WHAT ARE PRINCIPLES AND WHY DO THEY MATTER?
Over the 20 years of pursuing my own education in the classics, I have come to see that Covey was absolutely right! PRINCIPLES ARE THE ANSWER! Through studying great works, gaining the skills of finding the true principles they contain and then seeking ways to apply those principles to life, I have witnessed radical changes in myself, my family and the students I’ve taught. I have seen first-hand that there are true principles in every area of human life. And I have watched as these principles have worked to help myself and others:
- Overcome lifelong addictions
- Heal marriages
- Put finances back in order
- Dramatically improve health
- Repair parent-child relationships
- Gain increased discernment
- Build deeper faith
- Discover personal life mission
In fact, my study of history has shown me that principles don’t just govern our personal lives, they also determine the success and happiness of societies as well. A closer look at the rise and fall of multiple societies reveals consistent patterns in their commitment to true principles. As they live those principles, they experience greater freedom and prosperity; as they ignore them, they decline. It’s also true in the arts (as I discuss in some of my “Principles” videos) adherence to certain principles creates elevating and truly great painting, sculpture, art and architecture. Abandoning those principles not only generates degrading art but contributes to the moral decay of society.
I’ve also learned that principles are a foreign concept in today’s society; that words like “Natural Law” and “First Principles” are virtually lost. Yet, they are ideas that every American understood in the Founding Era. In fact, Thomas Jefferson wrote them right into our founding document- the Declaration of Independence:
“When in the Course of human events… the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God entitle them… they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness… That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.”
These were the concepts that created the greatest nation the world has ever known! They are the truths that create happy countries, happy families and happy lives. By gaining a deeper understanding of them, by educating ourselves, by putting our own lives in line with principles and by sharing this vital information with others, you and I can cause an intellectual and spiritual REVOLUTION in the world!