Today the destructive and disruptive effect of lying is damaging family life in an indescribable way. Lying comes across us as one of the worst characteristic in married life as it is in every other aspect of life. Its opposites such as honesty, loyalty, telling the truth are, however, assurances of a happy marriage. One of the main reasons that cause unrest in the family is unfortunately the “lack of confidence between husband and wife.” The first and foremost bad character that causes and feeds the mistrust between a husband and wife is to lie by word or by actions.
When you are married, there is nothing more painful than not to be able to trust a person whom you always live with. “Is he lying again?” “Is he deceiving me again?” “What lie is it this time?” These thoughts in the mind poison the marriage. Continuous doubt and mistrust about a husband or a wife end peace and happiness between them. What is more, Allah forbid, it finishes the marriage. We often hear the following from a husband and wife who have the problem of lying: “First it started with little lies. This opened a door to other wrongs later. I could no more differentiate whether he is telling the truth or lying. I lost my confidence in him and these dishonest behaviours of him made me anxious about the future. How am I going to live a life with a liar? I am really worried.”
I want to share some experimented suggestions as 15 articles which I believe can help solve this social problem:
- First of all, it is our Lord, our Creator, Who wants us to be honest people. Faith represents honesty; lying represents denial. We are the servants of Allah. As required by our belief, we must be truthful people to gain His pleasure. We should keep in mind that our beloved Prophet (pbuh) said “A believer might have some (bad) habits, but he never lies and betrays”, thus, he took up a position against lying; he hated the liars. No one that our Lord and our Prophet love is a liar or a fraud. This is because lying is a characteristic of disbelievers, hypocrites and mischief makers whom Allah and all the prophets never love.
- Family, the oldest institution of human history, cannot be built upon a lie. This is because one of the most basic principles necessary for the continuation of the marriage is that husband and wife must be honest and reliable. Therefore, for whatever reason it might be, they should never tell lies to one another.
- Deeds like lying, cheating, and deception are poisons that break up families and destroy their happiness. Which parents would want to poison their family? Lying is a really painful poison that makes an entire society suffer in pain and agony.
- Shouldn’t it frighten us to have a bad character which we would not want our children to adopt? “You cannot get a straight line with a curved ruler,” said Imam Ali (ra). Isn’t his message clear? Are the parents aware that due to their lying they turn their children into liars?
- A lie first harms the liar. The spouse, whose lie will be exposed one day, enters into a state of distress. He becomes anxious, has fear and lives with that fear. He lives a double life to prevent his lie from being exposed. A liar moves away from his real character and becomes dishonest over time. For this reason, couples must keep in mind that they become characterless through lying.
- Lying is not among the necessities of family life. Lying cannot be the source of happiness or peace at all. On the contrary, being as honest and sincere as to not need any lies is a must for marriage.
- Underestimating some lies as white lies is a grave danger. It is a major mistake of couples to underestimate white lies. A lie cannot be little or big, white or black. A lie is a lie.
- Believing and relying on one’s husband or wife is the insurance of the marriage. No couple likes having a lack of trust. The relationship between couples is harmed by lack of trust – especially when one is not believed even if he is telling the truth. For this reason, if we wish to be reliable, we should first live honestly in ourselves; one that does not live honestly cannot make others have honesty. Moreover, we should not forget that suspicious behaviours, which open a door into distrust (su-i zan) and raise doubts, incite the curiosities and suspicions of the family especially in this digital age when people have passwords for everything.
- Sometimes even a small lie is enough to shake a couples’ trust in each other. Let’s say you lied to your wife or husband, and then your lie was exposed somehow. This causes you to lose your credibility in everything although you speak truly. Is it worth it to lose your credibility with one lie?
- The number of lies among couples increases in multiples like 1, 3, 9, 27 etc. That is, one lie can be covered up by 2 more lies; 3 lies can only be concealed by 6 more lies. One would have to say 18 more lies to their wife or husband and relatives and friends in order to blanket their 9 lies.
- In married life, couples should not force one another to tell lies. Some people confess that they unwillingly lie when others come down on them. If everything can be sincerely spoken about in married life, there will be no room left for lying. For this reason, couples should avoid every kind of words and behaviours that may leave one another no choice but to lie.
- A lying spouse loses his reliability; he cannot get rid of suspicious gazes. It is really difficult to differentiate whether a liar is lying or speaking truly at any given time. This is where the lack of confidence begins. Your husband or wife and people around you are not so stupid or foolish that they will believe you all the time. It is really a bad situation to live with a person who does not believe and trust you. What is worse still, you make your wife or husband live with someone who is not reliable. Do you realize this?
- Lying is like the absorbing element in mathematics. His social circle abandons a liar when they realize he is dishonest. Every lie you tell “absorbs” the closeness you feel with your husband or wife, your happiness, and especially your prestige in the family.
- One of the most apparent reasons of lying is the mistakes and wrongs made willingly or unwillingly. Couples should be able to honestly confess their mistakes and wrongs by not disregarding the possibility that they can have faults and flaws. This is because, as Imam Bediuzzaman Said Nursi says, “The person who accuses his soul sees his faults. And he who admits his faults seeks forgiveness for them. And he who seeks forgiveness takes refuge with Allah. And he who takes refuge with Allah is saved from Satan’s evil. Not to see one’s faults is a greater fault than the first fault. And not to admit to one’s faults is a serious defect. If one sees the fault, it ceases to be a fault. If one admits it, one becomes worthy of forgiveness.” (The Thirteenth Flash)
- The best shield for couples is righteousness and honesty; for lying and liars cannot protect them forever. The lie of a liar will be exposed sooner or later. It is a universal truth that lying protects a human once, but truth protects always.
As a result, to be a credible, reliable husband or wife is only possible by being a righteous and honest person. Seeing that even one lie is enough to shake the trust in the family, couples should rather be honest with one another, speak truly in every condition, and live such a life that they should never need to lie.