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January 2018
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Episode 103 If Sun Tzu Were A Gardener… (Part 1)

I have a habit of trying to associate disalike things and because I love gardening so much I tend to apply everything I read and learn to the realm of gardening.  Today’s show is a result of a strange marriage.  I am a student of Eastern Philosophy and one of my favorite books on the subject is Sun Tzu’s Art of War.

I believe that Art of War is commonly misapplied to things in life not because it doesn’t fit but because people think Art of War is about beating your enemy and winning at all costs.  You’ll find out from this show that it is indeed not what this book is about and if someone like me can understand this book then most anyone can as long as we can see through the title and the implications.

In this Part 1 episode I talk about some background on the book and Sun Tzu and then dig into the first two chapters:

*Who was Sun Tzu?  Was he even a real person?

*What Art of War shares with some other Eastern philosophies.

*Chapter 1 – Laying Plans (Commander, Heaven, Earth, Moral Law, Method and Discipline)

*Chapter 2 – On Waging War – Making decisions, using your plan to optimal effect.


7 comments to Episode 103 If Sun Tzu Were A Gardener… (Part 1)

  • Erollins

    Jason, I loved this podcast. I have been a decades long student of Early Vedic, Buddisim and Taoism but just a two year student of the garden. After exploring permaculture (thanks to Jack Spirko, Paul Weaton, Sepp Holtzer and of course you), I found the comparisons of thought extraordinary. Paul Weaton asked several months ago if anyone found any similarities between Buddism and Permaculture and I neglected to respond to him even though I found the two to be almost mirrors. Your bringing Sun Tzu into the garden is perfect and very astute. Thank you and I’m looking (listening) for more.

  • Jason

    Well thank you.  I wondered how this one would go over – if I was reaching too much.

    I actually did respond to Paul’s question.  LOL  But then again I’ve found gardening and permaculture to have many themes relating to many different religions and I think there is a spirituality that pervades gardening.  Whether its the strong faith from Christianity, the impermanence and balance in Buddhism, the perseverance in Judaism, the reverence of the sacred from Hinduism.  You name it.  I think you can find the best of each in the garden. The garden is my church and temple, its hard not to get closer to your faith there.

    Thanks for commenting!


  • Steve

    Great Job, Jason.   I never would have thought of this angle, but it really worked out nice.  I guess it takes a creative mind like yours!   Love the photo.

  • Thank you Jason! Fascinating look at applying Sun Tzu’s work to another discipline, which isn’t surprising since they all relate to human nature and the human condition.

    Thomas Huynh, founder

  • Jason

    Thanks Steve!

  • Jason

    Thomas-Thank you.  I’m glad you posted here because now I’ve found your site.  What a great resource.  It would have made this show (and the upcoming Part 2) much easier!



  • Glad to be of assistance!