I recently rediscovered a fun fact while doing some research for a new project on Myers-Briggs and Greek divinities: telling successful lies is considered a godlike quality in Greek mythology.
Honesty, in other words, is not the best policy when you're a participant in the Greek story culture.
Image: re-caption this in the comments if you wish. It's my own caption and a work in progress.
Makes sense, since the main ethical principle of the Greeks was, "Do good to your friends, and evil to your enemies." Unlike in Christianity, values are not generalized in the ancient Greek world. Everyone knew how to love their neighbor, and they mostly did-- until someone crossed them.
Divinities were not moral paragons, either. They lied to suit their aims, and took great pleasure in disguising themselves as humans and telling big whoppers to their mortal victims.
Of the heroes, however, the talent of lying was predominantly attributed to Odysseus. He was a fine prevaricator, and used lies to get out of various scrapes.
Which got me to thinking: which Myers-Briggs types make the best, shall we say, storytellers? Do those types correspond with the types of the divinities who are the best liars in Greek mythology?
I took a quick look at a thread here, where people seem to have discussed everything under the sun concerning Jungian personality. Who are the best liars? The results, over 6 pages of shooting the virtual breeze: ENFJ 2, INTJ 1, ENTP 7, ESTP 2, ENTJ 3, ENFP 3, ESFJ 1, ISTP 1, INFP 1.
Which should validate the post of a predictably fair-minded and justice-oriented ENFJ, who said,
All the answers here are going to reflect nothing more than personal experiences, and lying is a trait that has a lot to do with morality. Depending on how that line is drawn there for an individual, any type could fall into this category, and we do. Nobody in his or her life has told the truth 100% of the time.
Fair point. Still, the fact that ENTP won the sweepstakes is significant for Myers-Briggs and Greek mythology. That type is characterized by Hermes, Prince of Thieves and King of Deception. If you have read the Homeric Hymn to Hermes, you know that he loves to lie and gains great benefit from it.
Hermes: not your father's messenger of Zeus.
But to return briefly to our justice-minded ENFJ, if you are an ENTP reading this, does that mean I am going to pounce on the first thing you say and accuse you of lying? Is personality type destiny?
Hmmm, no. But if you claim to have invented flying boots, I will be, shall we say, skeptical.