Global Pagoda- Vipassana meditation Hall in Mumbai
The Global Pagoda is one of the largest meditation centres in the whole world. It has a capacity to hold 8000 mediators. Situated near Gorai in North Western Mumbai the meditation hall serves lots of mediators around the world. It was inaugurated by the president of India, Pratibha Patel in the year 2009. She conferred the Padma Bhushan Award to respected Sri S.N. Goenka who is the organizer of this meditation technique. The award was given for his high level social work and was announced on 26th January 2012(republic day).
About Global Pagoda
The pagoda is a beautiful tall and large building overlooking Arabian Sea. The stone dome of height 29 meters is the largest in the world and has been built without any pillars. It is hollow inside the pagoda that serves as a huge mediation hall. The mediators practice the meditation method as taught by S.N. Goenka which is now being practiced in more than 100 countries. Bone relics of Lord Gautama Buddha are preserved in central locked stone. The relics of Buddha were actually found in Bhattiprolu stupa in Andhra Pradesh which was then donated to preserve it at Global Pagoda. The pagoda comprised of three sub domes. The first dome is the biggest and above it is the second and third one. The structure was fully completed in November 2008. There is a museum that depicts teaching of Buddha and his historical life. The educational display of the museum announces that practicing Vipassana is the path towards salvation which is real happiness.
Structure of Global Pagoda
The full building of Global Vipassana Pagoda consists of following divisions:-
- Dhamma Patana or the Vipassana meditation hall
- Museum that depicts teachings and life of Gautama Buddha
- Other two small pagodas on the south and north side
- Administrative building
- Study rooms and library
- A splendid Ashok Pillar inside the monument
- Dhammalaya or guest houses for only mediators of Vipassana
- Dhamma wheel suspended from a monument of 90 feet height
There is no entry fee to visit the pagoda and there are no charges for tour guides at the Vipassana pagoda. Only Vipassana mediators are allowed to get inside the pagoda and the tourists can only view the inside of the dome from the gallery for visitors. Tourists can enter the building from 9 in the morning till 6:30 in the evening.
Rules and regulations
- It is not allowed to carry any alcohol, intoxicants or drugs in the pagoda premises.
- Visitors who like to learn the mini course of 20 minutes have to maintain the rule that requires patience to be seated quietly within the pagoda for 20 minutes.
- Man and women are seated separately in areas designated for them.
- When visitors are inside the pagoda then complete silence should be maintained strictly.
- Mobile phones should be kept switched off
- A voice record of Sri S. N. Goenka is played providing instruction on meditation techniques according to which you must do it.
- Any kind of photograph or videos is strictly prohibited, whether you are on the photo gallery or inside the dome.
How to reach
Borivali station is the nearest railway terminus. The station is well connected by buses that leave from Thane and Navi Mumbai. It is near NH3 and state highway 42.
Meditation for visitors
People belonging to any caste can practice this meditation technique that involves the anapana technique which means concentration on breath. Tourists from around the world come here to gain knowledge about it. Lots of experience mediators have learnt it and have achieved proper concentrating power due to which the mind becomes peaceful and cool. It is very ancient technique imposed by Gautama Buddha. There is a ten day course for the beginners and they have to stay inside the Global Pagoda confined in the premise. Total silence is maintained for 10 days. Mobile phones and expensive accessories are kept away from them. Living there, eating is totally free. It is like living the life of a monk. For old mediators 3 days course are also available. At the end of the 10th day if they get any good result then they can donate as per their wish.