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I've been told by that I never seem to lie; my roommate, who has known me my entire life, has actually told others "He's incapable of lying." My wife agrees. This is apparently exceedingly rare, and usually associated with a neurological condition (such as autism, which I have not been tested for). 

 

This has me wondering: Do you lie? The reason I don't is pretty purely pragmatic: I report what I believe to have transpired, regardless of whether there's a benefit. Even white lies fail to compute; I'm completely transparent with everyone about everything, even when it gets me in trouble. 

 

For this reason lying has become a bit abstract and peculiar to me as I get older. There's never been a situation where lying was the only option, or seemed sensible. Who cares about social grace, possibly offending people or avoiding trouble? 

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"Honesty is the best policy" has been the philosophy I have lived by for a good amount of my life now. I wear my heart on my sleeve and am not one for sugar-coating or beating around the bush. So yeah, in regards to the social grace thing, it has gotten me in to a bit of hot water in the past. Nothing to egregious mind you, but enough to teach me that sometimes being blunt is not the way and it helps to be a bit more cordial. It's something I need to keep myself in check for now and then and I do my best to be frank, but also deliver that frankness in a way that will let people know my honest thoughts and opinions without coming off as a prick.

 

So when it comes to lies, I only really resort to the little white lies. You know the ones. Those little lies we say to avoid any kind of unnecessary ugliness or confrontation. It doesn't hurt to be polite.

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I used to tell little "white" lies (a phrase I hate since it makes lying seem like less of a problem) all the time - whether it was to make someone think I was cooler or more interesting, explain something embarrassing away, etc. 

Nowadays I really don't like lying, even "harmless ones". The well worn phrase of "honesty is the best policy" is very true. The older I get I find the humility and trustworthiness of a truly honest person  a blessing. So, I've been trying to emulate that and tell the truth 100% of the time. It's definitely a conscious decision.  

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I hate to lie mostly because I don't want other people to lie to me. I have trust issues too, but that's another story.

 

So I rarely lie, but I almost every day omit information. If you ask me directly I'll answer but if I'm not hard pressed to I won't tell you everything. Basically it's the same as lieing as the purpose of this attitude is to mislead but at least I don't feel as a liar. :/

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Omission I think is an unavoidable part of reporting. It becomes "lie-like" as we steer the reporting toward intentional misleading or manipulation. 

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Yes. Yes I do. I try to be honest but I do lie.

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I hate it when I lie...

 

Spoiler

...in bed and I cannot sleep. I just toss and turn and for some reason cannot fall asleep. It's just the worst feeling, wanting to sleep but cannot.

 

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Posted (edited)

I almost never lie and really hate doing so. I def don't lie in my day to day, and would find it difficult to remember the last time I purposefully told a lie. Not lying doesn't mean telling everyone everything. Saying "I am sorry I cannot tell you" is an honest way of telling people you can't share certain information.

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If I said no then then I could be lying because if I do lie then I'm lying about whether I lie

 

If i say yes, then that could incorrect because it would be a case of me telling the truth. 

 

So at the end of the day, what weight does my answer hold?

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30 minutes ago, Mr Masker said:

If I said no then then I could be lying because if I do lie then I'm lying about whether I lie

 

If i say yes, then that could incorrect because it would be a case of me telling the truth. 

 

So at the end of the day, what weight does my answer hold?

Depends on whether you're trying to deceive/mislead your audience. 

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Posted (edited)

The inability to lie surely is an alien concept, it must be terrible to only get some rest by sitting down, incapable of lying on your back and rest on a comfortable bed.

 

Lame attempts at humor aside, yes i do lie but no more often than most people do. There are times when honesty can be counterproductive and keeping quiet is not an option.

 

Its kinda ironic that people are ashamed by the concept of lying that they lie about not lying. No one bar exceptions like OP can avoid lying for too long because truth while it's a virtue can also be a terrible and painful thing to face. It can destroy self-worth by making you see a terrible aspect of your life that you choose to ignore.

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I cannot tell the truth.

 

Especially if I perceive things differently, it all might as well be a lie.

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I'm not a saint myself... but if anyone tells me there is cake... I know that's a lie.

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Posted (edited)

No, lying is never a good idea. If you always tell the truth, you don't have to remember what you've said in order to keep the facade. It's better to just remain silent than to lie, especially to those that love you. There's exceptions where a lie might be better though. If some random person walks up to you in public asking for money, you should tell them you don't have any money even if you do. That's just being street smart. Or when solicitors come to your door, specifically religious ones trying to get you to join their cult, you can say "I'm Jewish", and they tend to leave immediately. So lying can work in some cases when dealing with annoying people, but when it involves sex, occupation, family, etc. then it is usually not a wise choice because your lies will backfire, even if it takes a long time.

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I always felt lying was something of a spectrum, because the opposite, oversharing of unwanted truths, can be just as bad. 

 

Whenever we communicate information to someone, we have to make a decision about what we communicate.  If you meet with a colleague and they ask "hey, how are you doing?" it's up to you what you say.  The truth might be "not great, my butt hole is itchy", but I'd be surprised if most people chose to actually say that.  More often we say "fine, thanks!", which is technically a lie.

 

Put it this way: the Jim Carrey movie Liar Liar builds its entire premise on the absurdity of someone who always tells the truth.  The fact there is an entire movie whose whole set up "isn't it funny and weird if someone actually always told the truth" shows how normal it is for people to be generally selective with what they communicate in everyday life.

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Lying? Who, me?

 

How dare you say that about me!

 

You liar!

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2 hours ago, Mr Masker said:

If I said no then then I could be lying because if I do lie then I'm lying about whether I lie

 

If i say yes, then that could incorrect because it would be a case of me telling the truth. 

 

So at the end of the day, what weight does my answer hold?

 

Wait hold on, the question wasn't if you always lie, just if you lie on occasion

 

Here's a paradox though: If you answer "yes, I do lie" then your answer is guaranteed to be true! If you have told any other lies, then it's a true statement. But if you have never lied before this point, then this statement becomes the first lie... while at the same time answering the question correctly in the affirmative!


Anyway, I do actually lie quite readily. I've definitely cooled off the habit in the last decade or so, but I still lie to my parents (mainly my mom) constantly. Here's the thing, my mother is one of those who will absolutely grill the shit out of you about any and all details, whether they are important or not. And will be  s u p e r  condescending and/or stubborn about things... so I deflect, evade, and omit as much as possible. I mean if she knew that I, hypothetically of course, had been trading stocks and, just for the sake of example, lost a bunch of money... oh lawd there would be no end to the talking-tos and you-should-have-been-more-carefuls and you're-messing-up-your-lifes. Doesn't matter if it was my money to lose, or that she's flushed her fair share of doll hairs. It would be potentially hours worth of arguments that I simply have no interest in fielding, since the chance of either of us changing our positions is absolute zero.

 

As for white lies, I always thought those were lies you tell people to make them feel better. Like if someone gave you a gift that you didn't actually want or use, but you tell them you did anyway just to be nice. Telling a lie on your own behalf just doesn't seem like it should count...

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No more than white lies, but I don't really recall lying pretty much ever.

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49 minutes ago, magicsofa said:

 

Wait hold on, the question wasn't if you always lie, just if you lie on occasion

But twisting meanings to aid my joke answer is fun though.

 

But on the question itself, I guess I do lie on occasion. Usually white lies because I don't want to cause an issue or upset someone. I've probably made some bigger lies in the past but who doesn't when they're young and stupid. Of course this is excluding the crime I've covered up since 1926.

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I barely even talk so I don't think I have enough time to lie.

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Posted (edited)
7 hours ago, ducon said:

Yes.

 

ducon, thanks for sharing. I did not know proposition calculus/logic existed. If you have taken these courses, feel free to help me understand any of it, as I am very interested in least some of the core concepts. Nigh time I return to school.

 

One thing I am not seeing here, but that Bauul touched on, is the liquidity of truth. "History is written by the victors" has been a popular adage throughout the ages. Whether or not what we say is considered a lie depends on our sociological context. Opposing political discourses have truths unique to their narratives, which often contradict the truths of their adversaries. Guns save lives vs guns cause more deaths; one might assert either statement believing they aren't lying, but depending on the cultural context, they may be deemed a liar. 

 

As the American discourse becomes more divided, the adversarial disputes between large institutions, governments and media conglomerates begins to poison society on in individual scale. I see people speaking less frequently and less informatively. The tone of conversations trend towards defensiveness, cynicism and hatred. 

 

I am far too trustworthy. But, I think I should lie more. There are informational wars being aggressively waged around us every day. The increasingly dire socioeconomic climate often necessitates lying just to stay alive. Many jobs now hinge on confidentiality and nondisclosure clauses. The success of relationships seems to be getting warped by social media to rely more heavily on accentuated features and omitted faults. I guess my main point is that the truth is fickle, and something that is unimportant when pursuing the necessities of life. But, as pointed out here, something just feels off after telling a lie. It's a conundrum, determining when to be honest. 

Edited by Cacodreamin'

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Posted (edited)

i remember one time when i was very little i was scared of toothpicks because i thought i was gonna step on one and die for some reason. and one day my dad had an entire bag of toothpicks just laying on the table so naturally i decided the best course of action is to throw them off the balcony out of fear, and when my parents confronted me about this i had told them "my sister did it" she wasn't even in the house at the time

Edited by The BMFG

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Never lie as such, but you know, suggesting one thing you know isn't true, leaving a thing or two out while making a point, that sort of thing....but if it's something there's a decent chance someone else will either find out or have the motivation to seek out, then I never lie.

 

I cerrtainly used to, but I quickly figured out that there were some things that could easily be found out so I mostly avoided that. But due to my mediocre life, I did use to tell people stuff I did which I never was involved in.  For instance, tell people I moved around the country when I was in college not so long back, when in truth, I've never moved from the area I grew up in.

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Posted (edited)
10 hours ago, ducon said:

Yes.

Epimenides Paradox is also the first thing I thought of when I saw the thread XD

I think I like Russell's formulation the most:

"Epimenides the Cretan said that all Cretans were liars, and all other statements made by Cretans were certainly lies. Was this a lie?"

 

3 hours ago, Cacodreamin' said:

I did not know proposition calculus/logic existed. If you have taken these courses, feel free to help me understand any of it, as I am very interested in least some of the core concepts.

As someone who struggles with mathematical concepts, my recommendation for a very lay approach to these things is Douglas Hofstadter. I'm reading his Gödel, Escher, Bach and and it goes into Godel's incompleteness theorem, number theory, formal systems, propositional calculus, self-referencing systems and strange loops. Hofstadter really takes your hand and walks you through all these concepts by using visual and musical examples from Escher and Bach to illustrate them (hence the title) and it's a fascinating and often entertaining read. Naturally, the Epimenides Paradox comes up in his discussion of logic.

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