“The mass of [people] live lives of quiet desperation and go to their grave with the song still in them.”

Most readers will know the first part of this quotation from Thoreau, without being familiar with the second. An inverted rendition of the same idea might be that “no-one ever died saying I wish I had spent more time in the office.”

Both quotations express unhappiness born of constraint. There are two linked themes we can explore here. The first is that much suffering is caused by the self-sabotage of ingrained habit. The second is the proposition that people leave the world with their own individual song unheard…