life stories

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Sashtipoorthi: Bikulturelle Betrachtungen eines stolzen Deutschen

The Sanskrit expression Sashtipoorthi translates to: completion of the sixtieth year of life. This is connected to much more than a point of time in your life or a party. This expression encompasses an entire philosophy:
A person at the age of sixty has fulfilled their duties in life. They may and must release the corset of responsibility and should freely focus on their own personal development. Hence, Hindus often celebrate this milestone with a ceremony similar to that of a birth.
This philosophy is appealing to me, not only because I am turning sixty soon… I know the corsets, the societal, professional and economic ones from my own experiences of two cultures. As a doctor I also increasingly see this type of imprisonments in corsets of any kind as the origin of all kinds of illness. I would like to speak from my own biography and experience as a doctor: Be brave, dare to go against the imposition and limitations of the corset – confidence and courage. Preserve your integrity and the respect of and for your fellow human beings.

Simon, Julian: Sashtipoorthi: Bikulturelle Betrachtungen eines stolzen Deutschen
ISBN: 978-3-937772-34-9, paperback, 158 pages, 13,00 EUR

“On February 18th 1980 I arrived at Frankfurt Airport. It was could and cloudy. The first thing I lost was my name.
Julian Simon Pendanathu House is what my passport read. The border control officers assumed Pendanathu House, my surname, was a part of my address and Simon my surname. This was documented officially and I was too tired from the trip to protest and too confused by the long flight and I also spoke no German. (…) My brother Joseph had made his way from Lüdenscheid to Frankfurt to pick me up. It was cold and misty and I was completely tired out and stared in amazement through the fog of my exhaustion into the grey haze of the surroundings passing by the car windows. I could not comprehend what I was seeing. I had always heard that Germany was a rich country. So where were the rubber trees and coconut palms - the plants that guaranteed an income in Kerala? From the Autobahn I could only see forest, an occasional building. Where was the wealth?”