The act of offering is Brahman, that which is offered is Brahman, the sacred fire is Brahman, the one who makes the offering is Brahman and Brahman is nothing but the personification of truth.
The human civilisation has transcended in the ‘Kali Yuga’ where the significance of truth and humanity has reduced to ashes in the clamour of the corporate world. In the midst of change, which is the law of nature, our minds are ravaged by the tyranny of immediate present. Insecurity and insensitivity have embedded a deep and highly negative belief system in our mindset, i.e., a virtuous lifestyle produces non-competitive and unsuccessful individuals. Entangled among the cobwebs of life and over that such obscure theories of life, man becomes completely oblivious about the path on which he is trading and focuses his sharp eye on the destination. The destination of our ancient sages like Mahavira and Buddha was Liberation by knowing the ultimate truth; and our national heroes like Mahatma Gandhi and Swami Vivekananda were an epitome of truth. But in the 21st century, the tables turned drastically and so have the mindset of people.
The youth and the elderly have participated in a race which has no track, the rules of this race are “as per convenience” and the destination is to reach on the top, either by hook or by crook. In such a situation, the noble virtues like strength of character, morality, truthfulness, humanness and humility have gone to the backstage and now in the limelight we have name, fame, wealth and luxury.
The complete precis of human existence is expounded in the mantra from Mundaka Upanishad, ‘Satyameva Jayate’ which means ‘Truth alone Triumphs’. Along with the eventual victory of truth, there is also a conquest of falsehood and elation in the conscience of the speaker. This sanctity and power of truth can be understood from the very fact that not even the most impressive liar will admit of being Untruthful. A Hadith (sayings of Prophet) in Islam mentions a legend regarding a thief who confesses his crime of stealing to Prophet Muhammad and asks for his guidance to shun the ill habit. As suggested by the prophet he took an oath of not lying, so every time he was suspected of stealing, he had to publicly confess his crime with honesty. To avoid public humiliation, he slowly and steadily renounced his habit. Such is the profound impact of truth on a person’s life and character.
In today’s time, our conscience has been smothered by the easy rewards that come along with falsehood. But these rewards are not like the eternal sunlight; they are as transitory as a day consumed by night. ‘Sayad-aste-nasti’ is a concept in Jainism which means, ‘in some ways it is true, in some ways it is not’. It means that what we presume to be true is only our part of the truth, whereas the universal truth is a multidimensional concept. So if we consider truthfulness only as an aspect of speech, then we only know a part of truth about truth. Truthfulness is not only a part of speech but an integral facet of our mind, intellect and action. It is this aspect of the truth, also known by our saints, which smothers the rough edges of our character and imbibes in us moral excellence and incorruptibility.
In the Chaos of the glamouring world, there has been a complete obliteration of the highest truth, which is, that the life of man is dictated by his own ‘Karma’. Since Karma is a thought metamorphosed into action so our thoughts guided by untruthfulness lead us to a path of ignorance where are human tenderness leaves us to make cold and insensitive just as a soul leaves the body to make it lifeless. Truthfulness with the emotions of others as well as our own emotions is the foundation stone of every human virtue. Without truthfulness benevolence is malignance, cooperation is competition, courage is cowardice, love is attachment, and generosity is greed. Our humanity has seen a visible degradation with the concomitant downfall of our virtues as a result of which there has been an upheaval in vice and immortality. Humanity is considered as a baggage to be born which yields no results. But no matter how prevalent dishonesty may become, a single ray of light like a true word spoken with conviction is enough to annihilate falsehood.
In today’s world, truth has become an expensive luxury to be proved, yet, it is strong enough to make the roots of falsehood tremble. It should be remembered that only the dead fish goes along with the flowing river. So for those who have the conscience alive; and it frequently murmurs in faint voices in the hope of being heard; should remember that being true is a sign of bravery, compassion, strength and morality- all of which are noble virtues of being human.