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Count thy Blessings, Count thy Lies
January, 2009

We all lie one time or the other. Even kids do. Sometimes you feel it is necessary to overlook the truth. When you tell someone you like their dress even if you don't, it is a lie. When you tell your host that the food was great even if it wasn't, it's a lie again. However, we tell these lies to avoid hurting people's feelings. These are white lies.

Then there are people who lie for personal gains. They may do it to look good socially or to protect themselves or avoid ridicule. These are the lies that hurt. These are the lies that are told to deceive. Some medical experts consider these as genetic disorders. Whether it's a medical condition or weakness of character, the truth is these lies weaken the people who are deceived.

Let me tell you a story.

There was a rather naughty boy who lived in a village. One day he decided to play pranks on some villagers working in their field. He started shouting, "Help! Here's a lion here. Help me!"

The villagers grabbed whatever you could get hold of - sticks, knives, stones - and ran to help him. When they reached there they did not find any trace of the lion. The boy was laughing hilariously and told them that he was just having some fun. The angry villagers returned to their work.

After a few days, the boy played the same prank again. The unsuspecting and simple people ran for his rescue again but discovered he was lying again. They were pretty annoyed at this time.

Unfortunately, one day a lion actually came. The boy shouted for help. But this time no one came to help him. They have been deceived enough.

The lion killed the boy in minutes!

This is a very old story that emphasizes the age old truth passed on to use by generations. Once people know that you are a persistent liar, even your truth becomes a lie.

If you lie to hide some truth that might hurt others, it becomes your habit. Slowly you start thriving in your lies and it no longer matters to you if you are hurting the other person beyond repair. You stop feeling guilty about your lies. They become part of you and there is no turning back. But one thing you forget is that when you break someone's trust, it might become difficult for them to trust you again. And when this cycle is repeated, you lose their respect as well.

So before you speak a lie, just think of its consequences. Is it worth hurting others? Is it worth not being able to look at others with confidence and having to avoid eye contact? Can you sleep in peace knowing that you have wronged someone? As my father used to say, if you feel the need of hiding things or lying, it means you are doing something wrong. If you are true to the core, you won't feel the need to lie or avoid the subject. And for every lie you tell to deceive someone, you receive one less blessing…

Look into your heart today and search for a guilty lie, some false promises, some misleading hopes. Everyone lives with some of these. If you find none, it means you have come too far in your lies and there is no hope…

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