Dear Vicki: This is probably a rhetorical question – I doubt that you can really answer it – but what happened to telling the truth? At work, my boss “fudges” numbers to make things look better to his investors. A friend recently said she couldn’t help me paint my bathroom because she had to work late, but another friend saw her that evening laughing it up with a guy at a bar. Even my sister lied to me. She said she loved the blouse I gave her, yet as far as I can tell she hasn’t worn it once. And let’s not even discuss what’s happening politically these days. It is very wrong to tell a lie, so when did it became so acceptable? And why? Is there something the Five Elements model has to say about this? Signed: Still Honest in Hanover
Dear Still Honest: I have to say that I agree with you – as a nation we seem willing to accept dishonesty more easily lately. I also agree that we are not going to discuss political issues here, other than to acknowledge that the people in positions of leadership do affect social norms. What we can cover is why the people in your life might be lying and why it’s affecting you the way it is. Basically, the fact that your response to lying is so strong suggests that you probably have a primary Metal personality, or at least must be acting from that place at this time. Metal people can be very absolute in their ideas of what is right and what is wrong. Coloring inside the lines, so to speak, matters a great deal to them. And the reason for this can be found in the Five Elements model.
The element of Metal sits at the end of the cycle, which means it sees the whole of the cycle and can determine what worked, what didn’t work, and what is of great enough value to be taken forward into the next cycle. From that perspective – from their focus on the past – it’s easy to understand why Metal personalities believe that know what is right, or even best and important, and what isn’t. Further, they often believe that if we know what works really well, we shouldn’t ever want to do anything differently. This is an example of the black and white thinking of a Metal person. Truth is important, so lying is never acceptable. But not everyone is a Metal, and the other elemental personalities each have their own relationship with the concept of lying. Let’s take a quick look.