I called to wish my grandma a happy birthday, she's 90, devout Catholic. She started in on me about going to church. If I told her what I really thought, it would kill her, so I lied and told her that I go every Sunday. I just feel bad about lying, but feel like I had no choice. Does anyone else ever find themselves in similar situations?
I think there are occasions when it is ethical to tell a lie. I have lied to avoid hurting people. I have also lied to mean, aggressive people, to get along and keep the peace. You know, a situation where a boss or the boss's favorite pet, demands information about my opinions, lifestyle and that sort of thing. (It goes w/o saying that I have to keep the paychecks coming until I can leave that toxic workplace.) Survival lies and kindness lies. If telling the truth will cause problems you can't solve, then you must use your judgment.
My grandmother was a devout Catholic who was surprisingly understanding when I left the Catholic church. I didn't tell her though, my mother did. It helped that I was her favorite grandchild. To my amazement, my father who never attended Mass (a mortal sin for which you go to hell if you don't repent and he never did) was very intolerant of my leaving and argued about it constantly. You never really know.
I don't talk about treligion with my parents and they don't know how I really feel. In their mind they see me as a non practicing catholic who doesn't go to church. And they bug me about it sometimes, but for the most part they let it be. If I told them my true beliefs as a non believer, they would feel like failures as parents, and based on their own religious beliefs would have to accept that I am doomed for some eternal punishment. I see know reason to burden them with that. I let them believe what they want to believe. They can believe in their religious myths. And they can believe that I still hold onto a part of that. It doesn't bother me or affect me.