Patchakuti

Certain crossing paths can lead to a total collision. The turbulence and tragedy that was caused by the Spanish conquest of the Inca Empire in the 16th century can be described by the Andean concept of pachakuti. Worldviews, traditions and communities were shattered. The colonization was a turning point not only for the Andean population but indeed in human history, marking the beginning of the modern era. Patchakuti is generally some form of cataclysmic event or transformation and can also be generated by natural disasters that completely change reality. In today's political context, the term is used to express the need for radical change for the survival of the planet, in which patchakuti can lead to destruction as well as revival.

In the 15th century, the ninth ruler of the Inca was given the name Patchakuti. He transformed a small society into what would come to be known as the Inca Empire or Tawantinsuyu. During its height, it stretched from modern-day Colombia to Chile. The city of Cuzco - called "Navel of the World" - was the axis mundi from which everything was organized. The Empire was divided into four regions based on the four cardinal directions along with approximately forty lines, extending in all directions. These lines probably served as political boundaries as well as astronomical guidelines and ritual pathways, all connected by holy places called wak'as.

Cord and knots with information

Khipu can be described as historic chronicles made of cords and knots in various compositions – a sort of wordless language created from memories, precision, rhythm and color. Some of them served as maps of the sacred landscape of the Inca Empire, with knots marking significant sites.

Khipu have been compared to digital graphics or advanced mathematical systems with codes made of binary numbers. Large khipu could include up to two thousand knots, containing information on astronomical phenomena, bookkeeping or geometry. Under Spanish colonization, many khipu were burnt as much of the Andean world began to collapse.