Mischa Gohlke - That's how he rolls

Borders are relative to him! With the inclusion song "Being different unites us" (German: "AndersSein vereint") Mischa Gohlke and other artists showed us with the help of music, how holistically lived participation in a society can look like. To what extend all of us are disabled and how strong his love for music and his commitment for inclusion are, he tells us on REHACARE.com.


Photo: Mischa Gohlke holding a microphone; © Stephan Olbrich

Mischa Gohlke; © Stephan Olbrich

Name: Mischa Gohlke
Age: 34
City: Hamburg, Germany
Occupation: Initiator and project manager "Grenzen sind relativ" (English: Borders are relative), musician, lecturer, project and event manager, coach, activist and human being
Impairment: Profound hearing loss since birth, additionally several human impairments and weaknesses

More about Mischa Gohlke (only in German) at: www.grenzensindrelativ.de
When did you last laugh heartily and what about?

Mischa Gohlke: Just the other moment.

What have you always been wanting to do and why have you never done this so far?

Mischa Gohlke: Basically it is an essential task to face up to inner and outer topics in a process-driven way. This way also several fears and insecurities come across. For a long time I have been dreaming about singing on stage - and not only playing the guitar. But I am still full of fears when it comes to this topic. But they are going to be transformed and included.

Which person has influenced you most?

Mischa Gohlke: Many people have inspired me and this actually never stops. But especially guitar legend Stevie Ray Vaughan comes to my mind. When I heard him for the first time at the age of 15, 16, I immediately felt a deep connection and love for his music. This made me start learning how to play the guitar.

You have the chance to become the German Federal Commissioner for the Disabled. What would you do first?

Mischa Gohlke: Together with a dynamic team I would start campaign promoting that ALL of us are human beings with disabilities. We would dissolve the charge of the German Federal Commissioner for the Disabled and initiate a suitable organization, something like "Inclusion Community Germany".
By now inclusion often still means "integration" of people with (formally authorized) disabilities. So inclusion is basically about symptoms. But inclusion can, wants and has to be so much more! ALL of us are disabled, no matter whether physically, mentally, socially, emotionally or financially. Furthermore inclusion is no special convention, but a concretization of universal human rights. According to a holistic understanding of inclusion it involves all aspects which form living in a complex heterogenic society: Social, educational political, economical, ecological, cultural, spiritual, decentral, global, personal, interpersonal and collective topics can no longer be separated from each other, but have to be seen as connected with each other and therefore have to be considered as a whole as well.
Photo: Mischa Gohlke on stage, playing an electric guitar; © Stephan Olbrich

Already as a teenager Mischa Gohlke started to get excited about playing the guitar. This passion lasts until today; © Stephan Olbrich

Your life is made into a film: Who would represent you?

Mischa Gohlke: Difficult question. Actually it would have to be several actors of different ages. Who comes to my mind is my good old friend Daniel Steffe. As my "soul brother" he would rock it.

I would like to be ...

Mischa Gohlke: an alien!

Which questions would you like answered the most?

Mischa Gohlke: Questions are the most essential answers. So why do we need causally connectable answers? So when dealing with quantum physics and sciences of consciousness it can be much more interesting to ask questions and to face the mystery of life again and again. Not identifying with several seemingly realities, but experiencing life as value-free and open-minded as possible can be a very expedient freedom.

What I finally want to say...

Mischa Gohlke: Inclusion involves all facets of existance, even if our understanding of it is limited. Lived inclusion collides with our very neo-liberal shaped model of society. Inclusion is (also) (r)evolution!