Archive for the Short Story Category

The Brain and the Heart

Posted in Composition, Short Story on March 23, 2011 by theburningpulpit

The Brain and the Heart
A Fairy tale for Bigger Kids

Once upon a time the brain and the heart sat together in the head, side by side. No one was above the other; likewise, no one was beneath the other. But there was no harmony between the two, for they were opposites.

The brain was logical. He always analyzed hypotheses through and through before formulating conclusions and executing actions. He weighed both sides of a matter first before pronouncing judgment. He did not consider ideas without sound proof, for a statement without a clear rationale is plainly absurd.

The heart, however, was emotional. She was passionate, and was quickly drawn to admire many things: the rainbow, the flowers, and the like. Being impulsive and instinctive, she was quick to act as long as she feels she is correct, for in her opinion some things are to be believed immediately although unseen and unfounded. And that was the cause of constant disagreement between the two.

So time passed as the two coexisted uneasily, until man decided to coin a new word for a certain something he could strongly feel within: love. Upon hearing man uttering the new word, however, the brain could not help but be scornful.

“See how illogical man is? ‘Love’… is this thing not but an electrical sensation caused by my medulla oblongata as a signal for man to reproduce?” the brain posed this question to the heart, who sighed before answering.

“You do not understand. Love is like water to a parched field, like sunlight to the winter-beaten leaves, and like the evening star to the gloomy night. Love is the reason why man exists: man lives to love and to be loved. Love is life.”

The brain laughed. “I do not understand? I, who know many things? It is you, foolish heart, who does not understand. Man does not exist because of this so-called ‘love’; man exists due to oxygen and glucose and a series of electric impulses. I mean, does ‘love’ supply vital nutrients to the human body? How come, then, do you conclude that ‘love’ is life?”

“It is because of love that a father hunts food for his young! It is because of love that a mother nurses her children! It is because of love that a man marries and begins a family! It is all because of love, dear brain – love!” the heart emphatically declaimed.

“Rubbish! That is not ‘love’ – that is just self-preservation of species!”

“You just cannot see love even when it is right before you, can you?”

“I am afraid that I cannot find proof that this ‘love’ exists,” the brain pronounced. “Not unless you present a clear example or an exact definition will I ever recognize the existence of this ‘love’ thing.”

Both were quiet for some time. However, at length, as night fell, the heart muttered, “Love has reasons that Reason does not understand.”


It was a bright new morning. The brain, newly refreshed, was prepared to face the day–a day, no doubt, fraught with the annoying, senseless statements of the heart.

And speaking of the heart, she was nowhere near.

The brain was perplexed by this. What is she up to now?

“Heart!” he called out. “Heart! Where are you?!”

Lub-dub. Lub-dub. Lub-dub.

The brain heard a strange muffled sound – which was never before audible – far below him. He looked down and saw the heart there, sitting silently but for the alien sound.

Lub-dub. Lub-dub. Lub-dub.

At last – at long last – the brain understood.

A lot of things changed since then. The heart, now below the brain, remains in the chest. She just keeps her submissive silence, letting the brain decide firmly on a matter unopposed. Even though she sometimes disagrees with him, she does not speak out loudly and instead abides blindly by his judgment.

The brain realized everything, of course, and was deeply moved. Want proof? Our brains are the first to die after our hearts fail to function. Why? Scientifically speaking, this is because the sensitive brain would suffocate should the heart stop pumping precious oxygen to the head. Ah… I, however, believe that this is because the brain, binding his self to the only sound the heart produces, has ever since depended on the strange sound for his existence.

Lub-dub. Lub-dub. Lub-dub.

Love you. Love you. Love you.