Hypocrisy vs. Integrity

Hypocrisy is a state of mind unconcerned with honesty and marked with unconscious contradictions and inconsistencies. As the mind is naturally egocentric (lack of the ability to appreciate the point of view of others nor the limitations in our own point of view), it is naturally hypocritical. While we all posses certain beliefs (religion, cultural, political, etc.), we often fail to behave in accordance with those beliefs. Only to the extent that our beliefs and actions are consistent, only when we say what we mean and mean what we say do we have true intellectual integrity! The appearance of intellectual integrity is important to the egocentric mind — this is why humans actively hide their hypocrisy from themselves and others.

Hypocritical individuals tend to have higher standards for those with whom they disagree than they have for themselves or friends. They often fail to live in accordance with their professed beliefs. In addition, the fail to see contradictions in the behaviors of people with whom they identify.

Resolving a life of integrity means that you must examine your own inconsistencies and face them truthfully, without excuses. If you cannot face your hypocrisy, you will never move beyond it. Recognition of the need to be true to one’s own thinking, to be consistent in the intellectual standards one applies, to hold one’s self to the same rigorous standards of evidence and proof to which one holds one’s antagonists, to practice what one advocates for others, and to honestly admit discrepancies in one’s own thoughts and actions.

Take note of situations where you expect more from others than you do yourself. Realize that what you believe is embedded in your actions, not your words. Think about the way you are living your life. At the same time, observe others. Analyze the extent to which they say one thing and do another. Try to compare their words to their deeds. Look at Catholic priests, for instance. They serve to promote a religion of peace and love through the teachings of Christ, yet they ruin the live of young children through molestation. Consider the parents that tell their children to do this or that, then do the exact opposite themselves. Notice the people that pridefully wear the Christian badge, yet does live-up to their professed Christian standards.

It’s all around. Be true to yourself. Do not simply talk a good game, prove it by actions. Anyway can talk, but not everyone can do.

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