The idea of truth



The Idea of Truth

The three worded (or some may argue, for it being two worded) mantra from Mundaka Upnisada, ‘Satymeva jayate’, the eternal ‘truth’ is accepted by the mankind with utmost faith and belief. India also hails the sacred mantra with it inscribed in the base of its National emblem. The idea of truth being invincible hides several questions worth pondering upon though. The bold statement says that ‘truth’ is ever victorious. That ‘truth’ shall ultimately win. Why then is it so that falsehood exists? What is the nature of ‘truth’ and what is so intrinsic in its nature that gives it an eternal standing? Can the ‘Idea of truth’ and the ‘Idea of God’ be used interchangeably? Are they one and the same? If so, then a man devoted to God A, and a man devoted to God B should not use same Mathematical, Physical, Medicinal truth for solving their problems, but should look for their ‘truth’ which depends on their respective God. For, that would be wise. If, there cannot be two different truths about a particular scientific question, then there must be only one supreme God. And if that cannot happen, and mankind is meant to be divided then, truth must be beyond the idea of God.
Mahatma Gandhi once said, ‘God is, even though the whole world denies him. Truth stands, even if there be no public support. It is self-sustained.’ He said something about God and then hastily ran into highlighting the idea imbedded in ‘Satyameva Jayate’. The philosophers who have dwelled over the questions of morality, ethics and freedom have found it necessary to stop at some point and dwell over the idea of God. Voltaire is famously known to have said, If God did not exist, it would be necessary to invent him’. The necessity of creating a God comes from the fact that all the moral philosophies, religious views, higher truths in various fields of sciences and every single known and unknown well formed belief or researches in progress would lose their lustre and longevity in the absence of a creator who did everything with a purpose. A purpose that can justify all the pain mankind endures during its lifetime. A man lives and dies without knowing, many a times, the purpose of his life. Throughout his life he sticks to some set of belief or unbelief (which again is a kind of belief, a belief of the general belief of mankind being wrong). Amidst all this, few great souls go on to present their rigorous understanding about life and try to make the pieces of facts, convictions and observations fit to come up with meaningful picture (if we can say so, in general for all the philosophies presented to us in different ways). The philosophies of great philosophers cannot stand on firm ground, if the idea of God is taken away (if we agree with Voltaire), can truth stand alone? Is it truly ‘self-sustained’ (as Mahatma Gandhi believed)?
If there is some precondition for truth to be truly ‘self-sustained’ then it becomes a Mathematical contradiction that translates into the fact that truth can be self-sustained only if something else is present. Absurd! Wait, is it? Alas! What is Mathematics, Mathematical contradiction and absurdity, if not something somewhere found on the bases of ‘truth’ earlier? How can a convict in the court room, be the judge, the advocate and the audience as well? Are we sufficiently equipped to answer these questions?
Let us assume that we are (lest we forget that the assumption itself has a seed of truth), the next question is what is it that we seek to reach at and what is it that we seek to clarify. For, it’s always wise to leave for a voyage with chart and compass, so that we do not get lost. To start with, let’s consider following four inter-related questions:-
1.    Is ‘truth’ self-sustained
2.    If not, what is it that is required as a precondition for it to be so
3.    If there is a precondition, does not the ‘truth’ of the first question loses its self-sustained nature
4.    What is the nature of ‘truth’ then
Try speaking a false statement, while knowing the truth to someone you value. You will surely see that a false statement, while it travel from your conscience an reaches the lips after having travelled through the jungle of facts of your brain, leaves a trail of guilt. Why is it so? Is it in human nature to be truthful and feel guilty about the inability of being so at times? Many a times, worst of the worst men, who had been atrocious, foul and mean during their lifetimes, are found muttering views of repentance at their death bed. There’s something that makes a dying man realise that he did not put truthful effort in his deeds, or he did things his heart and soul warned him not to do. Scriptures define holy souls as the ones which leave their bodies with no repentance and probably with joy. Such is the nature of truth, that it can make a person’s life blissful if practiced truly, without deceit. But is it self-sustained?
Let’s, come out of human perimeters and think about flowers. A seed of a rose flower, for instance, hold the truth about the kind of flower it will grow into if provided with proper environmental conditions. When the seed in sown a seedling peeps out from the earth’s crust in few days. It grows into a plant with thorns and characteristic leaves. Anyone can tell that it is a rose plant even when no flower or bud appears. The truth shows its universal nature. No matter in which part of the world the rose seed is sown, it gives birth to the same rose plant. Days pass and the flower blossoms. It fragrance, its colour, its petals fill our heart with joy. We appreciate the beauty of the flower. The seed did not cheat itself. It grew into what it was meant to be. It did not worship any God. It did not need to know that there was a God.
From the above two wanderings in the domains of human and plant life respectively, we could bring out one thing and that is, it is truth that manifests itself in any form of life (we leave the dead world untouched, for the time being). Its manifestation is such that, it goes on and on, not through one single form of life but through innumerable. It keeps taking different forms. It discontinues a form of life if the form stops serving the purpose of truth - manifestation. Dianasours for example, have become extinct as they could not cope up with the climatic conditions and could not evolve considerably to adapt to new conditions (some theories say their might have been natural calamity or catastrophe resulting in the extinction of the species but we are not too much bothered about the actual cause at the moment).
Truth stands on few axioms which can be left unchallenged. If they are challenged, their anti statements become the new bases of truth. And in both the ways truth becomes eternal and (as it might seem) self-sustained. Absence of truth, is a kind of truth in itself and so there cannot be any situation where the mantra ‘satyameva jayate’ does not holds good.
The meditation on the nature of these axioms can take one from one level of understanding to another and this process of refining of knowledge can be said to be a step towards mokhsa, knowing the truth in its most basic form. A form that does not stands on the grounds of any other assumption. It is this level ground, where the philosophers find the creation God crucial. Truth stands on the axioms that ‘God exists’. Those who do not agree with it, have their axiom as ‘There is no God’. Both ways truth comes to existence. The beauty is that it takes the same form in various fields. For example, the gravitational force with which two heavenly pull each other follows the same laws. The electron in the first orbit of any Carbon atom, behaves in the same way irrespective of where it is and in what era of time. The photosynthesis in plants obey the same universal laws.
God or no God is equally good for truth to exist in the way it does. Then why does Volatire said, that God must be created if He was not their? Well, as soon as one says that there isn’t any God, he instantaneously creates the very same. By saying that there is no all powerful, merciful and benevolent God, the idea gets created. The idea has all the potentials as the actually presence of such a God can have. (I used the word ‘actual’ with a lot of pain the preceding line to present the thought, we are still lingering over the question of what is ‘actual’ and what is ‘virtual’). The thought is that there is no way that we can escape the idea of God, whether we believe in it or not. So to conclude I can say that truth is based on the idea of God. And mankind cannot escape the idea of God. For the non-living (and other creatures other than man) truth must have some other nature.

Comments

expression said…
though i was looking for a poem,i liked this article too...
its a truth....
:-)

anu

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