Published in  
May 10, 2016

Losing ground

When you tie a knot on a piece of string and then stretch the string, the knot gets tighter and smaller – losing its bumpiness, its disagreeability.

In a way, the ‘human’ is being stretched today. The anthropocentric project, enshrined in our modern distance, is failing. Our old ideas about how separate we are from the world, how intelligent and independent we are, how – by virtue of will – we can run against the mindless grain of things, are thinning out.

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Like the knot on the string, all this doesn’t mean we are ‘losing ground’; in fact, it means we are regaining an appreciation of our fluidity: a porosity that suggests that we are the world in its ongoing ‘stretching’, and not a knot in its resolute (but imperilled) determination to stay quite apart from everything else. When a seed is buried in the ground, and the seductions of that loamy enclosure crack the seed’s hard shell, it becomes larger. As such, it hasn’t lost its uniqueness, it has reiterated it.