What Can We Learn from Vogelsang?

 

In October, Johan and I visited Vogelsang, a former Nazi Training Facility and Tourist hot spot/wedding venue during the 1930s and early 1940s. Standing in this place now, looking out over the beautiful fall Eifel National Park, and knowing the history of this place, was hard to wrap my head around.

The National Socialist Documentation Center, which we visited and saw the exhibit, "The Master Race", offers these questions on their website:

  • What was the attraction of a place like Vogelsang during the National Socialist period?
  • What did the party leadership promise young men coming here regarding their future?
  • What motivated their hopes and their desire for social advancement?
    Were they, through drill and formation, predestined to participate in crimes, or could they have also said no?
  • Did they see themselves as members of a supposed master race and act upon this?

After we viewed the exhibit and walked most of the complex, I had no answers to those questions. I only had more questions and uncertainty about the world and the humans who inhabit it.

Questions and Keywords

The exhibit brought up a lot of questions and keywords, to which there were no answers given. It is up to each of us to determine the energy we give those words in our lives, family history and military history today.

And words like:

worth, worthy, elite, elitism, demeaning, subordination, transgression, violence, fear, adventure, injury, survival, grasping......

Creating a Better Life

There were many photos in the exhibit, and some of individuals with brief information provided about them. One young woman was grateful for the better life, good job, and opportunities she had working at Vogelsang in the 1930s and early 1940s.

As I stood there looking at her and reading the brief description of her, I did NOT ask the question, What Would I have Done? Instead, I tried to understand the history of that time period, the economic situation, political situation, family history, and wondered what might have driven this young woman to seek employment in this place.

What would it take for us to not judge, not ask what would we have done, but instead look at our lives and family histories in the historical lens? To write about the past as it was, not how we judge it should have been.

Sins of the Fathers

One thing we have to remember, especially in this day and age is that We did not commit the sins of our fathers but we carry them in our DNA. What would it take for us to release this burden we carry that is not ours? What would it take to stop using energetic words that cause us to take on the energy of others like saying, "I'm embarrassed or I'm ashamed or I feel guilty" when we have no reason to take this on because we are not the ones doing whatever we are apologizing for.

Maybe most importantly, what would it take for people to stop acting like sheep and following the pack and believing everything they are told? What would it take for more people to wake up and start questioning everything?

How might our world change? Could we stop the war, anger, hate, division, and all the other negativity in this reality?

My invitation to you is to start looking at the darker sides of your family and military history. Bring those things into the light and release the shame, guilt, sadness, negativity, darkness, horror, whatever it is that is stuck there. Let it go. Forgive. Move on to create a better future.

Would you like help researching your family or military history? Would you like to explore the darker sides of your history to clear and release the past? Contact us today to discuss how we can help.

© 2018 Jennifer Holik, Finding the Answers Journey

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