Each Effect Has at Least Two Causes in the Form of Actions and Conditions

This is perhaps the most important and overlooked principle of causation. Unlike storytelling which focuses on linear action causes, reality demands that each effect have at least one action cause and one or more conditional causes.

This becomes obvious when we take a close look at any causal set. For example, if we look closely at the causes of an open fire, we see that several conditions must be present and when the action of a match strike occurs we have the fire.


This principle teaches us that every time we ask why we need to find at least two causes in the form of at least one action and one or more conditions. Because we have not been trained to think this way, RealityCharting® helps guide you in this process and easily documents all the causal relationships.


Actions are causes that interact with conditions to cause an effect.

Conditions are causes that exist in time prior to an action bringing them together to cause an effect.

Causal set is the fundamental causal element of all that happens. It is made up of an effect and its immediate causes that represent a single causal relationship. As a minimum, the causes in this set consist of an action and one or more conditions. Causal sets, like causes, cannot exist alone. They are part of a continuum of causes with no beginning or end, which leads us to the next principle: Causes and Effects are Part of an Infinite Continuum of Causes.