We search for solid ground by looking away from the things that trouble or frighten us. This becomes a vicious circle, a pattern that reinforces the very habits that cause us suffering, most notably the habit of distancing ourselves from direct experience, from the realities of the present, its joys and its sorrows. If, instead, we can learn to be mindful, so the Buddhists teach us, we can learn to move with curiosity and kindness toward sources of pain, to to penetrate the heart of reality and find there compassion, for ourselves and for others together with deeper connection to our all-too-human joys and sorrows.
… this from teachings of the Dalai Lama, whom I was fortunate to work with over the past five years. We humans have layers of conditioning, old habitual patterns we develop and reinforce. We do this by turning to distractions we hope will push away an innate uneasiness with the reality of our situation, its ever-changing nature, its instability.