假痴不癫

 
jiǎ chī bù diān (jia chi bu dian)
feigning insanity

Hide behind the mask of a fool, a drunk, or a madman to create confusion about your intentions and motivations. Lure your opponent into underestimating your ability until, overconfident, he drops his guard. Then you may attack.

Sui Dynasty China

During the final years of Emperor Yang of the Sui Dynasty there appeared a ballad that foretold the fall of the house of Sui and the ascent of a man named Li as emperor. The ballad became immensely popular among the disaffected subjects of Emperor Yang's infamous rule. The emperor, being superstitious and believing in the prophecy himself, began a campaign to search out and execute anyone of importance with the surname Li. He had numerous ministers and officials along with their entire families put to the sword. A minor official whose name was, Li Yuan, was serving as superintendent in the provinces when he was summoned to the court. Li Yuan delayed appearing in court by claiming poor health. Li Yuan had a niece who was a palace maid and one day the emperor asked her where her uncle Li has been. The lady replied that her uncle was ill. The emperor said: "I wonder if he is courting death?" When Li Yuan heard this he was certain that if he obeyed the summons to court he would never return. Thereupon he feigned madness and pretended to become an incorrigible drunk. When the imperial spies reported Li's behavior the emperor thought that a madmen could never fulfill the prophesy and was no longer suspicious of Li. Surprisingly, two years later the Sui emperor placed Li in charge of a field army to defend the empire against barbarian incursions. Li fought bravely, won the respect of his troops, marched on the capital, and went on to found the illustrious Tang dynasty thus fulfilling the prophecy.

Sima Yi

In the year AD 239, the young prince of Wei was enthroned as king for his father was critically ill. However the real power was shared between Sima Yi and Cao Shuang.

Cao Shuang managed to deprive Sima Yi of his military power. Sima Yi feigned illness and didn't attend court. His sons Sima Shi and Sima Zhao also quit their posts to avoid suspicion. He told his sons to keep tabs on court affairs secretly, and to bide their time.

During Winter of 248, Cao Shuang's henchmen Li Sheng was appointed governor of Jinzhou. Cao Shuang told him to visit Sima Yi to find out what the old man was up to.

When Sima Yi heard tha Li Sheng was coming, he crept into his bed. Li Sheng arrived to find Sima Yi in bed. Sima Yi pointed to his mouth indicating that he was thirsty. The maid fed him soup. He deliberately let the soup spill out of his mouth and flow to his collar. Li Sheng was surprised to see this.

Sima Yi said, "I understand you are assigned to Bingzhou today. Bingzhou is a dangerous place, do take care. I'm dying and won't be able to see you again. Please ask Cao Shuang to be nice towards my sons."

Li Sheng told him, "It's Jinzhou, not Bingzhou." Sima Yi said, "Bingzhou is a dangerous..." Again Li Sheng corrected him, "No, Jinzhou." Finally Sima Yi said, "I'm old and senile and don't understand what you are saying."

Li Sheng reported to Cao Shuang that Sima Yi is near death. Thinking that Sima Yi is dying, Cao Shuang thought that he was no longer a threat.

On the fifth day of the second month in the year AD 249, Sima Yi and his sons staged a coup while Cao Shuang left the capital with the emperor to visit the imperial tombs.

On the ninth day of the second month, Sima Yi had Cao Shuang and his henchmen executed on charges of conspiracy.

Meaning: 痴:傻,呆;癲:疯癫,癫狂。假装呆傻,实际并不疯癫。形容外表看似愚钝,而心里却十分清醒。

Context: 《三十六计》第二十七计:“当其机未发时,静屯似痴;若假癲,则不但露机,且乱动而群疑;故假痴者胜,假癲者败。”

宁伪作不知不为,不伪作假知妄为①。静不露机,云雪屯也②。

【注释】

①宁伪作不知不为,不伪作假知妄为:宁可假装着无知而不行动,不可以假装假知而去轻举妄动。

②静不露机,云雷屯也:语出《易经.屯》卦。屯卦名。本卦为异卦相叠(震下坎上),震为雷,坎为雨, 此卦象为雷雨并作,环境险恶,为事困难。“屯,难也”。《屯卦》的《彖》辞又说“云雷,屯。”坎为雨,又为云,震为雷。这是说,云行于上,雷动于下,云在上有压抑雷之象征,这是屯卦之卦象。

此计运用此象理,是说在军事上,有时为了以退求进,必得假痴不癫,老成持重,以达后发制人。这就如同云势压住雷动,且不露机巧一样,最后一旦爆发攻击,便出奇不意而获胜。

【按语】

假作不知而实知,假作不为而实不可为,或将有所为。司马懿之假病昏以诛曹爽,受巾帼假请命以老蜀兵,所以成功;姜维九伐中原,明知不可为而妄为之,则似痴矣,所以破灭。兵书曰:“故善战者之胜也,无智名,无勇功。”当其机未发时,静屯似痴;若假癫,则不但露机,则乱动而群疑。故假痴者胜,假癫者败。或日:假痴可以对敌,并可以用兵。宋代,南俗尚鬼。狄青征侬智高时,大兵始出桂林之南,因佯祝曰:“胜负无以为据。”乃取百钱自持,与神约,果大捷,则投此钱尽钱面也。左右谏止,傥不如意,恐沮师,青不听。万众方耸视,已而挥手一掷,百钱旨面。于是举兵欢呼,声震林野,青亦大喜;顾左右.取百丁(钉)来,即随钱疏密,布地而帖丁(钉)之,加以青纱笼,手自封焉。曰:“俟凯旋,当酬神取钱。”其后平邕州还师,如言取钱,幕府士大夫共祝视,乃两面钱也。

【解析】

表面装糊涂,实际很清楚,假装不行动实际上是在暗中策划等待时机。如司马懿假病夺兵权;当时机不成熟时,决不可轻举妄动。如姜维明知蜀汉国力不及曹魏,却劳师动众九伐中原,以至蜀汉民穷兵疲,终被曹魏所灭。在军事上,此计不但是麻痹敌人、待机破敌的一种策略,还可作为“愚兵”之计来治军。如宋代狄青在征伐壮族首领侬智高时,以两面钱来装神弄鬼,让士兵误以为有神相助,于是士气大振。

【探源】

假痴不癫,重点在—个“假”字。这里的“假”,意思是伪装。装聋作哑,痴痴呆呆,而内心里却特别清醒。此计作为政治谋略和军事谋略,都算高招。

用于政治谋略,就是韬晦之术,在形势不利于自己的时候,表面上装疯卖傻,给人以碌碌无为的印象,隐藏自己的才能,掩盖内心的政治抱负,以免引起政敌的警觉,专一等待时机,实现自己的抱负。三国时期,曹操与刘备青梅煮酒论英雄这段故事,就是个典型的例证。刘备早已有夺取天下的抱负,只是当时力量太弱,根本无法与曹操抗衡,而且还处在曹操控制之下。刘备装作每日只是饮酒种菜,不问世事。一日曹操请他喝酒,席上曹操问刘备谁是天下英雄,刘备列了几个名字,都被曹操否定了。忽然,曹操说道:“天下的英雄,只有我和你两个人!”一句话说得刘备惊慌失措,深怕曹操了解自己的政治抱负,吓得手中的筷子掉在地下。幸好此时一阵炸雷,刘备急忙遮掩,说自己被雷声吓掉了筷子。曹操见状,大笑不止,认为刘备连打雷都害怕,成不了大事,对刘备放松了警觉。后来刘备摆脱了曹操的控制,终于在中国历史上干出了一番事业。

此计用在军事上,指的是,虽然自己具有相当强大的实力,但故意不露锋芒,显得软弱可欺,用以麻痹敌人,骄纵敌人,然后伺机给敌人以措手不及的打击。

秦朝末年,匈奴内部政权变动,人心不稳。邻近一个强大的民族东胡,借机向匈奴勒索。东胡存心挑衅,要匈奴献上国宝千里马。匈奴的将领们都说东胡欺人太甚,国宝决不能轻易送绘了们。匈奴单于冒顿却决定:“给他们吧!不能因为一匹马与邻国失和嘛。”匈奴的将领们都不服气,冒顿却若无其事。东胡见匈奴软弱可欺,竟然向冒顿要一名妻妾。众将见东胡得寸进尺,个个义愤填膺,冒顿却说:“给他们吧,不能因为舍不得一个女子与邻国失和嘛!”东胡不费吹灰之力,连连得手,料定匈奴软弱,不堪一击,根本不把匈奴放在眼里。这正是冒顿单于求之不得的。不久之后,东胡看中了与甸奴交界处的一片茫茫荒原,这荒原属于匈奴的领土。东胡派使臣去匈奴,要匈奴以此地相赠。匈奴众将认为冒顿一再忍让,这荒原又是杳无人烟之地.恐怕只得答应割让了。谁知冒顿此次突然说道:“千里荒原,杳无人烟,但也是我匈奴的国土,怎可随便让人?”于是,下令集合部队,进攻东胡。匈奴将士受够了东胡的气,这一下,人人奋勇争先,锐不可挡。东胡做梦也没想到那个痴愚的冒顿会突然发兵攻打自已,所以毫无准备。仓促应战,哪里是匈奴的对手。战争的结局是东胡被灭,东胡王被杀于乱军之中。

【故事】

三国时期,魏国的魏明帝去世,继位的曹芳年仅八岁,朝政由太尉司马懿和大将军曹爽共同执掌,曹爽是宗亲贵胄,飞扬拔扈,怎能让异姓的司马氏分享权力。他用明升暗降的手段剥夺了司马懿的兵权。

司马懿立过赫赫战功,如今却大权旁落,心中十分怨恨,但他看到曹爽现在势力强大,一时恐怕斗他不过。于是,司马懿称病不再上朝,曹爽当然十分高兴。他心里也明白,司马懿是他当权的唯一潜在对手。一次,他派亲信李胜去司马家探听虚实。

其实,司马懿看破曹爽的心事,早有准备,李胜被引到司马懿的卧室,只见司马懿病容满面,头发散乱,躺在床上,由两名侍女服侍。李胜说:“好久没来拜望,不知您病得这么严重。现在我被命为荆州刺史,特来向您辞行。”司马懿假装听错了,说道:“并州是近境要地,一定要抓好防务。”李胜忙说:“是荆州,不是并州:”司马懿还是装作听不明白。这时,两个侍女给他喂药,他吞得很艰难,汤水还从口中流出。他装作有气无力地说:“我已命在旦夕,我死之后,请你转告大将军,一定要多多照顾我的孩子们。”

李胜回去向曹爽作了汇报,曹爽喜不自胜,说道:“只要这老头一死,我就没有什么好担心的了。”

过了不久,公元249年2月15日,天子曹芳要去济阳城北扫墓,祭祀祖先。曹爽带着他的三个兄弟和亲信等护驾出行。

司马懿听到这个消息,认为时机已到。马上调集家将,召集过去的老部下,迅速占据了曹氏兵营,然后进宫威逼太后,历数曹爽罪过,要求废黜这个奸贼。太后无奈,只得同意。司马懿又派人占据了武库。

等到曹爽闻讯回城,大势已去。司马懿以篡逆的罪名,诛杀曹爽一家,终于独揽大权,曹魏政权实际上已是有名无实。

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