Pinocchio and the Truth
“The greatest trick the devil ever pulled was convincing the world he did not exist.” – Keyser Söze
I recently revisited the story of Pinocchio, the little wooden puppet who became a boy only to discover that his nose would later spring to life, and would do so repeatedly–every time he told a lie. Pinocchio’s nose stood up for truth, unconcerned with the shame its actions brought upon the young lad.
Though I empathize with young Pinocchio because of the social embarrassment the growth of his nose certainly caused, I also envy the instant Pavlovian work that took effect in his life; the very moment he would fib (stimulus), his nose would grow (response). In my life, I often lack an immediate cue after I’ve strayed from the truth.
In fact, I am capable of living out years with my deceptions, unaware of their existence. I can also intentionally weave elaborately constructed tales that are spun from lie upon lie. So I need to think twice before laughing at the apparent lunacy of Pinocchio for fibbing time and again after recognizing what his nose would do as a result.
Knowing the consequences of deception is not alone fully sufficient to enact change. In my life I’ve found that the sheer act of engagement in telling lies can cloud my mind, causing me to more easily believe they are truth. These implied or spoken fallacies move me further away from the truth of my condition, that I am flawed.
To become a real boy, Pinocchio had to be saved and restored. An admittance of weakness and imperfection was required. I, like Pinocchio, am in need of help. I need the Master’s handiwork to be made new. Attempting to achieve a genuine makeover any other way would be fruitless.