Mar 9, 2015

Definition of Lying

"Lying Takes longer than the truth"

Types of Lying

Lying by omission:

Also known as a continuing misrepresentation, a lie by omission occurs when an important fact is left out in order to foster a misconception. Lying by omission includes failures to correct pre-existing misconceptions. When the seller of a car declares it has been serviced regularly but does not tell that a fault was reported at the last service, the seller lies by omission. It can be compared to dissimulation.


Dissimulation is a form of deception in which one conceals the truth. It consists of concealing the truth, or in the case of half-truths, concealing parts of the truth, like inconvenient or secret information. 

Misleading and Dissembling:

A misleading statement is one where there is no outright lie, but still retains the purpose of getting someone to believe in an untruth. "Dissembling" likewise describes the presentation of facts in a way that is literally true, but intentionally misleading.


A half-truth is a deceptive statement that includes some element of truth. The statement might be partly true, the statement may be totally true but only part of the whole truth, or it may employ some deceptive element, such as improper punctuation, or double meaning, especially if the intent is to deceive, evade, blame or misrepresent the truth.


Minimization is the opposite of exaggeration. It is a type of deception involving denial coupled with rationalization in situations where complete denial is implausible.

Pathological lie

In psychiatry, pathological lying is a behavior of habitual lying. Pathological lying has been defined as "falsification entirely disproportionate to any discernible end in view, may be extensive and very complicated, and may manifest over a period of years or even a lifetime". The individual may be aware they are lying, or may believe they are telling the truth, being unaware that they are relating fantasies.


Gaslighting is a form of psychological abuse where false information is presented to the victim by a spouse or another primary attachment figure, causing the victim to doubt his or her perceptions, judgments, memories, and even sanity. Gaslighting is particularly effective when coupled with other tactics such as shaming and guilting. Anything that aids in getting another person to doubt their judgment and back down will work.

Big lie

A lie which attempts to trick the victim into believing something major which will likely be contradicted by some information the victim already possesses, or by their common sense. When the lie is of sufficient magnitude it may succeed, due to the victim's reluctance to believe that an untruth on such a grand scale would indeed be concocted.

Contextual lie

One can state part of the truth out of context, knowing that without complete information, it gives a false impression. Likewise, one can actually state accurate facts, yet deceive with them. To say "Yeah, that's right, I ate all the white chocolate, by myself," using sarcasm, a form of assertion by ridiculing the fact(s) implying the liar believes it to be preposterous.


Avoiding the subject that the lie is about, not giving attention to the lie. When attention is given to the subject the lie is based around deflectors ignore or refuse to respond. Skillful deflectors are passive-aggressive people, who when confronted with subject choose to ignore and not respond. 


A dismissal lie can be one of the trickiest ones. Dismissing feelings, perceptions, raw facts of a situation as a kind of lie that can do damage to a person just as much as any other lie. Many mental disorders are linked to dismissal lies because they are dismissing their reality. When done within families, many children start out with a clear sense of reality, but then slowly start to loose their grasp due to meticulous and methodical dismissal. While some may not realize that just dismissing something can be considered a lie, if you dismiss something too often you are trying to change reality into something it is not, causing your attention to be focused elsewhere and could be hurting others as more or more than a simple white lie. 

Economical with the truth

A careful use of facts so as not to reveal too much information, as in "speaking carefully".

Haystack answer

A haystack answer (or statement) is a volume of false or irrelevant information, possibly containing a true fact (the needle in the "haystack"). Even if the truth is included, it is difficult or impossible to detect and identify. In this way, the legendary Leprechaun hid his pot of gold, even after it had been found.

Other resources:
Lying : The ultimate manipulation tactic.