The question is clear, the answer is deep. Budo considers an aptitude for critical thinking essential because it allows us to recognize and acknowledge the confusion within. It teaches us to use this capacity in the pursuit of self-awareness, which in turn we can use to discern each and every influence that might pull one off of the spiritual path. Having learnt to discern these negative influences one is encouraged to distance oneself from them until one is able to remove oneself from their sway entirely. Buddhism does not have the answer to your question. You do, only you do. The answer and the question are one and the same thing. Zen is a process not an answering machine. John Daido Loori To be aware of a single shortcoming within oneself is more useful than to be aware of a thousand in somebody else. HH Dalai Lama Never underestimate the potential of ego to lead one astray. P.T. Sudo.