The disciples and relatives of The Buddha.

This is one of the compilation done during my 2 weeks of noviate programme from 03 Mar to 18 Mar 2003.
Note that some names are in Pali and have similiar English spelling. They were of different person and also of different gender.



Buddha’s cousin, who had a powerful retentive memory. Conferred The Chief Attendant of Buddha, when Buddha was 55 yrs old. Later became a Custodian of The Dhamma for his great knowledge and understanding The Dhamma. He could remembered 82,000 texts from Buddha and 2,000 texts from the Sangha. He passed away at 120 yrs old.


(Also Anuruddha)

Aniruddha was one of the Shakya princes.  He became blind one day for not sleeping, so he can listen to Buddha's teachings. Eventually gained Enlightenment and obtained the powers of the Heavenly Eye. Legend has it that not only could he see again, he could even see into the heavens.  He was one of the seven Shakya princes who became disciples of the Buddha.When Buddha was going into final Nibbana, the Buddha asked the sagha whether there were any final questions.  After three askings, it was Aniruddha who answered Buddha that there were no further questions.


Ahimsaka kumara was the earlier name of demonic Angulimala. Which means "Innocent" See Angulimala


Was also known as Sudatta, a millionaire lay disciple of Buddha. He was the chief supporter of Buddha. Regard as the most generous Upasaka ( Buddha’s lay-followers). His name means "Feeder of The Helpless" He had 3 daughters, Maha Subhadha, Cula Subhada and Sumana. Only son, Kala. His wife Punnalakkhana all his children were Buddha disciples.


He was known as Ahimsaka (Innocent), was misled and became The "Thousand-finger garland" murderer. He killed nine hundred and ninety-nine lives, and wanted to take Buddha to be his 1,000th victim. Was converted and ordained by Buddha after meeting Him. He became an Arahant after punished for his crimes. Many Therevadin Buddhists  used to bless the water by reciting this paritta of three stanzas and sprinkle on the head of the pregnant woman who is having difficulty in child-birth.


A man-eating demon converted to Buddha's disciple.


The most famous Indian emperor who converted to Buddhism after learning The Dhamma in the 273 BCE . There after wars were banned. He was a lay Buddhist who contribute the expansion of Buddhism in India and Sri Lanka (Ceylon) by sending his children to preach the Dhamma.


One for Five Ascetics (Kodananna, Bhadiya, Vappa and Mahanama) who left Ascetic Gotama.When Buddha who became Enlightened, all the five became Buddha’s first batch of disciples. Eventually all them attained Arahantship after hearing Anattalakhana Sutta. He converted Sariputta to become Buddha’s disciple.


A King who killed his own father. He was a chief supporter of Devatta. Later became Buddha lay disciple.


One of the Five Ascetics, Kodanna, Assji, Vappa and Mahanama, who were the pioneers of Sangha.


He and Tapassu were merchants from Ukkala-Orissa (now Burma). When they met Buddha, they offered honey-coated dough to Buddha, when He emerged from His 7-week fasting. They became the first lay disciples of Buddha and received Buddha’s hairs as mementoes. The hairs were enshrined in Burma. See Tapassu.


King of Magadha. Buddha’s first royal patron. When they first met, Ascetic Gotama promised to see the King when He becomes The Buddha. Hence, he was the first king Buddha visited. He became king at 15 years old. Rule for 42 year.


The Charioteer. He accompanied Prince Siddhatta to the wilderness on His Great Renunciation. He was instructed to return to palace with His garment and ornaments together with the hairs to inform the King Suddhodana of His renunciation. On the First Council Ven. Channa was charged for been extremely arrogant. He gained Arahantship upon repentance.


An ironsmith who offered the last meal to Buddha. He became guilty-consciousness for causing dysentery to Buddha due to the food. Eventually, Buddha honoured Cunda as equal to Sujata, (who offered milk rice) for providing meritorious meals.

Gaya Kassapa

An ascetic with 200 disciples. Brother of Nadi Kassapa and Uruvela Kassapa Who became an Arahant after listening to Aditapariyaya Sutta.


Friends of Yasa, who together with Subahu, Punnaji and Vimala they became arahants.


Cousin also brother-in-law of Buddha, was a evil monk to wanted to murder Buddha but failed in many attempts. Although he suffered a woeful death for his heinous crimes, by his early part of his career of being a monk, he would become a Pacceka(Solitary) Buddha named Atthissara in distance future.


An ascetic who became an Arhant at the same time with Sariputta.


A celebrated physician of The Buddha. He was abandoned in a basket by his mother,when he was a baby. Was adopted by Prince Komarabhacca. He induced King Ajatasatta to visit Buddha after he commited parricide.


He explained caste systems with King of Madhura


Was a playmate of Buddha, when both were young. Sent by King Suddhodana to invite Buddha to the palace, after nine failed attempts by others. Buddha obliged to Kaludayi’s request . He became an Arahant.

Kakalika Together with Devadatta who went astray. He is Chief disciple of Devadatta, who assalted Devadatta and caused his death.


Respectedly known as Mahakasyapa or Maha Kassapa.Was the most handsome disciple of Buddha who resembled Buddha in look. Because of his look-alike to Buddha, he became a forest monk to avoid being mistaken as Buddha. Legend said cremation of Buddha could not take place for 7 days, as funeral pyres could not ignite. Upon his return from the forest, the fire automatically ignited.

Katyayana Katyayana was born to a rich family was extremely enthusiastic about spreading the Dharma. He realized the 10 qualities a propagator of the Dhamma must possess: knowing the Dharma, ability to explain the Dharma, public speaking ability, persuasiveness, skillful means, ability to follow what is preached, of pleasant appearance and personality, possessing right energy, tired-less, and commands respect.  When propagating the Dharma, he perfected the 4 qualities of skillful means, using the right medicine for the right sickness, knowing the right time, and completeness of the Dharma.  With the help of Katyayana, Buddhism spread quickly and widely during Buddha's time.  The Buddha praised Katyayana as the foremost among his disciples in spread the Dharma.


Lay name of Moggalana. Good friend of Upatissa (Sariputta).


The First Arahant student. He was the senior of the Five Ascetics who joined Ascetic Gotama in seeking the Truth through extreme asceticism. He was one of the eight Brahmins who called upon by King Suddhodana to name the infant Siddhatta. He was conferred as Annata Kondanna when he understood the 1st discourse of Buddha..

Maha Kassapa (Skt: Kasyapa) Also known as Kassapa, was Brahmin of Magadha who became a close disciple of the Buddha, and was at the time of his death the most senior member of the Order. He therefore presided over the first Buddhist Council, held immediately after the passing. The Zen School regards him as their First Patriarch from the story of the 'transmission' of the 'Mind-seal' when the Buddha held up the golden flower and Maha Kassapa smiled. Legend has it that he then went to the Himalayas.  He would meditate inside a mountain till the coming of the next Buddha, which is 6.7 billion years later.  He would then pass on the Buddha's robes and alms bowl to the next Buddha.See Kassapa


One of the Five Ascetics became Buddha 1st disciple together with Kodananna, Assaji, Bhadiya and Vappa

Mahinda Son of the Indian King Asoka and leader of a Buddhist missionary enterprise to Sri Lanka. Sometime around 250 B.C., Asoka sent his son and daughter, Sanghamitta, to Sri Lanka to establish the Dharma on the island. Mahinda converted the king, Devanampiya Tissa, and established a monastery that eventually developed into the Mahavihara or 'Great Monastery.' A branch of the Bodhi tree was brought from Bodhgaya. In a short time, a valid lineage was established, and the religion began to grow on the island, remaining today as a stronghold of Theravada Buddhism.


Chief Disciple Also known as Kolita.A good friend of Sariputta. Rank No. 1 in psychic power amongst the Arahants. Buddha always discouraged all to display supernatural power except for Mogallana, he was even praised for using supernatural powers in propagating the Dhamma. In Mahayana traditon, Ullambana festival  (7th Month or Ghost Festival) was based on his story to save his mother in Hell.


Stepbrother of Buddha. On his marriage, he became a Bhikkhu. When he missed his beautiful betrothed wife, Janapada Kalyani,he wanted to go back laity. Buddha brought him to Tavatimsa Heaven to see celestial nymphs. His attachment was destroyed. Later, He became a disciple in respect of self-control. (Note his sister bear the same name in Romanised spelling)


An ascetic with 300 disciples. Brother of Uruvela Kassapa and Gaya Kassapa. Who became an Arahant after listening to Aditapariyaya Sutta.


A great surgeon of Kosambi who attended a injured man brought by Buddha and Ananda. The injured man, sent by Queen Magandiya, fell off from the tree while verbally abuse Buddha.

Punna Mantaniputta

The arharant who brought Ananda, Anuruddha, Bhadiya, Bhagu. Kimbila and the order.

Pasenadi Kosala

A son of King Maha Kosala. He was proficient in arts. Her chief queen, Mallika asked Buddha to interpret his 16 Dreams, which ended his cruelty misled by other.


Friends of Yasa, who together with Subahu, Vimala and Gavampati they became arahants.

Purna  Purna was born to a rich Brahmin family.  His father was the religious advisor of the King, and his uncle was Asita, the great sage who predicted that the baby Prince Siddharta would become a Buddha.  Purna was well-learned in the Brahmin ways since young and was the best in debating the philosophies. There were many stories about him debating the Dharma with great monks of other religions, often winning them over to Buddhism.


Son of Prince Siddhatta (Buddha).Rahula means fetter (obstacle / impediment) Became a samanera (novice monk) at the age of seven, when he first time saw his father, The Buddha. According to Tibetan Buddhism, he was the founder on Esoteric Buddhism.


A cobbler disciple of Buddha.


The Chief Disciple for Wisdom. Son of Vaganta. He is also known as Upatissa, an intelligent youth. A good friend Kolita. (Moggalana) Became an Arahant in 2 weeks.


A Barber desciple.

Sinha An army general who seek Buddha advice on war and killing, when he was a junior soldier.

Sivali was an important disciple of Lord Buddha. He was praised by the Buddha as the most miraculous monk for fortune. Sivali mantra praying for good luck and fortune:"Sivali ja Mahathero Devatanarapuchito Soraho Pajjayatimhi Sivali ja Mahathero Yakkhadeva Puchito Soraho Pajjayatimhi Ahang Wanthami Tang Sathatassatherassa Aetang Khunang Sotthilabhang Bhavantumae."


A 7 years old boy saved by Buddha in a cemetery. He was bound to a decomposed corpse by his step-father, and about to attack by jackals, Buddha saved him.He became one of the youngest desciple after Rahula.


Also known as Anathapindika a lay disciple of Buddha.


Buddha’s father. Became a lay Arahant upon his death. According to the Vinaya, Suddhodana requested one had to seek permissions from living parents in order to become a monk. This took place when his grandson Rahula, was suppose to be a Crown Prince became a monk. Buddha accepted this request and became a compulsory condition to become a monk/nun.


Friends of Yasa, who together with Vimala, Punnaji and Gavampati they became arahants.

Subhuti When Subhuti was born, all the treasures and apparatus in the family disappeared!  The fortune teller explained that it was a good sign, that Subhuti would become the foremost person in understanding emptiness.  Of course all the treasures and apparatus in the family re-appeared after three days.The Buddha praised Subhuti as the foremost in realizing emptiness.


A young man fell into lust while on the way to become a monk, when seeing a beautiful Uppalavanna who also on the way to be a nun. He finally repent to Buddha and became His disciple.


The timid Scavenger. Was honoured by kings and nobles for his Arahantship


A merchants from Ukkala-Orissa (now Burma). They became the first lay disciples of Buddha together with Bhallika. Offered first meal to Buddha after his 49 days of meditation. It was said they receive Buddha’s hairs and were enshrined in Burmese temples till today.




Royal barber from low caste, entered the order when Buddha first time returned to palace.He became the foremost in upkeeping the precepts, never breaking any of them.  He was often asked by the Buddha to settle disputes among the Sangha.Upali's impartialness and strictness made him successful in all cases.  Upali also consulted the Buddha in many precept doubts and monastic way of life, giving rise to many suttas.Later he became Buddha’s chief disciple on Vinaya (Monk Rules)


(Not a disciple)

A well known wealthy and learned lay discipline of Nigantha Nataputta (Mahavira- Jainism). Was sent to debate with Buddha on theory of kamma. Upon losing the debate, he was convinced that his master, Mahavira was wrong and Buddha’s view was correct. Buddha refused to accept him as lay disciple as he wanted him to continue to serve Mahavira.


Another name of Sariputta.

Uruvela Kassapa

An ascetic ( Jatila) with 500 disciples before meeting Buddha. He was eldest brother of Nadi Kassapa and Gaya Kassapa. He was obsessed by misconception of Arahant. Buddha displayed many times His psyche power to convinced Buddha’s attainment. He became an Arahant after accepting Buddha. One of the challenges was suppressing a Serpent King in Uruvela’s fire chamber. He and two of his brother and all the disciples were converted.

Vappa Mahanama

One of the Five Ascetics, Kodanna, Assji, Bhadiya and Mahanama


Friends of Yasa, who together with Subahu, Punnaji and Gavampati they became arahants.


The 6th Arahant of Buddha. Son of a millionaire in Benares. His father became the first lay follower to seek refuge with the threefold formula. Yasa after hearing the discourse delivered to his father, he attained Arahantship. His mother and wife became the first two female lay followers. Yasa four distinguished friends, Vimala, Subahu, Punnaji and Gavampati too enter the Sangha and attained Arahantship after hearing the Dhamma. Fifty more friends became arhants, and in less than 2 months since Buddha’s enlightenment, there were sixty arhants from distinguished families and worthy sons and fathers.



A courtesan from a village near Vesali at Beluva. She turned down an expensive invitation because of Buddha’s visit. Her mangrove grove was offer to Buddha and His followers for rain retreat, which last 41 days. Buddha spent His Last Rain Retreat in her mangrove grove.

Bhaddha Kachayana Ordained name of Yasodhara ( Prince Sidhharta's wife) became an arhahant by acquiring 4 Supermundane Paths and 4 Supermundane Fruitions of Sanctification.


She was one of the female disciple who was wife of Maha Kassapa in their lay lives. Both had not comsummate their marriage because they wanted religious lives but were forced into marriage.

Janapada Kalyani

Betrothed beautiful wife, of Nanda ,who wanted to return to laity because of her charm. However, her beauty was no match the celestial nymphs, when Nanda went to heaven. By comparison her and nymphs, she was like a female monkey.


The conceived nun who was accused by Devatta for having illicit affair while being a bhikuni. Was confirmed by Arhant Pajapati that she was innocent, as she was pregnant before her ordination. 


The first female disciple,was a beautiful female consort of King Bimbisara. Ranked foremost for insight. She was one of the Chief Disciple of Buddha in the Female Order together with Uppalavanna.The perfect or model Buddhist nun (bhikkhuni) according to the Buddha. She became a wise teacher herself, giving answers to questions posed by King Pasenadi which turned out to be identical to the Buddha's own answers when he was asked the same questions.

A servant of Queen Samavati, who listened to Buddha sermons everyday and return to palace to tell Queen Samavati what she learned from Buddha. She secured many converts by teaching the Dhamma.


A hysterical mother who brough her dead baby to Buddha for help. Buddha asked for a handful of mustard seeds from house that no death occurred, as the medicine to revive her baby. She later became a disciple after understanding Buddha's teaching of non-attachement.

(Not a disciple)

Although she was not a disciple of Buddha but her parents were. She was a beautiful maid was offer to Buddha for marriage. Buddha mentioned beautiful body was also like urine and dung.She was offended and took revenge on Buddha, when she became a Chief Queen. 

Mahamaya  The natural mother of Lord Buddha. She died seven days after the birth of Shakyamuni.
Mahapajapati Another name for Pajapati Gotami. She was the sister of Mahamaya, the mother of Shakyamuni Buddha. She married King Suddhodana after Queen May passed away. Mahapajapati then became the step/foster mother of Shakyamuni, and treated Shakyamuni as her own son. After the death of King Suddhodana, Mahapajapati was ordained as the first woman admitted to Buddhist Order.

Maha Subhadha

Daughter of Anathapindika had 2 sisters, Cula Subhada and Sumana. One brother, Kala. Both she and her younger sister attained Sotapatti.


A devout queen who counselled her husband King Pasenadi. She stopped her husband barbarous acts based on wrong interpretations of the 16 Dreams by seeking Buddha advice.


A faithful wife who recited her virtues to save her husband.

Pajapati Gotami

Better known as Mahapajapati. Stepmother also aunt of Buddha. Younger sister of Buddha nature mother. Upon death of King Suddhodana, her husband, she became The Founder of Female Order (Bhikkuni). She passed away at 78.See Mahapajapati


Aunt of Buddha, mother of Devadatta and Yosodhara (Prince Siddhatta’s wife) Wife of King Suppabuddha.


A mad woman running around naked. She lost two children, husband, parents, brothers under very tragic circumstance in a row.She went to Buddha and hearing Buddha's teaching, she recovered from her insanity and became a nun.. She became a source of consolation for bereaved mothers.


Pious and lovable queen without ill will. Was burnt to death by her rival yet radiated loving-kindness to the murderer.

Sanghamitta Sent by her father Emperor with her brother Mahinda to Sri Lanka to establish the Dharma on the island.


Sister of Sumana who both carry exemplary characters and had implicit faith on Buddha.


The milkmaid who offer milk rice to Buddha prior to His Enlightenment.


Daughter-in-law of Anathpindika, a chief supporter layman to Buddha. She had no respects for her parents-in-law. Was lectured by Buddha on the 7 kinds of wives.


Sister of Subhadda who both carry exemplary characters and strong faith on Buddha..


Very devout lady who unable to buy flesh for making herbal soup for a sick monk, used flesh from her thigh.


Chief female disciple for Bhikkunis together with Khema.She was a beautiful woman, which considered a curse to her misfortune even until the last hour of her ordination that she attracted a young man, Sudhira who wanted to be a monk to fall into lust.


Daughter of a millionaire, Dhananjaya. At 7 years old she attained the first stage of sainthood (Sotapatti) after listening to Buddha’s teaching. She had the strength of man yet gifted of all women’s charms. She settled Bhikkhus disputes and some Vinaya owing to her intervention. She was said to lived to 120 year old with 10 sons and 10 daughers.


Chief Benefactress of the order.


Prince Siddhatta’s (Buddha) wife also a princess cousin and bore Prince Rahula their only son. She is also known as Rahulamata, Bimba and Bhaddakaccana (Bhaddha Kachayana) The First Bhikkuni although The Order was not formed until her mother-in-law, Pajapati started it.

Samanera Ven Siri Dhamma ( 03-03-03 to 16-03-03)

Last update on 11 May 2003, base on Lee Hon Sing article at :

Kindly email me if you know any disciples of Lord Buddha not mentioned here.Also appreciate you can email the source of the information.
Thank You!

Sidney (Siri) See

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