Today’s Blog: Flattery Fogs Perception
TODAY’S PROVERB: One who rebukes a man will in the end find more favor than one with a flattering tongue. Proverbs 28:23, TLV
Who doesn’t like a little flattery now and then? Or should we? I used to think it was no big deal to dish out or receive flattery, until I realized it was at best almost-lying, and at worst manipulation.
Really? Unfortunately, yes.
Basically, there are two types of flatterers: 1) The appeaser, and 2) the sycophant.
The appeaser always agrees with the one they admire — a leader, friend, or public figure. Their goal is to please and ingratiate themselves however and whenever they can. They have difficulty thinking for themselves and seek others they admire to decide for them — not advise them, but make the decision for them. It’s nearly impossible for them to think critically because they view it as negativity, which translates, to them, as disloyalty.
The sycophant on the surface appears like an appeaser, but in reality uses flattery to gain an advantage over a person — especially a leader, friend, or public figure. They have their own agenda and create a false sense of security and trust in those they work with, for, or with whom they are friendly. Their goal is to control and gain power. If their efforts are unfruitful, they will move on and find someone else to use. Should they succeed, they will move on taking whatever and whomever they can with them.
Foggy Perception . . .
Both types of flatterers are of no value to us. One sees us unrealistically. The other sees us as a means to success. Both create a foggy perception of reality and truth. It’s a waste of time and can have painful results.
If people only tell us what they think we want to hear, we’ll never mature emotionally or spiritually.
We need conflict. As an author, I know that conflict is necessary to my character’s development. The hero’s journey is always fraught with conflict. They learn from opinions and experiences different than their own.
As iron sharpens iron, so a person sharpens the countenance of his friend.PROVERBS 27:17, TLV
Having people in our lives that are honest and supportive are treasures. They know when to encourage and when to tell us we’re wrong. Even if we don’t agree with someone who corrects us, be grateful they care enough to do it.