Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Truth or Not

Ever notice that children cannot lie.  They can be brutally honest even when it embarrasses their parents.  Even if they do manage to lie it is obvious.  Something in their demeanor gives them away.  When does that change?

We lie so easily as adults that it is frightening.  Some people are so good at it that it is impossible to know if they are lying or telling the truth. Politicians have become particularly adept at this.  They know how to read their audience and tell just enough truth to pull them in but the rest is pure fabrication.  They are adept at telling people what they want to hear.

When did we become a nation that prefers to hear lies instead of the truth?  When did we lose the capacity of determining when we are being lied to and demanding the truth?  When did truth become a variable? 

There are no degrees of truth.  Just as a lie is a lie.  Is it better to lie to spare someones feelings?  Perhaps.  But, in my opinion, the truth will find a way to come out, if not now then later.  Have I lied?  Of course I have, I am only human and because of that I have tried to either make myself look good or avoid punishment for something I have done.  Time has always found a way to hold me accountable for that lie.

It is harder to lie to our parents because they know us so very well.  They may accept the lie but it hurts them because they want to believe us and once we have lied to them, they know that they cannot have the same level of trust as before.  It is easiest to lie to complete strangers because they know nothing of us.  Until they do, they have no reason to suspect that we can or would lie to them.  We can lie to our friends but they will always hold us accountable for the lie.  If they don't call us out at the time, they will later and want to know why and quite possibly the truth. If they don't get it, the relationship changes and trust is lost.

As I have gotten older, I find it easier to tell the truth no matter how painful it is to myself or to others.  Easier, in that I don't have to remember who I told which lie to and who knows the truth.  People can accept the truth or not.  Harsh, yes.  Brutal, can be.  But if I have told the truth as I understand it, then that is all I can do.  If what I believe to be the truth is proven to be wrong, I can apologize and hope I am forgiven.

Sometimes it is better just to say nothing than to lie.