Buddhadharma editor Tynette Deveaux has son who, over the years, has enjoyed many great bedtime stories. The two of them have put together quite a collection of Buddhist children’s books. Here are Tynette’s top picks of the past decade, along with their publisher’s descriptions of the books, and links. (These books are best suited for children aged 4 to 8.)
Moody Cow Meditates
By Kerry Lee MacLean
(Wisdom Publications, 2009; 32 pp., $15.95)
Peter the cow is having a BAD day. After missing the bus and wiping out on his bike he loses his temper and gets in trouble. And to make matters worse all the other kids are teasing him, calling him Moody Cow. Peter’s day just seems to get worse until his grandfather comes over and teaches him how to settle his mind and let go of his frustration through a simple and fun exercise.This vibrant and funny children’s book is a playful and hilarious way to introduce children to the power of meditation. With full color illustrations by the author, Moody Cow Meditates is a wonderful book for parents and children to share together.
By Gail Silver, illustrated by Christiane Kromer
(Parallax Press, 2009; 40 pp., $16.95)
Offers children and caregivers a mindfulness-based practice for dealing with anger and other difficult emotions. Anh, a five-year-old boy, comes to know his anger when they dance, play, sit and breathe together, actively creating a space for Anh to resolve an earlier conflict with his grandfather and understand the causes of a strong emotion.
By Helen Manos, illustrated by Julie Viavas
(Kane/Miller Book Publishers, 2007; 48 pp., $17.95)
Based on Buddhist concepts of Samsara and Nirvana, this moving story about love and life, death and dying, and rebirth.
By Jon J. Muth
(Scholastic Press, 2008; 40 pp., $17.99)
Zen Ties is a disarming story of compassion and friendship that reaffirms the importance of our ties to one another.
Buddha at Bedtime
By Dharmachari Nagaraja
(Duncan Baird Publishers, 2008; 144 pp., $16.95)
These 20 thoroughly modern retellings of ancient Buddhist tales give parents a fun, low-pressure way to impart wisdom and moral guidance without preaching. Each story highlights a moral or ethical dilemma that echoes those that children face in their own lives, providing insight that they can use to defuse trying situations.
The Banyan Deer: A Parable of Courage and Compassion
By Rafe Martin, illustrated by Richard Wehrman
(Wisdom Publications, 2010; 48 pp., $15.00)
This inspiring tale reminds us that no one can be truly at peace unless all beings have a chance for peace, freedom, and happiness.