The perfect (somewhat) Buddhist gift for a non-Buddhist baby
November 8, 2008 5:36 PM   Subscribe

My friends are not religious but are having a Buddhist blessing ceremony for their baby's first birthday. Help me pick a gift.

They are not Buddhists and as far as I know don't plan to raise a Buddhist child, so I'm not looking for a heavily symbolic religious gift. I want something cute, thoughtful, possibly cool and somewhat (even if vaguely) related to the theme. The theme being, I guess, Chinese/Buddhist tradition and folklore.

I've been to Pearl River in SoHo today, and here are some of the things I considered getting:
Chinese baby jacket (or dress or pajamas)
Tiger hat or shoes
Zodiac ornament (the ceremony will be in their garden so they could hang it in a tree)

Would any of these be a mistake? The perfect choice? What else do you suggest?

It must be light and unbreakable because it's going to South America by mail. And if I can get it in Manhattan, even better - I need to ship it next Tuesday.
posted by AnyGuelmann to Grab Bag (5 answers total)
Oops! Here are the correct links to the jacket and the ornament.
posted by AnyGuelmann at 5:40 PM on November 8, 2008

Why are they having a Buddhist blessing for a non-Buddhist child? That might help us to figure out what kind of gift would appeal to them.
posted by ellF at 6:29 PM on November 8, 2008

I guess they just want to have a spiritually meaningful celebration. The monk that will be performing the ceremony is a person they've always admired.
posted by AnyGuelmann at 6:48 PM on November 8, 2008

My mother raised me as a Buddhist child and recently gave me a copy of one of my absolute favorite books from my childhood: The Mountains of Tibet. It's a beautiful, beautiful story - good for bedtime reading. Also, even if the parents/child aren't necessarily into the whole re-incarnation as literal fact business, the art is absolutely amazing.

Light & unbreakable!
posted by grapefruitmoon at 7:55 PM on November 8, 2008

How about donating to a tree-planting charity so that a tree can be planted in the baby's name? This one does a card/certificate saying the tree was planted in the person's honour. It's in the Buddhist spirit of non-attachment and is more "we are all one" than "it's all about Baby".
posted by angiep at 8:23 PM on November 8, 2008

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