
ground; (2) facile ground; (3) contentious
ground; (4) open ground; (5) ground of
intersecting highways; (6) serious ground;
(7) difficult ground; (8) hemmed-in ground;
(9) desperate ground.
2. When a chieftain is fighting in his own
territory, it is dispersive ground.
3. When he has penetrated into hostile
territory, but to no great distance, it is
facile ground.
4. Ground the possession of which imports
great advantage to either side, is
contentious ground.
5. Ground on which each side has liberty of
movement is open ground.
6. Ground which forms the key to three
contiguous states, so that he who occupies
it first has most of the Empire at his
command, is a ground of intersecting
7. When an army has penetrated into the
heart of a hostile country, leaving a
number of fortified cities in its rear, it
is serious ground.
8. Mountain forests, rugged steeps, marshes
and fens--all country that is hard to
traverse: this is difficult ground.
9. Ground which is reached through narrow
gorges, and from which we can only retire
by tortuous paths, so that a small number
of the enemy would suffice to crush a large
body of our men: this is hemmed in ground.
10. Ground on which we can only be saved
from destruction by fighting without delay,
is desperate ground.
11. On dispersive ground, therefore, fight
On facile ground, halt not.
On contentious ground, attack not.
12. On open ground, do not try to block the
enemy's way.
On the ground of intersecting highways,
join hands with your allies.
13. On serious ground, gather in plunder.
In difficult ground, keep steadily on the
14. On hemmed-in ground, resort to
On desperate ground, fight.
15. Those who were called skillful leaders
of old knew how to drive a wedge between
the enemy's front and rear; to prevent co-
operation between his large and small
divisions; to hinder the good troops from
rescuing the bad, the officers from
rallying their men.
16. When the enemy's men were united, they
managed to keep them in disorder.
17. When it was to their advantage, they
made a forward move; when otherwise, they
stopped still.
18. If asked how to cope with a great host
of the enemy in orderly array and on the
point of marching to the attack, I should
say: "Begin by seizing something which
your opponent holds dear; then he will be
amenable to your will."
19. Rapidity is the essence of war: take
advantage of the enemy's unreadiness, make
your way by unexpected routes, and attack
unguarded spots.
20. The following are the principles to be
observed by an invading force: The further
you penetrate into a country, the greater
will be the solidarity of your troops, and
thus the defenders will not prevail against
21. Make forays in fertile country in order
to supply your army with food.
22. Carefully study the well-being of your
men, and do not overtax them.
Concentrate your energy and hoard your
Keep your army continually on the move, and
devise unfathomable plans.
23. Throw your soldiers into positions
whence there is no escape, and they will
prefer death to flight.
If they will face death, there is nothing
they may not achieve.
Officers and men alike will put forth their
uttermost strength.
24. Soldiers when in desperate straits lose
the sense of fear.
If there is no place of refuge, they will
stand firm.
If they are in hostile country, they will
show a stubborn front.
If there is no help for it, they will fight
25. Thus, without waiting to be marshaled,
the soldiers will be constantly on the qui
vive; without waiting to be asked, they
will do your will; without restrictions,
they will be faithful; without giving
orders, they can be trusted.
26. Prohibit the taking of omens, and do
away with superstitious doubts.
Then, until death itself comes, no calamity
need be feared.
27. If our soldiers are not overburdened
with money, it is not because they have a
distaste for riches; if their lives are not
unduly long, it is not because they are
disinclined to longevity.
28. On the day they are ordered out to
battle, your soldiers may weep, those
sitting up bedewing their garments, and
those lying down letting the tears run down
their cheeks.
But let them once be brought to bay, and
they will display the courage of a Chu or a
29. The skillful tactician may be likened
to the shuai-jan.
Now the shuai-jan is a snake that is found
in the ChUng mountains.
Strike at its head, and you will be
attacked by its tail; strike at its tail,
and you will be attacked by its head;
strike at its middle, and you will be
attacked by head and tail both.
30. Asked if an army can be made to imitate
the shuai-jan, I should answer, Yes.
For the men of Wu and the men of Yueh are
enemies; yet if they are crossing a river
in the same boat and are caught by a storm,
they will come to each other's assistance
just as the left hand helps the right.
31. Hence it is not enough to put one's
trust in the tethering of horses, and the
burying of chariot wheels in the ground
32. The principle on which to manage an
army is to set up one standard of courage
which all must reach.
33. How to make the best of both strong and
weak--that is a question involving the
proper use of ground.
34. Thus the skillful general conducts his
army just as though he were leading a
single man, willy-nilly, by the hand.
35. It is the business of a general to be
quiet and thus ensure secrecy; upright and
just, and thus maintain order.
36. He must be able to mystify his officers
and men by false reports and appearances,
and thus keep them in total ignorance.
37. By altering his arrangements and
changing his plans, he keeps the enemy
without definite knowledge.
By shifting his camp and taking circuitous
routes, he prevents the enemy from
anticipating his purpose.
38. At the critical moment, the leader of
an army acts like one who has climbed up a
height and then kicks away the ladder
behind him.
He carries his men deep into hostile
territory before he shows his hand.
39. He burns his boats and breaks his
cooking-pots; like a shepherd driving a
flock of sheep, he drives his men this way
and that, and nothing knows whither he is
40. To muster his host and bring it into
danger:--this may be termed the business of
the general.
41. The different measures suited to the
nine varieties of ground; the expediency of
aggressive or defensive tactics; and the
fundamental laws of human nature: these
are things that must most certainly be
42. When invading hostile territory, the
general principle is, that penetrating
deeply brings cohesion; penetrating but a
short way means dispersion.
43. When you leave your own country behind,
and take your army across neighborhood
territory, you find yourself on critical
When there are means of communication on
all four sides, the ground is one of
intersecting highways.
44. When you penetrate deeply into a
country, it is serious ground.
When you penetrate but a little way, it is
facile ground.
45. When you have the enemy's strongholds
on your rear, and narrow passes in front,
it is hemmed-in ground.
When there is no place of refuge at all, it
is desperate ground.
46. Therefore, on dispersive ground, I
would inspire my men with unity of purpose.
On facile ground, I would see that there is
close connection between all parts of my
47. On contentious ground, I would hurry up
my rear.
48. On open ground, I would keep a vigilant
eye on my defenses.
On ground of intersecting highways, I would
consolidate my alliances.
49. On serious ground, I would try to
ensure a continuous stream of supplies.
On difficult ground, I would keep pushing
on along the road.
50. On hemmed-in ground, I would block any
way of retreat.
On desperate ground, I would proclaim to my
soldiers the hopelessness of saving their
51. For it is the soldier's disposition to
offer an obstinate resistance when
surrounded, to fight hard when he cannot
help himself, and to obey promptly when he
has fallen into danger.
52. We cannot enter into alliance with
neighboring princes until we are acquainted
with their designs.
We are not fit to lead an army on the march
unless we are familiar with the face of the
country--its mountains and forests, its
pitfalls and precipices, its marshes and
We shall be unable to turn natural
advantages to account unless we make use of
local guides.
53. To be ignored of any one of the
following four or five principles does not
befit a warlike prince.
54. When a warlike prince attacks a
powerful state, his generalship shows
itself in preventing the concentration of
the enemy's forces.
He overawes his opponents, and their allies
are prevented from joining against him.
55. Hence he does not strive to ally
himself with all and sundry, nor does he
foster the power of other states.
He carries out his own secret designs,
keeping his antagonists in awe.
Thus he is able to capture their cities and
overthrow their kingdoms.
56. Bestow rewards without regard to rule,
issue orders without regard to previous
arrangements; and you will be able to
handle a whole army as though you had to do
with but a single man.
57. Confront your soldiers with the deed
itself; never let them know your design.
When the outlook is bright, bring it before
their eyes; but tell them nothing when the
situation is gloomy.
58. Place your army in deadly peril, and it
will survive; plunge it into desperate
straits, and it will come off in safety.
59. For it is precisely when a force has
fallen into harm's way that is capable of
striking a blow for victory.
60. Success in warfare is gained by
carefully accommodating ourselves to the
enemy's purpose.
61. By persistently hanging on the enemy's
flank, we shall succeed in the long run in
killing the commander-in-chief.
62. This is called ability to accomplish a
thing by sheer cunning.
63. On the day that you take up your
command, block the frontier passes, destroy
the official tallies, and stop the passage
of all emissaries.
64. Be stern in the council-chamber, so
that you may control the situation.
65. If the enemy leaves a door open, you
must rush in.
66. Forestall your opponent by seizing what
he holds dear, and subtly contrive to time
his arrival on the ground.
67. Walk in the path defined by rule, and
accommodate yourself to the enemy until you
can fight a decisive battle.
68. At first, then, exhibit the coyness of
a maiden, until the enemy gives you an
opening; afterwards emulate the rapidity of
a running hare, and it will be too late for
the enemy to oppose you.


孫子兵法11/13 (Chapter 11 - The Art of War by Sun Tzu - The Nine Situations)

8767 分類 收藏
richardwang 發佈於 2014 年 3 月 22 日
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