34. Do not pursue an enemy who simulates flight; do not attack soldiers whose temper is keen.

佯北勿從銳卒勿攻

Sun Tzu

Sun Tzu is advising against chasing an enemy who is pretending to retreat (simulating flight), as this could be a trap, and against attacking soldiers who are highly motivated and determined to fight (whose temper is keen), as they will likely be difficult to defeat. Sun Tzu is emphasizing the importance of understanding the enemy’s tactics and motivations in order to make strategic decisions on the battlefield.

Do not pursue a business opportunity that seems too good to be true; do not compete with companies that are highly motivated and committed to their goals.

Be strategic and thoughtful when making decisions, especially in competitive situations. Pursuing an enemy who is pretending to retreat (simulating flight) could be equivalent to chasing after a business opportunity that seems attractive but is actually not viable or profitable. Attacking soldiers who are highly motivated and determined to fight (whose temper is keen) could be seen as trying to compete with a rival company that has a strong market position and a deep commitment to its goals.