Faith and Crossing the Border

After reading the Crossing and the aftermath article about Bambino, I was surprised about how much was left to the unknown after crossing the border. Despite the uncertainty after crossing the border, the refugees have built an entire complex of social organization around the unknown. The nature of the refugee camp’s blind faith and group organization seemed almost spiritual to me. People from all over gather at the refugee camp united by the singular goal of crossing the border. The camps even have a leader, Dikembe, who acts similarly to the way a priest or rabbi would, guiding the refugees towards something bigger and indeterminate. Like a congregation, the refugees are drawn together to seek a greater goal- a future beyond the border.

While it is not surprising that the future beyond the border is somewhat uncertain, the overall ambiguity of the aftermath seems to make crossing the border all the more mysterious. Since this ultimate goal is indefinite, it is easy for people to imbue it with their own dreams and perceptions and idealizations. The message that becomes abundantly clear is how powerful the driving force of freedom and escape must be within these communities. To put everything, even your life, at risk for something so unknown undoubtedly requires a degree of blind faith. While reading these articles it became clear to me that attempting to cross the border had become something greater than just the action, but a complicated ritual with both social and spiritual aspects.