Wizard in the Forest wrote:If we believe and acknowledge that liberation is achievable in this time and age
Is there any doubt in you...? Only asking.
we must also grant the idea that Arahants exist among us. Speculation about people who might be one helps expand our ability to recognize it as opposed to self-proclaimed messianic kooks.
I understand your wish. But speculation is something teachers warn of. I think especially speculations about the achievements of others, but I don't recall where I read this. So I can't give you a source. But I'm sure someone else can.
There is something else you may wish to consider:
The Buddha said, that it is impossible for an average individual, to even imagine the faculties of a Supreme Buddha.
It is a fact, that we can't judge the potential of anybody, who is more advanced than we are.
We can only see the stages we have left behind, and reach out a helping hand to those who are still there.
So, necessarily, all discussion about who we suppose to be on a higher level than we are, is purely guessing.
And as such, it could easily become idle chatter.
So, a little caution is recommendable here....
However, I understand your wish to find Buddhists to look up to and have as your inspiration.
In this case, don't listen so much to what others say, much rather find them by yourself.
Perhaps you worry about falling for the wrong ones.
In this case I recommend you go to a temple, to ask ordained persons, and share your wish
I'm sure they can help you.
If you don't have that option, you will certainly get recommendations for good teachers here, but I would leave out the "title" Arahant
altogether, because this is, for most of us, not to know.
For some it might be, but since I am not an Arahant, I can't tell you who is and who is not, until I become one.
I hope my reply was helpful for you.