This potentially could make it even clearer why the ariya sangha was so important. Awakening through direct contact with someone who has awakened.
Perhaps it was like it is in Tibetan Buddhism with pointing out instructions, and with Advaita also, and as they say in Zen with the direct transmission. With no counter examples, that’s potentially a strong case, or at least a case for that being a or the main way, if it’s the only one ever mentioned!
It need not be anything so exotic like ‘direct transmission’ (nothing akin to this is suggested anywhere in the EBTs). In fact, the idea that you could physically transfer awakening seems to go against everything else we know about the Dhamma: it is wisdom (paññā) that has the power to uproot the defilements.
And as others have pointed out, if someone realized stream entry through meditation it may not have been something that is likely to be mentioned in the discourses.
However, it may point out the value of hearing (or reading) the Dhamma from one who has attained right view (i.e. stream enterer or beyond), since they’re unlikely to preach the Dhamma in a way that would promulgate wrong view in the listener’s mind.
There are many who believe there are those who have attained stream entry and beyond in the present age, particularly among insight meditation traditions. Bhikkhu Anālayo says in his book “Satipatthana Meditation: A Practice Guide”:
I would also like to put on record my indebtedness to the guidance I received when formerly practising in several Theravāda meditation traditions, in particular those taught by Ajahn Buddhadāsa, Mahāsi Sayādaw, and S.N. Goenka, without which I would not have arrived at the approach presented here. Perhaps even more significant is my indebtedness to Godwin Samararatne for having taught me the appropriate meditative attitude.
In the past I had the good fortune to encounter other practitioners who had attained levels of awakening. These were found among followers of several mainstream vipassanā traditions, such as those taught by Mahāsi Sayādaw, S.N. Goenka, and Pa Auk Sayādaw. Still others did not follow any particular tradition. I do not have any doubt that each of these vipassanā traditions is capable of leading to the breakthrough to stream-entry, just as I do not have the slightest doubt that what I present here has the same potential. Thus what I have described here is not meant to supersede other meditation traditions, but rather intended as offering yet another option for progress on the path. In short, my motivation is to enrich, not to compete.
Of course, whether to believe these claims or not is upto you.