This book by Atisha, or commentary, is the prototype of all other forthcoming Tibetan lam.rim (stages of the path to enlightenment) literature by Je Tsongkhapa (Lamrim chenmo), Pahbonka Rinpoche, and others. Actually, Je Tsongkhapa requested for blessings from Atisha to compose his Lamrim Chenmo.
Maybe the translation or the style is not applicable for some readers, but it's important to notice that without Atisha's text, the whole lam.rim literature from Tibet would most likely not have happened in the big scale as it did. --Kent
The most basic texts of the Tibetan Buddhist Tradition, "lamrim" texts, cover all the stages of the path to enlightenment. They all trace their origin to this text by Atisha. I have long been attracted to the lamrim tradition, and have read a number of modern renditions. I purchased and read this book hoping to glean something extra or some special insight from a translation and commentary on the original source text of this whole tradition. I was disappointed. I doubt it is Atisha's lack of clarity that makes this book, and even his own verses, so uninspiring, so humdrum actually. Perhaps later exponents like Je Tsongkhapa and Je Pabongkhapa really did improve upon the original, and having read their works this one seems superfluous, but that has not typically been my experience in this field. I think that the authors, while they have done a great service in bringing this work to the English language, have not translated nor commented upon this work in a way that makes for compelling or even interesting reading. By its very history alone, this should be a book I refer to frequently, but I have never looked again at it even once since I read it a year ago, and that seems sad to me.