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11 - The Three Principles

There must be a certain amount of responsibility exorcised in the implementation of any of the “forbidden arts” and knowledge. It is, after all, only forbidden because of abuse that stems from the immaturity of humanity. Since time immemorial, only learned scholars would have access to such knowledge, because they would know how to and how not to use it. Presumably, one who was educated with knowledge would know the proper uses of such secrets. Man soon came to find though, that knowledge rather than wisdom was a poor judgment to use. He began to notice that certain knowledge gave individuals influence over others or over what were then called supernatural powers. As we all know, power corrupts, and in gaining this advantage, immature and unwise people would use and abuse the knowledge. In order to keep this knowledge from being abused, those in possession of the knowledge would keep it from being taught, or hide it from humanity. This led to many losses of knowledge over time. Secret orders and religious cults were now being formed, to appropriate the knowledge according to strict qualifications. While these led to our modern time dogmas and doctrines, their meaning has been misconstrued in favor of the literal translations, and is now being used to shape behavior and to control actions rather than to teach responsibility. This responsibility is absolutely necessary to properly use any forbidden knowledge without corrupting yourself or your environment. As I have said before, a good balance is necessary to make goal-oriented decisions. These can be measured according to many standards. Here I use some definitions that I learned from an old Nintendo game called Ultima: Quest of the Avatar.

In this game, you play an adventurer that answers a call for a warrior. This warrior must quest over the entire world to better himself in the Eight Virtues according to the Three Principles. This quest takes the main character through many trials, tribulations and tests according to the virtues set forth in shrines across the land. These virtues are all derivations of the combination of the Three Principles of Courage, Love and Truth. They combine to become the virtues of Compassion, Justice, Honesty, Honor, Valor, Sacrifice, Spirituality and Humility. Through the observance of these principles and virtues, one can develop the wisdom necessary to handle powerful knowledge. Each of these has their opposite as well. These can be considered vices or evils and can hinder your progress towards becoming the Avatar. After all the virtues are mastered, one final test must be passed in the Abyss, an ancient system of caves. At the end of this cave system is the Codex, a book that contains all the knowledge of the world. This is the prize for passing the test and becoming the Avatar. As I learned in the Army, when two people speak, there are six people present. Each as they see themselves, each as the see the other, and each as the truly are. These principles then lent themselves to each of a person’s nature, social identity and self identity. This is the basis of including them here, so that one may use them as guidelines to define their own standards of accountability.

The Principles are the ideal qualities of a great society as well as great people. They summarize all the hopes and desires that people are taught to want. For me, rather than make myself into what everyone else wants me to be, I use these principles and virtues as well as their opposites, to become a person who is highly respected, trusted and looked up to. They have taught me much of who I am, and who I want to be. They have also given me many glimpses into what I do not want to be, only through experience rather than knowledge. It all started with the truth.

The truth is where our most useful qualities come from. It is where honor and justice are born. This is the most intimate factor in ones social identity. One must be honest enough to love people and to stand courageously. People who trust you will give you anything that you need to accomplish what you choose. They will take time to listen to what you have to say and honestly value your opinion in many situations. They respect you for your dedication to being honest, as well as saving them the time of “running around the bush.” A person that is bluntly honest and forthcoming with knowledge, works to keep every one of the situations they are involved in fair and over the table. They usually look out for all involved, including themselves. They will be up front with their involvement and what they are receiving from any situation. This allows one to do favors for people out of a purely selfish desire. It is this kind of responsibility to the truth that brings honor to their name amongst the people. They know that being real and respectful is paramount to you, and that you expect nothing less from those that you associate with. This leads to a much more relaxed atmosphere around you, as people are not trying too hard to be something they are not. That would lead to a great disgrace of their name in your circles. They also know that if things are not fair or your rules are not followed, there will be no business. This requires you to make sure that your rules of behavior are enforced. Justice comes from a mixture of love and truth. It is being able to have enough compassion to be honest.

Compassion comes from another of the principles. It comes from Love. Love is where justice and sacrifice are born. One must love others enough to be truthful and courageous. These are the most intimate components of the nature of ones soul. Do you have enough love to be fair and honest? This definitely affects how people perceive you. This will give people the impression that you are going out of your way to do favors, but that you will not be taking advantage of them because you have no need to. It regulates how much you will give of yourself to others. One who gives their all, can only expect for some, not all, to return the favor one day. It brings you into contact with other beautiful people who are not a waste of your time and energy. Wasting time only leads to ill feelings later on. Those feelings will usually sit and stew for a while, as your problems belong to no one else. One day, it may all come out and hurt someone. A constant flow of this kind of behavior will eventually lead to hateful thoughts and the increasing possibility for injustice to occur, as you may become greedy. Usually though, the love is enough to develop the ability to forgive with compassion, especially in those situations where you may have acted the same. It allows you to keep open eyes that are un-swayed by all but the strongest feelings of love. This conversely has the greatest potential to hurt you, as many already know. The constant struggle to find an accepting love can easily blind and devastate a person. This does however lead to an increased constitution and ability to handle incredible situations, as you must have great courage to love.

Courage is necessary to be able to dive into any of your responsibilities, regardless of how you feel about doing so. Courage is where sacrifice and honor are born. One must be courageous enough to be truthful and to love. These are seen most notable qualities of the self-identity, as it takes great valor to be ones self in the presence of others, while giving of yourself to others and to remaining steadfast in your standards and convictions. A person who does not back down from idle challenges and is able to stay his hand in moments of rage is almost universally liked. They stand behind their word, regardless of the consequences, and are not afraid to be honest. This makes people feel comfortable around you, and makes it easier to trust you. You have the courage necessary to take responsibility for your actions. Not having this type of maturity leads to acts of cowardice. This can disgrace your reliability as greed may again come into the picture, and being afraid to give and be true to your word is usually looked down upon in most circles. It can also affect the way that you perceive yourself, or the way that you hold yourself in front of others. People do not like being around others who are afraid to be themselves. It tends to bring down their mood, and take away from their energy. It also alters the way that people carry themselves around you, as it may put them on the defensive. All of these are factors and indicators of your inherent spirituality, or sense of inner peace.

Spirituality is born of courage, love and truth. In a more true representation though, it is the courage, love and truth that are born from your spirituality. Anyone who has any desire for inner peace is always watching the world, learning its ways and adopting those customs that fit best. You must be spiritually aware to construct your life around courage, love and truth. It has to do with whether a person has an open mind or heart. Someone who does not have an open heart is quick to anger, the root of the vices of malice, greed, cowardice, disgrace, deception, and injustice. Without spirituality, there would be no philosophical needs, or standards to strive towards. Lack of function in the mind can only atrophy your mind the same as any muscle. No desires, wants, wishes. No passion. Without passion, people would not realistically be able to form goals to attain, or have a desire to better themselves. By constantly striving to be better and to learn more, we can further contribute to our lives as well as others. The only constant is change, and without some type of forward movement, our lives would reach a point of stasis. This leads to anger and the almost violent need to be noticed. This could potentially lead to an over increase of ones value of themselves.

Humility is how people value themselves. It is the generally accepted, best form of pride. Knowing what you are capable of and how useful it can be to others. You either hold it above others head with arrogance, or you humbly keep to yourself except out of necessity. This is what regulates your functionality with yourself as well as others. It creates your ability to work with people or against them. An arrogant mind will often overlook many of the finer details involved in anything that they do, and the quality of their work and their reliability will suffer from it. A humble mind knows that no matter how much he knows or has to offer others, there are still those who know more and have more to offer. A critical component in anyone's life, knowing your place is without association to the principles, because it is the principles applied. Sort of like having the points to reference the destination without the starting point. You must be able to hold yourself in that delicate balance of pride between humility and arrogance, as both are needed to successfully navigate your life.

These are just some of the possibilities of living a virtuous life. Many other consequences and reactions will come over time, through the use of any knowledge. These are simply guidelines that I use to formulate my standards of behavior as well as what type of behavior I expect from those whom I would associate with. There are many other guidelines to use, as there is an infinite number of possible arrangements of knowledge and experience, and as I always say, those that work best for you are those that work best for you. Do not forget that you must also be able to trust, love and stand behind yourself before any other progress can be made. Only when you are what you ask for will there never be an unreasonable request. It also lends itself to the fact that there is a responsibility that comes with any knowledge. That is the responsibility to use that knowledge properly for your intended goals without interfering in another’s ability to be responsible. These are the meanings and the workings of the Three Principles of Courage, Love and Truth through the Eight Virtues of Honesty, Justice, Compassion, Sacrifice, Valor, Honor, Spirituality and Humility.

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