The average person lies twice in the first ten minutes of meeting someone new, and up to 50 percent of the time when speaking to their mother. A study showed that 99 percent of people lie, and even the few who claimed not to, probably also are lying.
What if just for a day you were incapable of telling a lie, no matter how small?
According to anthropologists, there is a tribe that dwells in the mountains of Central America who are unable to lie, ever. The Tarahumara people, famed for their long distance running, avoided the influence of outsiders for thousands of years. In doing so, they also maintained a strict moral code based on utmost honesty.
The Tarahumara still place this value system above all else. Some psychologists believe that over time, their emphasis on truth-telling caused changes in brain chemistry. They may have less gray matter in the prefrontal cortex, the part of the brain responsible for creating lies. What started as a moral obligation to tell the truth may have become a physiological trait of the members of this unique tribe.
So does this mean that it’s possible for all humans to evolve out of lying?
Well maybe, but it doesn’t sound very likely, does it? According to some sources, lying was first used by humans to promote cooperation and to create bonds between individuals. That’s why one of the most common types of lies is a white lie, that is, a lie considered to be harmless. Oftentimes white lies are told to protect someone from hearing something that will hurt their feelings.
When language developed, lying quickly became easier and more common. Can you imagine how difficult it would be to lie without using any words? Language makes it possible for humans as young as two to lie.
Instead of evolving out of lying, exactly the opposite is happening. As we evolve, we lie more. But there’s good news! Individually, we tell fewer lies as we age. We may not evolve out of lying as a species, but as individuals over the course of a single lifetime, there is still hope.
Are you more honest as you age?