Lies and White Lies

Q: Considering the different degrees of lying, should you dissociate yourself with someone who white lies? My thought is the leap between white lying and all out major lies is very, very small. If a person will white lie to you what’s to say they won’t commit a major lie when they feel it’s appropriate.

A: There are people, to my knowledge, who feel comfortable departing from reality in minor situations but not in major ones. They are paving the way for telling whoppers but there’s no guarantee they will or will not reach that point. I do know this much. If someone white lies to another, he could white lie to you as well, and probably does. If someone white lies, he could tell whoppers too. It’s up to you to decide how much of a risk to take on someone you know to be a liar in some cases, although not in others. Lying is really a symptom of an error. If someone white lies, there’s some kind of error involved. Usually it’s something along these lines: “I don’t want a confrontation.” People usually spin this as: “I don’t want to hurt another.” My response to this is: “But when you lie, you show weakness. You depart from your ability to embrace and fully function in reality. Why should you sacrifice your own well-being for the alleged sake of another? And how do you help another by lying? Do YOU want to be lied to to have your feelings spared, without your consent?” Lying is like hitting yourself. Yes, there’s a difference between punching yourself a few times and sticking a knife in yourself. One does more damage than the other. But why do any damage at all?