This view that the enlightened being is a learned person, a great scholar, is a misunderstanding, another extreme. Enlightenment is not purely a matter of collecting information. If a buddha didn’t know how to change his snow tires, for example, a person with this view might begin to have doubts about him. After all, he is supposed to be omniscient one; how could he be a buddha if he doesn’t know how to do that? The perfect buddha would be able to surprise you with his knowledge in every area. He would be a good cook, a good mechanic, a good scientist, a good poet, a good musician–he would be good at everything. That is a diluted and diffused [“puffy”] idea of buddha, to say the least. He is not that kind of universal expert nor a superprofessor.
The point is that even Trungpa was fighting this common “puffy” misperception in his own tradition. I’m sure he saw it among many of the starry-eyed hippies that would come to his teachings expecting far more from him than he even imagined.
Trungpa mentions “omniscent” which is Tibetan is “kunkhyen” (kun = all, mKhyen = know). According to David, it’s often taken as equivalent to “enlightened” and applied to important lamas (living and dead). And though most lamas don’t buy into the view Trungpa is criticizing, ordinary tibetans do commonly attribute “global enlightenment” to lamas.
Question to Readers: Let me know other quotes from other traditions where this common puffy illusion is combated.