I and my wife were planning to go for a movie since many days. She asked ”when can we go?” Just to impress her, on the spur of the moment, I said, “today evening.” At that moment, my brain ignored the patient email queries that were to be cleared by evening. If I had said the truth “after three days”, I would have saved myself from the unnecessary stress and the movie would have become more enjoyable.
Stress is the major cause for all the lifestyle diseases that you can name. Stress leads to ‘fight or flight’ situation. But if we can turn the situation into ‘commanding or manageable’ there will be complete stress relief and we will win. And the way to do that is Being truthful. Let us explore.
Table of Contents
Secret behind the smile of spiritual leaders –
If you speak what you do and do what you speak, there will be no difference between your internal and external environment. You will have nothing to hide.
- It brings courage,
- It brings clarity to thinking process,
- It brings smile to your face,
- It makes you stress free.
Being truthful is actually the gist of spirituality. No matter what religion you follow, being truthful and being the same person from inside and outside is the highest spiritual state that one can ever reach.
On the contrary, if you are not truthful from inside out, no matter what religion you are following, you are just wasting your time.
Sri Ramakrishna Paramahamsa says – Being truthful is the greatest spiritual practice for this age.
Okay, that is for higher souls, let us learn how we – mortals can incorporate this practical theory.
Truth and long life
There is a chapter in Charaka Samhita, called Rasayana Chikitsa. It explains in detail about anti aging therapies. Acharya Charaka has explained all major anti-aging medicines such as Chyawanprash, Brahma Rasayan, Shilajit etc. in this chapter.
After explaining about various Panchakarma therapies, medicines etc., Acharya Charaka explained about the behavioral therapy that improves our life expectancy. This section is called Achara Rasayana. This is a set of behaviors / habits that acts as anti aging and improves our life expectancy.
The first point of Achara Rasayana is – Satya Vadi being truthful. Stress and anxiety are primary causes of early aging. Stress causes inflammation in the body, depletes skin health, causes wrinkles and makes us age faster (1).
We have seen how presidents and prime ministers age so quickly during their tenure. Being truthful relieves stress. If we lie, we have to remember the lie, build a story around it and make sure we tell the same lie to everyone. A lot of stress.
Let us avoid minor lies
These minor lies grow mighty monsters before we have a clue. Practice becomes habit and habit becomes character.
So let us start avoiding minor lies. We live in a world where to survive and thrive, we need to seek help of lies. But whenever you are faced with a situation where you need to lie, do one of the following.
- Just be silent, wait for a second. The person who is asking you the question may forget or move on to the next topic. That way, you can skip telling the truth and also avoid a lie.
- Smile – and let the person think whatever he needs to think. At least, you are saved from telling one lie.
- Tell the half truth –
“When will you be going Bangalore?”
If you are sure that the other person will go red if you say Tomorrow, just say “It may not be possible today”.
Another example: In stead of saying “I can not do it this way”, just say ” the process will be very difficult, if we do it this way.
Count the number of lies per day
I have tried it and somehow it is very easy for the brain to remember the number of lies per day. Let us try to reduce those numbers gradually to nil.
Our small efforts, our little concentration towards avoiding lies, yield multi-fold results.
I am not suggesting that we should reveal all the hidden lies of the past. That may lead to a catastrophe. I am just saying let us avoid lies in the present and future.
There is a saying – “Na Bhruyat Satyam Apriyam” – Bitter truths should not be told.
But if we can just adjust our speech so as to avoid as many lies as possible in a day, we can definitely enjoy the following benefits.
Better memory power
If we are lying, our brain has to work extra hard to remember what we have lied, it needs to create a story around that lie, it needs to think about all the situations that may arise due to that lie and it needs to workout ways to avoid them.
So most of the brain power is drained to protect that lie. Most of the brain space is occupied.
But if you are truthful, you already know what has happened and there is nothing to remember further. Lot of free memory space in brain. Better memory power.
There is a great saying – If you are truthful, you do not need to remember anything.
Lies beget internal fear. The person telling the truth has nothing to hide. Start avoiding lies and you will soon start realizing that you are becoming more and more fearless.
Know exactly your strength and weaknesses
When you are truthful outside, you will be more truthful inside. You will come to know exactly, what are your strengths and how you can nurture and take advantage of it to achieve success.
When you know what are your strengths, when you have started believing in what you can achieve, no one can beat you in self confidence.
5. Smiling face, without creases of anxiety
Your face knots will vanish, smile becomes broader, life becomes stress free.
6. Good sleep
Lies, false promises, false self-image, cause immense stress and takes away your peace of mind and sleep. Just start avoiding lies and you can see that your sleep starts getting deeper and more relaxing. This is because of improved mind clarity.
Your friend, spouse and family will be knowing exactly what kind of person you are. So there will be no false / over-expectations from you. Your relationships will be more meaningful and strong.
If you are truthful, there will be no question of infidelity. Life and family will be more enjoyable.
Longer healthier life
Just imagine you, while lying – the body will be twitched, brain is pressurized, forehead starts sweating.
Imagine you, telling the truth – Just an open mind and open heart speaking what is the truth with a smiling face. The body and mind are so relaxed. This is the secret behind the long life of spiritual masters.
9. You will be led in the right path.
When you are truthful, whenever you come to crossroads, naturally you will chose the right path. It will be very easy for you to analyze yourself and to succeed.
The truth in you will lead to the path of success, for the Truth in you Himself is The God.
So, let us start avoiding those little lies and let us tell the truth for as many times in a day as possible and let us be happy. 🙂
Man management principle
What is the ultimate man-management principle?
Dr JV Hebbar:
I want to steal Sri Sadhguru’s quote here. He was asked this question in a management school in the USA. For which he said a story, which goes with these lines. (not exact quote).
“Suppose if I lockup a person in the ashram, then there will be news in the newspaper about it. If I lockup a person the kitchen of the Ashram, the news will be bigger. But if I lockup someone in a wash room, the news will be the biggest.
On a normal day, Ashram is more important than kitchen, which is more important than wash room. But in the above example, the wash room becomes more important. So, the bottom-line is – NEVER LOOK UP or LOOK DOWN on any person. Do not think high of any person and do not think low as well. Always be neutral and accept things and persons as they behave.”
If you ask my personal opinion about principle of man management, first of all, let me tell you that I only have 6 full time employees. So, I am not a big management guru. But my answer would be,
First test the employee if he is trustworthy and totally honest. Encourage the person to tell the truth, how bitter it might be. Once he you know that she is honest, show her ultimate compassion, support, and encouragement. When I give a project to my employee, I will have a time frame to finish this, in my mind. But when the employee takes longer time than my projection, I totally believe that it was my mistake and completely back the employee to finish the project at her own pace.
Even in personal life also, if we want to win over our elders, children or friends, harsh instructions, strict rules, fear of punishment rarely work. Ultimate compassion, support, love and encouragement are the ways to make people do what we like them to do.
Truthfulness brings knowledge
Being truthful helps us to seek the truth in the outer world. This is the reason, most of the Hindu scientists of olden age like Agastya (Siddha system of medicine), Kanada (atomic theory), Charaka, Sushruta (Ayurveda), Aryabhatta (mathematician, astronomer, astrologer, physicist) etc. were living a saintly, simple life.
Hence, in Charaka Vimana Sthana, 8th chapter, Acharya Charaka explains that an Ayurveda student should be Satyavadi – always truthful.
Being truthful also means being honest with ourselves. Not setting up a too high or too low expectations from ourselves, always watching how our mind and tongue are behaving, being eager for self improvement etc.
Being truthful improves our self awareness, improves trustworthiness, gets rid of fake friends and fake life and declutters and uncomplicates our lives.