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Camel - My Inspiration
by Louise Lee
3/21/2015 / Christian Living
One day, a friend of mine asked me a question; that was meant to be psychological test. I was asked to think of three animals. Each one represents some kind of psychological states of me at that point of my life. The first animal that came to my mind was a horse, then a deer and lastly a camel. According to my friend, the first animal reflects how people thought I was, like a horse; the second animal reflects what I truly was, that was a deer; and the third animal was what I aspire to be, that was a camel.
After giving some thoughts to that after many years, I felt there were some truths in it. One thing dawned on me was my aspiration of being a camel; that amazed me and it was rather interesting and intriguing.
I do not have any experience with a camel in my life before, it is just simply because I am not a desert dweller. As far as I could recall was a ride on one camel's hide for photo taking. Other impressions of camels came from pictures of desert with one or two camels in single file, documentary on desert living etc.
If I were to use words to describe a camel, I would probably have words like strong, useful, enduring and even cool; that was my impression about camels. But little did I know camels actually have temper; they are by nature ill tempered, intricate and at times dangerous. They were not as what we see them today.
What happened to them? What had caused them to change? My interest level of studying camels has gone the highest at this point.
Some 3,500 years ago, desert people discovered that camels could be very good helpers for them because of their unique abilities. They could travel as many as 161 kilometres without water. It doesn't mean that they do not need water. Actually camels do not function well without water. A thirsty camel can drink up as many as 135 litres of water in about 13 minutes. Their ability to retain their body moisture has helped them in the desert conditions.
They stand about 2.1 meters tall at the hump and weigh 726 to 816 kilograms. Over a four-day period a camel can haul 170 to 270 kilograms at rates of 47 kilometres a day and 4 kilometres in an hour.
People started to dream of using them as a mean of transportation. However, because of its wild nature, camels are dangerous. In order to make them helpful, people have to capture and tame the camels first. To tame an animal means to remove its wild nature or to train them to obey people's command.
It wasn't all that easy to train a camel or for camels to be trained. They are very different from you and I; their new-borns walk within a few hours of birth. And their survival trainings start as early as one year old. Most camels can serve their master up to 50 years. Today, camels are very popular especially in the lands to the south and east of Palestine. They are widely used as a mean of transportation. They are like our cars today.
Camels have also become treasured possessions of the Jewish people in Bible times. Some desert people measure wealth by the number of camels a person owns. Camel hair can be used to make clothing and blankets, dried camel droppings fuel fires. For Mongolians, camel milk and meat are their delights. Camel hides were used to make shoes and saddles.
With these discoveries, my unconscious inspiration has become a conscious aspiration. Camels indeed have been transformed through obedience. They have learned to obey their masters, lay down their lives for their masters; they were changed from a useless wild camel to a priceless treasure. This applies to my life; being submitting to the Master of life would certainly make me a priceless treasure.
(My first illustrated book Psalm 23 for Kids is now available at amazon.com)
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