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Stones With Message

3 April 2010

Li Bai: Hold on! Don't fall like a fool!
I can't help it, I suffer from acrophobia, I'm ... falling ...
Stone collector:
Wow! What a spectacular fall of (mouth)water!

The stone on the left hand has a picture resembling the scene of waterfall in Mt Lu (庐山瀑布), and the pebble on the right site displays an image of a man in traditional Chinese costume holding high a wine cup (李白醉酒), which is a classic depict of China’s best known poet Li Bai (or Li Bo) (李白, of Tang Dynasty: 701 – 762). Both stones were found in Sichuan Province during the construction work on a building project.

As legend has it, Li Bai is a great environmentalist, who not only respected the nature, but communicated with the natural elements, and loved to invite, in particular, the waterfall in Mt Lu and the moon in the sky to share a drink with him.

Bringing in the Wine is his most popular poem which was composed during the golden era (盛世) in Chinese history, at the height of the great Tang Dynasty:

Bringing in the Wine


... ...


Do you not see the water of the Yellow River pouring down from the heaven,
The swift streams rushing towards the ocean, never to return!

Do you not see the hair in the mirror hung high in the chamber,
That were black when the day broke, but now all white in the night!

… …

Let me give away my flower-dappled horse,
Let me give away my thousand-dollar dress,
To exchange the wine, for you and for me,
To wash down our pain and our agony,
And the concern over the past incidents,
And the apprehension on the coming events,
And the fate of our land, of our universe,
In tens of thousands of years.

It did not take that long. Three years after Li Bai made his foolish business decision of trading his precious horse and expensive dress for few cups of wine, in 755 the An Shi Rebellion(安史之乱)took place, which was initiated by a sinister advisor close to and trusted by the emperor family which became the turning point in the Tang Dynasty's fortune.

Trick me once, shame on you. Trick me twice, shame on me!

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Information on your enemy cannot be gained via divination, from experience, or by reasoning. It can only be obtained through agents.

There could be local agents hired from your enemy territories; inside agents within your enemy's official ranks; double agents converted from your enemy spies; sacrificed agents who give themselves away for the purpose of confusing your enemy; surviving agents who bring back information from the enemy's camp.

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