People will tell you that truth is the greatest virtue, and they value this virtue the most. They lie unknowingly.
It needs a great courage to accept truth whatever it might be. Conflicts that rage within are not easy to resolve. Truth is very difficult to accept as most of the times it goes against our prejudices and conditioning. It shatters many illusions we have created about ourselves. It forces us to see that we are not as high and evolved as we thought of ourselves. It makes us see our shortcomings too painfully.
As long as we are engrossed in the world of thoughts, everything seems hunky dory. We can focus on lofty thoughts and ignore the baser ones. Reading books gives us the illusion that we know much; they make us gyaan-paapi. But as we delve in to ourselves a bit deeper, at the level of emotions, we come to know what really drives us. We can’t fool our emotions, our gut feelings. They know nothing of all the books we have read. They know nothing of what we think of ourselves. They come like storms and show us the shaky foundations of our concepts and thoughts. If we are able to watch ourselves when we are being buffeted by our emotions, we would see what we really are. This vision is painful as it shows us the reality about ourselves. It shows us how much we are controlled by our conditioning. It shows us how we are programmed to behave, and live, against our true nature. It makes us feel ashamed of ourselves because of our notions of what is right and what is wrong which are nothing but imposed concepts. To preserve the image we have so painstakingly built of ourselves, we start denying. We start lying to ourselves.