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Is the end of human lying inevitable?

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TryingMyBest
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Is the end of human lying inevitable?

Post by TryingMyBest » November 29th, 2018, 5:00 pm

Thank you for your time.
I have convinced myself that the end of human lying is inevitable for the following reasons. (Please correct me if I am missing something.)
Lies can never be proven true and truth is an ever-expanding juggernaut.
Lies promote false beliefs while truth is defendable.
It will be considered nonsensical to lie because lies promote false beliefs and false beliefs have no value.
Some people lie to "save their own skin" but pleading-the-fifth is always a better option.
Some people lie because they have been deceived into thinking that lying will benefit them. This is the great deceit: that lying will benefit you. Deceit is a lie, by definition. The end of deceit will coincide with the end of lying. Universal realization that, by definition, "deceit is a lie" will cause the end of the deception that lies are useful because humans naturally want to be undeceived. Therefore, lies will eventually cease to exist. As long as society continues to value and expand truth, the end of deceit (and the end of human lying) is inevitable.
I will close with a few truisms about truth. True progress is the progression of truth. True love is the love of truth. True power is the power of truth.

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Re: Is the end of human lying inevitable?

Post by Steve3007 » November 29th, 2018, 5:45 pm

That was a well argued, convincing and deeply insightful opening post.

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TryingMyBest
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Re: Is the end of human lying inevitable?

Post by TryingMyBest » November 29th, 2018, 8:02 pm

Steve3007 wrote:
November 29th, 2018, 5:45 pm
That was a well argued, convincing and deeply insightful opening post.
Steve, first, I just wanted to tell you that I am sincerely appreciative of you for responding. It truly means a great deal to me to be acknowledged for my philosophical views. I have these theories that have affected me so much and sometimes I just need to feel heard and not ignored.
Second, that was the perfect sentence that I needed to hear. Thank you for being welcoming and encouraging and for such an awesome compliment. A genuine thank you and wishing you the best.

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Re: Is the end of human lying inevitable?

Post by Steve3007 » November 30th, 2018, 5:38 am

TryingMyBest, have you seen the movie "The Invention of Lying"? It's a humorous look at an imaginary world in which nobody ever lies or deceives and everybody is always honest, sometimes brutally so. Is there ever a purpose for "white lies"?

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TryingMyBest
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Re: Is the end of human lying inevitable?

Post by TryingMyBest » November 30th, 2018, 2:34 pm

Thanks for the recommendation, I will watch it.

If the definition of a white lie is "to omit the complete truth to spare someone's feelings" then there is a moral component to it. If someone asks if you liked the food when you found it merely palatable, what is the ethical response? Perhaps, "thank you for the meal, I really appreciated it" would suffice. If you give the impression that the food was delicious (when it wasn't), your friend might go on preparing that identical dish over and over, believing the false reality that it is delicious. It is the dedication to the truth that gives these little moments moral weight. Compliments should be true. Care should be given to only say true things and still find a way to spare feelings. White lies should definitely not be used in important matters. I recently read psychiatrist M Scott Peck's book The Road Less Traveled. He argues:

"Lying can be divided into two types: white lies and black lies. A black lie is a statement we make that we know is false. A white lie is a statement we make that is not in itself false but that leaves out a significant part of the truth. The fact that a lie is white does not in itself make it any less of a lie or any more excusable. White lies may be every bit as destructive as black ones. A government that withholds essential information from its people by censorship is no more democratic than one that speaks falsely. The patient who neglected to mention that she had overdrawn the family bank account was impending her growth in therapy no less than if she had lied directly. Indeed, because it may seem less reprehensible, the withholding of essential information is the most common form of lying, and because it may be the more difficult to detect and confront, it is often even more pernicious than black-lying.

White-lying is considered socially acceptable in many of our relationships because "we don't want to hurt peoples' feelings." Yet we may bemoan the fact that our social relationships are generally superficial. For parents to feed their children a pap of white lies is not only considered acceptable but is thought to be loving and beneficent.
...

What rules, then, can one follow if one is dedicated to the truth?

First, never speak falsehood.

Second, bear in mind that the act of withholding the truth is always potentially a lie, and that in each instance in which the truth is withheld a significant moral decision is required.

Third, the decision to withhold the truth should never be based on personal need, such as a need for power, a need to be liked, or a need to protect one's map [of reality] from challenge.

Fourth, and conversely, the decision to withhold truth must always be based entirely upon the needs of the person or people from whom the truth is being withheld.

Fifth, the assessment of another's needs is an act of responsibility which is so complex that it can only be operated wisely when one operates with genuine love for the other.

Sixth, the primary factor in the assessment of another's need is the assessment of that person's capacity to utilize the truth for his or her own spiritual growth.

Finally, in assessing the capacity of another to utilize the truth for personal spiritual growth, it should be borne in mind that our tendency is to generally underestimate rather than overestimate this capacity.

All this might seem like an extraordinary task, impossible to ever perfectly complete, a chronic and never-ending burden, a real drag. And it is indeed a never-ending burden of self-discipline, which is why most people opt for a life of very limited honesty and openness and relative closedness, hiding themselves and their maps [of reality] from the world. Yet the rewards of a life of the difficult life of honesty and dedication to the truth are more than commensurate with the demands. By virtue of the fact that their maps are continually being challenged, open people are continually growing people. Through their openness they can establish and maintain intimate relationships far more effectively than more people. Because they never speak falsely they can be secure and proud in the knowledge that they have done nothing to contribute to the confusion of the world, but have served as sources of illumination and clarification. Finally, they are totally free to be. They are not burdened by any need to hide. They do not have to slink around in shadows. They do not have to construct new lies to hide old ones. They need waste no effort covering tracks or maintaining disguises. And ultimately they find that the energy required for the self-discipline of honesty is far less than the energy required for secretiveness. The more honest one is, the easier it is to continue being honest, just as the more lies one has told, the more necessary it is to lie again. By their openness, people dedicated to truth live in the open, and through the exercise of their courage to live in the open, they become free from fear."

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Re: Is the end of human lying inevitable?

Post by Eduk » November 30th, 2018, 2:46 pm

@TryingMyBest I think you are right. But the path is by no means straight or inevitable. And it may never be achieved by humans.
Unknown means unknown.

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Re: Is the end of human lying inevitable?

Post by LuckyR » November 30th, 2018, 3:45 pm

TryingMyBest wrote:
November 29th, 2018, 5:00 pm
Thank you for your time.
I have convinced myself that the end of human lying is inevitable for the following reasons. (Please correct me if I am missing something.)
Lies can never be proven true and truth is an ever-expanding juggernaut.
Lies promote false beliefs while truth is defendable.
It will be considered nonsensical to lie because lies promote false beliefs and false beliefs have no value.
Some people lie to "save their own skin" but pleading-the-fifth is always a better option.
Some people lie because they have been deceived into thinking that lying will benefit them. This is the great deceit: that lying will benefit you. Deceit is a lie, by definition. The end of deceit will coincide with the end of lying. Universal realization that, by definition, "deceit is a lie" will cause the end of the deception that lies are useful because humans naturally want to be undeceived. Therefore, lies will eventually cease to exist. As long as society continues to value and expand truth, the end of deceit (and the end of human lying) is inevitable.
I will close with a few truisms about truth. True progress is the progression of truth. True love is the love of truth. True power is the power of truth.
I completely disagree with your conclusion. Of course your post is logical... but is only so for the previous era. Unfortunately we are in the Post Factual era. Nowadays the definition of "truth" and "fact" are fluid and open to interpretation. You are aware of the current inhabitant of the White House, right? Soon no one will be able to be corrected for saying or believing anything. Truth (and thus lying) will be relegated to old folks reminiscing about how things were "when I was growing up".
"As usual... it depends."

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Re: Is the end of human lying inevitable?

Post by Fooloso4 » November 30th, 2018, 4:36 pm

LuckyR:
Unfortunately we are in the Post Factual era. Nowadays the definition of "truth" and "fact" are fluid and open to interpretation. You are aware of the current inhabitant of the White House, right? Soon no one will be able to be corrected for saying or believing anything. Truth (and thus lying) will be relegated to old folks reminiscing about how things were "when I was growing up".
I share your concern but I think the announcement of the death of truth and facts is premature. The current situation is an anomaly (I hope).

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Re: Is the end of human lying inevitable?

Post by TryingMyBest » November 30th, 2018, 4:49 pm

LuckyR,
A fact is a thing that is indisputably the case. Truth is that which is in accordance with fact or reality (the world or the state of things as they actually exist.)
The ostensibly halcyon days of old were filled with lies. Several US wars were fought because of the public being deceived, Vietnam in particular. Along with the free expression and immediate delivery of thoughts and opinions through technology like Twitter, there have evolved "truth-checking" organizations who make it their business to correct errors whether it is unintentional, withholding of relevant information or outright deceit. With ever-advancing artificial intelligence, soon even complex and recondite information may be accurately diagnosed as true or false.
Some information is recondite such that politicians used to get away with "fudging-the-numbers" to make their group look better; to an extent, this still happens. But increasingly more so, dubious claims are checked, double-checked and critiqued for validity. As truth-checkers evolve, there will be less and less tolerance for the obvious lie. Even political candidates will honestly reassure the public that they don't need to lie to get votes; they will even expect that lying will lose votes. Lies beget lies though, so once someone has started it takes more and more lies to keep their house of cards from toppling over. I agree with you that it is discomfiting that the fact that lies are harmful to oneself and society has not already been adopted as a universal value. Simple values that are beneficial stand by their own merit, and now have the potential to go viral and become part of society's collective common sense.
When society realizes that to be undeceived means one must not lie (simple enough) and develops confidence in the truth-monitoring groups for complex claims, there will be no more deception that will benefit, as both groups will demand honesty from its leaders. My question is whether someone in the habit of covering up lies with lies, once held to account for the lies and/or given a clean slate, can begin being truthful again. I believe so, truth is so much easier, natural, and freely delivered than deceit.

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Re: Is the end of human lying inevitable?

Post by LuckyR » November 30th, 2018, 5:54 pm

Fooloso4 wrote:
November 30th, 2018, 4:36 pm
LuckyR:
Unfortunately we are in the Post Factual era. Nowadays the definition of "truth" and "fact" are fluid and open to interpretation. You are aware of the current inhabitant of the White House, right? Soon no one will be able to be corrected for saying or believing anything. Truth (and thus lying) will be relegated to old folks reminiscing about how things were "when I was growing up".
I share your concern but I think the announcement of the death of truth and facts is premature. The current situation is an anomaly (I hope).
I hope I am wrong, but I fear I am right.
"As usual... it depends."

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Re: Is the end of human lying inevitable?

Post by LuckyR » November 30th, 2018, 6:06 pm

TryingMyBest wrote:
November 30th, 2018, 4:49 pm
LuckyR,
A fact is a thing that is indisputably the case. Truth is that which is in accordance with fact or reality (the world or the state of things as they actually exist.)
The ostensibly halcyon days of old were filled with lies. Several US wars were fought because of the public being deceived, Vietnam in particular. Along with the free expression and immediate delivery of thoughts and opinions through technology like Twitter, there have evolved "truth-checking" organizations who make it their business to correct errors whether it is unintentional, withholding of relevant information or outright deceit. With ever-advancing artificial intelligence, soon even complex and recondite information may be accurately diagnosed as true or false.
Some information is recondite such that politicians used to get away with "fudging-the-numbers" to make their group look better; to an extent, this still happens. But increasingly more so, dubious claims are checked, double-checked and critiqued for validity. As truth-checkers evolve, there will be less and less tolerance for the obvious lie. Even political candidates will honestly reassure the public that they don't need to lie to get votes; they will even expect that lying will lose votes. Lies beget lies though, so once someone has started it takes more and more lies to keep their house of cards from toppling over. I agree with you that it is discomfiting that the fact that lies are harmful to oneself and society has not already been adopted as a universal value. Simple values that are beneficial stand by their own merit, and now have the potential to go viral and become part of society's collective common sense.
When society realizes that to be undeceived means one must not lie (simple enough) and develops confidence in the truth-monitoring groups for complex claims, there will be no more deception that will benefit, as both groups will demand honesty from its leaders. My question is whether someone in the habit of covering up lies with lies, once held to account for the lies and/or given a clean slate, can begin being truthful again. I believe so, truth is so much easier, natural, and freely delivered than deceit.
Again, as an old person, I totally get what you are saying (and I in fact subscribe to your comments, personally). However, you are missing the reason for the demise of truth in the current time.

Logic tells you that 1) there are commonly agreed upon arbiters of truth, 2) that opinions are formed after knowledge accumulated from the understanding of truth. That is in fact logical, and the way it was.

Currently it goes the opposite way: opinions come first (from peer group, family etc), later there is a search for a source of "truth" that happens to reinforce the previously arrived upon opinion. The fact is humans are programmed to believe certain packaging of information over others. Broadcasting and typewritten formats are more believable than handwriitten and casual conversation to most. That is why in previous eras newspapers and magazines and TV and radio news broadcasting were the trusted sources. Now anyone on the planet can type any ol' opinion online and call it a "fact" and someone will take it as such.

Example: Is it a fact/truth that Obama was born in Kenya? Regardless of your answer there are folks who WHOLEHEARTED believe that it is a fact (ie they are not "lying" in the classic sense). So in their reality it IS a truth. And this belief will defy your efforts to make it otherwise.
"As usual... it depends."

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Re: Is the end of human lying inevitable?

Post by Fooloso4 » November 30th, 2018, 6:40 pm

LuckyR:
I hope I am wrong, but I fear I am right.
A few years ago, BT, I think both of us would have doubted the demise of truth, but AT … something new and unthinkable occurs on a regular basis beginning with the results of the election. Its anyone's guess what will happen. The results of the Mueller investigation could be a turning point, or not.

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Re: Is the end of human lying inevitable?

Post by LuckyR » November 30th, 2018, 9:12 pm

Fooloso4 wrote:
November 30th, 2018, 6:40 pm
LuckyR:
I hope I am wrong, but I fear I am right.
A few years ago, BT, I think both of us would have doubted the demise of truth, but AT … something new and unthinkable occurs on a regular basis beginning with the results of the election. Its anyone's guess what will happen. The results of the Mueller investigation could be a turning point, or not.
If Trump would have been elected before the advent of social media, he would have been gone soon afterwards (since he couldn't call Fake News, since there was only one news source in the public's mind). So he is merely the first to seriously take advantage of the Post Truth era, as opposed to the cause of it.
"As usual... it depends."

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Re: Is the end of human lying inevitable?

Post by TryingMyBest » November 30th, 2018, 11:53 pm

@Steve3007
I watched the film. It was great, thanks.

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Re: Is the end of human lying inevitable?

Post by chewybrian » December 1st, 2018, 5:46 am

TryingMyBest wrote:
November 29th, 2018, 5:00 pm
Thank you for your time.
I have convinced myself that the end of human lying is inevitable for the following reasons. (Please correct me if I am missing something.)
Lies can never be proven true and truth is an ever-expanding juggernaut.
Lies promote false beliefs while truth is defendable.
It will be considered nonsensical to lie because lies promote false beliefs and false beliefs have no value.
Some people lie to "save their own skin" but pleading-the-fifth is always a better option.
Some people lie because they have been deceived into thinking that lying will benefit them. This is the great deceit: that lying will benefit you. Deceit is a lie, by definition. The end of deceit will coincide with the end of lying. Universal realization that, by definition, "deceit is a lie" will cause the end of the deception that lies are useful because humans naturally want to be undeceived. Therefore, lies will eventually cease to exist. As long as society continues to value and expand truth, the end of deceit (and the end of human lying) is inevitable.
I will close with a few truisms about truth. True progress is the progression of truth. True love is the love of truth. True power is the power of truth.
I appreciate and agree with what you say in a sense, and I hope you are right. But, history is against it. You could make a similar case against crime. People should realize it rarely benefits them in them end, and technology should make it increasingly difficult. Yet, criminals turn that technology into a tool for crime, and crime continues. Technology can be a powerful tool for lying as well.

In the long run, I think the trend you predict depends on the political system. In many parts of the world, the truth is a deadly secret that can not even be spoken. As long as we allow these corrupt systems to continue, they will use technology to make their lies more powerful. 1984 is here already. Hopefully, free societies can survive the greed and stupidity of their own people; this seems to be in doubt. If not, we might enter a new Dark Ages, and truth could be as endangered across the world as it is in North Korea.

I'm not making any prediction, and I am not against your sentiments. I am only saying that 'inevitable' seems overly optimistic.

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