Another of the yamas in yoga philosophy is Satya, which is translated as non-lying or truthfulness. This may seem fairly straightforward and few of us are outright swindlers as a profession! But satya goes farther than just not telling lies. Truthfulness is a lofty goal that has many challenges in this age. We are asked to be truthful in our words, but also our thoughts, actions and feelings. This truthfulness however, must always be filtered through the lens of the first yama, non-violence. Sometimes there are things that are true that do not need to be said! How many times have we heard, "If you can't say something nice, don't say anything at all!"
We need to be truthful with others, but also ourselves. Sometimes this is a significant challenge. It can be difficult to look at ourselves in the mirror and be honest about our feelings, our capabilities, our motives, our limitations. In our competitive and comparing world, it is easy to overstate and get in over our heads. On the other hand, poor self-images often direct our actions so as not to meet our full potentials. Often by the time we're examining these values in adulthood, we have years of beliefs, habits and patterns that are not based in Truth, but unconsciously influence the direction of our lives. It takes diligent work to overcome our conditioning and reach a place of authentic action and thought.
Yoga practice can help us look inside and find Truth there. It can give us the confidence to live and speak that Truth. This is incredibly freeing, though it may also be a difficult journey with plenty of opposition from people around you. It is worth the trip! How do you live your Truth?