AfrikaBurn 2024: 29 April to 5 May

AfrikaBurn 2023. A Magical Masterpiece.

AfrikaBurn. There is an old desolate dirt road on the bottom of Africa, in the middle of the desert, full of washboard ridges, rocks that puncture your tires, dust that darkens your windshield, and nothing but vast and barren wilderness for as far as your eyes can see.

After hours on this long and lonely road, moving far away from civilisation, you will leave the “Republic of South Africa,” and like a mirage, an image of AfrikaBurn at Tankwa Karoo National Park will appear, and you be greeted with a warm welcome, wrapped in hope, with a side of enchantment. You begin to let go of the routine world you left behind. You set up camp. And soak it all in.

AfrikaBurn is a “pop-up” community, an ideal for a world, anew. (Although your soul will wilt a little as you read the word ‘pop-up.’) To the average mortal, it looks like camping with costumes. But life at Afrikan Burn is deeper, meaningful, and is nothing short of a magical masterpiece. On my first day, I thought, ‘Every human should be here. To experience all of THIS!’ #thepeople #connection #art #beauty #love #giving #community. But I soon realised, people cannot be led here. Burners are drawn here.

We are drawn because deep down, we know the current world dims, dulls, and disconnects us. We must fall in line and follow the rules. Our world is a template for acquisition and academia, for competition and conforming. But burners? Move to a different tune. In that world? We are caged animals restless, stirring, and pacing to be set free. We just don’t get with their program. AfrikaBurn is the antidote to politics, government, rules, and regulations. In other words? It uncages you.

Burners are seekers, explorers, and adventurers. Burners are introverts, yoda’s, and yogis. Burners are the old pioneers in the wild west migrating towards a better life, like Gertrude Bell traveling alone to Arabia to make maps in the early 1900’s. Like wild stallions – Burners are primal, passionate, untamed and undomesticated – always running towards the source of their soul. Burners are out on the edges. We are the bootleggers, the witches that were burned at the stake, the non-conformists, the artists. We are lovers, star-gazers, and poets. We feel the footsteps of our ancestors who walked upon this dirt before us as we dance to the vibration of the music, their souls, and the ever-spinning planet.

And that passionate planetary pulse? Is what awakens and beckons us here. An ancient rhythm that lives in our heartbeat. Like the yearning we felt in the womb – the desire for LIFE. This same force rotates the earth and moves the seas. And we feel it, like a drumbeat, and are called by the sound of its truth. Most folks are afraid of this calling. They bury their impulses deep inside them. But there are few wayward warriors who have the courage to love and express that wild and ignited FIRE raging inside of all of us. And they are here at the Burn … beaming, delighting – and living life, galaxy-sized.

At some point, you may catch a glimpse of one of them, out on the other side. You will know them by their sense of romance and rebellion. They’ll be in old dive bars, listening to folks singing about the open road. They’ll be reading dead philosophers under a tree, or creating art on a small desk listening to jazz, as the moonlight shines on their hands. They’ll be out traveling, walking in the forests, or looking for wildflowers. They’ll be growing mushrooms, or a garden, or drinking absinthe way into the night. They are anarchists whose formal education come by way of old poets, various lovers, soul connection, and most likely, whiskey-soaked (with a pickle back – of course!)

AfrikaBurn is how life should be. It is the promise of how humanity could be and perhaps, would be again someday. Self-reliance and sharing. Self-expressed and community connected. Teaching. Listening. Learning. Hugging. Expressing. Being. Full of joy and pleasure, winking at life and flirting with the stars.

Ahhh… Burners. A small group of rogue accountants, marketers, students, engineers, salesmen, teachers, workers, and doctors – who come, gather, celebrate, share, and love for an incredible week on a small patch of land, at the bottom of Africa, in search of – and will inevitably find, what it feels like… to be FREE.

See you all next year in the dust! Rebecca York DC

2 Responses

  1. You boys and girls are incredibly cool, thank you for being different!!

  2. Wow! That must have been a hell of a trip. The story is well told by the best scribe I know. The Burn almost sounds like a modern day Woodstock, maybe, maybe not. I’m sure that some of the Burners can relate to good ol’ Woodstock. Both places were found by people looking to find something in their life or maybe not looking for anything at all. As with a lot of people these days, some people are going somewhere, while others are going nowhere. Whether they go or stay, it really doesn’t make any difference. It does sound like AfrikaBurn should be experienced by anyone who will make the journey. Thank you Rebecca York DC for a great story!
    Two Dogs

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