This is not earth.
I never knew a 23 hour drive would take me to another world, a place where freedom and expression is the name of the game and the more out the box you are the better. A place for misfits, tricksters and life livers who don’t fit into the mould society has created for humans. Afrikaburn, the place where I discovered human possibility, and what amazing things the collective mind can produce.
Heres a little bit about the guiding principles that the event is based on, taken straight from the Afrikaburn website
So here’s the deal: AfrikaBurn is a community of participants guided by a set of principles. Eleven of them. Which is why they’re called the Eleven Principles. They’re the same set of ideals that informed the creation of Burning Man, of which AfrikaBurn is a regional event, with the addition of a new one – Each One Teach One – which encourages the sharing of knowledge..
Our community values creative cooperation and collaboration. We strive to produce, promote and protect social networks, public spaces, works of art, and methods of communication that support such interaction.
Our community is committed to a radically participatory ethic. We believe that transformative change, whether in the individual or in society, can occur only through the medium of deeply personal participation. We achieve being through doing. Everyone is invited to work. Everyone is invited to play. We make the world real through actions that open the heart.
We value civil society. Community members who organise events should assume responsibility for public welfare and endeavor to communicate civic responsibilities to participants. They must also assume responsibility for conducting events in accordance with national and local laws.
Immediate experience is, in many ways, the most important value in our culture. We seek to overcome barriers that stand between us and a recognition of our inner selves, the reality of those around us, participation in society, and contact with a natural world exceeding human powers. No idea can substitute for this experience.
In order to preserve the spirit of gifting, our community seeks to create social environments that are unmediated by commercial sponsorships, transactions, or advertising. We stand ready to protect our culture from such exploitation. We resist the substitution of consumption for participatory experience.
We are devoted to acts of gift giving. The value of a gift is unconditional. Gifting does not contemplate a return or an exchange for something of equal value.
LEAVING NO TRACE
Our community respects the environment. We are committed to leaving no physical trace of our activities wherever we gather. We clean up after ourselves and endeavor, whenever possible, to leave such places in a better state than when we found them.
Anyone may be a part of AfrikaBurn. We welcome and respect the stranger. No prerequisites exist for participation in our community. This means that anyone can partake.
AfrikaBurn encourages the individual to discover, exercise and rely on his or her inner resources.
Radical self-expression arises from the unique gifts of the individual. No one other than the individual or a collaborating group can determine its content. It is offered as a gift to others. In this spirit, the giver should respect the rights and liberties of the recipient.
EACH ONE TEACH ONE
As a self-reliant community, we believe the responsibility of spreading our culture lies with each and every one of us. All of us are custodians of our culture – when the opportunity presents itself, we pass knowledge on.
This truly was one of the most incredible things I have ever witnessed and by far the most friendly gathering of dirty people anyone could hope to be a part of. The complete lack of litter anywhere was also an utter breath of fresh air.
Until next year,
Hopefully we will get to witness Subterfuge burn.