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Thread: Sun Tzu

  1. #1
    Resident Snot-Nose GZA's Avatar
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    Default Sun Tzu

    I've been reading some parts of Art of War, and I've been wondering what type he may have been. Any ideas?

    I don't really have any theories, and I'm very sorry if this has been discussed.

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    ^He pronks, too! Magic Poriferan's Avatar
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    That's really tough, because he may not have even actually existed.
    We don't much know about his ideas outside the field of war and a little politics.

    If anything, he has to be an N, I say. One my feel an urge to say he's T, but an F might very well interest itself in the art of war. Again, I say that knowing nothing of Sun Tzu personally, severely hinders the question.
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    Furry Critter with Claws Kiddo's Avatar
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    ENTJ

    I mean...come on...it's the stereotypical evil overlord type. That type is all about conquest and power struggles. Throw in the elements of tradition and strategy and it's almost undeniable.

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    Resident Snot-Nose GZA's Avatar
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    He doesn't sound that evil... I heard that he wanted to live in peace as much as possible, and he seems to often stress "defeating" your enemies using your intellect and breaking them without even attacking with weapons.

    ENTJ still seems to make a lot of sense, but I think maybe he had a pretty good T/F mix and a pretty good P/J mix, because he often talks about boundless possibilities it seems.

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    ^He pronks, too! Magic Poriferan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kiddo View Post
    ENTJ

    I mean...come on...it's the stereotypical evil overlord type. That type is all about conquest and power struggles. Throw in the elements of tradition and strategy and it's almost undeniable.
    It is easily deniable. First of all, being so stereotypical is actually a bad sign. Those silly traits do not help when picking a type.

    More importantly, kiddo, have you ever read Sun Tzu's work?
    His first piece of advice is to avoid war, and if you fail that, his second is to avoid seige.
    That, among other things, doesn't really make him sound like the conquesting, evil overlord you mention.
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    Furry Critter with Claws Kiddo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Magic Poriferan View Post
    It is easily deniable. First of all, being so stereotypical is actually a bad sign. Those silly traits do not help when picking a type.

    More importantly, kiddo, have you ever read Sun Tzu's work?
    His first piece of advice is to avoid war, and if you fail that, his second is to avoid seige.
    That, among other things, doesn't really make him sound like the conquesting, evil overlord you mention.
    That is why I said "stereotypical". I was referring to the type, not Sun Tzu. ENTJs are masters of power struggles, and I'm sure part of that is knowing when not to go to war, but they know how to win when they do. I've read the Art of War, and I am no less inclined to believe he wasn't ENTJ.

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    Quote Originally Posted by GZA View Post
    I've been reading some parts of Art of War, and I've been wondering what type he may have been. Any ideas?

    I don't really have any theories, and I'm very sorry if this has been discussed.
    I have always thought of Sun-Tzu as an INTJ/ISTP mix. There are a lot of similarities between the two types. It is hard to tell a person's type from their philosophy, however.

    Other than the principle of attacking when you have the advantage (even in peace-time, was my interpretation), most of the "Art-of-war" was pacifist (ironically).

    It is mainly about conserving your resources (especially human resources). With the exception of putting people on "loosing ground" to have them fight their hardest to survive. My interpretation was that this was only to be done when situations seem hopeless otherwise.

    Battles are won in the war-room, according to him, before any actual fighting has occurred. If you can help it, only fight battles you know you will win.

    Seems very "Chart-the-Course". But frankly, it is simply the right thing to do in war-time, so anyone competent would suggest it.

    I haven't read a bio. So this is just my prejudice.

    INTJ or ISTP.

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    Luctor et emergo Ezra's Avatar
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    I think the people who say ENTJ are right, or at least close to it. Dichotomically, I could easily see him as an INTJ; a strategist.

    However, functionally, Te is most evident to me. His desire to work with the geography in order to achieve maximum effectiveness in battle is textbook Te. Then you have his clear ability to strategise well and figure out the ways in which things work, which points towards Ni.

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    Lex Parsimoniae Xander's Avatar
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    INTJ.
    Oh and the guy was definitely no pacifist. The whole "I can make anyone fight" thing...definitely a bit tapped in the head if you ask me.
    Isn't it time for a colourful metaphor?

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    Glowy Goopy Goodness The_Liquid_Laser's Avatar
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    I think INTJ. The strategies in "The Art of War" are often very indirect, not really hands on a lot of the time. Most of "The Art of War" is about how to win the war before the fighting even starts. I think Sun Tsu was more of a behind-the-scenes, hands-off strategist that was willing to get his hands dirty when necessary. That describes an INTJ fairly well.
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