The Hierarchy of Principles

Principles are not all on the same level. There are basic and higher principles. Principles are fundamental truths created for action. They point us in the direction of “what to do” in all types of situations.

Principles are found either directly, implied or experienced or understood. “Wickedness never was happiness” is a direct principle. It took Newton many experiments to discover the implied principles of  “for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction.” Some principles are natural consequences like, “if I put my hand on a hot stove I will get burned.” All principles whether direct, implied or understood can be categorized as a basic principle or a higher principle.
Basic principle are truths found in every subject on earth and in the universe. They are all encompassing. Every relationship is built on basic principles like, “when I feel loved I have a greater capacity to love.” Basic principles may include higher principles. The difference is higher principles are often indisputable like, “you can’t be in two places at the same time.” Principles are often “monumental discoveries” as when the governmental principles were identified by the mentors of the founding fathers.
Higher principles have been called by many different names throughout time. Algernon Sidney called them “first principle” in his book, Discourses Concerning Government. He said, ““All human constitutions are subject to corruption, and must perish, unless they are timely renewed, and reduced to their first principles.” Cisero said these first principles or “natural law should be the same throughout time and across the world because it is based on human nature, not on culture or customs.” The founding fathers called them inalienable rights. And the Bible calls them doctrine.

Principles could be compared to oil in your lamps. The oil can be anything that brings light and understanding. 

​The wise virgins were prepared with wisdom and understanding and were able to withstand a longer wait.  The foolish ones were not able to handle hard situations because they did not have enough wisdom. ​​​Knowing principles, both higher and basic provides us with the understanding to handle all types of tough situations.

About the Author Izaak Neil