Guruji, in everyday life we tell minor(white) lies. Is it harmful? Can it be continued? Will society be benefitted by elimination of such lies? Please guide.

You are right. In today’s society, people do tell lies which are not harmful. This has become a routine practice among house-holders, students and the business community. When parents tell such lies, automatically their children follow them. When these children grow up, they take it for granted that these minor lies are as good as truth. This becomes a black mark on the character of growing youths. Therefore, it is our duty to eradicate such practices from the minds of the up-coming younger generation.

In this regard, we would like to narrate an incident: After the 2nd world war, Japan has grown very fast especially in the field of information technology and computer applications. It became the first nation in the world as far as technology is concerned. Two Indian entrepreneurs, engaged in printing technology, visited Japan to purchase a printing machine. An Indian agent accompanied them to guide them to the manufacturing factory of the machines. An engineer-in-charge showed them the varieties of machineries that were suitable for their purpose.

After examination, the entrepreneurs realised that the rates had gone up and that they would find it difficult to purchase the latest model. The engineer then showed them an earlier model and said that it was equally good as far as their work was concerned. But he cautioned them that the speed of production would be 20% less than that of the latest model. The Indian entrepreneurs were happy to purchase the earlier model.

Just then, the Managing Director of the factory visited the spot and said “I am happy that you are purchasing the earlier model, which is beneficial for both of us. But I cannot hide the truth from you that this machine has certain defects which will come to surface only after a couple of years. That is why we improvised the model to the later one.

The Indian entrepreneurs were surprised at the Managing director for revealing the defect and showing his utter sincerity in business. They felt that in future they would also be equally truthful and sincere in business even if the untruth was minor and even if the untruth did not affect business. Concealment of even a small defect results in the spoiling of customer relationship in a long-standing business. Thus, the deal was happily finalised.

After coming to India, these entrepreneurs revealed this matter to their other business partners, about the sincerity of the Japanese Managing Director, and how much it had impressed them. They told them that this episode had made them resolve to follow the same ethical standard in future. Finally, the entrepreneurs prepared an attractive board at the entrance of staff room with following writing:

  • I will never tell a lie unnecessarily, even it is very minor.
  • I will not deceive anybody, starting from today.
  • I will not hurt another, whatsoever be the reason.
  • I will not highlight the defect of the other person nor will I ever feel jealous when the other person is living happily.
  • I will neither gossip nor comment and criticise others.
  • In my truthful life, I will not to allow my mind to deviate towards wrong doing. I shall discharge my duty truthfully.
  • With limited speech, I shall observe silence during most of the time.
  • I will respect my parents, elders, teachers and superiors.
  • I will help others to the best of my ability.
  • I pledge before God that I shall follow all the above-mentioned decisions of mine to progress on the path of truth.

As spiritual practitioners, let us follow the above-mentioned principles of truth in daily life so that every step towards spirituality and self-realization becomes easy. Good luck.

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