Study Guide

The Lion King Principles

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MUFASA: Everything you see exists together in a delicate balance. As king, you need to understand that balance and respect all creatures, from the crawling ant to the leaping antelope.

Mufasa lectures Simba on the Circle of Life, one of the most important principles in the animal kingdom.

MUFASA: I'm only brave when I have to be.

Simba made the mistake of thinking that being king was all about showboating—and not about courage and meting out justice.

MUFASA: Being brave doesn't mean you go looking for trouble.

Mufasa schools Simba on those kingly principles again.

MUFASA: You deliberately disobeyed me!

Respect for family members is as important to Mufasa as following the code of law. When Simba goes against his wishes, he's none too happy.

PUMBAA: Look at him. He's so cute and all alone! Can we keep him?

Although Pumbaa is something of a goofster, he's got principles, too: he cares about helping others.

TIMON: When the world turns its back on you, you turn your back on the world.

Timon's principle of self-care: when the going gets tough, take a break! A little R&R proves to be exactly what young Simba needs.

NALA: It's your responsibility!

Nala urges Simba to return to the Pride Lands, even if it means confronting painful and terrifying truths about his past. That's because being responsible is more important than being lazy or scared.

GHOST MUFASA: Remember who you are.

With these four words, Mufasa's ghost reminds Simba that he's got to live up to the kingly expectations that are his birthright.

SIMBA: Going back means I'll have to face my past. I've been running from it for so long.

When Simba decides to return to the Pride Lands, he realizes he's been shirking his responsibilities for longer than he would have liked. It'll be painful to go back, but he needs to do the right thing.

SIMBA: No, Scar. I'm not like you.

That's right, Simba. It's because you've got principles. You know that it's wrong to murder family members.

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