Liar, Liar – Part I: Lies in the Eyes of the Beholder

– By Maha Nadeem Akhtar, NUST Science Blog

After having (proudly) tried our Editor’s patience beyond limits, I knew I was risking my life in the long run even if my constant lying did work each time – though only temporarily – I finally decided to do an article for the blog.  So to make up for all the lies, I researched on lie detection and I’m planning on covering some of my findings in 3 pieces.

  1. Lies in the eyes of the beholder
  2. Reading in between the lies
  3. Mach-lies

Left your measuring tape at home?  Forget nose lengths, looks like Pinocchio’s got other chinks in his armor.  Oh yeah. The windows to your soul are betraying it all. So the next time your roommate interrogates you about their lost laundry that you ‘borrowed’ without asking…watch out 😛 Body language judgment is one of the most primary means of lie detection. Non-invasive, trusty tool to have during liar-hunting seasons… 

William James (Principles of Psychology, 1890) was the first to suggest that internal representations and eye movements may be related. The first time “Visual Accessing Cues” were properly discussed (not very sure), was in the 1970’s by Richard Bandler and John Grinder in their book “Frogs into Princes: Neuro Linguistic Programming (NLP) “. Neurological research states that eye movement (laterally or vertically) are associated with triggering different parts of brain. These movements are called lateral eye movements (LEM) and in NLP they are termed Visual/Eye Accessing Cues.

I’ll be referring to the directions from a right-handed liar’s view. (So you clearly know who my sympathies lie with)

1. Higher Right – Visual Constructed

Painting pretty pictures? Creative imagination definitely kicking in. This guy is totally busy with what is technically termed as “Visually Constructed Images”. ‘Of course, I didn’t steal your Sultan Rahi T, but I think I saw J picking through your laundry at the dhobi’s…oh yeah O:)

2. Higher Left – Visual Remembered

False alarm. The poor thing is simply remembering a vision. ‘When was the last time I saw him in that shirt?’

3. Straight Right – Auditory Constructed

A person in phase of auditory construction. Which means they’re just trying to think of how to make a sound that they probably haven’t made or aren’t in much practice of.

4. Straight Left – Auditory Remembered

Relating to a sound/voice from their past. If someone denies not recognizing a voice after this visionary cue, you know whose nose needs a trim. But before you do, please do confirm you had no orange monkey in your window…

5. Down Right – Kinesthetic

Recalling a feeling like smell, taste or even the aura of a place (Simply put – ‘mahol’)

6. Down Left – Auditory-Digital

Self Talk. ‘Why did you have to blow your nose into his Sultan Rahi T, dumbhead?’


  • So looking right is majorly letting the cat out and looking left tells you’re just remembering when was the last time you stole from the cookie jar.
  • Gazing straight ahead or unfocused, or still eyes is another one up for constructive imaging.
  • A left-handed person has all the opposite implications.
  • Sometimes people’s eyes do not move and this may be due to ‘Look-to-talk rule’ – They just have to look at you while their talking. Their eye movements are null or either too quick to catch. Note if they go unfocused so their ‘internal eye’ can direct itself.
  • In cases of near term memory, one does not need to search for the answer and their eyes might not move.

Handy? So gear up, keep your eyes peeled for those measly liars.


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