The real Liu Bei: he is neither a loyal and foolish second brother nor a treacherous and hypocrite

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Although Liu Bei was a Han clan, he was a downcast aristocrat. Although he, like Cao Cao, was also an official of three generations, the previous two generations were just small officials in the remote Zhuo county. They didn’t have any contacts, and they didn’t even save money for their family. In addition, Liu Bei lost his father when he was young, so that in his generation, his family could only make a living by weaving mats and selling shoes. Although he was not well off, Liu Bei’s mother believed that education could change his fate, so she saved money and finally sent Liu Bei to the famous teacher Lu Zhi at the age of 15.

It is reasonable to say that Liu Bei should study hard if he can get this learning opportunity. However, according to the history, “the former master was not very happy with reading, but liked dogs, horses, music and beautiful clothes”, “he was good at making friends with heroes and fighting for attachment when he was young”. However, it is also inconceivable that at this time, Liu Bei seems to have shown some imperceptible charm. At that time, his classmate, liuderan, was of the same clan as him. His father, liuyuanqi, supported Liu Bei for a long time, and the standard was exactly the same as that of his son. It seems that Liu Yuan was not very rich from the beginning, or his wife was stingy, and Liu Bei’s academic performance was disappointing. Finally, one day, Liu Yuanqi’s wife couldn’t help complaining, thinking that although everyone’s surname was Liu, “each family” would just help occasionally. How can they provide for them regularly? Liu Yuanqi said, “there is such a child in my clan. It is very human.”

At the same time, gongsunzan, who likes riding white horses, is good at using spears, and crosses the frontier fortress. He was once very beautiful. At this time, he was also a classmate with Liu Bei. He also seemed to see the outstanding features of Liu Bei, so he made friends with Liu Bei who was younger than himself among all his classmates. Moreover, even zhangshiping, Su Shuang and other “rich and valuable” Zhongshan peddlers and Ma Da merchants “see different things” and “they are more than the money”. These subsidies have become the first start-up funds for Liu Bei’s rise in the future.

All these show the uniqueness of Liu Bei. What is the difference? The history books seem to emphasize two points. One is peculiar in appearance. “He is seven feet and five inches long. He hangs his hands and knees and sees his ears.”. This was very important in the late Han Dynasty, which paid attention to physiognomy. Secondly, according to the history, Liu Bei, a young man, was “less talkative, good at servants, and neither happy nor angry” and had a youthful and mature demeanor.

Because of the Yellow turban rebellion, Liu Bei got his first chance in life. With the support of zhangshiping and Su Shuang, he formed his own private armed forces, followed the school captain zoujing to fight against the Yellow turban thief, and became an Xi Wei.

From the point of view of the son of a weaver of mats and shoes, Liu Bei’s ability to become a county Lieutenant has fundamentally changed his social status and prospects. However, just as he did not work under Lu Zhi’s family in his early years, Liu Bei seemed to despise this Anxi Wei. So when his superior supervisor, the postman, failed to obtain approval for “going to the county on business”, Liu Bei forced him to tie him to a tree and beat 200 sticks at one go, Then he tied his seal to the governor’s neck and “abandoned his official position and fled for life”.

It is really unusual that Liu Bei dared to beat his superiors at the beginning of his career. However, Liu Bei was lucky. At this time, the central government was in an uproar. He jinmou, a senior general, planned to kill eunuchs. On the one hand, he sent troops to Beijing, and on the other hand, he sent his cronies to the local areas to recruit troops separately. One of them, a lieutenant named ? Qiuyi, was ordered to recruit soldiers from Danyang, and Liu Bei defected to him. When he passed xiapi, he was attacked by bandits. Liu Bei became Xiami Cheng because of his “meritorious efforts”.

But before long, Liu Bei left again.

At this time, Liu Bei was almost thirty years old, but he still acted like a hairy boy. This is the magic of Liu Bei and his loveliness. Unfortunately, the author of the romance of the Three Kingdoms later, in order to highlight Liu Bei’s style of being an elder, simply assigned the whip to Zhang Fei, and hid many of Liu Bei’s early love affairs one by one. Today’s readers think that Liu Bei is a stupid second brother with big ears and long arms, who loves to cry and talks less.

But perhaps it was this kind of personality that convinced Guan Yu and Zhang Fei to follow Liu Bei north and south.

However, at this time, Liu Bei still had many shortcomings. If Liu Bei went to the cottage at this time, no matter how sincere he was, it would be difficult to convince Kongming. However, Liu Bei, who was running five years ago, was as impressed by Kongming as Liu Bei, who was running three years ago, was by Guan and Zhang. This is the change of people, which is what litaibai said, “the great sage and the tiger become unpredictable, and they were quite like ordinary people in those days”. So, what contributed to Liu Bei’s tiger transformation?

For a while, Liu Bei had good luck. Not long after he resigned from the post of Xiami Cheng, Liu Bei became a Gaotang Lieutenant again. Soon after, he was promoted to Gaotang Ling. Later, he left Gaotang and followed gongsunzan. Under gongsunzan’s watch, Liu Bei became the Sima of other departments and was ordered to stop the attack of Jizhou mu yuanshao together with Tiankai, the governor of Qingzhou. Because Liu Bei had made “several meritorious achievements” in this interdiction battle, he became the plain commander again and was soon promoted to the plain phase.

It was during Pingyuan’s tenure that Cao Cao went on an expedition to Xuzhou and Tao Qian asked for help everywhere. Liu Bei and his superior Tian Kai, the governor of Qingzhou, sent troops to rescue him. However, Liu Bei was especially appreciated by Tao Qian. As soon as he met him, he was assigned to command the fourthousand troops. After Cao Cao’s withdrawal, Tao Qian let Liu Bei garrison Xiaopei and became a foreign vassal of Xuzhou. Before long, Tao Qian died of illness. Before his death, Tao Qian decided to transfer Xuzhou to Liu Bei for treatment. This decision was supported by the grass-roots officials and local big families in Xuzhou. In this way, Liu Bei suddenly changed his fortune and owned a state.

However, Liu Bei’s good luck caused many warlords to envy and covet. Cao Cao in the north and Yuan Shu in the South became direct opponents for a while. Liu Bei was forced to fight on two fronts.

At this very moment, LV bushiqiong, defeated by Cao Cao, came to vote. Although he knew that Lv Bu was fickle, Liu Bei still took Lv Bu in to cope with the situation of the two fronts. In the second year of Xingping (195), Lu Bu suddenly attacked xiapi while Liu Bei was fighting with Yuan Shu. At that time, Zhang Fei, who stayed at xiapi, was incompetent, which provoked infighting between Liu Bei’s troops and the former taoqian generals. As a result, Lu Bu won easily, not only occupied Xuzhou, but also “the wife of the former master”. After that, Lu Bu, out of practical considerations, took Liu Bei in turn and asked him to garrison troops for Xiaopei. He became a foreign vassal for himself again. Liu Bei’s family members were also released. However, this cooperation did not last long. The rapid growth of Liu Bei’s power caused Lv Bu’s fear, and the two sides finally broke out military conflict in the second year of Jian’an (197). In the third year of Jian’an, Lu Bu defeated Liu Bei again and “recaptured the wife of the former Lord”. Liu Bei, who had no place to live, turned to Cao Cao, who then attacked and destroyed Lv Bu. In the winter of the next year, Liu Bei attacked Xuzhou and set up a banner to denounce Cao. However, he was defeated by Cao Cao in the fifth year of Jian’an. Cao Cao “collected all his people, captured the wife of the former Lord, and returned home with Guanyu.”. Liu Bei, who had nothing, turned to Yuan Shao.

The young Liu Bei could not be a postal supervisor, but the middle-aged Liu Bei was able to wait for the opportunity between the three rivals of Lu Bu, Cao Cao and Yuan Shao. However, Liu Bei’s strong character did not disappear, but went deeper. It is because of the deeper dive that the endurance is longer.

In the fourth year of Jian’an, Liu Bei set up an anti Cao banner in Xuzhou and narrowly escaped death in Changbanpo. Liu Bei’s experience can be said to be repeated defeats and defeats. However, Liu Bei never gave in, and no matter how hard Cao Cao tried, he never killed Liu Bei, or even his core team. On the contrary, Liu Bei’s reputation grew with the repeated defeats. When Yuan Shao decided to have a showdown with Cao Cao, Liu Bei (general left leading the governor of Yuzhou) ranked first in Chen Lin’s discussion of Cao Xiwen. In the past, when Liu Bei was poor and invested in Yuan Bei, Yuan Tan, Yuan Shao’s eldest son, the governor of Qingzhou, first “rode to meet the first lord”. When he arrived at the plain, Yuan Shao “sent generals to meet him” and went out of the city to meet him. What they valued was Liu Bei’s political reputation and appeal.

Of course, this political prestige and appeal came first from Liu Bei’s people-friendly style, and then from Liu Bei’s political appeal to revive the Han Dynasty.

As for the first point, as early as in the plain period, Liu Bei was in the environment of “people starving and banknotes gathering.” he said, “if the enemy is hard to defend outside, the wealth is abundant inside. The inferior scholars will sit at the same table and eat together. There is no simple choice. Many people will go home.”. As for the second point, the so-called rejuvenating the Han Dynasty is probably more about Zhugeliang’s political ideal. As for Liu Bei’s repeated resistance to Cao, it seems that he is still a character.

When Liu Bei joined Cao Cao in the third year of Jian’an, Cao Cao treated him with extraordinary rites. However, there was often an extraordinary crisis behind the extraordinary rites. In fact, when Liu Bei came to invest, Cao Cao’s think tank had split into two factions: the main killer and the main retention. When Cao Cao said that “today’s heroes are only for the emperor and Cao’s ears”, it was doomed that if Liu Bei wanted to stay under Cao Cao for the rest of his life, he must pick up his tail and be a man. Even so, it is a big question whether the suspicious and murderous Cao Cao can accommodate Liu Bei. What’s more, Liu Bei’s nature was just to be patient. It was only his experience and painful experience that taught him to be patient. It can also be said that Liu Bei’s patience is not natural, but for a higher level of intolerance.

It is better to be a fighting dog chased and beaten everywhere than a pug under the yoke of others. This is Liu Bei’s life creed. So he dared to flog the governor when he was an Xi Wei, and also dared to challenge Cao Gong mengde, who was not dared to be provoked in the world when the soldiers were less than 10000 and the generals were only shut down. Although defeated time and time again, they can always escape again and again and make a comeback again and again. So repeatedly, we finally have the opportunity to look at the cottage three times and the miraculous turning point of burning red cliff.

Chen Shou commented on Liu Bei: “if you do not bend, you will not be inferior in the end. You must not allow yourself to suppress the amount of premier and Premier. You must not only compete for profits, but also avoid harm to Yuner.” Very pertinent.

A glance at the thatched cottage was a turning point for Liu Bei. Once the strategic concept of “three days and three nights” was put forward, Liubei group had a clear development strategy for the first time. Zhugeliang and Lu Su jointly promoted the sun Liu alliance, which made this strategy feasible. From the battle of Chibi in the 13th year of Jian’an to the capture of Hanzhong in the 24th year of Jian’an, this IL year can be called the heyday of Liu Bei. From repeated defeats to victory in Lien Chan, from having no foothold to crossing Jingyi two prefectures. The torrent of history is spinning so fast that it is overwhelming. And the new upheaval lurks under this smooth sailing glory.

When Liu Bei and Cao Cao competed for Hanzhong, Guan Yu’s Jingzhou army launched a series of military operations in the Central Plains battlefield, from plotting against Cao Cao’s border guards to the official start of the war between the two sides, in order to contain the build-up of Cao Cao’s army in Hanzhong. Originally it was only a limited containment action, but it got out of control step by step because of the too smooth military progress, and finally evolved into a major battle between Cao and Liu. Guan Yu focused too much on military struggle and neglected the undercurrent of the diplomatic battlefield. Just as he pulled out Xiangyang, surrounded Fancheng, flooded the seven armies, and reached the peak of his military exploits, he was suddenly attacked by Lvmeng, who was crossing the river in white. Finally, the whole army was destroyed under the combined attack of Cao and sun.

The loss of Jingzhou and the collapse of Guanyu group are obviously a heavy blow to Liu Bei, but not a fatal blow. If we continue to endure and gradually restore the alliance relationship with Sun Quan, it is unknown who will win in the central plains without Cao Cao. Moreover, at this time, Cao Pi usurped the Han Dynasty, which is undoubtedly a great opportunity for Liu Bei group, which has always boasted of supporting the Han Dynasty.

However, Liu Bei did not try his best to deal with the newly established Cao Wei regime by usurping the Han Dynasty. Instead, he decided to invade Sun Quan and recapture Jingzhou.

The blunder of Liu Bei’s decision was clearly analyzed by Zhao Yun at that time: “the national thief is Cao Cao, not Sun Quan. If he kills the Wei first, Wu will serve himself. Although Cao Cao is dead, Zi PI usurpes the thief. Because of the hearts of the people, he should have planned for Guanzhong early and lived in the upper reaches of the river and the Wei River to fight against evil. The righteous people in Guandong must wrap grain and ride horses to meet the king’s division. Wei should not be set up and fight with Wu first; once the military power is handed over, he cannot be dismissed.”

Based on this analysis, quite a few posterity feel that the Kuangfu Han office that Liu Bei preached is just a propaganda slogan. So I think Liu Bei is a hypocrite who is duplicity.

Is that so?

First of all, if Liu Bei was really a wily hypocrite, he would never go to war with Sun Quan at this time. Let alone whether he could succeed in attacking Guanzhong at this time, but at least he would give up the Cao Wei Dynasty and attack Sun Quan, which would surely cause a major blow to his consistent political reputation.

Secondly, diplomatically speaking, international political struggles have no permanent friends or enemies, only permanent interests. In the second year of Huang Chu’s reign, there were military frictions between Wei and Wu because of the ownership of Xiangyang and Fancheng. At this time, what Liu Bei wanted to do was not to attack Wu, but to fight others. Instead, he should continue to watch the changes.

Finally, from the perspective of military affairs, it is impossible for Liu Bei, a veteran of military affairs, not to know that after the loss of Jingzhou, sun and Liu were separated by the Three Gorges. Whoever attacks first will have to cross hundreds of kilometers of valleys first. The terrain along the route is dangerous, the traffic is inconvenient, and there is much fog and little drinking water. Whoever starts first will be at a disadvantage. Unless it is a surprise attack when the enemy is unprepared. However, Guan Yu was killed in the winter of the 24th year of Jian’an. Cao Pi usurped the Han Dynasty in the second year, which was the first year of the early Wei and Huang dynasties. After another year, that is, in July of the second year of the early Wei and the first year of Zhangwu in the Shu and Han Dynasties, Liu Bei sent troops to attack Wu, captured Wu County, and then suspended his operations. It was not until February of the third year of the early Huang Dynasty and the second year of Zhangwu in the Shu and Han dynasties that he launched a full-scale offensive. Suddenly, it was no longer there.

Of course, some people think that Liu Bei’s military ability is not high. The battle of Bo Wang Po and the battle of Hanzhong can be described as two brilliant victories of Liu Bei group in the process of fighting against Cao Cao. In the romance of the Three Kingdoms, these two victories were attributed to Zhugeliang, but in history, these two victories were won under Liu Bei’s personal command. During the war of bowangpo, Zhugeliang was still lying high in the middle of the boom. When he captured Hanzhong, Zhugeliang was left in Chengdu to transport soldiers and food for the front line. How can we say that Liu Bei was a military imbecile?

It can be said that Liu Bei’s attack on Wu was a completely inconceivable madness politically, diplomatically and militarily. The explanation of this incredible answer was actually answered by a think tank of the enemy country.

After Guan Yu’s death, there was a big debate about whether Liu Bei and Sun Quan would go to war. Liu ye believed that war was bound to start. The reason was that Liu Bei and Guan Yu were “loyal to the emperor and his subjects, and grateful to their father and son”. As for Liu Bei, it is impossible not to avenge Guan Yu.

The problem is not complicated, but Liu Bei is old. As people get older, they tend to be unreasonable, not to mention that Liu Bei is an alien political figure with great personality and interpersonal feelings.

After all, Liu Bei is a politician and the king of a country. The repeated admonitions of Zhugeliang and Zhaoyun and the resolute opposition of many important officials could not have had an impact on Liu Bei’s decision. This may be one of the main reasons why Liu Bei delayed launching an attack for three years. Just at this delicate moment, Zhang Fei was assassinated, and the murderer went to Sun Quan. This event finally killed Zhugeliang and Zhao Yun’s last hope of preventing Liu Bei from the eastern expedition, and also cast the biggest tragic event of Liu Bei and the Shuhan regime.

Liu Bei’s life will inevitably end in the ashes of the fire burning camp and the desolation of the White Emperor city. Liu Bei, who remains in the history books, is neither a loyal and foolish second brother in the romance nor a treacherous and hypocrite, but an unyielding soul with distinctive personality and independence.

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