Chapter 1: Truth, Beauty, Godliness
The second word, shivam, means virtue - all that is good, all that is valuable, all that is the most precious in you: the ultimate good. The man who comes to experience the truth starts living the truth immediately. There is no other alternative. His living the truth is shivam. Shivam means truth in action, truth in your life, truth in your love, truth in your friendship, truth in your eyes and truth in your heart. Shivam is the action of truth. Truth itself is the center of the cyclone, but if you experience the truth, the cyclone around you becomes shivam. It becomes pure godliness.
A man of truth is the only proof that the world is divine. No argument can prove that the world is divine.
I am reminded of one of the greatest mystics, Ramakrishna. When asked by a logician, “What is truth? Do you have any argument, any evidence for it?” Ramakrishna laughed hilariously.
He said, “I am the argument, and if you cannot see in my eyes the proof and the evidence, you will not find it anywhere else. I am the only proof that existence is not dead, that existence is not only matter; that existence is not only available to science, that existence is much more than matter, that you are much more than the body, that you are much more than the mind..”
But this “much more” cannot be proved by any logician, any scientist. Only the mystic is the proof. He also cannot prove it by words, but only by his way of life. The way of life of the mystic is the only possibility of coming in contact with the divine, which is all around you. You are living in the very ocean of the divine, but the mystic becomes your first window through which you can see the non-material, the spiritual, the beyond.
Shivam is the mystic in action: his gestures, the music in his words, the poetry of his life, the light and the depths of his eyes. And whatever he does ( whether he is chopping wood or carrying water from the well ( you can see that there is a subtle difference. He is total in his every act, and that totality brings the third word, sundaram.
Sundaram means beauty. So this is the mystic trinity: satyam, the truth; shivam, the good, the divine, and sundaram, the beauty.
You have seen the beauty of the flowers, you have seen the beauty of the stars, you have seen the beauty of a bird on the wing, you have seen beauties upon beauties of sunsets and sunrises. But the greatest beauty is to see the totality, the intensity of the mystic. That is the greatest flowering in existence ( of consciousness itself. It is available only to those who are humble enough to receive it, who are not living a closed life of fear, of paranoia, but who are living a life of love with all the windows open. And they are ready to go with life wherever it leads.
These receptive souls are the only real seekers in the world. These receptive souls are blessed with their experience of sundaram: the beautiful rose that is opening in the heart of the mystic. These three words are so unique, so incomparable, there is nothing parallel to them.