May 22, 2020
2 min read


The Trial, a novel by Franz Kafka, tells the story of Josef K, who finds himself arrested and prosecuted for a crime he knows nothing about. In a similar way, we often wake up feeling lost and disconnected from our hearts, living in fear of our big emotions that society often prosecutes. The novel explores themes of alienation, bureaucracy, and the absurdity of the legal system, all of which reflect our own struggle with the mind and the heart.

The HeartMath Institute Research Center has spent over three decades studying the relationship between the heart and brain. Their research shows that the heart has its own functional brain, known as the heart brain, and that heart coherence is linked to cognitive function, emotional stability, and resilience. Negative thoughts and experiences can lead to disengagement from the heart, but the heart can communicate with the brain and create new nerves over time.

Like Josef K, we often find ourselves at the mercy of our minds, waiting for the gatekeepers to let us in and connect us with our hearts. The gatekeepers representing the guardians are portrayed as two men who stand guard at the entrance to the law, waiting to admit those who seek access to it. These gatekeepers represent the impenetrable and mysterious nature of the battle between our heads and hearts.

On one side of the gatekeepers is our mind, which is represented by the bureaucratic system that dominates our lives. It can be confusing, difficult to navigate, and often seems to have unclear or unknowable objectives. On the other side of the gatekeepers awaits the heart, our true essence and the core of our being. The heart is often neglected or abandoned in our pursuit of harmony, empathy, joy, and unconditional love.

Josef K, the protagonist of the novel, finds himself at the mercy of the gatekeepers as he tries to gain access to the law - a metaphor for the path to enlightenment and self-realization. He stands before them for years, trying to gain entry but being constantly refused. The gatekeepers warn him of the dangers of trying to gain entry and appear to have absolute power.

Ultimately, the gatekeepers' importance lies in acknowledging and embracing our vulnerabilities, allowing us to enter the gate and find our true home in the heart.We must acknowledge and embrace our vulnerabilities and allow ourselves to feel our emotions. Our pain can lead us to our freedom, and our heart can guide us towards our purpose. The gatekeepers (our minds) may seem powerful, but they are only a distraction from our true home - the heart.


Kafka, F. (1998). The Trial. New York: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group.

McCraty, R., Science of The Heart: Exploring the role of the heart in human performance. Volume 2, 2015