Tibetan Tales for Little Buddhas

One of the most beautiful children’s books I’ve ever seen.
- Marie Jones, BookIdeas.com

TTLB_Cover_largeThis award-winning book is a collection of three charming stories from Tibet. Each story provides an enchanting glimpse into Tibetan culture and leaves the reader with a little nugget of Tibetan wisdom. The engaging tales entertain with mystical beings, yaks, wild goats, horses, an enormous sow, and a yeti. Written in a simple style, young and old will enjoy these fun and thoughtful tales.

Naomi’s llustrations capture the essence of the Tibetan people and landscape. The book includes a map, glossary, and description of a Tibetan chant.

Details

  • Written and illustrated by Naomi C. Rose
  • Foreword by the Dalai Lama
  • Hardcover, 64 pp, 12 X 8 1/2
  • ISBN-10: 1-57416-081-8
  • ISBN-13: 978-1574160819
  • In English and Tibetan
  • Dancing Dakini Press, 2004
  • Ages 4 and up
  • Hardcover print: $19.95
  • Kindle-all formats: $2.99  Kindle version


Personally inscribed copies. $19.95 + shipping

Foreword by the Dalai Lama

dalai_lama_paintingEveryone wants to be happy and to overcome whatever problems they meet in their lives. One of the most important means of fulfilling this wish is through education. Even today, in this age of television and electronic communications I believe that reading books is an essential part of education. Therefore, we can give our children tremendous help if we teach them to read and give them an appreciation of books at an early age.

Naomi Rose has created a children’s book called Tibetan Tales for Little Buddhas. Young children will surely find these charming, colourful books attractive. In them she retells simple stories that were once told in Tibet that children anywhere will find fun to read. Because the stories are set in Tibet, readers in other lands will naturally become aware of the existence of our country and of the values that we hold dear.

I congratulate the author on her efforts and hope that books like these may serve as examples for others in their clarity, simplicity and charming appeal to children. I am sure they will bring joy to readers young and old.

Artwork

Visit Galleries to see more illustrations.

Story Synopses

Yeshi’s Luck

thumb_horsesWhen Yeshi loses his only horse, everyone agrees he’s had back luck. Everyone that is. except Yeshi’s father who responds to all events by chanting. As the reversals of fortune unfold, Yeshi and the villagers come to understand the wisdom of Yeshi’s father.

Jomo and the Dakini Queen

jomo.dakini.thumbJomo works hard at her chores to please her grumpy aunt. One day she encounters an enormous sow and a Dakini Queen (a wise and mystical woman of Tibet). From this encounter, Jomo learns to see past fear and to see with her heart. When Jomo applies this lesson to life with her aunt, Jomo is magically transformed.

Chunda’s Wisdom Quest

thumb_wisdom-quest-begins_1On the first day of his wisdom quest, Chunda hurts his ankle and believes his quest is ruined. When a fierce yeti is hurt, Chunda faces the decision of whether or not to risk his life to help. Through his choices, Chunda gains great wisdom of the healing power of kindness.

Awards

2005 Nautilus Book Award
2006 Storytelling World Honor
2005 Independent Publisher Award Honorable Mention

2005 Nautilus Book Award Gold Winner

Tibetan Tales for Little Buddhas won the 2005 Nautilus Book Award in the category of Children’s Illustrated Book. Author/illustrator Naomi C. Rose received the award at a presentation on Thursday evening, June 2, 2005, in the ballroom of historic Starrett Lehigh Building in New York. Several hundred authors, publishers, retailers, and media representatives were in attendance.

Nautilus Book Awards recognize and honor books that contribute significantly to our society’s awareness and embrace of values such as compassion, simplicity, and global peace.

From the award committee: “…Balanced and magical at the same time, the tales teach compassionate responsibility for all of life… The author’s vibrant acrylic and pastel illustrations richly reinforce simple yet profound teachings. As the Dalai Lama writes in the Foreword, this book ‘…will bring joy to readers young and old.’

Bestseller

Eagle Harbor Bookstore, Washington
The Ark Bookstore, New Mexico
Boulder Bookstore, Colorado

Review Excerpts

School Library Journal

“Three traditional Tibetan tales are retold and beautifully illustrated in this bililngual picture book…Rose’s vivid, dynamic paintings, suffused with deep blues and purples, capture the appeal of the landscape and the people…this book will be welcome in many collections.”

Booklist

“The stories, printed in both English and Tibetan, are certainly purposeful…children will enjoy the exciting fairy-tale elements…Rose’s vibrantly colored paintings ably bring to life the characters, setting, and supernatural encounters.”

San Francisco Chronicle
“… this colorful picture book … offer(s) gentle spiritual lessons and stories of adventure… Rose’s vivid color paintings draw the reader in and move the stories along.”

Midwest Book Review

“…an engaging children’s picture book and a fascinating introduction to another culture…recommended for family, school, and community library collections…as enjoyable for parents as it is for their little ones.”

Shambhala Sun

“There are lots of different things to like about Naomi Rose’s Tibetan Tales for Little Buddhas. First of all, it is a pleasure to look at. The vibrant, impressionistic paintings that fill the book invite the reader to enter a dreamworld Tibetan landscape…the three tales of love, devotion, courage and simple wisdom that make up this collection are sure to touch the hearts of readers young and old…A rich collection indeed!

Foreword Magazine

“(Rose’s) paintings generously adorn the sensitively translated text…(this book) will give American children a charming introduction to the culture and values of traditional Tibet.”

BookIdeas.com

“… one of the most beautiful children’s books I’ve ever seen…(teaches) lessons that transcend all religious, social, and national boundaries. Teaching children the art of wisdom is not easy, but this priceless treasure of a book does just that, and does it wonderfully.”

Santa Fe New Mexican

“What a treasure is Tibetan Tales for Little Buddhas! This book is sure to become a classic, offering its timeless wisdom…accompanied by finely rendered, evocative art.”

Asian Reporter

“… children all over the world can learn strategies for overcoming their own, perhaps not quite so exotic, problems from Tibetan Tales for Little Buddhas…an inspiration.”

Curled Up With A Good Book

“Rose keeps the language clear and the lessons simple…a wonderful introduction to Tibetan culture for youngsters and adults…The lessons are meaningful and attainable for children and the book has magic and mysticism to keep their attention…the accomplishments of this book should not be overlooked and (the book) should be read to children across the U.S.”

Full Reviews

School Library Journal, March 2005

Gr 2-5-Three traditional Tibetan tales are retold and beautifully illustrated in this bilingual picture book. In Yeshi’s Luck, a young man learns from his wise father that everything is not always what it seems, for sometimes good things come from adversity. In the second tale, a Dakini, a traditional goddess, shows a young girl how to face her fears. In the last story, the young monk Chunda goes on a wisdom quest and encounters a yeti. The inclusion of such specific cultural elements adds to the unique sense of place. The Tibetan text has an appealing calligraphic quality. Rose’s vivid, dynamic paintings, suffused with deep blues and purples, capture the appeal of the landscape and the people. An introduction by the Dalai Lama, a brief note about Tibet, and a useful glossary are included. With few folktales available from this land, this book will be welcome in many collections. -Robin L. Gibson

Booklist

An artist and student of Tibetan Buddhism, Rose has chosen and illustrated three traditional tales that exemplify Tibetan Buddhist beliefs. In the first selection, a boy learns not to judge events as “good fortune or bad”; in the second, a downtrodden young girl encounters a goddess and absorbs her strength; and in the last, a young monk learns to overcome his fears and practice “loving kindness” when he encounters a wounded Yeti. The stories, printed in both English and Tibetan, are certainly purposeful, and their source (Lama Surya Das’ 1992 book The Snow Lion’s Turquoise Mane) is mentioned only in the flap copy, but children will enjoy the exciting fairy-tale elements: the cruel parents, the shape-shifting creatures, the magic, the action, and the empowered young people who emerge from each story. Rose’s vibrantly colored paintings, created with broad, blurry strokes and dabs of pigment, ably bring to life the characters, setting, and supernatural encounters. –Gillian Engberg

San Francisco Chronicle
Another book highlighting a foreign culture is “Tibetan Tales for Little Buddhas” by Naomi C. Rose with an introduction by the Dalai Lama (Clear Light; 64-pages; $16.95; ages 7-up). In this colorful picture book, three folktales, printed in both English and Tibetan, offer gentle spiritual lessons and stories of adventure, including yaks, a yeti and a mystical creature that turns into a radiant woman. Rose’s vivid color paintings draw the reader in and move the stories along. –Regan McMahon

Midwest Book Review – 5 Stars
As enjoyable for parents as it is for their little ones, November 7, 2004

Featuring a brief foreword by His Holiness the Dalai Lama, Tibetan Tales For Little Buddhas is both an engaging children’s picture book and a fascinating introduction to another culture. The three tales, “Yeshi’s Luck”, “Jomo and the Dakini Queen”, and “Chunda’s Wisdom Quest” are presented in Tibetan and English. Warm color illustrations help display a picture of Tibetan daily life in this unique folklore treasury recommended for family, school, and community library collections. Tibetan Tales for Little Buddhas will prove to be as enjoyable for parents as it is for their little ones.

Shambhala Sun

There are lots of different things to like about Naomi Rose’s Tibetan Tales for Little Buddhas. First of all, it is a pleasure to look at. The vibrant, impressionistic paintings that fill the book invite the reader to enter a dreamworld Tibetan landscape. Himalayan yak herders, pious villagers, charming Tibetan maidens and a frightening beast that transforms into an exotically beautiful Dakini Queen are just some of the characters populating this vision, and the three tales of love, devotion, courage and simple wisdom that make up this collection are sure to touch the hearts of readers young and old. Those familiar with Androcles and the Lion will be intrigued by the Tibetan version of this story, in which the part of the lion is played by a yeti, the Abominable Snowman himself. This book also contains a foreword by His Holiness the Dalai Lama, a map of Tibet, the six-syllable mantra of compassion, and the Tibetan version of the English text on each page. A rich collection indeed! –Jonathan Landaw

BookIdeas.com, Reviewed by: Marie Jones

Tibetan Tales for Little Buddhas is one of the most beautiful children’s books I’ve ever seen. Written by artist and Buddhist Naomi C. Rose, this lushly illustrated book teaches three powerful life lessons using Tibetan characters and themes, lessons that transcend all religious, social, and national boundaries.

Teaching children the art of wisdom is not easy, but this priceless treasure of a book does just that, and does it wonderfully. The three stories present popular themes about not judging outer appearances, looking beyond fear to the underlying truth and giving compassion in order to receive its blessings.

“Yeshi’s Luck” is a popular and often re-told tale of how a boy learns about not judging too quickly from his very wise father. “Jomo and the Dakini Queen” teaches a young girl to look beyond the grumpiness of her Aunt and guardian and see the beautiful, loving spirit within. “Chunda’s Wisdom Quest” takes us on a journey with a young monk in search of wisdom, only to find that what he was looking for is not at all what he expected.

Again, these powerful, yet simple stories come to life with the vivid impressionistic paintings of artist Rose, and the stories themselves are filled with warmth, wisdom and wit. What is especially “neat” about this unusual book is the Tibetan translation of each story. Children get to see how the story is told in the unique language of the original storytellers, adding to the book’s richness and depth.

Tibetan Tales for Little Buddhas is a wise and gorgeous treasure for any child of any religion, and may also teach adult readers a thing or two about finding truth, wisdom and beauty in a world filled with noisy distractions.

Asian Reporter, Reviewed by: Josephine Bridges

Everyone wants to be happy and to overcome whatever problems they meet in their lives,” writes His Holiness the Dalai Lama in his foreword to Naomi Rose’s retelling of three tales once told in Tibet. Yeshi, Jomo, and Chunda, young heroes of the three stories, all have unusual problems to overcome in their search for happiness — there’s a wounded yeti, for example — that readers might not encounter outside “The Land of Snows, Rooftop of the World, Land of Rainbows” (names for Tibet we also learn here). Nonetheless, children all over the world can learn strategies for overcoming their own, perhaps not quite so exotic, problems from Tibetan Tales for Little Buddhas.

When Yeshi’s horse runs away in “Yeshi’s Luck,” the boy can’t understand why his father responds to this terrible turn of events by asking, “Who can say what’s good fortune and bad?” When the horse returns with another horse, Yeshi begins to get his father’s point, but there are still some surprises in store for him.

Jomo’s crabby aunt is always criticizing her niece’s housework. Jomo drops a hint for the reader when she confides to her yaks that she’s afraid of her aunt, who is “always yelling — ever since Mama and Papa died.” In a cave in a high mountain pasture, Jomo sees something else that frightens her, but this creature asks her — in rhyming couplets — to face her fear and look beyond external appearances. Be on the lookout for a shocking illustration in “Jomo and the Dakini Queen.”

“Chunda’s Wisdom Quest” is the story of a young monk in search of a mystical land. “How will I know when I get there?” he asks. “Just pay attention,” says the oldest monk. Hoping to get there fast, Chunda begins his quest by racing to the bottom of a hill and hurting his ankle in a fall. As he waits for his ankle to heal, Chunda discovers that he has a yeti for a neighbor, and not just any yeti, but “the kind that eats humans.” But when he doesn’t see the yeti one day, and goes to see if something is wrong, Chunda learns that the object of his quest may not be so far away after all.

Tibetan Tales for Little Buddhas is written in both English and Tibetan. Even if readers don’t know any Tibetan, the language is a joy to look at, as are the author’s paintings. Naomi C. Rose’s yaks and her use of the color blue are positively transcendent.

In her “Special Thanks” section at the end of the book, the author expresses her gratitude not only to the Dalai Lama, but to all “the Tibetan people whose dignity in the face of cultural tragedy continues to inspire me.”

Tibetan Tales for Little Buddhas is also an inspiration.

Dealing with life through the tales of the Tibetans

Barbara Harrelson for the Santa Fe New Mexican, 11/14/04

What a treasure is Tibetan Tales for Little Buddhas! This book is sure to become a classic, offering its timeless wisdom in three traditional Tibetan tales, accompanied by finely rendered, evocative art. As a bonus, the tales are translated into the Tibetan language, ensuring its popularity in this community where many refugee Tibetan families live.

Each of the stories has been adapted from native Tibetan folklore, with the intention of translating traditional cultural wisdom and values for children. The book includes a map of Tibet, a glossary and a description of a popular Tibetan chant that is featured in one of the stories, Yeshi’s Luck.

Yeshi’s Luck imparts a lesson that seems to be about fate, but ultimately teaches that one cannot know what life has in store and what seems like bad luck today could prove to be good luck in time. Yeshi is a young boy who goes in search of his lost horse and discovers many surprising truths along the way.

The theme of Jomo and the Dakini Queen deals with fear and how to overcome it. Jomo, a young girl with many chores and responsibilities, never manages to please her Aunt Peta, it seems. As she goes about her work with the yaks in the meadow, she encounters something scary and miraculous, echoing the sentiment in another classic of children’s literature, The Little Prince: “What is essential is invisible; it is only with the heart that one sees rightly.”

In the story of Chunda’s Wisdom Quest, a yeti plays an important role. The glossary tells us that a yeti is the Himalayan version of Bigfoot, that yetis were a protected species until 1958, and that sightings are still reported. Chunda, a young monk, learns one of the most valuable lessons life can teach about helping others, even when it seems to mean self-sacrifice.

The title of the book takes on added meaning when one has read and understood the tales — and realizes that the Buddha, according to the book’s glossary, is “one who has attained universal wisdom, compassion and peace.”

Naomi Rose, now a Santa Fe resident, has been a student of Tibetan culture for more than 10 years and was encouraged in this creative project by one of her teachers. Tibetan Tales for Little Buddhas is her first children’s book. Her artwork adds to our understanding of how Tibetan families live, eat and clothe themselves in a part of the world that is as astounding in its beauty as in its harsh living conditions.

Rose reports the difficulty in finding a publisher for the book, and it was only after she sent a draft copy to the Dalai Lama that events began to unfold that brought her to Clear Light Publishing in Santa Fe.

One of those events was the Sept. 11 attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon. A week after that national tragedy, Rose sent an e-mail to her Tibetan contact in Dharmsala, pointing out that a book like this might be needed even more than before.

A few days later, she received a fax from the Dalai Lama, with a foreword to the book, endorsing it. Still more time elapsed before she connected with Marcia Keegan and Harmon Houghton at Clear Light, who, she later learned, were friends of the Dalai Lama. This sequence of events seems to reinforce the lesson of Yeshi’s Luck.

In the foreword by The Dalai Lama, the esteemed leader emphasizes the value of education in helping people lead happier lives and overcoming problems.

“I believe that reading books is an essential part of education,” he says. “I am sure that these stories will bring joy to readers young and old.”

Curled up with a Good Book
The United States imports and embraces many aspects of Tibetan culture with religion, philosophy, and music being among the most popular and recognizable. Now Naomi C. Rose offers a different slice of Tibet for a smaller audience (in both number and size) – a children’s book set in Tibet, full of Tibetan themes and creatures, including a Tibetan translation of the book. The result is a vivid glimpse into what stories youngsters in the small country grow up hearing.

The book is divided into three short stories, each following a young child’s perseverance over various challenges. The first story is about a boy, his father, their horse, and the fortunes that follow them. The second story tells of a young niece and her overbearing aunt, and how the niece teaches the aunt to be a loving and caring person. In the third tale, a young monk travels alone to find wisdom, and though fear and doubt litter his path, he eventually succeeds. The three stories in the book deal with themes such as gaining wisdom, patience, forgiving, trust in oneself, and appreciation of nature. These are important lessons, and one might wonder if kids will not automatically tune out with such heavy themes. But Naomi C. Rose keeps the language clear and the lessons simple to keeps kids’ attention.

If the title isn’t a signal of the uniqueness of the book, then the forward by His Holiness the Dalai Lama certainly points to the singularity of this book. In order to add even more Tibetan culture into her stories, Naomi C. Rose incorporates the Yeti, yaks, horses, prayer flags and other such items. To further teach youngsters about Tibet, a short list of terms with definitions, a map of Tibet and its bordering countries, and a short Tibetan prayer are included. The nicest touch of all is that each story has been beautifully in Tibetan beneath the English version.

Tibetan Tales for Little Buddhas by Naomi C. Rose is a wonderful introduction to Tibetan culture for youngster and adults who have not experienced Tibetan culture in America. The lessons of the book are meaningful and attainable for children and the book has magic and mysticism to keep their attention. Though the foreword by His Holiness the Dalai Lama seems a little of the rubber-stamp variety, the accomplishments of this book should not be overlooked, and Tibetan Tales for Young Buddhas should be read to children across the U.S.

Originally published on Curled Up With A Good Book at www.curledup.com. © Carlyle Mok, 2005