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    German, English, French

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Every culture creates its own rituals to face the stages that punctuate our lives (being born, growing up, seducing, bonding and dying), and each episode of this series will focus on 2 different cultures and their different or similar way to handle it. 

Being born, growing up, seducing, bonding, dying: this cycle of life is immutable. It is the very foundation of our condition as a human being, beyond culture. It leads them inexorably towards the end – after all, to advance in life is to approach death, and from this point of view, to live becomes a frightening adventure! This is why humans have invented accompanying rituals that allow life to be structured in specific stages: the collective rituals of passage from one state to another allow the individual to construct a levelheaded perception of their mortal condition.

Meet those who, throughout the world, celebrate these “passages of life”. Purification, isolation, pain, transformation of the body: each group has its own practice, its beliefs, its prohibitions, which reveal its identity. To share with them these ritual is to penetrate at the heart of their culture, to understand their fears, their desires, their vision of life, their way of responding to “the difficult task of growing up”.

It allow us to question our own anxieties and perspectives and reflect on the usefulness of these ritualized occasions. Today, our Western societies are becoming more and more emancipated from them: people are free to live out their love with whomever they choose, cremation is secular, and graduating is no longer a widely recognized official entry into the world of adults. What do rites of passage bring to practitioners? How do they help them to pass a stage in life? How do they change the ones performing them?

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