Lying is a vice that causes dishonesty, as well as deception between people in a community. Lies mostly involve giving a person wrong or misleading information with an intention of deceiving him. However, telling the truth does not always work as the most practical solution to some situations. People lie once in a while and to the extent it helps make life easier, but still it cannot be termed as being the precise thing to do. In given situations, lying is permissible though not entirely right, depending on its nature and impact.
Statistics show that an average person tells between 8-12 untruths in every hour he is awake. After proper reflection of the daily activities and interactions with other people, we can intuit that lying is not only common, but also more necessary than we expect. Without a doubt, truth is necessary for good cohesion and welfare of any given society. Lying is permissible in situations where the teller does not have an option, and telling the truth might bring physical harm to him. For example, if a person is being held at gun point and asked some questions, most answers will be given depending on what the gunman wants to hear, and not the truth. Most parents tell fictional stories that can also be termed as lying because their children believe every bit. However, the lies act as entertainment and creative tools for the children as they grow up.
For example, parents tell their kids that Santa Claus, and tooth fairies exist while, in the bona Fide world, that is not the case. The degree of these lies in negligible as they do not cause harm or much dishonesty to anyone, hence permissible.
Lying, in some cases, can be a more moral thing to do than telling the truth depending on the repercussions that occur after. Telling a lie can sometimes be used to get the truth from a person, though it should be used as the only remaining option. This technique is mostly used by policemen during interrogation, which is part of their reversed psychology. They may make up stories to make a suspect think they know much more than they do. The suspect being interrogated maybe withholding crucial information that maybe an issue of national security. The lies will work as a tool to get the truth, which will in turn save many lives. Again, a lie is permissible if it leads to more good than harm.
Incase a suspicious person is looking for information to use it maliciously against someone else, lying is permissive. By telling the lie, the welfare of the victim is protected, and the perpetrator does not get to succeed in his malice. The permissiveness to lie has previously been highlighted by renowned philosophers like Plato. He allowed physicians in his vicinity to lie to patients if the situation dictated that they had to, and for the good of the patient. Plato also suggested that statesmen were allowed to lie to their subjects if the lie was intended for the good of the community. Modern Christian thinkers have been divided on the issue that lying, together with other falsehoods are permissible in some situations.
People also lie permissibly so as not to appear arrogant or for modesty purposes. Different people have different tastes in fashion and food depending on their culture, and upbringing.
For example, a person maybe wearing an outfit that looks ridiculous or crazy, but if they ask how they look in it a lie is told for modesty purposes. If the truth prevailed, it would hurt the other person’s feelings, and maybe even cause hatred.
The worldly values stand on three principal pillars, which are peace, justice, and truth. Truth is hence essential in the society for it leads to other virtues like honesty. However, some situations call for an individual to lie especially for safety reasons or for decency. It is thus not necessary for the public to take an absolutist approach towards lying for it is not used for the same purpose in all cases. This does not justify lying as the truth is seen to be the mark of God. Lying for a good is permissible, and what is wrong is habitual lying which leads to deception among people.
Not all lying is aimed at dishonesty or bringing deception upon the subject, but in some cases, it can be used for a noble cause. Hence, lies are permissible in some situations, depending on the intention of the person telling the lie.