Lying is an art

Sometimes I wonder what was the first lie ever told. Could’ve been something small, like “I didn’t eat your mammoth”, or “I didn’t break your stick”, but it could’ve been something bigger, like “we’re going to be alright”, “I’ll take care of you”. I suppose it comes down to whoever was born first: a con man, or a hero.


Mark Twain said that the religion was created, when the first con man met the first fool. Might be true. That would make this con man the most important person in the human history. He set the precedence with which we still struggle today. He would be a genius, wouldn’t he? We’re talking about times when supposedly complete honesty was the way to go. Due to lack of any known alternatives, but still. And he broke out of that system, introduced something new. More than that, he manipulated it. This has to be the biggest scam in the human history, if you think about it. How did he even came up with that idea? What thought process led him to invent a god? It’s easy for us, of course, there are thousands and thousands of deities across the various cultures and fictional worlds, but back then, this was an absolute novelty, a fresh idea. Something that at the time had to seem so abstract, so surreal, and yet he sold it. Of course, there’s a chance he believed his own theories. He lied to himself, in other words.

Either way, we can see how powerful lies are. Truth is boring, it’s singular. And if you think, that so is the lie, you’re wrong. When you decide to tell the truth, there’s just one thing you can say. But if you’re lying, you tap into that unlimited source of magic coming straight out of your imagination. Nobody knows where it can lead you, not even yourself until you’re done.

Because you see, lying is an art. When you lie, you create an alternate universe, a reality of your own making, a completely new timeline. But that’s not all. If there’s nobody who can prove you’re lying, this fictional world becomes just as valid as the truth. That’s what an undiscovered lie is, right? If it’s accepted, if it’s undeniable due to lack of evidence or witnesses, it’s just as useful as truth, sometimes more useful. Truth doesn’t always suit your needs, but the lie, your lie, does. And it takes a real artist to create a fictional world so big, so realistic, so believable and well designed, that it consumes the truth, replacing it perfectly.

Lying to yourself is another ability that can prove most useful. Telling yourself the same lie over and over again, until it starts to resemble a promise that you make, is a great way to live through difficult time. You know what I mean. You call it self-motivation, I call it lying to yourself. It only sounds more negative, because you don’t look at lying the way I look at it.

Of course, the world consists not only of artists. There’s plenty of amateurs too. And they do what they can to ruin that otherwise beautiful branch of arts. Denying the obvious truth, lying to someone’s face when it matters, that’s not right, of course it’s not. But credit where credit is due, the creator, who shifts the truth with such a grace and competence, that he leaves the world better than it was back when it was still enslaved by the reality, is, to me, nothing short of an artists.

-Calmest Waters


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