Life and death, and the myriad of dusts that they raise are eternal mysteries. As antagonistic to each other as they appear to be in nature, they remain nature’s all important inseparable Siamese twins in that the very process which gives birth to the first, parcels the second for a later – often sooner though! – date. What really is life if not a passage to death?
Today being the sorrowful day on which a beloved colleague would be committed to earth, I find it compelling to expound, not particularly on death, but on an aspect of this dear friend’s death – a most benign gentleman of immense prospects who was met with a most violent end, a young doctor of amiable character who was undone by the basest and vilest of beasts.
Without much ado, I wish to take us into a gross laboratory bereft of cadavers, but equipped with the heart of murderers as specimen. For this dissection, the thought process shall be the scalpel while general experience shall serve as the equivalent of that ancient guide by the name of Cunningham’s manual.
The dissections I set out to make are not of the ‘killer’ who accidentally brings death, by whatever means, to another. My specimen shall be the heart of that growing class of beasts – they assume the physical structure of humans anyway – who plot and set out to kill a fellow human. This class put even the most ruthless of beasts to shame since even the killer instincts of animals almost always permits them to kill only for meals. I am saddened by the fact that the human race provides me with an embarrassment of riches – in terms of availability of specimen – in this task. From warmongers to the jealous housewife; from the planners and executioners of genocides to the machete-wielding thug; from the serial killer to the assassin; and from the suicide bomber to the sheer armed robber; humanity has more killers than the thickest jungles can boast of. Thus, I have a confusing catalogue of specimens on my dissection table but even at that, I remain undaunted.
Lest I am accused of having a heart with similar proclivities to those of my specimens, I must state again that I shall not raise a knife in this task but would rely solely on whatever little piercing powers my thinking faculties can provide.
You would agree with me that the heart is the engine room of our beings. It is the station from where the juice of life is circulated in us. I believe that this juice of life carries in it whatever chemical or non-chemical mediators that are responsible for the more abstract qualities of our nature such as happiness, anger, benevolence, malevolence etc. To perform their priceless functions, our hearts are equipped with two major systems – the electrical and mechanical. The former dictates the rhythm while the latter is responsible for the distributive contractions.
With this information in hand may I proceed to the dissection table itself. One, two, fire! Oh gosh! I said it. I thought as much. A mere glance at a murderer’s heart reveals to me that all is wrong. In lieu of the clenched fist which aptly describes the human heart what I find is a counterfeit of such grotesque shape that makes it impossible for love or forgiveness to emanate from it. A cut of its major vessels sends me staggering back. In them I find not the redness of blood but bile of a most corrosive nature, blackened by hatred, envy and the likes. And an analysis of its rhythm and contraction reveals a scattered pattern very much unlike our well known lubb-dubb. What I decipher is a cacophony of hate-kill, hate-kill, hate-kill. Oh goodness! Woe unto humanity for she has been infiltrated by a most fiendish species that takes its humanoid form rather perfectly. Then I saw the light. I realized why murderers of unthinkable wickedness abound among us. They simply do not have a heart. In place of it sits in their chest, a hollow chamber of hate and evil that torment even its carriers. What else could make a creature violently eject the vital force behind his own very existence from another being?
Nevertheless, the most striking quality of these chambers of hate that pass for hearts is not their lack of love, no, not even their fiendishness, but their dangerous selfishness. Murderers can under certain circumstances exchange their overflowing hate for a love, so can they substitute ruthlessness for compassion but that which they can never shed is their unhealthy love of the self. The motive force of the murderer is a preservation and aggrandizement of the self at the expense of anything else. A murderer has an innate capacity to set the world ablaze in order to have a bonfire.
This, I believe, is why he cares less about how many crying faces or agonizing hearts his single act of pulling the trigger that would send a young man of prospect to premature death than he cares of the car, or gold, or whatever silly materials he wishes to dispossess his victims of. In like manner does a tyrant or imperialist give no freaking hoot about how many perish so that he can perpetuate himself in power.
The time has arrived for mankind to appraise itself and see how beings with chambers of odium as hearts come to be. Political and socio-economic systems that fuel the emergence of humanoid beasts must be overhauled. Man, as an individual, and in groups must begin to attach importance to the virtues of compassion, empathy, and love. Except we begin to see every human as part of the mighty tree called humanity, there shall be no end to the escalation of tears, sorrow, and bloodshed amongst us. Perhaps a realization of this would help mould the mutant hearts I just finished dissecting into true human hearts that exude love.
And for such hearts that remain recalcitrant even to therapy, I beseech nature, the supreme force in the universe, to cease being indifferent. Wipe them out!