Buddha Bear: Towards Emotional & Spiritual Enlightenment For Kids

Buddha Bear: Towards Emotional & Spiritual Enlightenment For Kids

Towards Emotional and Spiritual Enlightenment for KidsMore so than ever before, our kids are growing up fast. Smart phones and connected devices are increasingly exposing our children to mature themes; from growing climate instability to morally corrupt leadership. Such topics can often negatively influence our children’s worldview and subsequently, their emotional well being.

Therefore, it is vital for us, as parents, to present our kids with resources that are both entertaining and morally wholesome. Towards this goal, celebrated author and cartoonist Guy Gilchrist, together with the team at Backpack Buddha, have developed a very unique interactive children’s book entitled, “Buddha Bear’s Enlightenment Coloring Book.”

Although the book draws it’s strength directly from Buddhism’s 8 Fold Path, it is largely a non-denomination journal. In other words, anyone of any faith can easily relate and benefit from this book. And while this book is primarily intended for kids aged 5-12, that doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy and benefit from this coloring book as well!

It’s primary aim, to foster positive spiritual and emotional growth through concepts of compassion for others, gratitude for nature, and love for one’s self.

Spiritual Growth Though Buddhism’s 8 Fold Path For Kids

The strength of this coloring book lies in its incorporation of Buddha’s 8 Fold Path; 8 paths one should take to achieve Enlightenment.

  • 1. Right View or Understanding: To gain insight into the true nature of reality. 
  • 2. Right Intention: The unselfish desire to realize enlightenment. 
  • 3. Right Speech: Using speech in compassion & kindness. 
  • 4. Right Action: Striving towards ethical conduct and compassion. 
  • 5. Right Livelihood: Making a living through ethical means, and living without negative things such as drugs or alcohol.
  • 6. Right Effort: Cultivating positive qualities and releasing negative ones.
  • 7. Right Mindfulness: To always be thinking, aligned in body and mind.
  • 8. Right Concentration: Meditation through mantras or through breathing.

Buddha's Eightfold Path

How does this book incorporate the 8 Fold Path?

Similar to Backpack Buddha’s popular adult publication “Everyday Enlightenment,” Buddha Bear’s ECB also consists of 21 days. Each day is inspired by one of the 8 paths of the 8 Fold Path.

Buddha Bear Coloring Book Day 1

Day 18 revolves around path 2, cultivating the right intentions or thinking. To begin, young readers discover a insightful quote which reflects the day’s theme. The quote for this day comes from Lao Tzu, “When you accept yourself, the whole world accepts you.” Simple, yet powerful and always so true.

Next, the reader is introduced to the daily adventure of Buddha Bear. On “Day 18,” the theme revolves around self-love and acceptance. Here, Buddha Bear tell us, “You know, even though I look different from some of the other travelers, I love the way I look because no one else is the same as me! My belly is big and I’m not that tall, but I sure do find the best places to sleep!” Here Buddha Bear accepts his differences, and derives confidence from them.

 Buddha Bear Coloring Book Day 18

The reader is then promoted to respond to a question of self reflection. Continuing with “Day 18,” Buddha Bear asks, “What do you like about the way you look?” Ultimately, this forces the reader to reinforce their positive self image by writing it down in indelible ink.

Finally, readers can then color in a content looking Buddha Bear as they reflect on the days theme.

Overall, the layout is simple, yet incredibly effective in it’s approach. It takes often ambiguous and difficult to understand concepts from the 8 Fold Path, and presents them in a way children can truly practice and benefit from.

Buddha Bear Coloring Book Cover

Inspiring Gratitude For Nature

Throughout the book, Buddha Bear deals with many themes associated with an appreciation for nature. By doing so, it aims to inspire kids to not only get outside and play, but also protect our natural world, which is increasing under threat from anthropogenic climate change. More, the book itself is made entirely by hand from sustainable lokta paper.

Buddha Bear Coloring Book Day 15

About The Creator Guy Gilchrist

Guy Gilchrist is perhaps best known as Jim Henson’s cartoonist. However, he is also an acclaimed author and illustrator of over 60 children’s books, three of which were awarded best book of the year by the United Nations International Reading Council. As a result of his long and illustrious career, his work has been permanently enshrined in the National Smithsonian Institute.

Buddha Bear Creator Guy Gilchrist - Best Known as Jim Henson's Cartoonist


Buddha Bear’s Enlightenment Coloring book is full of powerful exercises in compassion, self realization, and appreciation for nature, that are directly inspired by Buddha’s 8 Fold Path. The incredibly cute stories and illustrations by Guy Gilchrist makes it a joy to read and color for any child and parent, regardless of religion. All of this makes Buddha Bear’s Enlightenment Coloring book remarkably unique, and unrivaled among todays children’s books on the market.