No, we're not talking Ed Rooney from Ferris Bueller's Day Off here. (That's spelled principal, gang.) This theme is actually really closely related to the courage theme. Just like the kings' pride is over their power, Daniel and his friends' courage is over their principles. Those principles are related to their trust in God and their identity as a people. They refuse to compromise themselves in any way, not praying to foreign gods or eating non-kosher foods (hold the Babylonian lobster bisque, thanks). Those principles ultimately prove to be a greater source of comfort than "doing as the Romans do" or, in this case, doing as the Babylonians, Medes, Persians, and Greeks do.
Questions About Principles
Is there any pay-off to sticking to your principles—in the story or in real life?
If there was no pay-off—no reward—would it still be right to stick to your principles?
Do any of the characters besides Daniel and his friends have principles, do you think? If so, what are they?
Is it ever okay to compromise your principles? Can you think of something that you just wouldn't change your mind about, even under threat of getting thrown into a fiery furnace or a lions' den?
Do you think that Daniel and his friends worry about sticking to their principles—worrying that it's not going to be alright in the end? Or do you think they're able to unwaveringly trust that the ultimate outcome will be good?