Courtesy Wikipedia.org

Hypocrisy is the act of pretending to have beliefs, opinions, virtues, feelings, qualities, or standards that one does not actually have.

Hypocrisy typically comes from a desire to mask actual motives or feelings, or from a person's inability to conform to standards they espouse.

Samuel Johnson spoke about hypocrisy in Rambler No. 14:
"Nothing is more unjust, however common, than to charge with hypocrisy him that expresses zeal for those virtues which he neglects to practice; since he may be sincerely convinced of the advantages of conquering his passions, without having yet obtained the victory, as a man may be confident of the advantages of a voyage, or a journey, without having courage or industry to undertake it, and may honestly recommend to others, those attempts which he neglects himself."[1]

Psychologically, hypocrisy can be an unconscious act of self-deception.

It is a common fallacy (see
List of fallacies) to—in an ad hominem attack—accuse someone of being a hypocrite in an attempt to invalidate their argument. In other words, just because someone is a hypocrite, that does not make them wrong.


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