I must say plainly this, that fanciful though it may appear at first sight, the comforts of life are the main cause of our want of love of God; and, much as we may lament and struggle against it, till we learn to dispense with them in good measure, we shall not overcome it.
Till we, in a certain sense, detach ourselves from our bodies, our minds will not be in a state to receive divine impressions, and to exert heavenly aspirations.
A smooth and easy life, an uninterrupted enjoyment of the goods of Providence, full meals, soft raiment, well-furnished homes, the pleasures of sense, the feeling of security, the consciousness of wealth – these and the like, if we are not careful, choke up all the avenues of the soul.
– Bl. John Henry Newman; The necessity of self-denial; P. S. V, 337