Textual analysis and comparative discussion on early Buddhist sects and texts.
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But what about Theravada? Are there any similar ideas that Buddha put forth, about very different Dhamma paths for people, accounting for our varied stages of readiness?
Sort of; there are 40 different subjects for samatha meditation, and the meditator chooses based on his temperament. There are also different suggestions based on personality types, for example:
https://dhammawiki.com/index.php?title= ... typography
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I recall, but not well enough, some sutta? that mentioned at least 3 or 4 types, devotional, intellectual etc. But just discovered this Abhidhamma text, Puggala-pannatti
that is amazingly thorough.
https://vignette4.wikia.nocookie.net/ti ... 1010181403
The heart of humanity is highly complex, so one can see why Buddha taught from so many angles.
Wholesome virtuous behavior progressively leads to the foremost. -- AN 10.1