This is virtue: that in his mind a man should be unoccupied with the world. As long as the senses have dealings with external things, the heart cannot have rest from imaginations about them. Outside of the desert and solitude, the bodily passions do not abate, nor do evil thoughts cease.
Until the soul becomes drunk with faith in God by receiving a perception of the power of faith, she can neither heal the malady of the senses, nor be able forcibly to tread visible matter underfoot, which is the barrier to things that are within and beyond perception by the senses.
Homily I (pp. 113-114)