Is Making Excuses Acceptable? Is There A Perfect Alibi?
Be not ashamed of mistakes and thus make them crimes.— Confucious
The best way to avoid making up excuses and alibis is to never do anything illegal or morally or ethically incorrect, but human beings make mistakes. They often lie to cover their embarrassment at such occurrences and to escape harsh consequences.
Alibi (noun) - A claim or piece of evidence that one was elsewhere when an act, typically a criminal one, is alleged to have taken place. Informally, an excuse. Do we really need excuses?
Conventional Wisdom, Thought, and Alibis
A philosopher and teacher of Old in China, Confucius (approx. 551-479 BC) also used the alias Kong Zi and Kong Qiu or Zhong Ni.
Yo Yo Ma once reportedly stated that it has been said that Confucius accompanied himself on a zither type of instrument called a "qin" or Gugin while he sang his now-famous sayings. Thus, his wisdom was also musical and artistic.
I cannot play a Gugin instrument, but I have played an autoharp in the past, so I would have to use that instead of the gin if I were to recite wisdom with musical accompaniment.
My own opinion about alibis, in a couple of my Haiku:
If you do not wish
Consequences, then do not
Do anything wrong.
[If you still get into trouble, hire Alan Shore.]
If you do not want
Trouble, do not go into
Places where it dwells.
If one needs to formulate an alibi, perhaps a false alibi, I think one's success depends upon many things. Success may depend upon how well one can apply logic, spin information, and function as an actor.The best success if avoiding the situation entirely.
The elements of success seem to true to the content in the TV series Boston Legal. It makes me laugh and is a good time. Another thing that makes me laugh is listening to students produce excuses for late or missing homework assignments.
An actor once said that if you cannot access some part of yourself in playing a role, then you are not acting - you are lying.
Lying may have its place, such as in times of being held captive by the enemy during a war. Otherwise, I think lying, excuses, and (false) alibis are not appropriate.
Wisdom Applied to Alibis and Excuses
Some of the opinions of Confucius that might be applied to alibis, with my comments:
- Fine words and an insinuating appearance are seldom associated with true virtue.
- Hold faithfulness and sincerity as first principles.
- The cautious seldom err.
- A man who has committed a mistake and doesn't correct it, is committing another mistake.
- Be not ashamed of mistakes and thus make them crimes.
- To be able to practice five things everywhere under heaven constitutes perfect virtue: gravity, generosity of soul, sincerity, earnestness, and kindness.
- The superior man is modest in his speech, but excels in his actions.
- He who merely knows right principles is not equal to him who loves them. (The less virtuous will compromise and come up with false alibis).
- The man who moves a mountain begins by carrying away small stones. (As in building an alibi ahead of time, piece by piece.)
- The superior man acts before he speaks, and afterwards speaks according to his actions ("Let your yes mean yes and your no mean no").
- He who speaks without modesty will find it difficult to make his words good.
- Ignorance is the night of the mind, but a night without moon and star. (The less informed may be fooled by a false alibi.)
The superior man acts before he speaks, and afterwards speaks according to his actions.— Confucious
- When a man's knowledge is sufficient to attain, and his virtue is not sufficient to enable him to hold, whatever he may have gained, he will lose again. (The non-virtuous person will trip themselves up in their own web of deception.)
- By nature, men are nearly alike; by practice, they are carried far apart.
- To see what is right and not to do it, is want of courage.
- The determined scholar and the man of virtue will not seek to live at the expense of injuring their virtue. They will even sacrifice their lives to preserve their virtue complete. (No false alibis.)
- Recompense injury with justice, and recompense kindness with kindness. (Don't make a false alibi to avoid consequences.)
- In his errors a man is true to type. Observe the errors and you will know the man.
- The superior man, when resting in safety, does not forget that danger may come. When in a state of security he does not forget the possibility of ruin. - (Even if innocent, sometimes a person is found guilty. For example, if one is alone and no one can be a witness to their whereabouts during a criminal act or an unwanted act a friend or lover accuses one of.)
One last quote:
"All I know is just what I read in the papers, and that's an alibi for my ignorance." - Will Rogers
Alibis For All - "Alibis" in Place Names
- Aliens & Alibis Books -- 6554 Wilshire Drive; Columbia , South Carolina 29209. The bookstore usually is home to at least two cats, but specializes in science fiction, fantasy, mysteries and the like. New and used books are a treat.
- Alibis Eatery & Spirits -- Restaurant and jazz supper club in Pennsylvania at 10 N Pitt St. in Carlisle.
© 2007 Patty Inglish
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