Published in  
May 10, 2016

To find your way, get lost

The reason why Africans say that ‘in order to find your way, you must become lost’ is because they make no fundamental distinction between the traveler and his environment, or the pilgrim and the pilgrimage.

In a sense, it is not the case that ‘we’ are travelling through the ‘world’, moving from one predetermined point to another. It is the case that the world is researching itself, iteratively and materially re/configuring what it means to be on a journey…much in the same way that a wave doesn’t travel across the ocean, it is the ocean in its ongoing complexity.

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As such, ‘becoming lost’ is really about losing the specificity of our boundaries, the intransigence of our anthropocentrism; it is about shapeshifting, colluding with plants and rocks and wind, and becoming fine enough to meet the challenge of a dead-end. Perhaps it is more about noticing that we are the dead ends we confront, we are the monsters on our path. It is about broadening our spectrum enough to see that ‘the way ahead’ is not as demanding and as exclusive as our frantic maps make it out to be, but a promiscuous field of threadbare possibilities wanting to be stitched.