Practicality of Deliberation

Practicality of Deliberation by Sun Tzu 500B.C

Enlightened rulers must Deliberate on the Plans to go to battle – Sun Tzu

As war is a matter of life and death and hence it is a subject of deliberation which can on no account be neglected.  There are Five constant factors to be taken into account between antagonistic sides in one’s deliberations when seeking to make an assessment of the outcome of war .They are ;

  1. Moral Influence : Moral law causes the people to be in complete accord with their ruler so they will follow him regardless of their lives , undismayed by any danger.
  2. Heaven or Weather : Signifies day and night , cold and heat , times and seasons.
  3. Earth : Comprises distances , danger and security , open ground and narrow passes , the chances of life and death.
  4. The Commander : Stands for virtues of wisdom , sincerity , benevolence ,courage and strictness.
  5. Method and Discipline : The marshaling of troops , the graduation of rank ,the supply lines and control of expenditure.

These Factors lead to 7 comparisons between warring factions which decide the final outcome ;

1.Which sovereign possesses greater moral influence ?

2. Which commander is more capable ?

3. Which side holds more favorable conditions in weather and terrain ?

4. On which side decrees and orders better implemented?

5. Which side is superior in arms ?

6.On which sides are officers and men better trained ?

7.Which side is stricter and more impartial in meeting out rewards and punishments ?


Thus a Sovereign who deliberates on these issues and heeds his advise is assured of victory .


War is constantly waging around us and we are direct participants in it willingly or unwittingly .Modern day troops are your workforce , your managers the officers and commanders ,the heaven and earth are the conditions of engagement .

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