The conflict between the heart and the brain is as old as our consciousness.
The heart wants what the heart wants is a quote which was often used to depict the irrational thought of our brain. Humans are rational creatures; at least they pretend to be one. When they cannot explain why sometimes their decisions are not rational, they fall back into irrational explanations and take them as axioms to justify their further irrational choices.
Once there was a tale, a dialogue between what we call as the heart and the brain. The heart was the instinctive brain, the gut feel, which stores useful information in separate folders and selectively retrieves it to take decisions quickly and not necessarily rationally.
“What do you think?” asked the brain.
“I don’t think. I know. She is the one.”
“How do you know?”
“I know, I’m in love with the girl,” replied the heart. Love is a term which brain is quite familiar with but has trouble processing.
“How do you know you love her.” Brain enquired not entirely convinced, though it knew the answer. The brain needed to feel what the heart felt.
“I just know it. I can feel it in my gut,” answered the heart. The brain was unable to understand this. It did not have access to the most precious resource of the heart, its instinct.
Heart realized that the brain was not convinced and started to explain. “I know it. His whole body reacts to her.
She is the only woman he feels relaxed and excited at the same time.
He is euphoric, and he is nervous.
He gets sleepless, and he wishes she gets in his dream if at all, he gets to sleep.” Brain started to remember why it has chosen to dream of her. The thought process was too long to store and too tedious to recollect. The brain simply chose to forget but made sure it left had enough cues for the heart to feel about the dream.
“His heart races, his breathing accelerates, but somehow time slows. I just love the duality he experiences when she is with him. She brings out the best of both the polarities in him.” Heart continued.
“And you think this is what love is?” Brain protested mildly.
“He feels warm all the time. He feels cared. He feels scared. Both feelings are much stronger than what he feels when he was fed warm soup on a cold rainy night. He feels she is complementing. He feels she is taking over.” Brain understood why heart would love her. The girl induced the feeling heart was wired to enjoy. The heart does not know it. It is called dopamine. The brain keeps pumping it every now and then to incentivize heart for behavior the brain thinks that is needed to be reinforced, the right behavior. The heart does not know this either. Maybe the heart does not care.
“Is that all there is in love?” brain sighed. Learning about how heart felt did not help the brain reach a conclusion.
“No, there is more. There is this feeling of..” The heart was so excited to tell more about how it felt, but it realized that the brain had already reached the state when it usually feels fatigued. It is time for the heart to stop feeling and let the brain do its thinking.
“Do you think there is more to love?”
“Yes. Love has more to offer.” Brain started. The heart has given it food for thought.
“Love is finding a girl who questions him. A girl who teases the brain. A girl whom he understands but will still manage to riddle him every single time.”
For every sentence the brain recited, the heart sent a picture which it knew would make the brain recollect and connect to what it was saying. It sent brain the picture of the time when she had left a treasure hunt for him on his birthday. Heart sent it the picture of the time when she questioned him on the philosophical quote that he had proudly put on facebook and then had to completely change his stance. And the time when he took her to a contemporary art gallery expecting her to be baffled but instead she challenged him on the inconsistency of the superstroke in the monochrome. The Brain started to see what the heart was trying to say. At least in the short run heart was not wrong about the girl being the one.
“Love is finding a girl who will stay with him in the long run.
Love is finding a girl who will take care of him.
Love is finding a girl who will make him capable of love.
Love is finding a girl who will give him a reason to stay healthy, earn adequately, and make him adept socially.
Love is finding a girl who will help him nurture himself.
Love is finding a person who will help him find himself.”
Brain concluded, proud it had included all the scenarios of social, economic, biological, and philosophical situations. Heart now went to work retrieving the images of the times when she took care of him during his sickness, when she chose her college to be in the same city as him, when she would push him for a morning run and accompany him, the time she sent him tutorials on personality development and the times she used to read him essays on persuasion. Heart reminded the brain of the time she helped him prepare his resume and made him register for a data science course. Finally, it pulled out the footage when she inspired him to save for a house they would like to move into in a few years.
“And…” Heart prompted brain for more.
“Love is finding a person who will complement him.” Brain ended with the same thought where it had left the heart last to feel. They both have reached the same conclusion.
Heart smiled. Brain felt good too. It now has processed enough information to make the decision.
Brain concluded, “She is the one.”