Life is an experimental journey that we make involuntarily. It is a journey of the mind through matter, and since it is the mind that journeys, that is where we live. So there are contemplative souls who had lived more intensely, more widely and more turbulently than those who live externally.
The end result is what counts. What was felt is what was lived. A dream can tire us out as much as physical labour. We never live as hard as when we have thought a great deal.