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The Six Secret Teachings

 

Disciplines > Warfare > The Six Secret Teachings

 

In the Chou dynasty of the 11th century BC, an elderly, eccentric advisor known as T'ai Kung set out principles of government and warfare through reported conversations with King Wen and his successor, King Wu.

Chinese history has many 'secret teachings'. Making things secret makes them more desirable as they seem scarce and harder to access. To gain access to secrets typically requires investment that leads to greater commitment, as the person acts to sustain consistency with their investment.

These pages include brief notes on observed key learning points and further discussions of these. For detail and full translation, see Sawyer (1993).

 

1. Civil Secret Teachings

1.1. King Wen's Teacher

1.2. Fullness and Emptiness

1.3. Affairs of State

1.4. The Great Forms of Etiquette

1.5. Clear Instructions

1.6. Six Preservations

1.7. Preserving the State's Territory

1.8. Preserving the State

1.9. Honoring the Worthy

1.10. Advancing the Worthy

1.11. Rewards and Punishment

1.12. The Tao of Military

 

2. Martial Secret Teachings

2.1. Opening Instructions

2.2. Civil Instructions

2.3. Civil Offensive

2.4. Instructions on According with the People

2.5. Three Doubts

 

3. Dragon Secret Teachings

3.1. The King's Wings

3.2. A Discussion of Generals

3.3. Selecting Generals

3.4. Appointing the General

3.5. The General's Awesomeness

3.6. Encouraging the Army

3.7. Secret Tallies

3.8. Secret Letters

3.9. The Army's Strategic Power

3.10. The Unorthodox Army

3.11. The Five Notes

3.12. The Army's Indications

3.13. Agricultural Implements

 

4. Tiger Secret Teachings

4.1. The Army's Equipment

4.2. Three Deployments

4.3. Urgent Battles

4.4. Certain Escape

4.5. Planning for the Army

4.6. Approaching the Border

4.7. Movement and Rest

4.8. Gongs and Drums

4.9. Severed Routes

4.10. Occupying Enemy Territory

4.11. Incendiary Warfare

4.12. Empty Fortifications

 

5. Leopard Secret Teachings

5.1. Forest Warfare

5.2. Explosive Warfare

5.3. Strong Enemy

5.4. Martial Enemy

5.5. Crow and Cloud Formation in the Mountains

5.6. Crow and Cloud Formation in the Marshes

5.7. The Few and the Many

5.8. Divided Valleys

 

6. Canine Secret Teachings

6.1. Dispersing and Assembling

6.2. Military Vanguard

6.3. Selecting Warriors

6.4. Teaching Combat

6.5. Equivalent Forces

6.6. Martial Chariot Warriors

6.7. Martial Cavalry Warriors

6.8. Battle Chariots

6.9. Cavalry in Battle

6.10. The Infantry in Battle

See also

The 36 Stratagems, in Detail, The Annotated Art of War

 

Sawyer, R.D. (1993). The Seven Military Classics of Ancient China, Basic Books

http://www.chinese-wiki.com/Military_Strategists_and_Works

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