"I met Andrea Miller, deputy editor of Lion’s Roar magazine, in India, during the 6th International Buddhist Conclave. While we did exchange editorial ideas and matters that affected the future of Buddhism around the world, from politics to culture, we also talked about family: she is a mother while I had married just a couple of weeks before the conclave. In October, I learned that she was the author of a new and lovely children’s book centred on the Buddha’s life, specifically on the most important day of his life: the way he woke up.
The Day the Buddha Woke Up (published by Wisdom Publications) tells the story of the Buddha’s biography for a child’s eyes, condensing the archetypal stages of his life and deeds into pithy and meaningful sentences like: “He could have had anything he wanted. But what he wanted was not a thing.” The narrative takes the reader through Siddhartha Gautama’s journey, with the climax being his sitting beneath the Bodhi Tree. Enlightenment or Nirvana, of course, is not complex here. It is simply enjoying this moment without wishing it was a different moment (I am reminded of Thich Nhat Hanh’s advice that the present moment is all one needs for happiness).
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