John Steinbeck’s poem plague near the City Lights Bookstore in San Francisco Chinatown’s Jack Kerouac Alley. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
“It always seemed strange to me… the thing we admire in men, kindness and generosity, openness, honesty, understanding and feeling, are the concomitants of failure in our system. And those traits we detest, sharpness, greed, acquisitiveness, meanness, egotism and self-interest, are the traits of success. And while men admire the quality of the first they love the produce of the second”. [John Steinbeck]
Plato said it early on: “Honesty is for the most part less profitable than dishonesty”.
Honesty (Photo credit: las – initially)
As you read the quote from John Steinbeck about the things we detest, there is a message that gets lost in his quote. It begins with the things we love to see in a person. Honesty. And the fact is, honesty isn’t everything it’s defined to be. Honesty can be one of the things we detest in a person as it hurts and can be excruciating and painful… The truth hurts sometimes, quite often as a matter of fact and it makes it one of the traits we detest. It leads to reading between the lines and out-front that openness that will come with honesty can reveal egotism and self-interest.
Honesty can be the most dangerous game because you can really hurt someone, and hurt them to the bone chilling core and feel as though you’ve done the right thing. The righteous thing. One of the traits we detest. And without intention… Without malice. And even with love. In the end, love hurts too and becomes a trait we detest.