I have encountered massive numbers of Buddhists in my shot life and have seen many intriguing sides of each one. Almost 97% of these are name sake Buddhists (First 1 and 2 types) which we don’t need to bother much about. But other 3 % as I think need s much closer analysis than usual.
It’s interesting to observe how defilements take over one’s mind unconsciously (Chitha-Upaklesha - Dhamma) to rot one within and to deviate from the path.
Lets see the types of people we see around in daily life
(This is not an exhaustive list)
What type are you from following???
1. Don’t know anything much related to Buddhism and don’t care as well.
2. Don’t know anything much related to Buddhism, like to learn, but no time to allocate with all important daily routines to improve one’s “kama bhogi “life/status in place.
3. Knows little bit, but wants to show off that they know a lot by asking various intriguing questions from others. Probably they already know the answer to many questions they ask.
4. Knows little bit. Really has something which you don’t know. But will only ask from a big shot.
Not given much care/consideration to the answers given by simple unimportant people. Bigger/important the person is better the answer you get (as you feel it). These are the people who run after Buddhist celebrities to ask simple/obvious/unimportant questions to get a dose of ego boost by having a chance to chat with them and to say proudly "I got the answer/cleared doubts directly from ven Maduluwave Shobihitha .. etc".
5. Knows a bit. Wants to improve the knowledge. and regardless of the source of information one will analyse it and absorbs it. Buddhism is neither for show off nor to be used in arguments. It is to improve wisdom and to make life better for him and the others.
6. Wants to improve knowledge as much as possible. But as a spoon in the curry, doesn’t know or doesn’t wants to know the taste of it. Learn only for gaining upper hand in arguments or as a show off or to destroy Buddhism "Learn enemy to - destroy enemy"
7. Knows a lot, practises also well. But ego and itchiness to show off is so high they cannot stop blabbering about their progress and achievements in spiritual life with every pants or skirt they encounter.
8. Knows a bit. Not a show off. But not really interested in practising it or to give a serious thought about it. Buddhism is only good to use in a saying such as "Ah.. life sucks... All is dhukka" etc ... or to be used in late night kitchen discussions. It doesn’t go beyond that. These are the people you will find talking about Buddhism in every situation in daily routines without giving much thought to it.
9. knows a lot, not a show off, Will not ask questions on topics which they surely know the answer, and may live a normal daily life in which even their very close friends/relatives doesn’t even knows of the depth of spirituality they have reached (Not drum beaters). Simply because when one advances in path of spiritual improvement, the ego drops and eagerness to show off (Spiritual egoism) diminishes.
As a rule of thumb, after meeting a person for the first time in life, if that person was able to give you an impression of a “good and devoted Buddhist” in the first 5 minutes of his/her talk with you, You should not even consider to accept that person as a Buddhist. He/she is just a show-off with high spiritual ego.
Barking dogs hardly ever bites!