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We can look all around us and see that lying is not taken as a big deal in society anymore. According to a recent college survey, up to 98% of students have lied or cheated in their academic careers. Is this trend something that we should worry about? Does this, as one of the authors of the surveys said, “Paint a grim picture of today’s youth” and of young adults as well? As Catholics, why should we be concerned?

The answer is simple: we deserve better.

The thing we must realize is that lying or cheating affects relationships as well as goes against the very purpose of our humanity. It affects our three most fundamental relationships; our relationship with God, neighbor, and self.

Lying affects our relationship with God: Although in society, we tend to look at things from a natural standpoint, we must first and foremost look at religion because revelation confirms our natural desires; grace builds on nature; it does not destroy it.

We must look at the relationship we have with God because we are all made for Him. Since God is truth (John 14:6), when we lie, we are actually going/working against God. This is not something to take lightly but a huge deal as we never want to work against God and His plan for our lives. This can only lead to bad things since only God is good (Mark 10:18).

Lying affects our relationships with our neighbors: People are owed the right to not be degraded. We all have an intrinsic desire for the true, good, and beautiful (which are all perfected in God). When we lie or don’t help people towards the true or good, we are degrading their humanity. What we are indirectly telling the person we are lying to is: “I care about you so much that I’m willing to deny you one of the very things that makes you human-your desire for truth.”

This is not a good thing. It also labels you as untrustworthy and really isolates you because people will not trust you. Lying hinders the world from getting to know the real you because you are not making yourself a gift to others, but only pretending to give yourself. You are hiding your ideas, your thoughts, YOU!

Lying affects the relationships with myself: Finally, lying hurts you. You lose sight of which you really are if you have to pretend to be someone you’re not in various situations. Keep in mind, truth is when our minds match up with objective reality. The lie you tell is not objective reality, but a subjective way to escape reality.

It keeps you from growing in the capacity to love because love must be given and received in truth otherwise it is not truly love; it is a counterfeit. You can see how this leaves people incomplete or lost. In lying, you deny yourself the very things that make you human (the true, the good, and the beautiful-known as the transcendentals) and thus degrade yourself.

Now that we understand how lying harms our relationships we can next discuss why it is so important to be true. The purpose of morality is to uphold the dignity of the human person. At its core, truth is important because it upholds who and what we are as human beings. So lying/cheating is always degrading to the human person which goes against morality. This is why morally it is called intrinsically disordered (CCC#1753) and ethically it is degrading to humanity.

We see that the truth about lying is it objectively hurts or destroys our relationships with God, others, and ourselves. It dehumanizes us and the people we are lying to, as well as undermines the very fabric of society, morality, and humanity. This is why truth is important and why LYING IS A BIG DEAL! It is a big deal because WE ARE A BIG DEAL. We deserve better. We deserve to love and be loved not in fictionality, but actuality and in doing so we will fulfill our purpose and God’s plan by always upholding our human dignity.

 

Gerard-Marie Anthony is single and has written numerous articles and books through various publications including, Who AM I: The Theology of the Body in Prayer.   He can be reached at his website: www.gmarieforG-O-D.com or by e-mail at: gmarieforG-O-D@hotmail.com .

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4 Comments

  1. Carol-799486 August 13, 2013

    You can lie to the whole world and make yourself a king for the day. But if your reflexion in your mirror tells you otherwise, then your not. Make the face in your mirror your friend and truth will reign in your heart and soul.
    Fear in God must be in the heart of every Catholics out there. We must help those who had gone astray and bring them back to the right path leading to God.
    Its never an easy task but God will guide us all the way when we try.

  2. Diana-952684 August 13, 2013

    I dated a man who lied about who he is on his profile, his height, age, and after finding out the truth, I was upset but I still gave him the benefit of the doubt and continued dating him. After 4 years and much hard work in attempting to bring him to the right path, being kind and generous with him and his family. Allowing his adult child to live with me. Now, I realized I wasted those years of my life. He would even lie to friends and family right in front of me about looking for rings and wanting to get married. At the very end, he finally had the courage after having several beers in him, and me upset after one of those lies. I asked him I want the truth, please! He said; he really did not want to have anyone live with him, he was comfortable living by himself – and marriage was not what he wanted for his future, he felt he was too old. I was hurt and upset because even though I had the evidence that he was liar, I believed him about marriage and stayed far too long.

  3. Phillip-672135 August 13, 2013

    Infidelity is the most emasculating activity that a so-called man can engage in.
    But when a young woman wants to know why I have doubts about the potential of a relationship, and I say, honestly, that her physical appeal has diminished over 3-4 months – that is honesty no girl will plainly accept. So rather than test the artistic bounds of the English language, I come up with something else both less honest, and with less damaging long term effects. Just my experience.
    As a man, I have failed in the past to properly gauge what I want. And it has put me in a position where I look dishonest for “thinking” that I ever wanted something, or someone. Not a mistake I want to make again. I wish only for broken hearts to heal and move on quickly.

  4. Lynea-297530 August 25, 2013

    No, sorry, lying is never the right thing to do.

    If a guy loses attraction to a woman because she gained weight, he wasn’t in love with her in the first place. No where in the marriages vows is there, “Do you take this woman to by your lawfully wedded wife, so long as she stays lookin’ good?” or “So long as she doesn’t expect you to be honest?”

    Here’s a suggestion: stop dating. Only do courtship with the intention of timely marriage when you already are sure: 1.) You understand the meaning of marriage as a Sacrament, 2.) You understand the Church’s teachings on the primary (always open to life) and secondary purposes of marriage, 3.) After 1 and 2, you want to be married in the Church, and only in the Church, 4.) You are committed to putting God first and keeping the Commandments, honoring your spouse, and helping her also get to heaven, 5.) You know what you want in a spouse. Dating to get to know what you want is cruel. No one tries on a pair of shoes, takes them out of the store and wears them indefinitely to see how they make their feet feel and how they look, etc., and then takes them back. People have a much different type of “sole”, and actual “soul” (see what I did there?) and making people out to be just interchangeable partners to trade up is wrong. You court a person with God in mind, to get to know that person, if you are capable of committing. If not, you can be sure you aren’t doing the Holy Will of God. If the person turns out to be something other than what you knew you wanted in the beginning, then you tell them simply, plainly and kindly. If it is a person’s weight, tell them. They may hurt in the beginning, but after a while they will be glad that they dodged that bullet.

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