Watch: How will you direct your energies towards that which gives life?
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Transcript of Video:
Well, I think a helpful metaphor for giving things up is pruning. The reason plants are pruned is to, number one, sometimes give them shape, a better form visually. But it also redirects growth. If you prune a branch from a tree or a shrub or a vine, it will actually stimulate growth in another direction. So the monastic life is about saying no to some things in order that our energies can be directed in other directions. The vows, especially celibacy and poverty, are about saying no to certain things – and saying no to partnerships and sexuality expressed with others is a way of directing generative energies in other directions. Saying no to the acquisition of wealth and property is a way of experiencing life in community and sharing everything one has with other people, and not being distracted by the need to acquire wealth and status and power in those terms.
– Br. Mark Brown