偷梁换柱

 
tōu liáng huàn zhù (tou liang huan zhu)
replace the beams and pillars with rotten timbers (interfere with an opponents operations)

Disrupt the enemy's formations, interfere with their methods of operations, change the rules in which they are used to following, go contrary to their standard training. In this way you remove the supporting pillar, the common link that makes a group of men an effective fighting force.

Six Dynasties Period China

In 383 emperor Fu Jian of Qin, personally led an advance guard of 5,000 horses to attack the Jin general Xie Shi. Discovering that the Jin forces were greater than he anticipated, the emperor had his army form defensive positions along the bank of the river. The Jin armies likewise encamped on the opposite side. Neither side wished to cross first since it was well known that an army is most vulnerable when crossing a river. General Shi sent an envoy across the river with a message that read: " My lord, your army has entered deeply into our territory, and in deploying your ranks you have crowded upon the river. This is the plan for a lengthy stalemate. Do you really want to fight? If you will order your men to withdraw to a safe distance and allow us to cross we can then fight it out and settle the matter quickly."

The emperor agreed to the request. When his advisors objected, emperor Fu Jian told them that he planned to turn his army about and attack the Jin after half their troops had crossed. But general Xie anticipated the emperor's treachery and sent scouts disguised as imperial troops to infiltrate the Qin ranks. When the emperor ordered his army to pull back, the disguised Jin troops began to incite panic by spreading the rumor that Qin was withdrawing in defeat and that Jin was in hot pursuit. The retreat quickly turned into a rout as the Qin troops broke formation to escape. The emperor and his generals raced frantically after the fleeing soldiers with whips in hand to stop them, but to no avail. The Jin army quickly crossed the river and pursued the Qin forces inflicting enormous casualties. The emperor was wounded and narrowly escaped. He was captured and strangled a few weeks later.

Usage

Make the allied forces change their battle formation frequently so that their main strength will be taken away. When they collapse by themselves, go and swallow them up. This is like pulling back the wheels of a chariot to control its direction.

State of Jin

Before the Warring States period, in the state of Jin, the four noble families of Zhi, Zhao, Han and Wei shared power.

The Zhi clan was the most powerful and wanted the others to cede more territory to them. Zhao bitterly opposed the idea. In the year 451 BC, Han, Wei and Zhi attacked Zhao's fortified city of Jinyang for two years but failed to capture it.

Jinyang was situated in a low-lying place. Zhi decided that they could divert water to drown the city. Zhi also threatened Han and Wei if that did not co-operate, part of the water will be diverted to destroy their irrigation system.

But Zhao did not surrender. Zhao's strategist Zhang Mengtan came up with a plan, "Han and Wei were forced to submit to Zhi. If we can persuade them to resist Zhi, they'll become our supporting forces against Zhi."

Zhang Mengtan managed to secure the backing of Han and Wei. At night, the Han and Wei soldiers secretly dug up the dikes, causing the water to flood Zhi's camp. Water flooded Zhi's camp and utterly destroyed Zhi's soldiers. The Zhi chief was captured. Zhi's clansmen were killed and their territory divided among Zhao, Han and Wei.

Meaning: 比喻暗中玩弄手法,以假代真,以劣代优。

Context: 清·曹雪芹《红楼梦》第九十七回:“偏偏凤姐想出一条偷梁换柱之计,自己也不好过潇湘馆来,竟未能少尽姊妹之情,真真可怜可叹。”

Example: 他采取~的手法,将别人的科研成果据为己有。

频更其阵,抽其劲旅,待其自败, 而后乘之①,曳其轮也②。

【注释】

①句中的几个“其”字,均指盟友、盟军言之。

②曳其轮也:“语出《易经,既济》纷。既济,龄名,本卦为异卦相叠(离下坎上)。上卦为坎为水,下卦为离为火。水处火上,水势压倒火势,救火之事,大告成功,故卦名“即济”。既,已经;济,成功。本卦初九?《象》辞:“曳其轮,义无咎也。”意为,拖住了车轮,车子就不能运行了。

此计运用此象理,是说好比拖住了车轮,车子就不能运行了。己方抽其友方劲旅,如同抽出梁木,房屋就会坍塌,于是己方就可以控制他了。

【按语】

阵有纵横,天衡为梁,地轴为柱。梁柱以精兵为之,故观其阵,则知精兵之所有。共战他敌时,频更其阵,暗中抽换其精兵,或竟代其为梁柱;势成阵塌,遂兼其兵。并此敌以击他敌之首策也。

【解析】

这则按语,主要是从军事部署的角度讲的。古代作战,双方要摆开阵式。列阵都要按东、西、南、北方位部署。阵中有“天横”,首尾相对,是阵的大梁;“地轴” 在阵中央,是阵的支枕。梁和柱的位置都是部署主力部队的地方。因此,观察敌阵,就能发现敌军的主力的位置。如果与友军联合作战,应设法多次变动友军的阵容,暗中更换它的主力,派自己的部队去代替它的梁柱,这样一定使它的阵地无法由它自己控制,这时,立即吞并友军的部队。这是吞并这一股敌人再去攻击另一股敌人的首要战略。

以上的这段按语,反映了封建社会里,军阀割据,所谓“友军”,不过只是暂时的联合而已,所以“兼并盟友”是常事。不过,从军事谋略上去理解本计,重点也可以放在对敌军“频更共阵”上。也就是多次佯攻,促使敌人变换阵容,然后伺机攻其弱点。这种调动敌人的谋略,也能收到很好的效果。

【探源】

偷梁换柱,指用偷换的办法,暗中改换事物的本质和内容,以达蒙混欺骗的目的。“偷天换日”、“偷龙换凤”、“调包计”,都是同样的意思。在军事上,联合对敌作战时,反复变动友军阵线,借以调换其兵力,等待友军有机可乘、一败涂地之时,将其全部控制。此计归于第五套“并战计”中,本意是乘友军作战不利,借机兼并他的主力为己方所用。此计中包含尔虞我诈、乘机控制别人的权术,所以也往往用于政治谋略和外交谋略。

秦始皇称帝,自以为江山一统,是子孙万代的家业了。但是,他自以为身体还不错,一直没有去立太子,指定接班人,宫庭内,存在两个实力强大的政治集团。一个是长子扶苏、蒙恬集团,—个是幼子胡亥、赵高集团。扶苏恭顺好仁,为人正派,在全国有很高的声誉。泰始皇本意欲立扶苏为太子,为了锻炼他,派他到著名将领蒙恬驻守的北线为监军。幼子胡亥,早被娇宠坏了,在宦官赵高教唆下,只知吃喝玩乐。

公元前210年,秦始皇第五次南巡,到达平原津(今山东平原县附近),突然一病不起。此时,秦始皇也知道自己的大限将至.于是,连忙召丞相李斯,要李斯传达秘诏,立扶苏为太子。当时掌管玉玺和起草诏书的是宦官头儿赵高。赵高早有野心,看准了这是一次难得的机会,故意扣压秘诏,等待时机。

几天后,秦始皇在沙丘平召(今河北广宗县境)驾崩。李斯怕太子回来之前,政局动荡,所以秘不发丧。赵高特此去找李斯,告诉他,皇上赐给扶苏的信,还扣在我这里。现在,立谁为太子,我和你就可以决定。狡猾的赵高又对李斯讲明利害,说,如果扶苏做了皇帝,一定会重用蒙恬,到那个时候,宰相的位置你能坐得稳吗?一席话,说得李斯果然心动,二人合谋,制造假诏书,赐死扶苏,杀了蒙恬。

赵高未用一兵一卒,只用偷梁换柱的手段,就把昏庸无能的胡亥扶为秦二世,为自己今后的专权打下基础,也为秦朝的灭亡埋下了祸根。

【故事】

吕后杀韩信,历史众说纷纭。历史上的是非功过,不是一下子说得清楚的。这里并不想作什么评价,仅用此例,再次说明“偷梁换柱”的计谋,在历史上也往往发挥政治权术作用。

楚汉相争,以刘邦大胜,建立汉朝为结局。这时,各异姓王拥兵自重,是对刘氏天下潜在的威胁。翦灭异姓诸王,是刘邦日夜考虑的大事。异姓诸王中,韩信势力最大。刘邦借口韩信袒护一叛将为由,把他由楚王贬为淮阴侯,调到京城居住,实际上有点“软禁”的味道。韩信功高盖世,忠于刘邦。当年楚汉相争,战斗激烈之时,谋士蒯彻曾建议韩信与刘邦分手,使天下三分。韩信拒绝了蒯彻的建议,辅佐刘邦夺得天下。而今却落得这样的下场,心中怨恨至极。

公元前200年,刘邦派陈烯为代相,统率边兵,对付匈奴。韩信私下里会见陈烯,以自己的遭遇为例,警告陈烯,你虽然拥有重兵,但并不安全,刘邦不会一直信任你,不如乘此机会,带兵反汉,我在京城里接应你。两个人秘密地商量好,决定伺机起事。

公元前197年,陈烯在代郡反汉,自立为代王。刘邦领兵亲自声讨陈烯。韩信与陈烯约定,起事后他在京城诈称奉刘邦密诏,袭击吕后及太子,两面夹击刘邦。可是,韩信的计谋被吕后得知。吕后与丞相陈平设下一计,对付韩信。

吕后派人在京城散布:陈烯已死,皇上得胜,即将凯旋。韩信听到这个消息,又没有见到陈烯派人来联系,心中甚为恐慌。一日.丞相陈平亲自到韩信家中,谎称陈烯已死,叛乱已定,皇上已班师回朝,文武百官都要入朝庆贺,请韩信立即进宫。韩信本来心虚,只得与陈平同车进宫。结果被吕后逮捕,囚系在长乐宫之钟室。半夜时分,韩信被杀。后世称“未央官斩韩信”。盖世英名的韩信至死也不知道,陈烯已死的消息,完全是谎言。陈烯叛乱,是在韩信死了两年之后才平定的。

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