Six types of characters

It is a must to know the character type of the one who starts practising meditation according to the teachings of the Buddha. Without knowing the real type of character,(temperament) it is pointless to practice an object of meditation to see a useful result. The selection of object should be appropriate with the type of character who meditates upon it. Here is a brief explanation of character types found among the human beings as explained in the Dhamma.

1, Raga Carita – Greed predominant character (greedy temperament)

2, Dosa Carita – Anger predominant character (hating temperament)

3, Moha Carita – Perplexity predominant character (deluded temperament)

4, Saddha Carita – Faith predominant character (faithful temperament)

5, Buddhi Carita – Discerning predominant character (intelligent temperament)

6, Vitakka Carita – Discursiveness predominant character (speculative temperament)


One of saddha carita is parallel to one of raga carita.

One of buddhi carita is parallel to one of dosa carita.

One of vitakka carita is parallel to one of moha carita.

Even if you want to make many other different types of character you can simply combine any two of the above. But do not do so since it is endless. These are the major characteristics obviously seen in human beings. The importance is that, though Man is a complex combination of all these characteristics and is not a flat one, only the predominant feature is considered here to suit the purpose.

Some hints to make out the types of character

1, The Raga Carita.

If one is (a) deceitful, (b) fraudulent, (c) conceited, (d) full of bad wishes, (e) desirous, (f) not contented with, (g) lustful, (h) fickle, (i) shameless, (j) fearless, (k) full of vanity, and (l) negligent he/she is a greed predominant character.

2, The Dosa Carita.

If one is (a) angry, (b) revengeful, (c) contemptuous, (d) full of domineering attitude, (e) envious, and (f) avaricious, he/she is an anger predominant character.

3, The Moha Carita.

If one is (a) slothful and torpid, (b) restless, (c) repentant, (d) doubtful, (e) holding one’s own view, and(f) unwilling to give up the wrong view, he/she is a perplexity predominant character.


4, The Saddha Carita. (similar to the raga carita)

If one is (a) willing to give, (b) willing to see nobles, (c) willing to listen to the  Dhamma, (d) joyous, (e) not willing to move with monarchy, (f) not deceitful and (g) inspiring confidence, he/she is a faith predominant character.

5, The Buddhi Carita.(similar to the dosa carita)

If one is (a) obedient, (b) having company with good friends, (c) moderate, (d) mindful, (e) diligent, (f) sympathetic and (g) energetic, he/she is a discerning predominant character.

6, The Vitakka Carita. (similar to the moha carita)

If one is (a) garrulous, (b) fond to be in a crowd, (c) discontented in wholesome deeds, (d) unsteady, (e) reflective in the day, (f) reflective in the night and (g) preoccupied, he/she is a discursiveness predominant character.

The relevant character and suitable object of meditation.

* Greed Predominant-

Reflection upon the loathsomeness of dead bodies (asubha bavana) Reflection upon the putrid nature of the thirty two parts of the body (kayagata sati)

* Anger Predominant-

Development of the four sublime states (brahma vihara) Concentration on the colour disc,- blue, yellow, red and white (vanna kasina)

* Perplexity Predominant and Discursiveness Predominant

Development of mindfulness of breathing. (anapana sati)

*Faith Predominant-

Reflection on the first six  reflections, Buddhanussati, Dhammanussati, Sanghsnussati, etc.

*Discernment Predominant-

Reflection on death (marananussati) concentration on calmness (upasamanussati) analysis of four elements (catudhatu vavatthana) and reflection on loathsomeness of food.

NB:-Except four vanna kasinas all other kasinas. (earth, water, fire, wind, light and space) And recollection on four formless existences (Infinity of Space, Infinity of Consciousness, Nothingness and Perception neither is nor is not) are suitable for all in general.

First, adhere to the moral code of precepts to be spiritually pure and then be aware of the surroundings (to avoid dangers) and select the most suitable posture for meditation by yourself. Then recollect the holy qualities of the Buddha and radiate the feeling of loving kindness from you to all living beings. And also think of the loathsomeness of this fragile body as it is an aggregation of impurities and lastly the nature of death as the first thing of your meditation whenever you start meditation. Now try your personal object and see the difference. I wish you will do it.

May all beings be well and happy!           

 By Ven. K. Ariyaratahna.                                         

*For more information please read “The Path of Purification” or “Abhidhamma Sangraha”.

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