Many of the stresses coming at us from every direction are spiritual, so the greatest desire of many of us is to find inner peace.
In the past, when the events in peoples lives were far more limited, they might have longed for excitement and emotional experiences, but today longings tend to run in the opposite direction: more peace of mind and less stress.
It is not surprising that so many pursue pastimes whose main purpose is to calm them down.
Even in days of old, the psalmist prayed, “Return, my soul, to restfulness” (Psalms 116:7).
But the soul itself never rests. It is constantly creating and responding both to action and to inaction.
And the soul always follows its own course, even when it is not manifest consciously in our thoughts or emotions.
Even when we are unaware of what is happening in our soul, the soul tries to make its wishes known and to respond, on its own terms, to what we are doing and feeling.
No matter what lifestyle, activities, or conscious thoughts we may have, and no matter what their source, at times the soul within us tries to get our attention and to respond to what is happening in our day- to-day experiences by shouting, “No, no!” or “Yes, this is what you should be doing.”
–Rabbi Adin Steinsaltz