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Thread: Who's the top dog of amongst the heads of 5 alliance schools?

  1. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Athena View Post

    With that said, Yue is a brilliantly written character. He has so many layers to him. My reaction to his character went from: decent person – a bit strict- a bit of a stick-in-the-mud – petty – mean- power hungry. However, a brilliantly written character doesn’t need to equate to having great martial arts. Whether we like it or not, the writer intended for Zuo to be the top martial arts expert in the Five Mountain Schools (excluding Feng Qingyang and Linghu Chong), and the novel indicates that Zuo was the top until Yue got his Bixie boost.
    Thats the thing. Unlike other major villians, YBQ really had no plans to do anything major until the BXJF opportunity came along. If Yu Canghai never made the move, YBQ would only be able to sit there and suffer ZLC's schemes.
    Its BIxie Jianfa Gawdammit you guys!!!!

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    I am not saying YBQ was the top dog, I just don't think YBQ was as weak/unintelligent as most seems to think.

    How did the priestess died? Yes, from an assassination by YBQ!

    What happened at the end of the story? How did the 5 sects got wiped? Yes, another brilliant scheme by YBQ!

    You don't become the head of a sect by waiting. That's a little bit of innocent-thinking from our part, won't it?

    Also, if YBQ's plan was to become ZLC's right-hand man then stab him, that is still a plan/scheme, which supports my argument that YBQ had alternate plans other than BXJF.

    You can say that I'm pushing a slippery slope argument. But would a weak person dared to scheme so much? The prize is the head of 5 mountain sects, but it has a heavy duty as well. Going against Sun Moon Sect is no joke.

    Simply banking on BXJF makes no sense. If I am not wrong, Yu Canghai's grand(?)/master consulted with YBQ's grand(?)/master about how to defeat BXJF, but after seeing how weak 3 eras of the Lin family, I'm sure no one would dare to pin all their hopes on just BXJF. Remember, Lin Zhennan's dad was weak, Lin Zhennan was weak, LPZ was weak.

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    Zuo Lengchan was a top and very experienced martial artist, plus not an idiot , but somehow he didnt realize the BXJF he learned was very weak (even yu changhai knew the BXJF of qingcheng sect is not a top tier martial arts). Anyone know why is that?

    maybe the fake BXJF is already stronger than his Songshan's swordplay martial arts?

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    Senior Member Athena's Avatar
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    For the record, I agree with Ren Wo Xing’s ranking and I disagree with my own ranking which was from 2006. If someone is harping me on a post that I wrote in 2006, I can only say my thoughts and views have evolved since then.

    Yue Buqun was arguably one of the top experts in the Five Alliance Schools; that was never in doubt. He was also a seasoned political schemer as he did win the leadership of the school.

    There were probably two ways for him to get the leadership of the Five Alliance Schools; it was either the Bixie Jianfa route or capitulate and whisper his way up the hierarchy and then maybe successfully backstab Zuo Lengchan. Both schemes are or would have been a gamble. There is no other grand plan that he could have had. Furthermore, backstabbing someone like Zuo Lengchan would not be easy. Would Yue succeed? I don’t know, but the chances are slim, in my opinion.

    The reason why people schemed after Bixie Jianfa was because Lin Zhennan and his father, Lin Zhongxiong, were so weak that people thought: ‘it must be that they are so stupid If I could get the manual, I might become as strong as Lin Yuantu.’ This comes from Reverend Chongxu in chapter 30. 沖虛道:“正是。辟邪劍法的威名太甚,而林震南的武功太低,這中間的差別,自然而然令人推想,定然是林震南 太蠢,學不到家傳武功。進一步便想,倘若這劍譜落在我手中,定然可以學到當年林遠圖那輝煌顯赫的劍法。老弟 ,百余年來以劍法馳名的,原不只林遠圖一人。但少林、武當、峨嵋、昆侖、點蒼、青城以及五岳劍派諸派,后代 各有傳人,旁人決計不會去打他們的主意。只因林震南武功低微,那好比一個三歲娃娃,手持黃金,在鬧市之中行 走,誰都會起心搶奪了。”令狐沖道:“這位林遠圖前輩既是紅葉禪師的高足,然則他在莆田少林寺中,早已學到 了一身惊人武功,甚么辟邪劍法,說不定只是他將少林派劍法略加變化而已,未必真的另有劍譜。”沖虛道:“這 么想的人,本來也是不少。不過辟邪劍法与少林派武功截然不同,任何學劍之士,一見便知。嘿嘿,起心搶奪劍譜 的人雖多,終究還是青城矮子臉皮最老,第一個動手。可是余矮子臉皮雖厚,腦筋卻笨,怎及得上令師岳先生不動 聲色,坐收巨利。”

    Allow me to answer your questions, and I will do so without the use of exclamation marks.

    1) Dingxian and Dingri were killed by Yue Buqun after he had already started learning Bixie Jianfa. He killed them in combat as the novel said it was 正面交锋. He had improved on his martial arts at that time. He banked on Bixie and won Bixie and used it to kill two obstacles to unification.

    2) He won the leadership from Zuo Lengchan, but he did not have the manpower to secure the position forever. Zuo Lengchan’s idea was: ‘I consolidate and recruit all of them into my organization willingly or unwillingly’. Additionally, Zuo Lengchan had built a small army for at least a decade. Yue Buqun, apart from his disciples, had almost no one. His own head disciple whom he raised became fearful of him, and he became angry with Linghu Chong’s reaction.

    他又向沖虛道人、丐幫解幫主等說了几句話,快步走到令狐沖跟前,問道:“沖儿,你的傷不礙事么?”自從他將 令狐沖逐出華山以來,這是第一次如此和顏悅色叫他“沖儿”。令狐沖卻心中一寒,顫聲道:“不……不打緊。” 岳不群道:“你便隨我同去華山養傷,和你師娘聚聚如何?”岳不群如在几個時辰前提出此事,令狐沖自是大喜若 狂,答應之不暇,但此刻竟大為躊躇,頗有些怕上華山。岳不群道:“怎么樣?”令狐沖道:“恒山派的金創藥好 ,弟子……弟子養好了傷,再來拜見師父師娘。”岳不群側頭凝視他臉,似要查察他真正的心意,過了好一會,才 道:“那也好!你安心養傷,盼你早來華山。”令狐沖道:“是!”掙扎著想站起來行禮。岳不群伸手扶住他右臂 ,溫言道:“不用啦!”令狐沖身子一縮,臉上不自禁的露出了懼意。岳不群哼的一聲,眉間閃過一陣怒色,但隨 即微笑,歎道:“你小師妹還是跟從前一樣,出手不知輕重,總算沒傷到你要害!”

    This showed that Yue Buqun realized that he was alone. Songshan had to submit on surface because Yue Buqun outsmarted Zuo with his fine speech, but Zuo Lengchan was far from accepting this outcome. Taishan was a close ally of Songshan, would they have gone alone with Yue Buqun? I don’t know. Mo Da was always a lone wolf, and would not have played ball with anyone at the top. Northern Hengshan had a very low opinion of Yue Buqun. So, he won the prize, but realized he could not keep it until he killed off the entire first generation of the three other schools and the entire Northern Hengshan School. He would start from scratch. He had successfully tricked almost the entire first generation of the other three schools to slaughter one another in the cave. That was a very effective consolidation method, but with that his political capital was spent. Ren Woxing and the Sun and Moon Sect had come to Huashan to conquer the Five Schools, and Yue was not prepared for that. Yue Buqun would have faced the entire Sun and Moon Sect’s elite plus the other affiliated organizations with the sect. Would Yue Buqun have managed to ward off that attack on his own with the second and third generation disciples of the three schools? Yue was good, but I doubt that even Zhuge Liang could have defended Huashan with a handful of injured and lowly skilled disciples. Again, out of self-interest, Yue might choose to surrender, considering he had been forced to consume the silk-worm pill, we will never know. Ultimately. he won the prize, but could not keep it. I am just saying that politically Yue outmaneuvered Zuo Lengchan, and you are correct to say that he was a cunning and intelligent man. However, his ultimate plan had some flaws because of his selfishness and desire to share power with none. Here is how the visions of Zuo and Yue differ: Zuo wanted to consolidate his power and grow his political capital. Yue, on the other, hand only cared about consolidation of power and didn’t care that he would use up his capital to maintain that power. Yue is a successful political schemer, but he did not have the same ‘grand vision’ of Zuo, and possibly he even lacked the tactical mind of a warlord which Zuo and Ren Woxing did have, as he did not anticipate the attack from the Sun and Moon Sect.
    Last edited by Athena; 07-27-21 at 06:55 AM.
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  5. #25
    Senior Member Athena's Avatar
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    In a way, Jin Yong had (un)intentionally foreshadowed this at the beginning of the book in chapter 2 how some people would place power consolidation over the strength of the school.

    那矮胖漢子受激不過,大聲道:“誰說我不知道了?劉三爺金盆洗手,那是為了顧全大局,免得衡山派中發生門戶 之爭。”好几人七張八嘴的道:“甚么顧全大局?”“甚么門戶之爭?”“難道他們師兄弟之間有意 見么?”
      那矮胖子道:“外邊的人雖說劉三爺是衡山派的第二把高手,可是衡山派自己,上上下下卻都知道,劉三爺在 這三十六路‘回風落雁劍’上的造詣,早已高出掌門人莫大先生很多。莫大先生一劍能刺落三頭大雁,劉三爺一劍 卻能刺落五頭。劉三爺門下的弟子,個個又胜過莫大先生門下的。眼下形勢已越來越不對,再過得几年,莫大先生 的聲勢一定會給劉三爺壓了下去,听說雙方在暗中已沖突過好几次。劉三爺家大業大,不愿跟師兄爭這虛名,因此 要金盆洗手,以后便安安穩穩做他的富家翁了。”
      好几人點頭道:“原來如此。劉三爺深明大義,很是難得啊。”又有人道:“那莫大先生可就不對了,他逼得 劉三爺退出武林,豈不是削弱了自己衡山派的聲勢?”那身穿綢衫的中年漢子冷笑道:“天下事情,哪有面面都顧 得周全的?我只要坐穩掌門人的位子,本派聲勢增強也好,削弱也好,那是管他娘的了。”
    So huge, so hopeless, to conceive
    As these that twice befell
    Parting is all we know of heaven
    And all we need of hell.

    Emily Dickinson (1830-1886)

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    Quote Originally Posted by Athena View Post

    1) Dingxian and Dingri were killed by Yue Buqun after he had already started learning Bixie Jianfa. He killed them in combat as the novel said it was 正面交锋. He had improved on his martial arts at that time. He banked on Bixie and won Bixie and used it to kill two obstacles to unification.
    @Athena, sorry to cut off, 正面交锋 means one by one in combat or 2vs1 ?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Athena View Post
    5. Feng Buping's martial arts are very impressive. From everything we've seen of Feng, it is very likely he was quite superior to Yue Buqun. I have a friend who has a copy of the very first edition of the Smiling Proud Wanderer (this edition was published almost 40 years ago). In this edition, there were some indirect comparisons between Feng and Yue. There was a comment like this:"The energy released from Feng's Swift Gale Swordsmanship was very powerful, in the entire Huashan School only Yue Buqun's Zixia Shengong MIGHT be able to match it." Might be able doesn't sound to convincing to me, my friend also told me that in the first edition that fighting scene between Linghu and Feng was much longer than in the newer editions. (Old edition: And even the spectators felt that the Feng Buping was the right choice to assume leadership of the Huashan School because of his powerful internal energy and good swordsmanship. Unfortunately, Jin Yong cut the fight short between Linghu Chong and Feng Buping as result that comment was removed too. (Again this argument is subjective)
    I've been skimming through the first edition recently, and this isn't really accurate.

    華山派中,唯有岳不群一人的紫霞神功,才會較這「狂風快劍」中所含的內力為強

    According to this passage, YBQ's Zixia inner power was definitely stronger than that in FBP's swordsmanship (though it doesn't say by how much).

    The fight also was not cut short - it went down in exactly the same way as later editions. There was a lot of extra detail in between about how DG9J gets stronger with the opponent's skill, how LHC's understanding improved drastically fighting such a strong opponent etc. - basically the same comments as when he duelled RWX. They probably got cut because they were redundant, at the cost of deemphasising just how much that fight improved LHC's skill.

    LHC also become more confident much earlier, feeling that his opponent's skill was just so-so and deliberately let the fight drag on for practice, feeling that he could end it at any time. This was at the point when he started experimenting with 'no technique' swordsmanship.

    There were also a couple of minor changes in that scene - a Hengshan nun was present. One of the leaders of the Songshan contingent was ZLC's elder son, Zuo Feiying, who apparently was on-par with his martial uncles in ability. He was cut out completely in later editions.

    Other interesting differences:

    • LPZ's grandfather was apparently Lin Yuantu's biological son. Instead of adopting a son after castration, he had an illegitimate son while he was still a monk, which was the main reason why he wanted to return to secular life, and BX was just icing on top of the cake. Presumably this was changed because it made LYT look bad.
    • Before encountering the three Wudang priests at Wudang mountain, LHC and his party encountered a group of what appeared to be a few hundred Wudang priests. LHC was first surrounded by 8 priests utilising an 8-trigram sword formation, which LHC had difficulty with because each member's weaknesses was compensated for by his neighbours. Noticing that they were inexperienced, LHC beat them by taking his scabbard and pointing it downwards, tripping them up as they went past. Next, he has attacked by another 4 priests, who were individually stronger, but did not attack in formation, so LHC beat them easily, humiliating one who badmouthed him by slicing off his long beard and cutting his belt so that his trousers fell down. The entire group of priests, minus the initial 8, were later found slaughtered. Apparently, they were all fake Wudang priests, and had been slaughtered by the real ones. The 8 priests using the sword formation were apparently real Wudang who had been forced to do the others' bidding to lend the group some credibility as Wudang members. This subplot went nowhere, so was deleted in later editions.
    • When ZLC battled RWX, he employed Bixie swordplay with his bare hands, which was pointed out by XWT. LHC could see that the techniques were indeed sword techniques, but could not figure out how to break them as they were not truly either sword or palm. If he treated them as sword attacks, then he could spot the usual weaknesses, but they would not be true weaknesses as palms had different properties from swords - they could bend and grab.
    • KHBD was created by a married couple who later fell out. They had opposing martial art philosophies, and each wrote one volume of the KHBD. The two Huashan brothers each memorised one volume, so obviously they would come away with opposing principles. There was no mention of how both parts were needed, or how the first step was the hardest (which appeared in later revisions). This makes more sense with regard to how the Huashan schism occurred (the two parts were not meant to be unified), but makes the two brothers look like complete idiots for not realising it. I also get the impression that the castration requirement had not been thought of at this point.

  8. #28
    Senior Member Athena's Avatar
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    Again harping me on a post I made in 2006, my views and thoughts have evolved. Gosh, how many times do I need to type this.



    @a_tumiwa

    The part about ‘正面交锋’ was not specified. Jin Yong used that phrase how Dingxian and Dingri died.
    Last edited by Athena; 07-30-21 at 01:14 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by hyoyatika View Post
    Nope, there were 2 evidence as I provided above.

    Also, bear in mind that Huashan's background is superior to the other sects:
    1. Huashan was created by one of the QZ7, which means in terms of tradition, it has an advantage.
    2. Huashan's Cai Zi Feng and the other fella were highly-skilled. You do not simply enter Shaolin and steal a manual.

    Now let me bring up another important trinket of information that supports my belief YBQ wanted to become the leader and that he was strong:

    YBQ and ZLC sent spies to Huashan and Songshan.

    Would YBQ dare to send a spy to Songshan if he was so weak?
    Would ZLC bother to spy on YBQ if YBQ can be easily crushed?
    Sorry, I don’t think you know what evidence means. RWX disliked YBQ because he saw through his fake gentleman persona - nothing to do with any so-called ambitions. Similarly, the internal strife at Huashan was just that - internal strife. There was no evidence it had anything to do scheming for leadership over the other four mountains.

    And on top of that, YBQ did NOT send a spy to Songshan, while Zuo Lengchan was spying/plotting against the leadership of all four of the mountains.

    YBQ was clever and scheming, but he didn’t have some grand plan that was long in the making to take over the world - he was an opportunist who saw a great chance via the BXJF, gambled everything on it, and won.
    Read the latest chapters of Coiling Dragon at Wuxia World!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Athena View Post
    Again harping me on a post I made in 2006, my views and thoughts have evolved. Gosh, how many times do I need to type this.
    I wasn't trying to refute your point, I merely wanted to correct misinformation regarding first edition XAJH (though to be fair, you did say it was second hand info, and was probably delivered off the top of their heads). This is as relevant now as it was in 2006 given that the text of the first edition hasn't changed, and has nothing to do with your views past or present.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Doc Kwok View Post
    I wasn't trying to refute your point, I merely wanted to correct misinformation regarding first edition XAJH (though to be fair, you did say it was second hand info, and was probably delivered off the top of their heads). This is as relevant now as it was in 2006 given that the text of the first edition hasn't changed, and has nothing to do with your views past or present.

    No problems and thank you for your explanation
    So huge, so hopeless, to conceive
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    Parting is all we know of heaven
    And all we need of hell.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ren Wo Xing View Post
    Sorry, I don’t think you know what evidence means. RWX disliked YBQ because he saw through his fake gentleman persona - nothing to do with any so-called ambitions. Similarly, the internal strife at Huashan was just that - internal strife. There was no evidence it had anything to do scheming for leadership over the other four mountains.

    And on top of that, YBQ did NOT send a spy to Songshan, while Zuo Lengchan was spying/plotting against the leadership of all four of the mountains.

    YBQ was clever and scheming, but he didn’t have some grand plan that was long in the making to take over the world - he was an opportunist who saw a great chance via the BXJF, gambled everything on it, and won.
    My apologies on the spy part.

    But what do you think RWX disliked about YBQ? What did YBQ faked?

    The internal strife at Huashan has nothing to do with taking over the other four mountains, but it clearly shows that YBQ is a man capable of scheming and had ambition.

    With that in mind, it is not impossible that YBQ wanted to take over the 5 sects at a very beginning.

    Of course what I am presenting here is speculative but think about if it makes sense-if you are YBQ, would you bear blind faith in a swordplay that you have never witnessed, a swordplay that only have one "endorsement" and a swordplay that is used by another 2 person who both turned out to be mediocre?

    Guys, think about it. Would you stake your entire fortune on a swordplay that you have never seen, especially with recently evidence suggesting it sucks?

    If you want me to directly suggest what was his plan-his fake persona. His Gentleman Sword image was his scheme. To fool others and then backstab them.

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    Quote Originally Posted by hyoyatika View Post
    The internal strife at Huashan has nothing to do with taking over the other four mountains, but it clearly shows that YBQ is a man capable of scheming and had ambition.
    The strife started before YBQ was born, and mostly ended when he was still a young man. Although he clearly participated in the later stages, it would be as a junior member when he was unlikely to have much influence. Besides, Ning Zhongze participated too - would you say that she was scheming and ambitious?

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    Quote Originally Posted by a_tumiwa View Post
    Zuo Lengchan was a top and very experienced martial artist, plus not an idiot , but somehow he didnt realize the BXJF he learned was very weak (even yu changhai knew the BXJF of qingcheng sect is not a top tier martial arts). Anyone know why is that?

    maybe the fake BXJF is already stronger than his Songshan's swordplay martial arts?
    I wouldn't call it stronger than Songshan swordsmanship. Yue Buqun created a convincing 'fake' version for ZLC to learn, but it goes to show that YBQ isn't a bad swordsman per se: that's in response to people saying he had crappy swordsmanship. BXJF was described as being very weird when the lin family used it, but I suspect that having a top tier expert improve upon the design boosted its effectiveness*. I would go so far as to say that if trained correctly, even LPZ could eventually use the upgraded BXJF against YCH, and proceed to teach it to his descendants too.

    To provide some context, I teach martial arts (all sorts), and neijia kung fu is my favourite. In my understanding of energy principles, I encounter an overwhelming number of practitioners (including people considered advanced practitioners) who simply don't grasp the essence of whatever style they're using, and as a result, I aim to 'correct' the systemic flaws of their style, which usually stems from poor teaching, cultural redundancies, or just inexperience. (Not a lot of people enjoy being told that their way isn't optimal, but to date I've yet to be wrong about my assessments.)


    *I am going by the BXJF that Lao Denuo used, which Lingshan described as dazzlingly brilliant (beating the qingcheng members quite easily). But of course, lao denuo, whose actual strength is even more obscured than YBQ's in the novel, is considerably better than the top qingcheng disciples.

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    Quote Originally Posted by hyoyatika View Post
    My apologies on the spy part.

    But what do you think RWX disliked about YBQ? What did YBQ faked?

    The internal strife at Huashan has nothing to do with taking over the other four mountains, but it clearly shows that YBQ is a man capable of scheming and had ambition.

    With that in mind, it is not impossible that YBQ wanted to take over the 5 sects at a very beginning.

    Of course what I am presenting here is speculative but think about if it makes sense-if you are YBQ, would you bear blind faith in a swordplay that you have never witnessed, a swordplay that only have one "endorsement" and a swordplay that is used by another 2 person who both turned out to be mediocre?

    Guys, think about it. Would you stake your entire fortune on a swordplay that you have never seen, especially with recently evidence suggesting it sucks?

    If you want me to directly suggest what was his plan-his fake persona. His Gentleman Sword image was his scheme. To fool others and then backstab them.
    Doc Kwok has already pointed out that YBQ had very little to do with the qi/sword strife. I want to add that YBQ didn't 'stake his fortune' on the BXJF, because he didn't take any action or any risks to speak of. I'm sure he would've loved to be the leader of a Five Mountains Sect, but he made no movements to actually try and become that leader, because he simply didn't have what it took - his own martial arts wasn't good enough, he didn't have supporters, and as Athena pointed out he had no plan or grand strategy. "Be sneaky and backstab them later" is not a plan or a grand strategy.

    Yes, he was a schemer, but that doesn't mean he was scheming to become leader - quite frankly, prior to getting the BXJF, he was at most scheming to just stay alive + Headmaster of Huashan, which he nearly failed at if it wasn't for LHC helping out!

    This whole 'YBQ had a master plan for many years to become leader and BXJF was just one of his tools' is just your personal headcanon, completely unsupported by any facts in the novel. Zuo Lengchan had a master plan - he sent spies to Huashan and nearly wiped them out with an ambush, weakened Southern Hengshan by wiping out Liu Zhengfeng and his supporters, ambushed and nearly killed the leadership of Northern Hengshan (if it wasn't for LHC), and set up internal strife within Taishan to get rid of Daoist Tianmen.

    To answer your question about RWX, RWX's comment about YBQ had two purposes - one, it was the first true hint that something was 'off' about YBQ, from someone of high status who wasn't directly involved with him, and someone who had a good impression of other Huashan people (Ning Zhongze/Feng Qingyang) at that. Second, he had just demonstrated perfect acumen in describing how Linghu Chong's fight with the four manor masters went, and this was a further show of his acumen and judgment.

    As for how he discovered that Yue Buqun was a hypocrite, it isn't surprising; as the former leader of the Sun Moon Sect, Ren Woxing had access to the most powerful intelligence 'web' in the entire world. Combine that with his own intelligence and acumen, and it's not too hard for him to see to the truth of the matter.
    Last edited by Ren Wo Xing; 07-31-21 at 12:05 PM.
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