Conflict, suffering, is the process of breaking up [the] habit of attributing values. You have a set of values established through experience, through tradition, and these values have become your guides; with these past standards and values you approach a fresh experience, which must naturally create a conflict. This suffering is nothing else than the breaking up of old values to which the mind clings.
Now it is the very essence of stupidity to escape from conflict through a series of established values, or through forming a new set of values. The very essence of intelligence is to understand life or experience with an unburdened mind and heart, anew, afresh.
Instead of meeting life without any preconceived demands, you come to it with a mind and heart already prejudiced, almost incapable of swift adjustment, quick pliability. The lack of this instantaneous discernment of the movement of life creates sorrow. Conflict is the indication of bondage, which cannot be conquered, but whose significance must be understood. All conquering of obstacles through a new set of values is but another form of escape.
New York City
3rd Public Talk 15th March, 1935