Great Disciples of the Buddha: Their Lives, Their Works, Their Legacy
By Ven. Nyanaponika Thera and Hellmuth Hecker382 pages
Just as the sun is valued not only for its own intrinsic radiance but also for its ability to illuminate the world, so the brilliance of the Buddha is determined not only by the clarity of his Teaching but by his ability to illuminate those who came to him for refuge
The Buddha’s first generation of followers established the traditions and values of the early Sangha. Indeed, it is nearly impossible to understand Buddhism without understanding the lives of the early Buddhist saints. This rich and inspiring series of biographies editted by Bhikkhu Bodhi mainly draws from the traditional commentaries of the Theravada tradition and so provides an excellent balance between readability and faithfulness to the source material. A must read for all students of Buddhism.