Sati did not reveal the entire truth to Lord Shiva. When he asked her how she tested Shri Rama, she responded that she hadn’t, but she went in disguise before him to see if he could recognise her. What made her lie? only her mind knows.
Even water when combined as milk, can be sold as milk in the market place. But a lie is like acid. Even a drop of acid in milk will destroy an entire bucket. Falsehood should be avoided at all costs.
We should embrace the truth. In the Valmiki Ramayana – Shri Rama says, ‘God comes to the world as Truth’. The beautiful analogy used here by Shri Tulisdasji is explains everything. Many attributes can work together like hardwork and compassion, but if we do something impure like lying for selfish reasons, it will poison our efforts.. Truth is God in this world and we should remain committed to it.
Mahatma Gandhi said in his news paper, ‘Devotion to this Truth is the sole justification for our existence. All our activities should be centered in Truth. Truth should be the very breath of our life.’ Of course, there may in rare circumstances be justified reason for one to lie, perhaps say to a criminal who is seeking to harm somebody, but in most cases, a strict adherence towards telling the truth is the best path to follow.
Everyday I remind my self of Maharaji’s words to Ram Dass, ‘love everyone and tell the truth!’