Did Mark Minter “go back on his word” or abandon his principles when he decided to get married? Some people on RooshV forum apparently think so:
http://xsplat.wordpress.com/2013/08/01/the-posts-that-got-me-a-1-week-ban-from-rooshvforum/ (I recommend the whole blogpost)
“worldwidetraveler Wrote: Principles isn’t something you toss away at any inconvenience. They are what hold you true to yourself. You only know what type of man you are when things get tough but you stick to your principles. When you easily discard them for “happiness”, you are not a man in my eyes.”
To that xsplat responds, in a way that I really agree with:
“Didn’t Gandhi get away with saying something that could be paraphrased as “principles are for those who can’t re-organize their views?”
Principles. What are principles? Unchanging beliefs. What good are unchanging beliefs? Well, they make you feel like you live in a safe, secure world, where you have some bedrock of SOMETHING to hold on to.
That’s not a useful feeling.
It’s better to be flexible and adaptable.
The main principles, the foundational principles, are extremely broad. Truth and happiness. All else must fall in line and change when they are not in accord with truth and happiness.
If not marrying is a principle that diminishes happiness then it is a principle that is in need of updating for a fresh principle.”
“It’s probably pointless to try to get you visualize this, but what the hell. It’s only an investment in a few typed words.
Why are “principles” so sacrosanct to you? Why can’t they change? What makes a “principle” any different than a viewpoint or strategy?
And why does Marks previous insistence on never marrying count as a “principle”?
If Manboobs suddenly reversed his “principles” you’d be applauding him for seeing the light.
This idea of “principles” is just a red herring. He changed is mind and you disagree with his new viewpoint.
Anybody here arguing in favor of principles is holding a mental map that is logically inconsistent. You applaud when people change their principles to those that you believe in, and vilify them when they change their principles to be against what you believe in.
It has nothing to do with constancy of principle and everything to do with agreeing with you or not.“
I mostly agree, but I still see the point of principles. I think people arguing with xsplat realize principles are important, but they are using that logic to defend false principles, while xsplat makes principles sound useless and overly flexible.
I think the truth is in the middle. First of all, a stance on never marrying is NOT a principle. It’s just a life tactic, something to gain happiness from and avoid pain. If it no longer gives you happiness or helps you avoid pain, it can be changed. Like changing your diet. Or other parts of lifestyle. It has nothing to do with morality. If this counted as a principle, principles would indeed be flimsy and worthless.
Everything to do with morality is what I call principles. Breaking promises is breaking a principle, and xsplat knows that:
“The words that are important and the contracts we make with each other.
Break those and you lose trust for further contracts.
Changing your mind about your personal values or personal strategies has nothing to do with going against your so called word.“
A good analogy for principles are laws of physics. They work over and over every day, and we have little reason to worry they will change, especially in our lifetime. But they are never 100% proven and yes, there is a possibility they might stop working tomorrow. But it’s just so unlikely we can practically say “this is fact”. Even if someone did a test where the law of gravity didn’t work as predicted, we have way more reason to believe his methodology was wrong, rather than the law.
Everything outside that can change. Weather can change, the appearance of people can change, but things still fall down and not up.
Principles, unless they are false, are indeed important. They are a reference point for us, when everything seems chaotic. They should not be changed unless there is VERY good proof that they are wrong and should be changed. Just like there are sometimes great change in science (for example, the discovery that the earth revolves around the sun), there could be great changes in principles, but it happens only after MAJOR testing, not LIGHTLY.