The range of people who find benefits in the our training in Sun Tzu's Rules is amazing. While most translations obscure the meaning of Sun Tzu's original rules with ideas of "war", our work is aimed at helping people understand what cannot be translated.
For example, a reader from a mathematics department at a university in Thailand writes us that he had read many versions of Sun Tzu in both English and Thai and dreamed of understanding its deeper meaning, but that he thought it was "hopeless" because he couldn't read the ancient Chinese. After discovering our work, he wrote us:
Your book The Art of War plus The Ancient Chinese Revealed and [your] many internet sites now make my dream alive...It is very original and opens my eyes..."
Similarly, those with a great deal of experience in the both Chinese and strategy write us praising our work.
Dick Buxton started studying Mandarin at the Defense Language Institute in Monterey, CA in 1968. He was stationed throughout Asia while he was in the Navy. After getting out, he got his masters in Oriental Studies with a concentration in Chinese history, studying Chinese at the National Taiwan University and working as a China analyst for the intelligence community. He found our books at the Spy Museum in Washington, D.C. and wrote to complement us saying:
"Having had my scholastic head in modern China, I never really read the original Chinese version, and only referred to it now and again whenever Mao’s Chinese Revolution came up or I had a need to refer to Mao’s tactics in the countryside prior to 1949. When I saw your book the other day, I just had to pick it up. I’ve been reading it nightly – the Chinese and the English – and it has renewed my interest in studying Chinese again."
At the opposite end of the spectrum are the parents that we hear from who find these ideas so simple that they are teaching them to their kids. For example, Dave Harper writes:
found your work especially helpful because it conveys, in readily understood terms, the principles in The Art of War - such as positioning, leverage, etc. One book in particular of yours, the Warrior Class: 306 Lessons in Strategy, is most helpful...Would you believe my eldest children (aged 5,6,8) quiz each other from the Warrior Class?...thank you once again for the excellent work you are doing."
Nor is Dave alone in finding this ideas so easy that children can appreciate them. Ossy Hernadez was one of those people who had collected many versions of Sun Tzu's The Art of War, but who said that he really didn't understand the work until he got our version for career building. He said:
"The intro on that book alone --the 5 element diagram, 4 skills which none of the other books speak of--helped me realize that there was more to The Art of War. My daughter already understands the 4 basic skills that are needed to survive in this competitive world. And she's only 7! She already has her sights on being president one day. Again, thank you very much."
We hear from many people who found that other versions of Sun Tzu's work obscured its meaning. For example, Edwin Fuentes writes:
"As I read through your translation, I felt that I understood his [Sun Tzu's] work better and felt that other versions include too many excerpts from other people and confuse the reader more, making the reader not understand Tzu's original work for what it is."
A lot of people also write us to say how valuable they find our methods of diagramming Sun Tzu's ideas. Dennis Cobb was serving a fellowship that required a great deal of travel, bringing him to Beijing, where he purchased a number of books on Sun Tzu. He writes us:
I find myself engrossed in digesting your take on this classic. I have greatly enjoyed your take on Sun's work, and quite like the diagrammatic method. It reinforces the duality of every aspect of competition in a way that stays sharp when involved competitive situations...Keep up the good work!"
Jeff S. agrees, having also spent some time studying Sun Tzu. He says:
"Your book [Amazing Secrets] is awesome. I've been studying AOW for around two years and your translation, commentary and especially the diagrams really help explain the concepts."
Or course, our interest is not just in explaining Sun Tzu, but in using it to help people with their lives. We are trying to bring something totally new to this "self-help" category.
Bill Kopps who has a background of helping develop self-help books agrees. Working in psychological analysis and clinical psychology, he has reviewed several self-help systems and worked with those developing self-help books. However, he has generally soured on these books writing us:
"I tend to not look at them anymore because after a person has read a few they become redundant."
Then he goes on to say:
"But for some reason your course stuck out as seeming different...I wrote this email because I think your self help approach adds to the self help books and self help systems found today. It is a new and novel approach. I would also like to express my thanks for the good job done on the audio and written form of 'The Art of War.'"
James Mirabel is a business person in Corpus Christi, Texas, and a student of our Warrior Class Lessons. He sums it up nicely:
"...Sun Tzu's Art of War keeps strategic decisions simple so that even the average lay person can apply his principals to their everyday life. Sun Tzu's Sun Tzu's strategy is easy to understand and with practice can change a persons life & way of thinking to give them a competitive edge in any situation...The one major change that really sticks out to me is how I now analyze every situation and relate the principals of the art of war to every competitive situation. It is starting to become automatic."
Can we help you understand what you could be doing better in your life? The best way to find out is to start now.