During the spring and autumn period，Zhao Xiangzi had been learning chariot driving from Wang Yuqi.
Before long, Zhao Xiangzi contested with Wang Yuqi. Zhao Xiangzi changed horses three times and lost three times. Then he reproached Wang Yuqi for not having taught him all the techniques.
Wang Yuqi said, “The most important thing in driving a chariot is to coordinate the body of the horse with the chariot and pay all your attention to controlling the horse. Now when you lagged behind, you just wanted to keep up with me. When you were in the lead, you were afraid of being caught up by me. In a driving contest, there is always someone who lags behind, and someone who is in the lead. If you pay all your attention on me, how could you control your hoarse well? This is the reason why you lost.”
Ji An lived at the time of Emperor Wu of Han Dynasty (206 B.C.-A.D.24). He was respected because he was upright and just and spoke the truth. He did not care about trifles in his conduct and as an official. Because of this. Therefore, he was appointed to the post of managing the local officials.
Once, Emperor Wu said that he would implement the Confucian policy of benevolence and justice and do good things for the people. However, ji an interrupted the emperor, saying, “Why should you pretend to implement the policy of benevolence and benevolence when you are so greedy inwardly?”
Emperor Wu turned pale and left. Everyone was worried that Ji An would be punished.. When emperor Wu returned to the palace, he complained to his aides that Ji An was too rude and forthright.
From this time on, Ji An was never promoted again. His contemporaries, Gong Sun Hong and Zhang Tang, were promoted to very senior positions, but Ji An never got promoted.
One day, Ji An said to Emperor Wu, “You appoint officials in the same way as you arrange firewood. ‘Put the latest ones on them.’” Of course, Emperor Wu could tell this was a complaint. Then he turned to the others and said, “Everyone really can’t stop learning! You listen to him, it’s getting more and more strange!”
The idiom “later comes first” often means that the latter can outperform the former.
hu jia hu wei（the fox assuming the majesty of the tiger）
A tiger caught a fox in a forest, and was just about to eat it, when the fox said, “You mustn’t eat me. I was sent by Heaven to rule the animals. By eating me, You will violate the command of Heaven. If you don’t believe me, just follow me to see whether the animals are afraid of me.”
The tiger agreed, and followed the fox as it walked around the forest. The animals all ran away on seeing them. The tiger thought they were afraid of the fox, so he let it go. He didn’t realize that it was him that the beasts were really afraid of.
chun wang chi han（If the lips are lost, the teeth will be cold.）
During the Spring and Autumn Period (707 – 476 B.C.), Duke Xian of the State of Jin Wanted to expand his position of strength and sphere of influence. Therefore he would like to send his troops to destroy the State of Guo on the pretest that the State of Guo often encroached on the borders of the State of Jin. But there was a third state, the State of Yu, between the State of Jin and the State of Guo, and the Jin army had to cross the State of Yu before it could reach the State of Guo .
“How can my army cross the State of Yu without a hitch?” Duke Xian of the State of Jin asked his ministers. Xun Xi , one of the ministers, said, “The monarch of the State of Yu is short – sighted and covets small advantages. If we give him priceless precious stones and fine horses, it is not unlikely that he will allow our army to pass through his country. ” Seeing that Duke Xian of the State of Jin was a little bit grudging, Xun Xi continued to say, “The State of Yu and the State of Guo are neighbor stated as closely related as lips and teeth. The State of Yu cannot exist independently if the state of Guo is destroyed. Your precious stones and fine horses are just left in the care of the monarch of the State of Yu.” So Duke Xian of the State of Jin accepted Xun Xi’s plan.
When the monarch of Yu saw the precious gifts, he was wild with joy, and readily promised to let the Jin army pass through his state. Hearing the news, Gong Zhiqi, one of the ministers as the State of Yu, hastened to admonish the monarch, saying,” That won’t do. For the State of Yu and the State of Guo are neighbor states as closely related as lips and teeth. Our two small states are interdependent, and can help catch other when problems crop up .If the State of Guo were destroyed, it would be difficult for our State of Yu to continue to exist.
As the common saying goes, if the lips are gone ,the teeth will be cold, The teeth can hardly be kept if the lips are gone.
Once a man wanted to go to the south, but his carriage was heading north.
A pedestrian asked him:” If you are going to south, why is your chariot heading north?” The man answered:” My horse is good at running, my driver is highly skilled at driving a carriage, and I have enough money.” The man didn’t consider that the direction might be wrong; the better his conditions were, the farther away he is from his destination.
The idiom derived from this story indicates that one’s action was the opposite effect to one’s intention.
During the Spring and Autumn Period (770-476 BC), the king of Qi once sent an messenger to greet the mother of king of Zhao. The Queen of Zhao asked the messenger, “Is your harvest good this year? Are the people safe? Is the king safe and sound?”
Hearing this, the messenger was displeased and said, “You did not inquire about the king of Qi first, but about the harvest and the people. Shall we put the lowly first and the noble behind?”
The Queen of Zhao smiled and said, “No. If there is no harvest, how can there be people? If there are no people, how can there be a king? Is it possible to give up the basics and ask only trifles?”
The messenger of the state of Qi was speechless for a moment.
During the Eastern Han Dynasty, there was an official named Qiao Xuan who was honest and upright. He repeatedly reported the crimes of some officials.
Once, in order to catch robbers, he did not hesitate to sacrifice his son.
Later, he was forced to resign when he impeached minister Gai Seng. Because of Qiao Xuan’s integrity, Cao Cao, the ruler at that time, appreciated him very much, saying that he “has 100 folds and does not flinch, facing the festival and not strange wind.”
During the Spring and Autumn Period (770-476 BC), The king of Zheng had two generals named Gongsun Zidu and Ying Kaoshu. Gongsun Zidu have always been jealous of Ying Kaoshu.
Once, when they attacked another country together, Ying Kaoshu climbed to the wall and commanded his soldiers follow to him, just as they were about to break through the gates. Gongsun Zidu saw Ying Kaoshu will get a great success, he is very jealous. He pulled out an arrow and shot Ying Kaoshu in the back.
Ying Kaoshu didn’t guard against the arrows. The old general fell over and breathed his last.
Although the king of Zheng later knew that it was Gongsun Zidu who shot Ying Kaoshu to death, he could not be ruthless enough to punish him severely. He had no choice but to curse the despicable man.