convivium wrote:he rules out a lot of teachings in the suttas. that is uncontroversial.
I don't think that's a particularly good way to put it personally.
He does restrict the scope of the defined technique to certain aspects of the Buddha's teachings, and he does expect practitioners to adhere to the technique during the retreats, but that doesn't mean he "rules out" teachings... they're just out of scope for the technique presented. I've not seen a teacher who teaches everything, so it's natural that a teacher will pick and collate different aspects, and it's equally natural that the aspects that worked for them personally (or in this case, that worked for U Ba Khin) are what's included in the presentation.
I think it's also quite likely that some of the aspects which are out of scope of the technique are some of those which are less compatible with a secular presentation of vipassana. Recollecting the qualities of the Buddha or the Sangha for example, is going to restrict the more universal appeal of a technique which is not formally aligned to any religious denomination.
"Do not force others, including children, by any means whatsoever, to adopt your views, whether by authority, threat, money, propaganda, or even education." - Ven. Thich Nhat Hanh
"The uprooting of identity is seen by the noble ones as pleasurable; but this contradicts what the whole world sees." (Snp 3.12)
"You've got to focus on what's really worthwhile in life, which means resisting a lot of the currents in our culture" (Thanissaro)