Goenka emphasized the idea of protecting and preserving the pure teachings of Dhamma for generations to come. For years I received this as direction to protect and preserve the 10-day course format and insulate this experience from the chaos of the world, but this is not at the heart of dhamma as I currently understand it. Every day we sit to discover the truth within our own body. Each of us holds the secrets of universal truth within us, and Vipassana is the tool that helps us find it. If we simply enforce the rules that were passed down to us we will lose the essence of truth. Instead, we must be passionate learners who question, analyze, and evaluate every aspect of our experience so we can deeply understand the nuances of dhamma and truth. With experience these rules become supportive guides, but simply accepting and enforcing them will lead to blind faith.
After sitting a few 10-day courses, I accepted this responsibility of protecting the pure dhamma as if I was a wise carrier of the truth. Goenka was a protector. Senior Teachers should be protectors. But I’m simply a student trying to learn and grow every day. To achieve the deep understanding of dhamma that our teachers have, I need to tap into my authentic truth and grow from my personal platform. As a naive protector, I tended to push the non-meditators in my life away, but as an explorer of truth and love, I share a common bond with many different types of people. I am grateful that many advanced teachers have protected and preserved the teachings of dhamma since the days of Buddha, and I understand the importance of obeying the guidelines of my teachers, but I am not a protector. I am an explorer of truth and love, and meditation is showing me the path forward. Instead of driving people away, I’ve found this perspective to be inspiring and inviting to all the people in my life. Maybe it will help you too. Time to meditate.