Sun Tzu and the Art of War

It’s sometimes very tempting for people to believe that in a rapidly changing world, what’s new is all that has value. However, I believe that more and more, as fast as the world around us changes, we need to keep one eye on the great learning and wisdom of the past in order to understand how to operate most effectively in the world.

One example in recent years has been the increased interest in the work of the Greek stoic philosophers to understand and make sense of how to live an effective life. Other works that bear study to understand the world we live in include the writings of Plato or the Analects of Confucious. One of my favourites is ‘The Art of War’ by Sun Tzu. Even though the book was written over 2,000 years ago it still has valid lessons today for business or life generally.

For those who want to get a simple taster, or a way to share the work with younger learners, I recently came across a cartoon video series. The thirteen videos each take one chapter of the book and make it very accessible.

Some people are uncomfortable with models related to war, battle or conflict to deal with issues in modern life. however, I believe this is to ignore the fact that in many situations if we are in a situation where, given the chance others would potentially act on a win-lose basis towards us, then it is naive to proceed as though life should not entail competition. I believe one of the greatest strength in this written work is the emphasis on using strategy to avoid battle.

The Playlist of all Thirteen Episodes
(Click on the link above to open a separate tab with the full playlist of all the episodes)

Well worth watching (and hopefully being inspired to go on and read the book)

 

 

 

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2 Responses

  1. It’s important that we examine “Sun Tzu’s” meaning. This is not a book on conflict – this is a book on realizing objectives without conflict. Nations must prevent – and avoid – a state of war with other nations. Conflict events do occur due to error or misadventure, but war happens only through incompetence, insatiable greed or egotistical aggression. Competent organizations neutralize potential conflicts before they emerge https://tinyurl.com/y4clmpe3

    • Thanks so much for sharing that link – Jones’ book is certainly going on to my book list.
      I can see a lot of what you say reflected in China’s current strategies in Asia, Africa and how they manage their relationship with America.
      I rather doubt that Donald Trump has read Sun Tzu!

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