The 20 Synthophic Precepts are grouped here into five broad topics (realms). This allows the whole argument to be grasped at once, with further exploration possible after that.
I. TRUE HAPPINESS (Precepts 1-3)
The goal of all beings is True Happiness; a deep lasting happiness independent of circumstance. Understanding Nature is essential to discovering the path to True Happiness.
II. NATURE (Precepts 4-7)
Nature consists of interdependent complex systems, includes ourselves and our minds, and operates according to a rational basis permeating the universe. Our best tools for understanding Nature are reason, science, and a healthy skepticism.
III. SELF KNOWLEDGE (Precepts 8-11)
Understanding Nature includes understanding ourselves and how we interact with it. This includes knowledge of our impermanence as a system of aggregates and an appreciation of what we control and what we do not. We only have full control over our mind and our choices.
IV. GOOD, EVIL, & VIRTUE (precepts 12-17)
We label good and evil so we may promote the former and diminish the latter. Therefore only that which is in our control (our choices) need be labeled either, depending on whether the choices are consistent with our nature and produce True Happiness, or inconsistent and produce True Suffering. Virtue (selecting the good) is both necessary and sufficient for True Happiness.
V. THE GOOD PERSON (precepts 18-20)
Exploring the objective truths of virtue is preferable to simplistic codes. Through practice, codes give way to character and moral excellence nourished. The virtuous (those in accord with Nature) will have the foundations of True Happiness. Moral excellence and excellence in living are thus the same; wisdom and virtue the same.
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