Name of the book: Sunrise Moonrise
Author: Trishla Jain
Illustrator: Kirstin Eggers
Reading Level: 5 years and above.
MRP: INR 210/-
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Like I mentioned before, of late I have had a crisis of faith. To clarify, by ‘crisis’ I do not mean that I am questioning my religion and its standing or that I’m looking for answers elsewhere, but that I’m trying to figure out if I even want to believe that God exists. Given my personal conundrum, I have been a bit cautious with talking about God and religion with Laddoo except the ‘mattha tek’ twice a day. When I do talk to her about it, I want to be able to convincingly give her answers when she asks questions.
In such a situation when I got my hands on a book like ‘Sunrise Moonrise’, I was extremely happy (and relieved) that even though this is a book about prayer, it is NOT a book about religion – not one in particular, and even not about them all in general. And that’s why I LOVE IT!
Written by Trishla Jain and illustrated by Kirstin Eggers, this gorgeous beauty is the perfect first book to get a child acquainted with prayer and the myriad ways in which it can be done.
It starts with the Moon asking the Sun, “What does it mean to pray?” Together, they journey to Earth with “open hearts and minds” to see what praying is all about. In a fun rhyming prose, we get to explore how people from different cultures and faiths pray – some chant, some sing, some kneel and bow their heads, some meditate, some offer flowers – and that praying means to LOOK DEEP INSIDE and “find blessings and prizes.”
I LOVE how no God was mentioned and that simply meditating was also included as a form of prayer. While talking about different forms of prayer the illustrations do show temples, churches, mosques, synagogues… and a BEAUTIFUL MEADOW.
My biggest takeaway from that book was that it doesn’t matter where or how we do it, as long as we find the time to pray (in whatever form) and that when we do, it comes from the heart. That finding peace WITHIN yourself and being at peace WITH yourself and others also counts as prayer. As an adult, it eased my currently questioning mind a bit, and I know I can find a bit of solace in meditation, at least until I find the answers I am looking for.
And like her other book that I wrote about previously (Om the Gnome), this book too has a mini “I spy” on each page where kids have to find a lotus, a compass, and a fish, in between the other gorgeous and colourful items that the pages are full of.
Laddoo has yet to sit through an entire reading of this book and I guess it’ll be a while before she can fully grasp what it is trying to say, but I can be patient until then. Because this is one book I WANT her to read.
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