Exploring Human Potential

Topic For Thanksgiving: “Principles – discuss!”

Posted on | November 22, 2017 | 2 Comments

Mike Magee

This Thanksgiving, more than most, our country finds itself reaching for guidance and direction. I offer my own thoughts, and those of my muses for consideration. “Principles” – discuss.

The principles most people aspire to live by come quite naturally to mind because they simply feel right, or sound right to the majority. We make choices – good over evil, love over hate, gentleness over cruelty.

Individuals, families, and societies fight over principles, some say because it is simpler than living up to those principles. We equate certain virtues with success – sincerity, justice, chastity, humility, and industry to name a few. But whether this is true is more about how we define success (long-term vs. short-term, ourselves vs. others, material vs. spiritual).

Whose success are we talking about, the principled or the unprincipled?

Principled people seem to feel comfortable in their own clothes.

Principled people do not seem to surround themselves with unprincipled people.

Principled people are viewed as valuable rather than successful. Their values are not ideas which flow from their mind, but rather are a part of a mindset. Knowing it deeply, they do it easily and naturally.

Principled people are not forced to seek direction or justification from outside because they are self-directed from within.  The measure of their principles can be taken by where they spend their time and the objects they pursue.

Principles provide the direction and the pathway to a worthy destination.


Additional Readings:

“Intelligence is derived from two words – inter and legere – inter meaning ‘between’ and legere meaning ‘to choose’. An intelligent person, therefore, is one who has learned ‘to choose between’. He knows that good is better than evil, that confidence should supersede fear, that love is superior to hate, that gentleness is better than cruelty, forbearance than intolerance, compassion than arrogance, and that truth has more virtue than ignorance.”   J. Martin Klotsche

“It is often easier to fight for principles than to live up to them.”
Adlai Stevenson

“Thirteen virtues necessary for true success: temperance, silence, order, resolution, frugality, industry, sincerity, justice, moderation, cleanliness, tranquility, chastity, and humility.”
Benjamin Franklin

“Beware all enterprises that require new clothes.”
Henry David Thoreau

“Who lies for you will lie against you.”  
Bosnian proverb

“Try not to become a man of success, but rather a man of value.”
Albert Einstein

“A belief is not merely an idea the mind possesses; it is an idea that possesses the mind.”
Robert Bolton

“Doing what’s right isn’t the problem. It’s knowing what’s right.”
Lyndon B. Johnson

“We trust, sir, that God is on our side. It is more important to know that we are on God’s side.”
Abraham Lincoln

“The true worth of a man is to be measured by the objects he pursues.”
Marcus Aurelius

“The man who grasps principles can successfully select his own methods. The man who tries methods, ignoring principles, is sure to have trouble.”
Ralph Waldo Emerson

“If we are facing in the right direction, all we have to do is keep on walking.”
Ancient Buddhist Proverb


2 Responses to “Topic For Thanksgiving: “Principles – discuss!””

  1. Charles Fahey
    November 22nd, 2017 @ 11:04 am


    Thank you. Peaceand all good things.


  2. Mike Magee
    November 22nd, 2017 @ 12:28 pm

    Happy Thanksgiving, Chuck!

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