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Monika Debes-Schneider, née Debes

Potter; industrial clerk.
Decades of Buddhist practice and study of the Pali canon.

*November 25, 1938 in Hamburg.


Father: Ernst Paul Debes   *September 8, 1906   † June 6, 2004.

Mother: Ina Debes, née Foerster   *March 31, 1910;  †October 7, 1968.


1938-1960 She spent the first years of life in Groß-Flottbek in Hamburg. In 1943 the family moved to Großhansdorf. Completed primary school in Großhansdorf, then Rudolf Steiner School in Wandsbek / Hamburg and Stormarn School (high school) in Ahrensburg. As the oldest of five siblings she was often responsible for looking after her younger siblings and her sick mother in Großhansdorf.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1954/55 she participated in Schleswig-Holstein youth development organization (housekeeping); then, until 1958, completed a pottery apprenticeship with Agnes and Alfred Stock in Kappeln/Schlei. From 1958 to 1960 she then went on to complete her studies of applied arts at Hamburg University of Fine Arts (HfBK Lerchenfeld) with Otto Lindig, Otto Stelzer and Marianne Rex.
Monika Debes lived in contributing to the Buddhist Seminar founded by her father Paul Debes (together with Ingetraud Anders and Irma Lübcke).
1967-1972 In 1967 she married Klaus Engel and gave birth to her daughter Elisabeth Engel, soon afterwards, however, became a single mother. At the time she completed photographic and printing work to support herself. After her mother’s death in 1968, worked for “Hanseatische Buchführungsgesellschaft” in Hamburg, followed by retraining as an industrial clerk (1970/72).
1972-1982 From 1972 to 1999 worked as a clerk at Deutsche Grammophon / Polydor, Hamburg. Since this employment she commenced an economically secure and self-determined life.                                                From 1979 to 1982, together with befriended single mothers and their children, she went on beach holidays in Greece in the open air, without a tent or hotel room.
Since 1983 From 1983, together with her daughter Elisabeth, lived in a joint household with the archaeologist Lambert Schneider and his son Lambert.

In 1990 she married Lambert Schneider.

In this same year they acquired a holiday home on Lake Como together with Irma Lübcke and other friends.

The holiday home above Lake Como

Monika and L.S. on the Côte d’Azur 2019


Travelled with Lambert Schneider to France, Italy, Spain, Greece and Turkey to visit historical art and archaeological sites.

Pilgrimage to India 2004; stays in Sri Lanka, Myanmar, Thailand and Bali.

Participates in Buddhist seminars and retreats as well as own lecture group on the discourses of the Buddha in Hamburg.