Media Watch — 13 November 2013

A timely TV documentary that spans three generations has been produced by Katharina Wulff-Braeutigam.

The documentary (broadcast by WDR, Germany) is based on German hippies who – during the seventies – openly lived out their sexuality as a tool to self-realization. They lived in so-called open marriages, and had many sexual partners. One of them is Salama, now 91 years old, one of the founders of APO (a major political protest movement in Germany that began in the mid-sixties) who to this day works as a therapist. The other is Girija who with her then husband founded the therapist center Zyst near Munich, and is now married to Prabhupad. Both women had children who speak about their childhood, how they experienced their parents and how they feel about it all today. Friends from the time appear as well and there are multiple references (and footage) to Osho and the ashram in Pune.

Salama and her daughters

I found it a very interesting record of the feelings and experiences of three generations. However, the apparent focus on how the mothers’ choices influenced the psyche of their children feels a bit too heavy, as if only children with sannyasin mothers were affected psychologically in their childhood years and implies other children who had so-called ‘normal’ parents weren’t. Surely every child has its positive and negative experiences with their parents while growing up and as an adult has to deal with them. And move on.

On the whole it shows the younger generation in a more conservative frame of mind with regards to relationships and marriage, which has been my general observation for a while. Children of sannyasins often seek the very security and order their parents had adamantly thrown overboard in their search for truth and self-realisation.

Katharina Wulff-BraeutigamKatharina Wulff-Braeutigam is known as the author of the book Bhagwan, Che and I (Bhagwan, Che und Ich) where she deals with her childhood which she partly lived at the ashram in Pune during the seventies. In 2005 she made the documentary Children of Enlightenment (Kinder der Erleuchtung), portraying 3 now grown-up sannyasin children and their mothers. She is the daughter of Mareile (aka Varda) and niece of Nandan. Katharina is a producer of TV documentaries and lives in Germany.

Watch the video (German, no subtitles): Die Kinder der sexuellen Revolution

Bhagawati

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