In daily life, I realized I don’t actually lie much. Holding myself to disclose everything seemed pretty immediately impractical, so I took the approach of assuming “do not lie,” means, “do not speak inaccurate to your knowledge.” In a few rare moments, I avoided responding to questions I didn’t immediately feel comfortable answering, where I’d usually dodge with my words.
I noticed how my immediate explanation for a story was to some degree embellished. Telling it flatly wouldn’t have the same dramatic effect. For these situations, I gave up (“did you ever hear how he broke up with them? umm, well, now that I think about it, I forget. Trust me, it makes him look shitty!”) or immediately disclosed (“…modified slightly to fit with your story”) and thought about for a while later. Would telling it flatly be closer to the truth, though? Getting the same emotional response from the situation as I had out of the listener may be a more genuine retelling than replicating words as closely as possible.
I pondered whether my self-portrayal was a lie. I could feel the disingenuity in my eyes, brows, and forehead while attempting to be happy and in the moment when truly worried off-topic. As a person, I don’t feel necessarily honest or dishonest. I don’t actively lie, and I avoid breaking people’s trust, but I know some don’t perceive interactions with me as always “real”. Can I, without ever telling a lie, be dishonest in my existence?
The experiment didn’t have as large of an impact on my lifestyle as I expected. It certainly didn’t make me feel like a better person. Lies as actions don’t have much of an impact on my perception of honestly. None of the incidents effected by, “do not lie,” felt remotely as large as the vague feeling of fake-ness.
On a side note, white lies. “Harmless, trivial.” Pretty sure they’re yet another subtly racist phrase of black evil and white purity. A connecting example is white collar crime that hurts millions, with the perpetrator lying yet abiding by the objectivist principals fancied by our elite, versus “real” dark criminal activity, which doesn’t necessitate dishonesty.