In our popular culture and mindset we tend to classify people in binary fashion as "good" or "bad." But the reality is more Buddhist-like than the hype. People aren't "bad" if they lie. Everyone lies according to Ariely's research. Dishonesty is not rampant but we have public example after public example of dishonesty by people who have to strongly suspect that one day their behavior will be on public display. What does your Buddhist (or your meditator's) sensibility say you should be on this spectrum, in regard to your own behavior and the behavior of others? Is there such a thing as "bad" person? How should we deal with dishonesty that goes beyond the little white lie?
The administrator has disabled public write access.
Dishonesty and Being Human
11 May 2015 06:36 #98756
My model for what it takes to become a basically good human is... failing your way to success. Humans are fundamentally good, as well as fundamentally lazy, greedy, and selfish. The right culture for really promoting human development needs to have both consequences for bad actions and the possibility of mercy. Otherwise, a huge shadow side is created where we hide our failings, deny our weakness, project what we don't like about ourselves onto other people or groups, fear our own imperfect nature, and cultivate as a culture (or subculture) a kind of "proxy morality" where certain acts and beliefs are fetishized as being "good" without really investigating whether that is true or not. Sometimes I think the overall situation is basically hopeless... but moment by moment it seems like it can still be navigated.