Wednesday, February 8th, 2023 18:22:02

Tales Of Lies

Updated: June 5, 2015 10:02 pm

SATIRICUS is not very good at telling lies. He used to think that it is because telling an acceptable lie is too fine an art for a clumsy fellow like him to master. But it now seems that is only one part of the answer. The other part could be that in these days of advanced science and technology there seem to be too many people around who know enough neuroscience to spot a lie when told to them. An American neuroscientist by name Maria Popova recently wrote a regular article on how to do it. She used a mixture of communication science and linguistic analysis to find out that there are some most common patterns that people follow when they lie. According to her, liars tend to tell very little about themselves because subconsciously they want to dissociate themselves from the lie they are telling. Liars also tend to be more ‘negative’ because, again subconsciously, they feel guilty. She also says liars tend to keep their lies “straightforward”, because the brain finds it difficult to build a complex set of lies.

What does all this mean? To tell the truth, it means telling a good enough lie is a matter of complex science that is beyond this simpleton. Take the first scientific premise—it says Satiricus has to dissociate himself subconsciously from the lie he tells. Does that mean Satiricus is a combo of a good Satiricus and a bad Satiricus and while the bad Satiricus lies the good Satiricus says sorry, folks, I don’t have anything to do with that? Secondly, says this neuroscientist, a liar tends to be subconsciously ‘negative’ because he feels guilty. That is truly nonsensical. For how can Satiricus show guilty negativity when he is telling a lie with a positively innocent face? And finally, says the neuroscientist, a liar can be found out unless he keeps his lie “straightforward”, because “the brain finds it difficult to build a complex set of lies”.

Now that part of neuroscience Satiricus can quite understand. For it means a lie has to be straightforward because the brain cannot handle a complex lie. Putting it another way, a liar can get away with his lie only if his brain is smart enough for that lie. Otherwise what happens? Otherwise he has to stick to telling the truth.

Ergo, Satiricus is always truthful. He always tells true lies.

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