Empowering a liar


“Lying is a cooperative act. Think about it, a lie has no power whatsoever by its mere utterance. Its power emerges when someone else agrees to believe the lie.

… When you combine the science of recognizing deception with the art of looking, listening, you exempt yourself from collaborating in a lie. You start up that path of being just a little bit more explicit, because you signal to everyone around you, you say, “Hey, my world, our world, it’s going to be an honest one. My world is going to be one where truth is strengthened and falsehood is recognized and marginalized.” And when you do that, the ground around you starts to shift just a little bit.” ~ Pamela Mayer: How to spot a liar

I’m a liar. And so is everyone else at some point as this honest and refreshing video of How To Spot a Liar suggests. Whatever the reason, there is probably no one who hasn’t lied at all in his or her lifetime. I think lying is often the most convenient path anyone can take to avoid unpleasantness. It’s not necessarily done to deceive and inflict harm to others. But there seems to be some level of selfishness thrown in. I may try to convince myself that I’ll lie for someone’s sake. But at the end of the day, I think I’m taking that route for selfish reason, for my own benefit if I were to be honest about it.

The constant challenge is how to get past the need to lie, whether to spare someone from what could be painful truths or just to get around bad choices made.

Lately, I’ve been thinking that the hardest thing is NOT to call out a lie in a group setting. It’s hard to pretend that I don’t know that someone is blatantly lying by making up things to suit a personal agenda. Sadly, calling out a lie uttered by a well-liked person just make me appear like a bitch, especially when others don’t seem to realize that they’re being lied to. That’s why difficult as it may be for me, I’m trying to reign in this urge to expose the half-truths and the outright lies to keep the peace. Otherwise I’ll just further alienate myself. It seems that critical thinking and asking questions can get you labeled as a “negative” person. Labels are bothersome.

As the lies continue, it’s getting harder and harder to preserve the respect. Because the act itself chips away the foundation of whatever mutual respect there should be in any encounters. No matter how small the lies may be, letting it slide only empowers the liar. And lately, I seem to be going down that road, much to my chagrin.


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