412 – Truth and Morality

Our parents, our teachers and our elders elucidated never tell an untruth. I did not attach any importance to it as I never lied to my mother. My father was very strict and so in self-defense or to protect a sibling one lied. Morality was a word also used a great deal and one thought that it was associated with character. When I had my own children, I realized how important it was to tell the truth, and what was the actual meaning of morality.

Truth as described by Swami Sivananda is the purest word. It is justice and fair play, humility and forgiveness, kindness and compassion patience and self-restraint. Realizing God by speaking the truth and observing the truth in thought, word, and deed.

Mahatmas definition of truth

Morality as expressed today is conforming to a standard of what is right and what is good. There is a moral-police which takes a righteous stand, which can be described as sanctimonious and religious. The best definition I found was given by the Mahatma. He wrote that truth is the substance of all morality. Truth is the basis of all things.

A Gujerati verse gripped Mahatma Gandhi’s mind and its precept is to return good for evil. He could never get it out of his head.

For a bowl of water give a goodly meal.
For a kindly greeting bow thou down with zeal.
For a simple penny pay thou back with gold.
If thy life be rescued, life do not withhold.
Thus, the words and actions of the wise regard.
Every little service tenfold they reward.
But the truly noble know all men as one,
And return with gladness good for evil done.

Swami Satyananda Saraswati, expounded that human morality should not be subjective; morality should be objective. It needs to be considered from many perspectives, and not an individual perspective. Right now, what we consider as moral for us may be harmful for another.

Morality has to be universal, and the Mahatma stated that morality does not belong to a country and it is not based on our beliefs. Morality is based on the welfare and happiness of all, not only on the welfare and happiness of one. Therefore, when we think in terms of goodness, consider the welfare of all and not just our own.

Aim Hrim Klim

Photo by Claudio Schwarz on Unsplash

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