"Absolute honesty" (or absolute anything) may sound impossible to achieve, but striving for it is important to building character and developing personal integrity, which are among our goals for FFS students. One teenage girl, who has become increasingly more honest since her arrival, recently owned up not to lying, but to "exaggerating" about how much homework she had. It got her out of helping another student with a chore she didn't feel like doing. She admitted it later, during a discussion of honesty at the table. "I guess there's no way around it," she said. "When we're not being absolutely honest, we're being dishonest."
She's right. Exaggerating may seem harmless, just like rationalizing, fudging, telling half-truths, or omitting certain facts can also seem harmless. But they all compromise the truth when the goal is to remain consciously honest.