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Buddhism Topic Guide

Buddhism is a major world religion, based on the teachings of the Buddha. The word Buddha means “enlightened one”. Buddhists try to live by the Four Noble Truths that were discovered by the Buddha. They also follow a path, known as the Noble Eightfold Path, to help them to live a good life.

The Buddha’s teachings are contained in the Tipitaka, the Buddhist holy book.

Teach your children about Buddhism using our handy topic guide!

Choose a section:
Teaching Ideas | Resources | Facts | Videos | Books | Links

Teaching Ideas

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Resources

Buddhism Facts

  • Buddhism began in India more than 2,500 years ago.
  • The Buddha was born a prince, called Siddhartha Gautama but he was not interested in being rich or powerful. He concentrated on helping others.
  • Buddhists do not believe in a god.
  • It is believed that there are more than 500 million Buddhists in the world.
  • Buddhists are vegetarian, as they believe all living beings should be treated with equal respect.

Videos

Siddhartha and the Swan and The Monkey King

Two Buddhist stories, animated by the BBC.

Running time: 4:34

Charlie and Blue Learn about Enlightenment

Charlie and Blue visit a Buddhist centre.

Running time: 5:50

Books

Moody Cow Meditates

This funny picture book introduces the idea of meditation.

Under the Bodhi Tree

A life of the Buddha, specially written for younger children.

Who Is the Dalai Lama?

This book tells the life story of the 14th Dalai Lama, leader of people of Tibet, and the head monk of Buddhism.

Is Nothing Something?

In this book, Thich Nhat Hanh, a Buddhist Zen master, answers children’s questions.

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