Comparatives can either be adjectives or adverbs.
- Adverb: Please walk faster.
- Adjective: I bought a faster car.
You have the choice to use either the definite article the, or the particularizing article a.
It is not the English language but common sense and logic that should tell you when to use definite articles and when to use particularizing articles.
- The man came to my house.
- A man came to the house.
- The higher power has spoken.
- A higher power has spoken.
- I am a girl asking you to marry me.
- I am the girl asking him to buzz off.
Which would sound more logical to you?
- A cheaper car you buy, a dearer cost you pay for maintenance.
- The cheaper a car you buy, the dearer the cost you pay for maintenance.
Sentence 1 is acceptable, when the salesperson presents you with a list of cars and their relative cost of maintenance. By using that sentence, the salesperson is referring to a particular item in the list.
Would you, as the speaker, choose to exaggerate or at least accentuate that there is one and only one way everybody goes up and comes down?
- The higher you go, the faster you fall.
Or, are you liberal and forgiving and given to your audience that they have a choice of whichever way they could choose to be higher, lower, or faster?
- A higher status you attain, a faster route will be available for your descent. You can choose any status. A higher status would have more choices available for you to fall. A faster route of descent would certainly be more available than if you were in a lower status.