Some would say that conflict followed Adam and Eve out of the Garden of Eden. Certainly, it is a key element of life. And, while major conflicts such as war have destroyed many lives and been evil forces in this world, conflict can also produce very positive results.
So, if one wishes, as Emerson said, to create a "new path" from the typical, one could write about the benefits of conflict. Recently, there has been a book published entitled, In Defense of Unhappiness; in this book the author states that our society has become so obsessed with being happy that we have taken anti-depression drugs to still the unrest in our souls. [This rings of Aldous Huxley's Brave New World in which people take soma to quiet the stirrings that "disturb" them.]
It is a fact that history confirms that no great achievements in individual lives and with societies occur without some struggle. For, only a dull complacency exists in people who have no conflict. LeGuin's short story, "The Ones Who Walked Away from Omelas" explores this very idea; in this story of a utopia of sorts, all the people but one are happy; they have been happy for so long that "smiles have become archaic." However, there is a dullness to their lives and an evasion of the reality of the existence of one who must suffer for the rest.
Looking at the history of the United States, as an example, the greatest leaders of this country emerged from the conflict with England's control of the colonies. Patrick Henry, Thomas Paine, Ben Franklin, Thomas Jefferson, George Washington--these were men who demonstrated their mettle by rising to meet the conflict. Through their unselfish struggles, the United States of America was formed, then, as a country of freedom.
Sadly, now the evidence is that many people do not appreciate this freedom because it has little meaning when it is all one has ever known. Clearly, human beings cannot attain sterling qualities if they have not struggled and grown; if they have not had conflict. The old cliche, "You can't have one without the other" rings true, indeed.