External factors can have some influence, but they are by themselves amoral. Man's life is above all intellectual. One's most intimate friends are one's thoughts.
The very same thing brings harm to some and benefits to others: for example temptations, sufferings and misfortunes. It all depends on one's thoughts. The same pain leads one to despair while for another it may be an occasion for renewal and joy.
Ideas influence judgement, judgement arouses feelings, feelings determine internal and external actions. The greatest battles are fought in the mind. Here all our energies have to be concentrated.