In some Eastern philosophy, there is the belief that people are fundamentally good but we get seduced by our physical bodies into taking the easy way out. We therefore need to take a long-term approach in order to realize that achieving our long term goals is the easy way out.
For this reason, it's worth the effort required to be vegetarian, to only eat healthy food, abstain from drugs, exercise well, and all those things people are supposed to do to take care of themselves. It's also worth the effort to study and meditate (and personally I think they're versions of the same thing).
I'm having a lot of trouble putting that into practice. But the challenge keeps me strong.