“Stop making such a big deal of it, at your age my life was much harder!”

If your parents were children during the Nazi era and World War Two then you would be considered as so-called “Kriegsenkel” or WarGrandchild.

Just about all “Kriegskinder” or WarChildren will have undergone some very traumatic experiences that were practically never looked back on and re-appraised.

Their children often suffer – mostly unknowingly – from this transgenerational trauma that has been passed down.

This trauma that has been inherited across generations manifests itself in:

  • A sense of insecurity about life and not really trusting oneself to do things.
  • A false sense of one’s own limits.
  • Not being able to find one’s feet: always moving home as if fleeing from something.
  • Not being able to reach one’s own parents on an emotional level.
  • Not really being able to get in touch with one’s own identity.

Addressing these issues is a challenge, as is examining what lies behind them and initiating solution-finding processes. Of course having to live with these issues, without having processed them and moreover passing them on, is just as challenging.


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  • One day
  • 2 hours Solo-time in nature
  • As an introduction for “working with nature as a mirror”. You can find out, if this kind of work “is something for you”:
  • As a regular pratice
  • As a possible preparation for the big WarGrandchild Souljourney

For whom

  • Your parents were children during WW2
  • You are aware about unresolved war-traumata
  • You want to have a “new story”
  • Y0u want to find out, if “working with nature as a mirror” is something for you
  • You want to work regularly on your topics
  • You want to prepare for the big WarGrandchild Souljourney


  • Maximum six participants
  • You get a “nature-task” and spent abour two hours alone in nature
  • Day-long format, without overnight stay, close to Cologne/Germany
  • Four times/year (Spring, Summer, Fall,Winter)
  • The dates around the seasons are not choosen randomly, as they remind us about the ongoing change and the challenges nature has to go through. We will use this very old nature wisdom about healthy and wholesome change. We let our human nature be inspired, touched and accompanied by it.
  • To go through all seasons – in this small WarGarndchild Souljourney – is a very good preparation for the big WarGrandchild Souljourney.

Dates & Enrollment


  • 3 Days (weekend)
  • 8 hours Solo-fasting-time in nature
  • Working on one of your specific topics
  • As a preparation for the big WargrandchildSouljourney
For whom
  • Your parents were children in WW2.
  • You are aware of the consequences of war trauma that has not been processed.
  • You want to be in a position to tell a new story about your life.
  • Max. 4 participants
  • You can work on one of theses topics
    • Something you want to let go of, something you want to leave behind.
    • Something you want to reaffirm for yourself, a transformation, a change in roles.
    • A new chapter in life, a new responsibility that you wish to take on board.


  • Before: I will give you advice and support via email and via phone to get clarity on your issue.
  • During: you will fast and go on a solitary ritual walk of several hours through nature. You will come back with a story that you will recount to a supportive group in a circle who will mirror it for you.
  • After: I will give you advice and support on your issue in the context of everyday life.

Dates & Enrollment


  • Seven days
  • Optional 24 hour Solo-fasting-time in nature

New roots: War-Grandchild-Souljourney through the four shields
(with Co-Guide Petra Lenz-Snow)wood-nature-sunny-forest

In a healthy and natural forest, all related trees are connected via their deep roots and a network of mycelium. A lively cooperation and exchange takes place. Warning about pests and water shortage is passed on. When there is shortage, nutrients are exchanged. The mother trees „suckle“ their children and help them not to grow in unwanted directions. In this, every tree finds it place in the big structure of the forest.

In our traumatized German society we are – generally speaking – neither well rooted, nor can we fall back upon a healthy network. Be it because of flight experiences of our grandparents during the war, their often fragmented personalities caused by it, or the deeply felt shame about our history: it is difficult to connect with this dark heritage.

The four shields and medicine-wheels are a firm part in the cultures of man indigenous tribes. They are the backbones of the oldest, holistic, nature-based psychology. Nature-based cultures developed these models by observing natures cycles and how these processes are bringing itself back into a healthy balance over and over again. Working with the four shields can help you to let go of all these all stories that hinder you from realizing your dreams and to fully take your seat in life. Our time together therefor will also be about the question, what it means, to regain a new connection with yourself and your roots.

The medicine-wheel and the four shields are a map, framework and anchor. They show you, where you are in balance and rooted. But also, which old structures are to be let go of, to be able to make new connections, to this bigger and deeper Version of you, that is now to nurture. You are doing this work not only for yourself, but also always for the upcoming generations.


  • This format is suitable also for people with few nature-experience.
  • Our motto is always: safety first.
  • We meet for seven days on a beautiful retreat center in the Bavarian forest.
  • The keepers of this place – Arthur & Christine – have a private forest on their property. They have let this forest grow in its natural way for the past years, so it may come back to its natural, healthy and organic strength.
  • You will have the oportunity to do a medicine walk for 2-3 hours/day in this forest. You will get special tasks to do so. The time in nature is interwoven with the telling of your stories in circle. We will sit in Council, a non-hierarchical form of communication, where we lsietn and speak from the heart. Council gives the save container as well for your individual story, as for the collective story, that emerges by our time together. On the fith day you will have an optional 24hour Solo-Fastingtime in nature. Here you have the room to let go of old structures and to receive new and life-affirming messages. On the morning oft he sixth day, you will come back. We celebrate the new story, you stepped into with a celebration meal and telling of your stories.

Dates & Enrollment


  • 11 days
  • Optional 24 hours Solo-fasting-time in nature

A new story: rites of passage for WarGrandchildren
(with Co-Guide Petra Lenz-Snow)

As WarGrandchild you were born into a deeply traumatized culture and family. This left you with deep soul-scars. You may have felt for quite some time now, how these deep soul-wounds negatively influence your life. Or you have discovered this topic just recently. In any case, you strongly feel the call to heal these wounds.

Also nature knows wounds. She knows about their necessity and has million years experience to transform them into something miraculous. A grain of sand injures the sensitive, inner seashell. A unique pearl develops. A tree is struck by lightening and a branch breaks off. The tree produces healing resin. Over the course of million years and facing the elements, a piece of jewellery emerges: amber.

As WarGrandchild you probably do not feel as a unique piece of jewellery. Instead, you might not even know, who you are. Maybe you even thought about how senseless and painful this life is and for what reason you landed on this earth. Already as a little child, you had to – mainly by yourself – go through crises and be strong for your parents. Your parents were not able to really see and mirror you in your uniqueness – due to their story. And because of the collective Trauma, our society is not very helpful with this either.

Indigenous people in all cultures and during all times knew, that holistically healthy communities, need people, who are aware of their unique potential and qualities. So they can bring them in for the sake of all. Here our deepest wish “to be ourselves” meets naturally, what our community needs most. From the rituals of the indigenous people, Greek mythology, to our modern times: we can find numerous forms of rites of passages, having the same general pattern: change occurs through a threshold-experience, holding the potential to initiate into a new life.

Our rites-of-passage is such a threshold-experience: you will get the room to look in depth at your formlery experienced wounds and pain, and to mourn them. You are invited to let go of and let die, what you do not need anymore and what may have never been yours. To be counted also pain and wounds you received from the collective soul, maybe already in your mothers’ womb. Your personal story will be linked to a bigger meaning and you will call in a new life, that is your very own now. You mark the beginning of a new life-chapter. The healing of your wound will also heal the collective wound and the following generations – and you will give birth to a new story.


  • This rites-of passage lasts 11 days. After an intense, preparation time (3,5 days), you will spend four days and nights alone in nature. The Incorporation time last 3,5 days and will prepare you for your return into everyday life.
  • The three stages
    • Severance: during preparation time in base-camp, you slow down, let go of your everyday life and focus more and more inside. You spend time in nature and look for your solo spot in the woods. You tell your story in the circle. From us Guides, you will be supported to further “polish” your intent. We help you prepare for fasting and give practical advice for a safety-system.
    • Threshold: Four days and nights you go alone and fasting into the woods. You solely carry enough water and the necessary protection. You will become silent and empty. You will listen deep inside and outside. You will get into contact with the beings in nature and your inner being. What happens out there? Nobody can say that. It will be your unique story. Only one thing is for sure: you close your old story and let go of it. Us Guides will be in basecamp during this time and are always available for you.
    • Incorporation: We await you at the threshold. Together we break the fast and celebrate your return. You tell your story in the circle. It will be heard, honoured and mirrored. We prepare you to return home and for the Integration into your every day life.

For whom

  • Your parents were children during WW2.
  • You know about the consequences of unprocessed war traumata.
  • You feel: it is time now, to heal these wounds.
  • You want to let go of the old and live a new story
  • Experience with working in nature is not a prerequisite. You also do not need to be experienced in sleeping outside in nature.
  • Health circumstances, which do not allow four days of fasting, can be taken care of.
  • Different “Fitness levels” are no problem.

 Dates & Enrollment

About me


Dr. Iris Wangermann

  • Born in 1975. German-Austrian.
  • I have been occupied with my own WarGrandchild history since 1995. During this period my education as a qualified psychologist began, as did various trainings – always in search for holistic health.
  • In my education and training in Systemic Counselling (since 1998) I became aware that individual psychological problems have their origins in overall family systems. What motivated me in particular was that one can only change a system if one is motivated to change oneself.
  • In further education and training since 2006, using the nature-based process work (in the tradition and in the School of Lost Borders) and working with nature as its mirror, I have been inquiring the depth of my soul. Here I also learnt to appreciate and practice “the Way of Council” – a non-hierarchical form of communication which relies on empathetic listening and speaking from the heart. I also work with the medicine-wheel, the oldest holistic, nature-based psychology. I am a trained Vision Fast Guide (School of Lost Borders) and assisted Meredith Little & Scott Eberle (Ballcourt Fast – practice of living and dying).
  • My most important teacher though is nature herself, with millions of years experience, wisdom and knowledge about holistic and healthy solutions for change and process work.
  • From 2009 to 2012 I completed 950 training sessions in the peaceful martial art of Aikido according to the method taught by Dirk Kropp. The training experience was a very formative experience in that it allowed me to discover that the causes of conflict can be found in the human soul, just as their solution can be found there. Since 2013 I practice regularly Yoga.
  • Also having an influence on me has been my training in client centred dialogue according to Carl Rogers (2001-2003), where I first came across the mirroring method, which I later encountered again in nature-based process work. What was important to me was the approach that all persons are best equipped to analyse their own situation and to work out solutions for them, if they find themselves in an appropriate environment for such a process – as in nature.
  • Qualified Intercultural psychologist. Operating as an autonomous mentor and trainer in supporting and consulting groups and being a personal coach since 2004. From 2012 (winter semester) to 2014 (summer semester): acting professorship in Intercultural Business Communication at the Hamburg University of Applied Sciences. I am a member of PAKH, study group of intergenerational consequences of the holocaust, SIETAR, the Wilderness Guides Council and the Kriegsenkel e.V.
  • It is my believe that for working with people a certain ethical posture is necessary – besides having a professional background. Read more about my orientation here.

My role as a facilitaor

  • I am not a psychological therapist, but a facilitator with long years of experience in change processes. The latin word “facilitare” derives from “to make it easy”.
  • I am not controlling your process and I am not the one brining it forward. But I provide you with a safe container.
  • Of course I bring in my knowledge and impulses.
  • I work with circular methods
  • I believe that the best answers for questions about your unique self are already within you. I am at your side, accompanying you, and together we try to get a hold of your treasures.


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  • Every three month (Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter)
  • 10:30 am – 05:30 pm
  • 2017
    • Summer: 23rd July (full – waiting list)
    • Summer: 30th July
    • Fall: 8th October


  •  Haus Hardt – in the middle of  the woods. Bergisches Land/close to Cologne.


  • Participants: max. six
  • Tuition:  80,- to 100,- Euros, incl. 19% VAT. I work with a sliding-scale, to allow as many people as possible to participate. I hope to make his work accessible, to anyone who feels drawn to it. I do not ask for financial proof and trust, that everyone pays, what feels appropriate and is possible.


  • If you cancel until eight weeks before the start of the program, 50% will be refunded.



  • Fridays, 03:00 pm – Sundays 02:00 pm
  • 2018: 6th – 8th July



  • Max. five participants
  • 250,- to 400,- Euros, incl. 19% VAT. I work with a sliding-scale, to allow as many people as possible to participate. I hope to make his work accessible, to anyone who feels drawn to it. I do not ask for financial proof and trust, that everyone pays, what feels appropriate and is possible.
  • 168,- Euros for overnight stay in single-bedrooms and with organic-vegetarian food. Tea, coffee and cake.


  • Deposit (when enrolling): 174,- Euros.
  • Remaining amount until eight weeks before start of the Souljourney.


  • If you cancel until eight weeks before the program starts, 50% of the deposit will be refunded.



  • 18th – 29th August 2017


  • Bayrischer Wald/Germany. 65km east from Regensburg. 170km northeast from Munich. At 600m height.
  • We are on the land of a former farm. The old farmhouse and the rest of the area is very well looked after by the owners, who will also cook for us.
  • There are showers and an inside eating place for rainy weather.
  • Heart of the place is a bid glade, with bordering 7ha private woods. It is an earthy and at the same time light and airy place. The private woodland, with its old moss-covered granite stones – with a variety of plants and animals – is allowed to grow without human influence. Here you will spent your solo-time.
  • There is a large water-proof, fixed tarp, and two sitting areas (in- and outside).


  • Maximum eight participants
  • Fee rites-of-passage: 900,- to 1600,- Euros. In this price 19% VAT is included. We work with a sliding-scale, to allow as many people as possible to participate. We hope to make his work accessible, to anyone who feels drawn to it. We do not ask for financial proof and trust, that everyone pays, what feels appropriate at the given time.
  • Cost venue, vegetarian whole-food and sleeping spot (either in the comfy haystack, or in your (brought) tent): 350,- Euros


  • Deposit (when enrolling): 250,- Euros, to reserve your spot. Non refundable or transferrable.
  • Full payment due: latest 10 weeks before start.


  • Less than eight weeks before start: 50% of fee is due.
  • If withdrawing less than four weeks before start: full fee is due.


  • German
  • Future Fasts in English and with WarGradnchidlren from different cultures are in the planning. If you are, please send me an E-Mail. Thank you.
  • 11th May 2017
    Remembering – Reappraising – Reconciling” evening, Oberursel, Taunus/Germany.
  • 5th November 201612239541_889716817791769_5596831177895294556_n
    “Rites of passages for WarGrandchildren”
    “Am I a War Grandchild?” evening,  Konzertmesse Dortmund.
  • 4th June 2016
    Eleder-Younger Council Facilitation,
    “About us” weekend, PAKH, workgroup on intergenerational causes of the Holocaust.
  • 18th – 20th March 2016
    “Inner Diversity – Outer Diversity & Identity”.
    WarGrandchild conference, Loccum, Kriegsenkel e.V.
  • 13th November 2015
    Participant at the panel discussion “Psychosocial consequences of the 2nd WW, for the 3rd generation”.
    Martina Büchel, Kuntsbühne Oberursel.

8th May – 70 years end of war anniversary

IMG_02408th of May 2015 was the 70 year “end of war anniversary”. A network of people from the WarGrandchild work (Munich, Lake KOnstanz, Dortmund and Köln/Cologne) took a stand against the forgetting and for inner and outer peace.

  • Where: nature reserve Cologne Melaten cemetery. A quite interesting place, where death and blooming life are closest together.
  • We walked to the war graves and memorials of the first and second world war and held a Council about “inner and outer peace”. Then each of us took off for a single and slient walk and came back with an asnwer refelcted by this place.
  • Pictures  (Scroll down for the Cologne initiative).


Petra Lenz-Snow
(Co-Guide:  Souljourney II & Big Souljourney )


  • Petra was born and raised in Germany and has guided vision fasts and wilderness rite of passage programs for over 20 years.
  • She is currently serving as Co-Director and Board Member at the School of Lost Borders.
  • From 2012 – 2015 she was the executive director of the Wilderness Guides Council, a network of guides supporting wilderness ceremonies around the world.
  • Her personal journey with breast cancer instructed Petra first-hand how important the container of the natural world and the rite of passage ceremony are when one is cracked open and irrevocably changed by unforseen life initiations, such as illness, loss of a loved one or other pertinent trauma.
  • In her free time she writes articles for her blog ‘Journeys into Healing’ and gives talks at various venues to raise awareness about Cancer as a Rite of Passage.
  • Petra’s wilderness training in the U.S. began at the Bear Tribe, founded by Chippewa medicine man, Sun Bear, and concluded at the School of Lost Borders with Steven and Meredith Foster in 1995.
  • She is a licensed practitioner of naturopathic medicine and a mother of three young adult children.


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For Enrollment, Questions or further Information call: +49 221 94387345 use the contact-form or Email me: Info@Kriegsenkel-Seelenreise.de

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