Prompt: Honesty is the cornerstone of all success, with confidence and ability to perform shall cease to exist.
-------Mary Kay Ash, founder of Mary Kay Cosmetics, Inc
Assignment: Are people bound to tell the truth at all times, or are there situations in which it is better to lie and tell only partial truths?
A dark shadow runs away in the middle of the night with the silverware. He is caught and brought back church by the police. What’s happen with this man? He is Jean Valjean, a miserable man, a prisoner, who has just been released from prisonment in the Bagne of Toulon after nineteen years old. He thinks that he will be accused by Bishop Myriel. However, the old benevolent vicar not only rescues him by claiming that is a gift for him, but also gives him two silver candlesticks such as forgot things. It is a deliberate lie for saving Jean Valjean’s life. I believe that a lie occurs in this case is most important than a hundred of truths. It is humanity, benevolence, compassion and altruism to encourage others to believe in people’s love, in better life and fix their mistakes, also lights a fire of hope for the future and avoids hurting someone’s felling.
Good lies are commonly showed in the literature to achieve perfect humanity of great novels. Standing on the boundary of live and die, lie and truth, human compassion always chooses to tell a lie if they think that it will help someone. For example, according to “Les Miserable” of Victor Hugo, a French author, we are easy to realize that the benevolent vicar’s lie escapes Jean Valjean out of prison although vicar did not know who he is and where he comes from. This lie opens new entrance for a prisoner for living better. From the kindness of heart of vicar, he appreciates his mistakes and tries to do his best for starting new life from nothing. He also attempts to help others like him such as Fantine, Costte,… Actually, the lies in some situations can pull wrongdoers from the dark, vast and deep gulf to create their life’s belief. In reality, a lie or partial truth can light a fire of hope for the people’s future, especially patient. A doctor’s choice is always telling a lie about serious diseases of a patient. A perfect example is telling a lie or partial truth than a truth for a depressed man. He just still lives in 6 months and nothing can not save his life after that, the doctors will tell that he still have 50-50 chance to live. This is the easiest solution to promote his life because any truths at this time make him more depressed and lead to suicide. When he believes he still has a chance, he will pray and respect his remainder time, which is a time of gaiety, sharing with his friends, remembering his past and hoping good things for the future. Needles to say, the lies from the doctors are sometime miracle for patient getting their belief to overcome their diseases. Furthermore, a hurting someone’s feeling can be avoided by just a lie. When my cousin was a senior of university in Ho Chi Minh City, my uncle can not overcome his cancer and dies before three days she defended her thesis. Her family decided to keep this news until she defended successfully. When she called, everybody told lie that her dad was still good because the bad news not only hurted her feeling but also harmed her career. She could be depressed and gave up all things so that was a good solution for her potential career. A white lie at some moments is better than hurting someone’s feeling and destroy their future. A truth is always good to get honesty and success but a lie in right way can help reduce people’s depression, even save other life. Fibbing is a perfect quick fix to a sticky situation and makes our life easier. We should be an intelligent liar in useful circumstances if it really help one but do not damage others.
TOEFL listening discussions: A conversation between a student and an HR interviewer