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precept (noun) rule of behavior or thought
A precept is a rule on which our behavior or way of thinking is based. Religious leaders and books lay down precepts, that is, they prescribe rules for right conduct and right way of thinking. A precept, in short, is a moral principle. ‘Do unto others what you wish to be done unto you,’ is an example of a precept. ‘So is ‘Love thy neighbor as thyself.’
- It is often said that example is better than precept. That is, It is better to do a good thing before we preach it to others.
- Patience and forgiveness are the noble precepts, which every religion preaches. But these are the very rules of behavior that most people of all religions violate in their zeal for their own religion.