“I am the vine, you are the branches.
Whoever remains in me and I in him will bear much fruit,
because without me you can do nothing.”
~ John 15:5
In my philosophy classes, I learned that I am a contingent being. I depend on other beings for my existence. I exist within a network of causes and effects. I came into this world through the actions of my parents and grew up through the help and action of many others. In turn, I have caused some things to happen in this world and have been instrumental in the coming to life of other people into this world. Ultimately, all of us contingent beings depend on a necessary being to come into existence.
In sociology and the human sciences, I learned that it takes a village to raise a child. I exist in a web of relationships that make human lives and communities possible and to prosper. Generations have come before us for us to enjoy what we are enjoying now. And more generations will come after us to continue this great human adventure. It gets better and better from one generation to another. There must a Great Chief ruling over this global, even universal. village.
In my spiritual life, I learn that I am a branch and I need to be attached to the vine to be alive and productive. I exist only because I am attached tot he vine. Without the vine, I am worth nothing as a branch. Even as I am attached to the branch, the vinedresser prunes me so that I become more fruitful.
Simple images. Great lessons. I only have to stay quiet and let them sink into my being and I move deeper into my spirituality.