Wisdom of Manjushri

Creating and sharing artistic inspiration can be a thankless task at times. You spend months closeted away, perfecting your production then release it to the full exposure of the world. However, sometimes the work gives back in unexpected ways!

It was a wonderful surprise to have this heart-warming video pop up on my screen last night. Having spent many months living with the monks at Chokyi Gyatso Institute, it was especially exciting to see them not just enjoying the music, but also expressing their own creativity.

I recorded the Manjushri song for the Blue Lion album and Blue Lion Preschool with help from Gary Dyson and our producer Jampal. We even had some input from Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche

Manjushri Chant Original

Rinpoche has always encouraged children to chant the syllable DHI, even if they don’t do any other practice, so I was keen not only to emphasise that part of the mantra but to make it fun.

Hearing these young monks chanting with such joy and enthusiasm really made my day!

From the Blue Lion songbook

Haven’t heard the Blue Lion album yet? 
If you are looking for beautiful and engaging songs for you family which contain nuggets of timeless Buddhist wisdom, this is the album for you! There is plenty of information and previews on this page or else listen for free on Spotify.

Enjoy, and let us know what you think. We love to have your feedback.

Kind regards
Simon Thomas
Director, Dharma Kids Collective

About Dharma Kids Collective
Dharma Kids Collective is a global hub for artists, musicians, writers and filmmakers who create high quality content for children influenced by Buddhist wisdom.
Contact: simon@dharmakidscollective.com

New Video – Buddha’s First Teaching

New Video - Buddha's First Teaching

Four Noble Truths for Kids

The teachings of The Buddha are timeless, but we are not!

Every generation and society has their own special circumstances which govern how we live and learn. So, while the timeless teachings remain as fresh and current as ever, the method of delivery has changed over the millennia.

Dharma Kids Collective strives to bring ancient wisdom to this generation of children in ways that they find entertaining and relevant.

We are delighted to present the first video in the series from our trusted partner Funfetti_art: Four Noble Truths.

What an auspicious place to begin!

Funfetti Art are also known for their posters and joyfully illustrated children’s books which are available in many languages. Click here to find out more.

Stay well and safe.
Kind regards,
Simon Thomas: Director, Dharma Kids Collective.

About Dharma Kids Collective
Dharma Kids Collective is a global hub for artists, musicians, writers and filmmakers who create high quality content for children influenced by Buddhist wisdom.
Contact: simon@dharmakidscollective.com

What’s New?

Have you heard the Blue Lion album yet?

Rated 5 out of 5

“What an amazing and precious album of songs for children.

Since receiving the album, we have played and sung the songs everyday at school. The children love them – the songs are fun, playful and heartfelt..

Thank you to the creators of the Blue Lion Album – you have helped awaken so much joy in our classroom!”

MaryAnn – March 14, 2021

Originally created to complement the curriculum of the Blue Lion preschool in Singapore, which was opened under the auspices of Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche late last year, the Blue Lion album has been entertaining and educating children right across the world.

“15 wonderful quality Buddhist songs. This is a dream come true for me and my family. Sadhu, may all noble aspirations come true. Sharing the wisdom of the Triple Gems in Buddhists young and old through all mediums. Love the rich musicality in these simple, children-friendly melodies. We really enjoy the music arrangement in the songs. Every singer offered their best singing and awesome job to the sound tech team.

Thank you. Sadhu, Sadhu, Sadhu.”

Jeorgein (verified owner) – March 11, 2021

The Blue Lion songbook includes the lyrics to all 15 songs accompanied by the delightful illustrations by author and artist Alicja Zmigrodzka, whose other titles such as “Little Hero” and the ever popular 21 Taras colouring book can be found here.

Having sold out our first print run, Blue Lion songbook softcover picture book is now back in stock, so if you have not got hold of a copy yet, now is the perfect moment!

E-Copy Available 
Like your books in electronic format? Click here to download the PDF

We are all Community
I would like to thank you all for your ongoing support. Stay tuned to this blog for all our latest updates.
Kind regards
Simon Thomas

About Dharma Kids Collective
Dharma Kids Collective is a global hub for artists, musicians, writers and filmmakers who create high quality content for children influenced by Buddhist wisdom.
Simon Thomas, Founder, Dharma Kids Collective
E-mail:  simon@dharmakidscollective.com
Phone:  +64 2242 64785

New Video from Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche

Dear Friends,
Funny story!
In order to celebrate today’s global launch of the Blue Lion album – Buddhist songs for every child, I prepared this short video from a clip which Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche sent to the creators of the book Little Hero.
A few days ago, I put it on YouTube for my global collaborators to check. I didn’t really expect anybody else would notice, so I failed to make it private at first. After a couple of days, I noticed that it was suddenly getting plenty of views, so it looks like I leaked my own video by mistake! 
So, you may well have seen it by now even though this was supposed to be the premier. I watched it dozens of times while I was editing and it still stayed so fresh and fun.
Thank you so much Rinpoche!


Artists Unite!
Following up on Rinpoche’s suggestion, a group of students have created a modern children’s book named Little Hero, which delivers Shantideva’s timeless messages in catchy, child-friendly verse along with colourful and entrancing illustrations. Thanks to a generous grant from Khyentse Foundation, this delightful volume is available in English, Spanish, French, Polish, German, Italian and Russian!
Click here for more details.

FYI the Blue Lion album (Buddhist songs for every child) is now live! You can hear it on Spotify and all the usual channels or better still click here to get your copy now and you can name your own price!
thanks so much to you all for your ongoing support. 
Simon Thomas
Dharma Kids Collective is a hub for artists, musicians, writers and film makers who create high quality content for children influenced by Buddhist wisdom.

Newly Published – Blue Lion Songbook

New Year and New Opportunities

Optimism is in the air as we enter a new era. Many of us see 2020 as a pivot point, an opportunity to do things better, and a time to ensure that the next generation will inherit a world that is just as beautiful and nurturing as the one we grew up in. But what steps can we take to make that happen?


Educating The Heart

The Blue Lion project is one practical approach to giving our children new tools gleaned from ancient Buddhist wisdom, which will be available to them for life. The Blue Lion preschool opened it’s doors in November and the album will be released in February. In a flurry of year’s end activity, we managed to get the Blue Lion songbook off to the printer just before Christmas!

Not Just Pretty Ditties



Each song on the Blue Lion album was created in close consultation with educator, author and Buddhist practitioner Heather Sanche to fulfill an essential niche in the child’s development and to pass on essential advice from the perspective of Buddhist wisdom. For example, we are now living in times of change from which we cannot truly insulate our children. The song Changing Every Day talks about how things are always changing, incorporating the story of the transition from caterpillar to butterfly.

Alicja’s Magic


Illustrator author Alicja Zmigrodzka has been the driving force behind the creation of the Blue Lion songbook. As a songwriter, it was a joy to see my own music inspiring such creative abundance. I think that Alicja managed to capture the essence of the songs and represent it in her own enchanting style. 

Songwriter Simon Thomas explores the Blue Lion songbook on Christmas day with Olivia Saxton


Buddhist Songs for Children


Shortly before I left Australia at the beginning of the year, I was approached at a Buddhist gathering by a woman who was preparing to open a new preschool ( named Blue Lion) in Singapore under the auspices of our common teacher Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche. She asked if I might write a few songs specifically to fit into the curriculum of their new school.

“Sure,” I agreed. I mean….how hard can it be? Write a couple of ditties for small children.

Zoom calls are the flavour of the year, and it was on one of these strange methods of communication that I learned the full scope of what I had agreed to. An old friend of mine, Heather Sanche from Vancouver Island, is designing the curriculum and has big ideas when it comes to music.

“Well, we need one for packing away the toys, another for lining up, and another one before they eat their lunch,” she explained.

“Okay so three songs….that should be okay.” I replied

“Oh no, we need one for each theme as well, like impermanence and community. And then we want some for the ceremonies too.”

By the time we had isolated every nook and cranny of the curriculum which required a song, we were at a count of 16. I remember muttering something about it being a 70’s double album, however having worked with a committee some years back trying to establish a Buddhist primary school in Lismore, I know how difficult it is to get something like that off the ground.

I was happy to volunteer, but that is a lot of songs!

Home studio

Wherever I travel in the world, I bring the bare essentials to do home recordings, but I need help to produce a song to professional quality. I enlisted my mate Gary Dyson from London, well-known for his beautiful voice and innovative dance tracks, to help in production. He was happy to assist, but strapped for time as the UK was just opening back up from Covid suspension. That was when we learned that all the songs were to be translated into Chinese, so we would have 16 more versions to record!

I needed some help, so applied to the Khyentse Foundation in the USA for a grant, given that they were already supporting the preschool. Luckily, they could see the value of the project and approved my application….on condition that I write a few more songs for the Middle Way School near Woodstock.

With a modest payment available, I approached a young musician and producer in New York named Max Milner, who is bringing his huge talent to the project.

Even though the team in Singapore are translating the songs into Chinese, and we can use the same music track, I still need somebody to record the Chinese versions. I decided to contact a rap artist/comedian from Shanghai named Tadi, who magically appeared in Bodh Gaya, India a couple of years back, when I needed somebody of just his talents for a big show I was running. Tadi wrote straight back to me saying, “You won’t believe this! Two weeks ago, I opened a new recording studio designed especially for children and families. I have kids coming in to sing every day and we are looking for original material for them to record.”

So, despite the Covid doom and gloom, the future of Buddhist songs for children is looking bright! If you would like more information, please follow my Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/simonthomasmusic/ or visit me on Bandcamp https://simonthomasmusic.bandcamp.com/. I will make all the songs available by donation when they are ready.