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Most important value in life?

  1. Jun 13, 2005 #1

    Lisa!

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    I don't know if you talked about it before but I want to get your ideas about it anyway:
    Why most of people consider honesty as the most important value in life?
    And do you agree with "Honesty is the best policy."?
    Do you think that sometimes telling white lies are necessary?
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Jun 13, 2005 #2

    DaveC426913

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    I am not convinced they do. I would say perhaps something more general like 'personal integrity' or 'generosity'.

    Well, without them, surprise parties would be impossible!

    I once heard a working definition of when a lie is morally acceptable: If the person you intend to lie to, will, after the fact, thank you for doing so, it is OK to lie. (Surprise party being the most obvious application).
     
  4. Jun 14, 2005 #3
    Honesty does not mean that you have to answer the question in absolute specifics of knowledge.
    For example, let's say some "joe-blow" asks the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff about stealth technology, or whatever.
    A reply of "It's none of your business" is an honest answer. Even a stern look with no words spoken in this case is an honest answer.
     
  5. Jun 14, 2005 #4
    Most people want the ones they love to be honest with them. This doesn't mean most people are usually honest with the ones they love; that's another topic. I don't think honesty is something people typically strive to achieve themselves, but it sure is nice to surround yourself with people who will be honest with you. :smile:

    Yes, the only time society considers you dishonest is if you lie with mal intent. There's no reason to believe there's something wrong with "lying" when you're doing it for the good of others. Lying is only considered wrong when you do it to further yourself at the expense of others.
     
  6. Jun 14, 2005 #5

    I couldn't have said it better!

    KM
     
  7. Jun 15, 2005 #6
    I would prefer to live in a world where everyone told the truth - even though that world would be really boring but at least there is certainty.

    The world we live in will never be that way.
     
  8. Jun 15, 2005 #7

    Pengwuino

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    I think honesty has a sliding scale depending on what someone does. If people always tell teh truth, theres not a whole lot you can tell about their personality so some might say its not important. However, when someone lies, all of a sudden the idea of honesty takes on a whole new level of importance. I think people think theres "a lot more to a person" if they lie, ESPECIALLY if its casual lieing (where theres nothing at stake yet you still lie for no reason). I konw someone who was in this period of casually and non-casually lieing to me and to me it was tantamount to a nuclear weapon going off in a little city when it came to how much of a friend i thought she was.

    Maybe its just me however.
     
  9. Jun 15, 2005 #8
    Yeah, it's the most important value for one to experience, but not to hold. Seriously, it's not like I'm going to get pissed off when I tell a lie... well, unless it was a bad one that got me caught.

    And Honesty is the best policy if you don't have one. It's also the best one to fall back on, usually. And it's the best one to have when judging oneself. Otherwise, honesty is overrated. I mean Sincerity is already a better one to have, by ten fold even.

    "Are white lies necessary?"
    Not just white lies, but even lies that would make a rainbow jealous.
     
  10. Jun 15, 2005 #9

    DaveC426913

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    Hang on there. Speak for yourself, not for all of society.
    We are so on opposite sides of this.
    I interpret that to mean you believe lying is OK except under certain circumstances, whereas I believe lying is always wrong except under certain circumstances.

    The difficulty I have with your philosphy (or how I interpret your philosphy) is in the grey areas. People tend to be a very poor judge of whether what they're doing is for the good of others. Worse, they will rationalize.

    Classic example: "I didn't tell you about that affair because I didn't want to hurt you."
     
  11. Jun 15, 2005 #10
    I think I agree with you more than my post led you to believe.
     
  12. Jun 15, 2005 #11
    If honesty can be compared to a good, solid documentary film

    then

    lies would compare to a bad and boring soap opera.

    A lie will come apart like a ball of rubberbands where
    honesty will hold true until all the laws of physics have changed, drastically.

    Lies are based on the human mind. And simple ones at that.

    Honesty a part of the truth that is found in all existence.

    My take. Whatever.
     
  13. Jun 16, 2005 #12

    Lisa!

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    I've tried not to tell lies since I was a kid."Hiding the truth sometimes,telling lies never!"
    when you're honest,you feel better.I mean you don't have to be worried about the time when others may know you told them lie.and you don't have to tell another lie in order to hide your first lie!"Lie is like a snowball!" And once your lie is revealed,people may never trust you.
    but sometimes it seems to be really difficult not to tell lie and at the same time not hurt other's feelings.

    Be careful about surprise parties!they could be really dangerous sometimes.
    agree with you.

    you know in most cases people tell themselves lies about people whom they love!
    by the way,what a difficult username! :wink:
    If people tryied to be honest with themselves,it would happen!
    Could you please explaine more?
    Interesting!



    Tigron-X,you really frightens me!
     
  14. Jun 16, 2005 #13

    dextercioby

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    I hate lying.To be honest,i don't lie too often...(sic!):tongue2: Some people consider lying to have the same negative impact as hiding the truth.But i always hide the truth to protect them.I'm innocent,deep down inside of me.I never did something bad...Yet i have no friends.Lousy ba$tards !!

    Daniel.
     
  15. Jun 16, 2005 #14

    saltydog

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    No Lisa. Survival is the best policy. One must never forget: "it's all a matter of survival". I know, it's cold, indifferent, inhumane even. The social trappings of civilization hides this basic fact but we are still at our core, biology.
     
  16. Jun 16, 2005 #15

    Lisa!

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    dexter,isn't this time one of those special occassions that you'd tell a lie? :wink:


    I'm not sure if I've understood you comp. .Could you please explaine more?
    You mean human should do whatever to survive himself!
     
  17. Jun 16, 2005 #16

    saltydog

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    Martin Freedman, the Economist, said, "there is only one thing you can be assured about the other man, he'll put his priorities above yours" (you'll see this as true with time or already do so). That has nothing to do with being honest if you think his priorities are better than yours. That's survival in the real world.

    Now I know truth is a nobel cause and is a goal to be pursued in general but always, the biology remains within ourselves. That biology first and foremost is self-perservation. And thus I hold that people will little reflect upon honesty when doing so would threaten their survival, that is, they'll lie. :smile:
     
    Last edited: Jun 16, 2005
  18. Jun 16, 2005 #17

    DaveC426913

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    Yes, but the surpassing quality of humans is that we can choose. We can decide whether we want to live for our own sake, or whether we have compassion for our neighbour. That is one of the defining characteristics of a society. It is what separates animalism from intelligence.
     
  19. Jun 16, 2005 #18

    DaveC426913

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    Yes, just remember:

    A lie of omission is still a lie.
     
  20. Jun 18, 2005 #19

    Lisa!

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    Yes,that's right.Although I wish it wasn't.
     
  21. Jun 18, 2005 #20

    Lisa!

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    And that's what makes him in trouble.I don't know how much authority we have in this world and I think all of our troubles are coz of that.We know we can choose but for sure it's not all the time.
    That's right.sometimes I don't want to ask a question,so I act in a way that people know I won't answer their questions.
     
  22. Jun 18, 2005 #21

    honestrosewater

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    Do I really need to say anything? [cough]username[/cough] :rolleyes:
    But, eh, consider the source.
    Above all, I think it's better to prioritize and use your intelligence to choose the best action rather than relying on crude rules.
    I've found that being honest with myself has been very valuable.

    Here's an interesting scenario: A woman runs to your door in terror and says that her boyfriend is chasing her, trying to hurt her. You let her inside. A few minutes later, the boyfriend comes to the door, asking if the woman is inside. Do you tell him the truth? Oh, and to make it more interesting, say he is a bodybuilder and has a gun.
     
    Last edited: Jun 18, 2005
  23. Jun 18, 2005 #22

    dextercioby

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    Thinking of what i might be doing with the woman later on :devil:,i would lie to him on ANY possible situation.Unless he were to pay me...:wink: In which case,he can do whatever he wants with her...

    Daniel.
     
  24. Jun 18, 2005 #23

    honestrosewater

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    Well, your honesty is refreshing. :buggrin:
     
  25. Jun 18, 2005 #24

    wolram

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    honestrosewater.
    Here's an interesting scenario: A woman runs to your door in terror and says that her boyfriend is chasing her, trying to hurt her. You let her inside. A few minutes later, the boyfriend comes to the door, asking if the woman is inside. Do you tell him the truth? Oh, and to make it more interesting, say he is a bodybuilder and has a gun
    I also have a gun so i shoot him, and milk the situation for all its worth.
    But on the other hand--------------------
     
  26. Jun 18, 2005 #25

    Lisa!

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    dextercioby,I'm really sorry for any woman who wants you to help.there's always worse and here you would be worse than his bf. :devil:




    So we could say at least honesty with ourselves is the best policy.Lieing to ourselves is the worst kind of lieing.




    You can say a white lie!maybe you can still find a way to hide the truth!anyway this kind of lies couldn't be important.
     
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