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36 Strategems

19 Jan 2009 on Learning

36 Strategems are 36 priceless strategy drawn from Chinese philosophy…

  1. Deceive the heavens to cross the ocean
  2. Besiege Wèi to rescue Zhào
  3. Kill with a borrowed knife 
  4. Substitute leisure for labour
  5. Loot a burning house
  6. Make a sound in the east, then strike in the west
  7. Create something from nothing
  8. Openly repair the gallery roads, but sneak through the passage of Chencang
  9. Watch the fires burning across the river
  10. Hide a knife behind a smile
  11. Sacrifice the plum tree to preserve the peach tree
  12. Take the opportunity to pilfer a goat
  13. Startle the snake by hitting the grass around it 
  14. Borrow a corpse to resurrect the soul
  15. Entice the tiger to leave its mountain lair
  16. In order to capture, one must let loose
  17. Tossing out a brick to get a jade gem
  18. Defeat the enemy by capturing their chief
  19. Remove the firewood under the cooking pot 
  20. Catch a fish while the water is disturbed
  21. Slough off the cicada’s golden shell 
  22. Shut the door to catch the thief
  23. Befriend a distant state while attacking a neighbour
  24. Obtain safe passage to conquer the State of Guo
  25. Replace the beams with rotten timbers
  26. Point at the mulberry tree while cursing the locust tree 
  27. Feign madness but keep your balance
  28. Remove the ladder when the enemy has ascended to the roof 
  29. Deck the tree with false blossoms
  30. Make the host and the guest exchange roles
  31. The beauty trap (honey trap)
  32. The empty fort strategy 
  33. Let the enemy’s own spy sow discord in the enemy camp 
  34. Inflict injury on one’s self to win the enemy’s trust 
  35. Chain stratagems
  36. If everything else fails, retreat