Monday, February 17, 2014

The Problem Tree

On a recent trip to Senegal in West Africa we visited a Fulani village which was near Pink Lake.  Our guide introduced us to the Chief, and showed us around the village.  We came upon what is called the "Problem Tree".  This is where members of the village go to resolve problems that arise between them and, from what we were told, it works.  I found this to be such a simple yet profound way to deal with discord.  In this quaint location where people live in huts and have meager possessions, they deal with their problems in a very simple and civilized manner.  Wouldn't it be great if problems between people all over the world could be resolved this way?  Perhaps members of the U.S. Congress could learn a thing or two from the Fulani people.  Imagine that.

I also found the tree itself to be beautiful.  I don't know what kind it is, but it's beauty definitely brings a smile to your face.  Maybe that alone can make you forget your problems for a while.

The "Problem Tree", Fulani Village, Senegal, West Africa
Photo by Sharon A. Keyser-Jackson

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