Let me ask you a purely academic question: Hello?
— Dean Blehert

Wednesday, January 04, 2006

The Seemy Side

"Be what you would seem to be" said someone -- I think Alice's Duchess. Would the two be's cancel out, leaving "seem"?

But there can be no hypocrisy in "seem" alone. Hypocrisy is a clash between seemings, since what we are is purely the potential to seem to be anything. We are. Then we decide to be someone or something -- and that is what we seem to be. If we then try to be what we seem to be, we have a new seeming (a subtle one) and probably hypocrisy, since we try to be what we effortlessly are.

That effort to be what we effortlessly are is probably what gets us stuck in being that and makes it hard to know that we could be anything else.

Have you ever had anyone insist that you stop lying and tell the truth when you were already telling the truth? I remember a "very nice" street car conductor trying to get me to confess (when I was eight) to something I hadn't done. It felt like being rolled in glue. Whatever I was being at the time (truthful) became something sticky from which I could not easily be extricated.

After all, even truthfulness should be a choice, not a compulsive propitiative mannerism.

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