Using practical wisdom with rules

Practical wisdom is needed for knowing when rules should be broken.

Rules are designed in theory as sign posts on how to act that best serves a purpose. Rules are created to address problems, or as useful guidelines by the experienced who have walked the road to help the novice.

Rules sometimes are created by stupid or cruel people who rather than assisting become a barrier to good action.  Rules often come with penalties for breaking them.  Rules sometimes fail to match those situations that life throws up for which a novel approach is required.  These three situations require practical wisdom to determine the best course of action, which may mean ignoring or adapting the rule.

In blogging I have created a guideline that a good blog post is best at 300 words.  I say guideline rather than rule since nothing is set in stone, and circumstance and need will determine the best blog length.  I have some blogging experience, and I read dozens of blogs a day, thus I know that to give my best attention to a blog I prefer them short and simple.  If I come face to face with a 2000 word blog with complicated abstract words, it better be good to earn my attention.

To gain practical wisdom on when to ignore or adapt rules, it is better to follow the rules first, then gain experience in the doing of the activity, thus through time and the “doing” a sense of what is the right action is developed.

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14 responses to “Using practical wisdom with rules

  1. Your post is ~ 242 words. 300 words feels about right…

    • The great thing about WordPress is it will give you constant feedback on how many words you are writing. I will break the 300 word guideline on occasion though.

  2. You are definitely right about jargon, nothing turns readers away from a blog quicker than big words used incorrectly.

    “Rules are created to address problems, or as useful guidelines by the experienced who have walked the road to help the novice.”

    Shunryu Suzuki highlights the paradox of rules in, Zen Mind Beginners Mind:

    “In the beginner’s mind there are many possibilities, in the expert’s mind there are few.”

    Otove

    • Thanks for your comment otove. I think the expert through practical wisdom knows the easiest and safest route to a goal, and thus their possibilities become few. The beginner holds opinions which are inefficient and wrong as to how a goal is reached due to their ignorance.

      • I guess what I’m trying to say is that any adaptation (ie knowledge/skill base) toward reaching one goal, immediately precludes one from reaching another.

        A healthy dose of Chaos, brought by the novice, keeps the waters of life from stagnation.

      • It comes back to the middle way, a balance between two extremes.

  3. Mind likes to “Break the rules”, follows when forced,
    Soul is limitless, beyond the rules
    We are caught between them! 🙂

  4. I like the expression of guidelines over rules as the flexibility allows the person to adjust to the situation. The word ‘rule’ sounds so finite and lacks the freedom to discover what is over the next hill. I like this one.

  5. Hey Alex!

    I enjoy reading your blog everytime. You incept new thoughts in my mind which expands my horizons.
    As a return gift, the least I could do was nominate you for The Reader’s Appreciation Award! 🙂
    Not that my nomination matters, but I really think you deserve this award.. \m/

    • Thanks ROAS, I appreciate your comments and blogs too.

      Thank you for your nomination. I shall start work on putting together a page dedicated to those who nominated me for various awards.

  6. Its really great to see a Luciferian so appreciated for his hard work, keep it up bro, you are an inspiration to many, influence should never be underestimated

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