I’m almost done reading Sun Tzu’s The Art of War. It’s been an interesting read though I don’t know how much I’ve really gotten from it. I guess it’s applicability would be limited simply because I’m not a general or a businessman (apparently it’s popular in the business world).
I was trying to figure out what credibility Sun Tzu really has, and it turns out, according to wikipedia, he’s one of those historical figures that we’re not really sure actually wrote his famous text. Supposedly he general, strategist, philosopher, and minister for a king of an ancient Chinese kingdom.
One of the commentaries included in my copy includes the commentary of Cao Cao. Who is Cao Cao? Cao Cao is such a famous character in Chinese history I learned about him playing a Super Nintendo game. He was like the boss monster of that game, so I suspected he had some street cred. I tried reading up on him and it turns out he was a major player in his period, seizing some awesome real estate in a chaotic time and winning a lot. He also killed a bunch of people.
Anyway, Cao Cao is down with Sun Tzu. Well, all the commentaries are obviously down with Sun Tzu, but Cao Cao at least has some weight even in the Western World.
I’ve learned probably one thing from the book so far, well two things: (1) I now know where the title On Deadly Ground comes from and (2) if you’re prepared you will win. Simple but rings really true to me, so I suspect that’s part of why the book has remained as popular as it has all these years.