My husband told me yesterday as he drove about what his Somali friend said. In Somalia, he said, they memorize directions by trees.
And his mom still uses this technique to memorize how she got somewhere and how to get back. She says, turn right when you get to this tree with the crooked branch. Then turn left when you get to the skinny tree.
(Somali friends, comment below if this is true and please explain how it works.) I mean imagine how good these people are at recognizing and memorizing tree features. To me a tree is a tree. And that got me thinking... if only we could recognize our iman trees. You know iman lows.
They leave us paralyzed, frustrated, hungry for connection. If only we could recognize which kind of a low we are experiencing. Because truly not every low is the same. And accordingly, not every response to the low is going to be the same.
Although the symptoms will be the same.⠀Responses are different.
With some lows, you just need to get back to the routine of things.
With some lows, you need to hang out less with a certain group of people.
With some lows, you need to make time for solitude and think things through.
With some lows, you need to reread a certain Surah in the Quran. With some lows, you need to listen to a few lectures back to back. You get the idea. Unfortunately, over and over again, we run into a low and we are clueless as to what worked last time this happened.
We just shuffle between different responses until one works. And that simply takes time. Knowing what the next step should be is half the job. It's the half that usually takes a long time to figure out. So next time you hit that low, start taking a better look at it.
What caused it?
Has this happened before?
Which directions did I take?
Which direction actually took me to the destination I was seeking?
What is the magnitude? ⠀
Not every tree is the same. And not every iman low is the same. Start looking better at the features and use those details to take the right direction. Use them as a map to bounce back to quickly to where you belong.
Don't get lost in the woods. Allah is waiting for you at the end. 🌷Umeda