Nima Sherpa lives in Nepal with her family who has prayer flags over their house gently moving in the breeze. Her father is a tour guide in the mountains and frequently leaves home for long periods of time. Before he departs, Nima and her mother offer a prayer for his journey at their altar. Each day, this little girl passes many people on her way to school. When she sees them she "brings her hands together with her fingers almost touching her chin, bows her head slightly, and says, "Namaste!" "Namaste" means "the light in me meets the light in you."
Nima's mother tells her, "When you say Namaste! try to see the special spark of light that shines within every person's heart." And so Nima honors those she encounters with her joyful blessing: a tired group of porters; a herd of yaks; a group of travelers; and Tenzing, a trader who is a friend of her father. He expresses his appreciation for the sweetness and hospitality conveyed by her "Namaste!"
Diana Cohn is an award-winning children's author who has worked for many years on environmental, economic, and global justice issues. This uplifting story teaches children the importance of finding some a ritual to honor and celebrate the Divine in every person. An added value of the tale is that it introduces children to the deeply spiritual culture and practices of the Tibetan Buddhists. We were very impressed with the richness and vibrancy of the colorful illustrations by Amy Córdova. A glossary at the end of the book by Ang Rita Sherpa of the Mountain Institute explains the Tibetan terms used in the story.