What happens when we are in conflict? In the struggle to overcome conflict we become disillusioned, we enter into darkness or, being in conflict, we try to find escapes in various forms. If thought-feeling is caught neither in disillusionment nor in comforting refuge then conflict will find the means of its own ending. Conflict produces disillusionment or the desire to escape, for we are unwilling to think out, feel out all the implications involved in it; we are lazy, too conditioned to change, accepting authority and the easy way of life. To understand conflict and to be able to examine it with freedom, there must be a certain disinterested tranquillity. But when we are in conflict or in sorrow our instinctive response is to escape from it, to run away from its cause, not to face its hidden significance; so we seek various channels of escape: activity, amusement, gods, war. So distractions multiply; they become more important than the cause of sorrow itself; we then become intolerant of the means of escape of others and try to modify or reform them, but conflict and sorrow continue.
6th Public Talk 1945