Mentally, it’s impossible not to abstract something. All thinking of a reflective nature is abstract thinking. The only thinking that is not abstract thinking is the processes aligned with the here and now.
Everyone creates mental models of reality and then calls those models reality. If someone is reluctant to trust their own model, they are quick to rely on the model of a group or a particularly charismatic individual.
You are as much of a tool and a pawn as anyone else. Your desire not to be is what compels you to seek out teachings where self-proclaimed enlightened beings state that they know they actual reality, the true Truth of the world and our existence.
Reflexively, you create hierarchies of greatness in your mind and deem someone worthy or unworthy to set above you in your particularly pantheon of greats. Unquestioningly, you assume that everyone who has been proclaimed great by the majority of historians or media outlets is indeed great. When one of them falls, and they are exposed to be charlatans, evil mongerers, or just plain human beings, you enter into an existential crisis.
The reality that you’d crafted to be perfect, sound and sane completely erodes. For a moment, you have a window into another sort of reality that is completely empty.
Staring into this emptiness, you can see that the way to fill it is entirely up to you.