We are all liars. Every single one of us. There is not, nor has there ever been a person cursed with the gift of total honesty. It is an impossibility. It is an end result of the competitive nature of our society. We are continually measuring ourselves against others. So much so that in the end our intentions often blur into a philosophical wet patch which causes us great discomfort when we are forced to sleep in it. Rather than continually reassess our beliefs and ideas it is often more comfortable to roll over and ignore the discharge of doubt as if it isn’t there.
The biggest problem for a race of liars is often the raising of ones children. In an ideal world a parent should introduce a sense of values which they themselves have accumulated over the years. The child should look upon their parent with awe, both inspired by their wisdom and dazzled by their brilliance. However we are disregarding a few things here. First of all we don’t all live in tents in the desert. Which means that a parent has to compete with the television, with google and with popular culture for the child’s attention, love and respect. The pressure the lying parent feels to compete against these things is immense. They often try to distract the child for their own failings with meaningless clichés, meant to soften the blows to their own ego rather than to encourage or motivate their offspring. None of these statements are more redundant than the following:
It’s not the winning it’s the taking part that counts.
First said by some arsehole somewhere.
The first thing I want to make clear is that there is no truth to it whatsoever. It is always the winning which matters. Nothing else does because from the very beginning of our lives to the very end, our lives are infinitely better if we are winners.
Pick a war, any war. Ask a soldier. Not winning in something as serious as war often equates with death. Perhaps it’s an extreme example. How about in your working life? There are three people up for promotion. You are the oldest, with the most experience. You get interviewed but don’t get the job. The bigger office, the extra 20 thousand a year, which would have meant you could have got a mortgage on a bigger house and finally started a family are all gone in the blink of an eye. However it doesn’t matter, because you took part. How about love? The most beautiful girl in your high school. All the boys want her. You ask her out. She laughs in your face and tells everyone in school that you are an idiot. Of course you don’t feel sad, because you took part.
The problem with propagating lies to children is that they do have an impact in unforeseen ways. We are in grave danger of producing a society of kids who just don’t give a shit. Why should they even try to win if it doesn’t matter? We are sucking the motivation out of them by being overly reassuring. What’s wrong with trying your best to win and not being good enough? It’s going to happen often enough in their adult lives that one day they may even thank you for it.
Life is about winning, from the moment it begins until the moment it ends. Denying it, is like claiming that the sky is green. If you don’t believe me ask the other 179,999,999 sperm your father ejaculated when you were created. That’s right you can’t. Because they didn’t win the greatest lottery of them all. I am sure if you did ask them they would say ‘It’s not the winning it’s the taking part that counts’.