模索 [もさく] する – to seek; to grope (for)
- 模 [モ・ボ] – imitate; copy
- 索 [サク] – rope; cord
I’m not really sure of the etymology of this word, but I rather like the sound of “imitating the rope.” Interestingly, 検索 [けんさく] (investigate-rope) means “to look (something) up” (e.g. a word) and 索引 [さくいん] (rope-pull) means “index” (e.g. a book).