Looking for good Indian-Hindu moral tales for preschooler - Mothering Forums

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Old 06-12-2005, 07:49 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Anyone know of any good books? I bought a bunch of books from the Panchatantra from India last time we were there . . but when I got home and read them, they were somewhat violent. Not all of them, but enough that I was uncomfortable with the books. One had a farmer chopping a snake's head off and there was blood everywhere. Another one had a person hacking a bird's wings off.

And of course most Hindus know how violent some of the religious tales are. Poor Ganesha. I love the Bagavad Gita but that's obviously too old for a 4yo child.

I'm looking for gentle tales from India that I can buy in the U.S. Any titles you can recommend?

7yo: "Mom,I know which man is on a quarter and which on is on a nickel. They both have ponytails, but one man has a collar and the other man is naked. The naked man was our first president."
 
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Old 06-12-2005, 10:46 PM
 
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I believe most of the Jataka Tales are Indian, but not Hindu. They're Buddhist, and the ones I've read have been very non-violent.
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Old 06-13-2005, 11:38 AM
 
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Here are some that I found, I have only read a few so I'm not sure of the quality of the majority of them. Most are available on Amazon.
  • One Grain of Rice, by Demi
  • Savitri - A Tale of Ancient India, by Aaron Shepard
  • Aani and the Tree Huggers, by Jeannine Atkins
  • Monsoon, by Uma Krishnaswami
  • The Brave Little Parrot, by Rafe Martin
  • The Monkey and the Crocodile, by Paul Galdore
  • The Great Hiss, by Swami Childvilasananda
  • All I See Is Part Of Me, Chara M. Curtis
  • Little Krishna, by Harish Johari
  • Our Most Dear Friend: An Illustrated Bhagavad Gita For Children
  • The Mantra Is a Prayer To God, by Ceci ******
  • Rama and Sita: A Tale From Ancient Java
  • How Ganesh Got His Elephant Head
  • And Although not necessarily an Indian tale of morality but a favorite that is set in India: Rikki-Tikki-Tavi, by Rudyard Kipling and illustrated by Lambert Davis
  • The Monkey and the Mango, by Eknath Easwaran
  • also check out www.desikids.co.uk/
Also Illuminations From the Bhagavad Gita, by Kim and Chris Murray. It is not a children's book but my daughter loves the illustrations. Hope these were helpful. Oh, and The Under the Banyan Series: A Curly Tale, Magic Vessels, Hiss Don't Bite and Eyes On the Peacock's Tail all by Vayu Naidu

"While Eeyore frets ...and Piglet hesitates...and Rabbit calculates...and Owl pontificates...Pooh just is."
taken from The Tao of Pooh by Benjamin Hoff
 
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Old 06-13-2005, 11:43 AM
 
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oh, what a great list - I'm not the OP but this is nice to have. At least one or two of these are also Jataka tales.

Nother related book we love is In the Mountains of Tibet. It's a beautiful book about death, rebirth, heaven.

Also, Tendzin's Deer is beautiful (might be Tenzin or Tendzin?)

The Boy Who Ran Away (story of Buddha)


So, do you want mainly Hindu stories? If you want anything Indian, I can give a list of wonderful picture books with Buddhist themes.
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Old 06-13-2005, 02:29 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Oh thank you for that list!! At this point just having gentle stories from that basic region or philosophy are fine. Buddhist stories are also great.

How Ganesha Got His Elephant Head: the traditional story is that his father Siva chopped it off, because he returned after a long journey and didn't recognize his son. Then he felt bad about that and got him the head of an elephant instead. Not so sure I like that story. We are trying to teach that the images of the gods are symbolic and ancient, and the elephant head, the things he's holding, his posture, etc. are more important than how he got those things. Many people believe the "how he got his head" story is much more modern than the ancient form of Ganesha.

I would be interested in your list of picture books. Wow this is great!

7yo: "Mom,I know which man is on a quarter and which on is on a nickel. They both have ponytails, but one man has a collar and the other man is naked. The naked man was our first president."
 
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Old 06-13-2005, 10:04 PM
 
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i have a v. sensitive 2.75 year old dd. and i have yet to come across a story book from india (either hindu or muslim) that i could read to my dd. i have not read the books refered to above but i know for instance rama and sita, rikki tikki tavi, ganesh, the monkey and the crocodile (if it is the crocodile trying to get the monkey and the monkey tricks him) would not work with my dd. she gets upset with anyone being killed (she does not understand the meaning of death but that killing hurts), anger or sadness or even getting into trouble. the only books i found were the ones i picked up when i was in india (i was born and raised there) and they were mostly rhyme in the native language.

i cant read any of the fairy tales (grimms or any other folk tales) becasue she gets upset so i havent even tried.

yet she likes mother goose rhymes because they dont dwell on death which it is mostly full of.

but with a typical indian philosophical background one of my fav. author is r k narayan http://www.epinions.com/content_180923960964 and http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg...324329-0470212

http://www.darsie.net/talesofwonder/india.html see which stories are appropriate for u

http://store.doverpublications.com/0486292479.html

we grew up listening to stories full of death, being eaten up by tigers, ghost stories, hunting (jim corbet) even at my dd's age but we did fine. most indian children grow up with those kind of stories.

we rarely grew up being read to. instead we grew up listening to stories and bedtime stories from parents, gparents and uncles and aunts if there were visiting. when reading happened we were mostly reading books to ourselves rather than having someone else read to us.

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Old 06-14-2005, 02:27 PM
 
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I have a lovely book that is not a traditional Indian tale but takes palce in India. It is called "Finders Keepers" by Robert Arnett and is a true tale about an American tourist (the author) in India who loses his wallet and how it is returned to him. It is all about how doing the right thing is it's own reward. It is also beautifully illustrated.

http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg...books&n=507846
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