We live in a physical world. We have a physical body and a mind, the two of which are closely interconnected. In fact, it is our experience of physical sensation and emotional response that makes us sentient beings. Yet, if we compare the physical and mental influences upon our lives, it is clear that physical pain can be subdued by strength of mind; therefore, mental happiness and satisfaction are ultimately more important to us than physical discomfort and unhappiness. This is one of the reasons that spirituality, attention to our inner dimension, is so important. On the other hand, if someone is mentally unhappy, simple physical comfort does no relieve his or her mental distress.
The Buddhist tradition, particularly the thousand-year-old tradition of the Indian University of Nalanda that we inherited in Tibet, is concerned with trying to know various levels of reality, through investigation, avoiding the pitfalls of under-estimation and exaggeration. Modern science, too, is concerned with discovering reality, not only in theory but also in practice by conducting repeatable experiments. Whether we approach reality through science or through a spiritual path, we have to accept it as it is.