Bunch of keys?

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thepea
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Bunch of keys?

Post by thepea »

“One who has love and compassion with a pure heart experiences the Kingdom of Heaven within. This is the Law of Nature, or if one would rather, God’s will.”
S.N.Goenka

In Goenka's bunch of keys sermon he talks of experiencing the kingdom of heaven within, opening the Brahmic plane within, and opening the Nibbanic peace within, is experiencing the kingdom of heaven(God's will) simply observing the field of experiential wisdom within(entering the field of Panna)?

Is opening the Brahmic plane within, entering Jhanas and experiencing the higher lokas?

Is opening Nibbanic peace within, experiencing the ultimate truth of the laws of nature or experiencing God?

I believe Goenka describes God as the truth.

Am I mistaken in assuming Goenka is pointing at Nibbana as God?

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Re: Bunch of keys?

Post by DNS »

I have heard a lot of talks by S. N. Goenka and this one is much different. Maybe he was talking to a Christian group, i.e., using skillful means? Do you have a link or reference for that talk? The closest thing I have heard him say to that is that for those who must have a God-concept, then they should consider the truth (Dhamma) as God.

thepea
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Re: Bunch of keys?

Post by thepea »

This is a partial clip of the article posted in the Polish Vipassana newsletter the quote can be found at the bottom of the clip.


S.N. Goenka Addresses Peace Summit

By Bill Higgins
Date: August 29, 2000

NEW YORK — Vipassana Acharya S.N. Goenka addressed the delegates to the Millennium World Peace Summit as they gathered in the United Nations General Assembly Hall today - first ever gathering of religious and spiritual leaders in the UN.

Mr. Goenka's speech, in the session entitled Conflict Transformation, focussed on the themes of religious harmony, tolerance and peaceful coexistence.

"Rather than converting people from one organized religion to another organized religion," said Mr. Goenka, "we should try to convert people from misery to happiness, from bondage to liberationand from cruelty to compassion."

Mr. Goenka gave his speech during the Summit's afternoon session to a group that included roughly two thousand delegates and observers. Mr. Goenka spoke in the session that followed CNN founder Ted Turner's speech. Mr. Turner is one of the Summit's financial patrons.

In keeping with the Summit's theme of seeking world peace, Mr. Goenka stressed in his speech that peace in the world cannot be achieved unless there is peace within individuals. "There cannot be peace in the world when people have anger and hatred in their hearts. Only with love and compassion in the heart is world peace attainable."

An important aspect of the Summit is the effort to reduce sectarian conflict and tension. Regarding this Mr. Goenka said, "When there is anger and hatred within, one becomes miserable irrespective of whether one is a Christian or a Hindu or a Muslim."

Similarly he said to a thunderous applause, "One who has love and compassion with a pure heart experiences the Kingdom of Heaven within. This is the Law of Nature, or if one would rather, God's will."

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TheNoBSBuddhist
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Re: Bunch of keys?

Post by TheNoBSBuddhist »

Yes, I agree with Mr Snyder; It is easy to see that S. N. Goenka was addressing a multi-faith audience, and much like the Dalai Lama does when HE addresses unities of Christians, he spoke in terms they could equate with...Always very respectful and deferent to their own beliefs, never imposing his own tenets....

I think he merely tried to include God in a way that could be understood and identified with, for the people he spoke to....
:namaste:

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thepea
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Re: Bunch of keys?

Post by thepea »

TheNoBSBuddhist wrote:I think he merely tried to include God in a way that could be understood and identified with, for the people he spoke to....
Mr Goenka also preaches to his students that as well as truth, God is also love, compassion and purity.

Why would he introduce God into his teachings if he did not feel this an appropriate fit to the Burmese Theravada teachings?

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Re: Bunch of keys?

Post by TheNoBSBuddhist »

Maybe for the same reason Thich Naht Hahn talks about God so much, even though he is a Zen monk; Maybe for the same reasons Thomas Merton, as a Christian monk practised Buddhism so avidly.

Because in the end, all that matters is knowing Suffering and transcending Suffering; and the essence of God is one of complete peace, serenity and freedom from defilement.
:namaste:

You will not be punished FOR your 'emotions'; you will be punished BY your 'emotions'.



Image

Pay attention, simplify, and (Meditation instruction in a nutshell) "Mind - the Gap."
‘Absit invidia verbo’ - may ill-will be absent from the word. And mindful of that, if I don't respond, this may be why....

thepea
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Re: Bunch of keys?

Post by thepea »

TheNoBSBuddhist wrote:Because in the end, all that matters is knowing Suffering and transcending Suffering; and the essence of God is one of complete peace, serenity and freedom from defilement.
That's what I believe Goenka is preaching, that God is Nibbana(the eternal complete peace and freedom from defilement within each of us) this essence of God is what we are to cultivate(satipatthana).

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Re: Bunch of keys?

Post by tiltbillings »

thepea wrote: God is Nibbana
That really is not something that very meaningful, unless you so radically redefine the term god and nibbana, as to make them unrecognizable.
>> Do you see a man wise [enlightened/ariya] in his own eyes? There is more hope for a fool than for him.<< -- Proverbs 26:12

This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond. -- SN I, 38.

“Of course it is happening inside your head, Harry, but why on earth should that mean that it is not real?” HPatDH p.723

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Mkoll
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Re: Bunch of keys?

Post by Mkoll »

thepea wrote:That's what I believe Goenka is preaching, that God is Nibbana(the eternal complete peace and freedom from defilement within each of us) this essence of God is what we are to cultivate(satipatthana).
Maybe that's what Mr. Goenka preached and maybe it isn't. I haven't heard or read enough about him to say.

But it's not what the Buddha taught.
Namo tassa bhagavato arahato samma sambuddhassa
Namo tassa bhagavato arahato samma sambuddhassa
Namo tassa bhagavato arahato samma sambuddhassa

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Re: Bunch of keys?

Post by Monkey Mind »

To be fair, Mr. Goenka did not use the word "God" (in this referenced passage), he spoke about experiencing "Heaven" here and now. He mentions "kingdom of heaven within" three times in 11 hours of discourses during the basic courses.

I interpreted these passages in this way: other religions look for Heaven as an external place found in the afterlife. Mr. Goenka is stating that "heaven" (a comparison of the end goals, i.e. Nibbana to heaven) is an internally achieved state that exists in the present moment.

The specific passage also references Brahma. I was uncomfortable with this reference, until I read more about the Brahma Viharas.
"As I am, so are others;
as others are, so am I."
Having thus identified self and others,
harm no one nor have them harmed.

Sutta Nipāta 3.710

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Re: Bunch of keys?

Post by SarathW »

S.N Goenka's revolutionary speech to united nation.
Must watch. :)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xy9PugTy15M
“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”

thepea
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Re: Bunch of keys?

Post by thepea »

Hi Monkey Mind,

Are you suggesting that the "Kingdom of Heaven within" , the "Brahmic plane within" and the "Nibbanic peace within" are all being used to describe the final goal, or do you feel Mr Goenka is describing subtler states reached progressively from apparent to ultimate truth?

I realize that Mr Goenka did not use the word God in this sermon, but he did use the word God's will while addressing the peace summit to describe "the kingdom of heaven" and references God as truth, love, compassion and purity. As a student of his I have come to experience that he does not say anything unnecessarily, and covers an incredible depth with the choice of words he does use.

Calling God the truth and then expressing Nibbana as the ultimate truth, it's not a huge leap to suggest he is using the terms synonymously, is it?

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Ben
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Re: Bunch of keys?

Post by Ben »

You need to look at his audience at those talks.
Even the ten-day course discourses are designed for those who are complete newbies to the Dhamma and many there are westerners who have come from abrahamic religions. SN Goenka has also aimed particular messages to some groups such as practicing Dhamma is (at least initially) compatible with one's existing religion.
When one does the long courses that are intended for his 'serious' old students, that message is modified and he indicates that those with a belief in the salvic power of god/ gods will come to a point where they will either choose the Dhamma as their refuge and drop their religious practices or retain their religion. He also indicated that it was a natural and not imposed decision/milestone. But in the meantime, he suggested that those belonging to other religions look upon their gods or religious figures as the embodiment of particular qualities that one could model oneself on.

In one Q&A session I attended, someone asked him whether he had encountered god. He answered that he has never met such a being.
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Ben
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thepea
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Re: Bunch of keys?

Post by thepea »

Ben wrote:When one does the long courses that are intended for his 'serious' old students, that message is modified and he indicates that those with a belief in the salvic power of god/ gods will come to a point where they will either choose the Dhamma as their refuge and drop their religious practices or retain their religion.
I don't know what you mean by salvic power of God, could you please define this? I am simply going by Mr Goenka's words as God is Truth, love, compassion and purity as he openly states to the world.
I have sat the longer courses and have never been a religious person so I do not come to the table with a predetermined definition of God, but I understand that Mr Goenka is attempting to ease the transition for some.
Ben wrote:In one Q&A session I attended, someone asked him whether he had encountered god. He answered that he has never met such a being.
Who would encounter Nibbana/God?

Mr Goenka is correct to answer in this fashion, but this does not negate the fact that he includes God in the Dhamma he teaches.

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Re: Bunch of keys?

Post by tiltbillings »

thepea wrote: Mr Goenka is correct to answer in this fashion, but this does not negate the fact that he includes God in the Dhamma he teaches.
You are, it seems, seriously missing the point of Goenka-ji's use of the word god.
>> Do you see a man wise [enlightened/ariya] in his own eyes? There is more hope for a fool than for him.<< -- Proverbs 26:12

This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond. -- SN I, 38.

“Of course it is happening inside your head, Harry, but why on earth should that mean that it is not real?” HPatDH p.723

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