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Ignorance of the Dhamma is the main reason that we have taken rebirth.The truth is concealed from unenlightened minds — to gain insight and right understanding we need to practise insight meditation, which is the only way to win liberation from the cycle of suffering.The introductory story in the Milinda Pañha con­cerning Nāgasena’s upbring­ing is almost identical to the story of the young Moggali­putta Tissa, which is told in the Mahāvaṃsa, the Ceylon Chronicles.Moggaliputta Tissa Thera lived about a hundred years before Menander and is mentioned twice in the text [Miln.I presume this debate was conducted in the Bactrian Greek language but was later translated into Pali and Sanskrit.

This edition is fully indexed, and includes the glossary and list of Pāḷi Quotations. Since it is compiled from several different sources, it may not be geographically accurate.

Motilal Banarsidass reprinted the first edition as a hardback in 1991, and in 1998 they printed a revised edition.

My original intention in abridging Rhys David’s translation was to make this important work of Buddhist literature accessible to as many people as possible, but it is still not widely available.

The author is not known but it is almost certain that he lived in the far north­west of India or in the Punjab, since he mentions no place in the interior of India south of the Ganges.² This is supported by what is definitely known about King Menander, a Bactrian king identified with Milinda. Many of his coins have been found over a wide area of northern India, as far west as Kabul, as far east as Mathura and as far north as Kashmir.

The portrait is sometimes of a young man and other times that of a very old man.

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