Wednesday, September 8, 2010


            Once in awhile, you wear designer knockoffs, Chanel sunglasses you bought from a sidewalk vendor for ten bucks.
            And that Louis bag? Bought at a street market in Rome.
            You didn't steal them. You weren't going to buy the real ones, and you're not stopping anyone who is. You don't hide the fact that you wear them from your friends.
            It's about as little as a little white lie gets. It's no big deal.
           Women who thought they were wearing fake designer shades, even though they might be wearing the real thing, were more than TWICE as likely to cheat and lie when observed by researchers at Duke, Harvard, and the University of North Carolina.
           These same women were much more likely to judge people as dishonest, untruthful, and unethical.        
           That's just from wearing or thinking they were wearing a pair of fake sunglasses that were randomly handed to them. These women didn't even go out and buy them.
           How much damage are we doing to ourselves and the people we love when we 'lie' in some way, or misrepresent ourselves? What toll is it taking on us and our relationships? How likely are we to find the life and love we want in a world that we see as more dishonest, untruthful, and unethical.
           I'm not knocking people who wear knockoffs. And who tells the truth and nothing but the truth all the time? But it of utmost importance to be aware of who we really are and what is most true for us.
           The great teachers have always said, "The truth will set you free."
           Try the sunglasses. If they don't work, maybe the truth will.


1 comment:

  1. Great stuff, John. The mind-body link is really strong - I read in some book - I think it was "Predictably Irrational" - how when a speaker mentions words or phrases about getting older, then people in the audience leave the room walking measurably slower and more hunched over than people who don't hear those words.

    It would be great if you could put down some references to some of the research you're reading.
    One along these lines that I really like is Dan Gilbert's "Stumbling Towards Happiness". It's partly about how bad people are at imagining how their life would be in different situations, so we spend time scared and avoiding things that aren't really so bad if they really happen.