Cora Judd's Reviews > Lying

Lying by Sam Harris
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Sep 20, 11

Read on September 01, 2011, read count: 2

Harris' writing here is so clear and elegant that it might be easy for one to mistake his ideas as simple. However, while 'Lying' can be read in a sitting, it can be mulled over for a very long time.

The ideas that linger are of the power of honest speech. Of his lie-related proposals, however, the most compelling is the destructive nature of the white lie; the one we tell out of compassion or embarrassment. I'm equally moved by his portrayal of plain truth-telling as a "source of power and an engine of simplicity" in relationships. He makes no statement without logically supporting it and provides a few examples that will resonate with a pang. (Bonus: the only really correct way to answer the "does this make me look fat" type of question)

I think it's an essential topic at a time when we've acquired so many social personas (masks?) for our complex lives and, unfortunately, a little lying here and there is seeming much less shameful than it once was.
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Betsy Sounds really interesting.


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