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The Petition

The relationship was dead. Dead in the water. After innumerable separations and reconciliations, one thing had become apparent - it was impossible to remain in this soul-destroying, mind-numbing, heart-breaking relationship. There had to be a break. And this time it had to be final. There never was an appropriate time in which to convey the tragic news. So after a considered pause - the momentous decision was quietly revealed:

"I have filed for divorce," announced Reason.

This solemn declaration was met with silence.

"I want a divorce," said Reason, a little more loudly.

"Don't be daft!" replied Mankind, absent mindedly.

"I have had enough," responded Reason.

"Have some more," encouraged Man, kindly.

"You are not listening," accused Reason.

"I never listen to inane chatter, as you well know," stated Mankind.

"I'm leaving," sighed Reason, profoundly saddened.

"Again?" asked Mankind, who had become accustomed to this coming and going.


"Well, if you must," yawned Mankind, bored by the conversation.

"I am taking everything with me," warned Reason.

This appeared to startle Mankind. He asked warily, "Meaning?"

"Exactly what I said."

"Elaborate," snapped Mankind.

"Very well. I am taking the five Senses with me."

"You cannot do that. They belong to me. They are my possessions, part of my vast wealth. I will not stand by whilst you run off with half my assets," shouted Mankind, utterly enraged and appalled.

"You don't realise one thing: they do not wish to remain with you. We have discussed this situation and our options at length....."

Reason was, not for the first time, rudely interrupted by Mankind.

"So you have been involved in secret discussions behind my back! You have deliberately set about poisoning them against me. How manipulative of you. I am thoroughly disgusted by your meanness and by your lack of common sense. ME, I am the one who owns ALL of you! And don't you dare ever forget it Mister not-so-smart!" Mankind was beside himself with fury.

"You own nothing. Whatever you have was bestowed upon you lovingly. You were warned, repeatedly, that these gifts could and would be withdrawn when the time
arrived. That time is now."

"What do you mean?" spluttered Mankind.

"Your conduct is of one who is deaf, dumb, blind, and thick. Your ignorance on matters of supreme import is staggering..."

The sentence remained incomplete.

Mankind exploded, "Just who the hell do you think you are? Would you denigrate my every achievement? Who created the splendour and beauty of Sumeria, Phoenicia, Egypt? I created those stupendous civilizations and all the others that followed them! In fact, I am awed at my own brilliant accomplishments. You evidently have this mistaken belief that I would still be roaming the lands as a mere cave-dweller if it had not been for you! You make me sick! All you have ever done is to hold me back with your incessant nagging!"

Reason waited for the rage to subside. When it had, Mankind slumped to the ground, his handsome countenance creased with lines of self-pity. He clutched his head in trembling hands.

Reason spoke gently, "Look at the state of this place. You have made a mess of it. Consider for a minute the doings of your children. Have they not run riot? The huge inheritance that was passed on to them ought to have been distributed equitably. Yet, the greedy and arrogant, corrupt and ignorant amongst them, robbed and even killed their own brethren in order to grab everything for themselves. And you turned a blind eye and deaf ear to all this mischief. You have exhibited an unwillingness to take sufficient care of your five or six children, who constitute all the different races in the world. Little wonder, then, that they have run amok. Have I not called your attention to this grave matter repeatedly?"

"You surely cannot hold me responsible for sibling rivalry - which is a most natural phenomenon!" cried Mankind.

"And pray, has not this so-called sibling rivalry resulted in terrible bloodshed? The intense competition, fierce divisions, extreme hatreds prevalent amongst people are a direct consequence of your neglect."

Mankind was unmoved. Instead he claimed, "You are surely exaggerating. And do please take note of the progress and success in virtually all areas of my life. You must not be too negative in your assessment of my remarkable achievements."

"And so, just what is your definition of progress? Are tall structures and large vehicles on the one hand, and desperate lands barren of hope on the other, reconcilable in this rosy vision you have of your current civilization? Civilization without Reason is non-existent - practically meaningless."

"Am I now to be subjected to yet another one of your pointless lectures? I will do, say, think whatever I want, whenever I want and however I want! I'm pretty fed up of your constant attempts to cajole, convince, persuade, manipulate me!" exclaimed Mankind, only too aware that he could not defeat Reason in argumentation.

"You have, by your very own words, described my reasons for seeking this divorce. Our differences have become irreconcilable."

Mankind panicked. Reason appeared to be entirely serious. A change of tone seemed to be in order. Reason was, of course, not entirely unaware of the thoughts crowding the chaotic mind of Mankind.

"Look, I will try to change. I shall endeavour to listen more carefully to all your concerns. What more can I say? I mean, I am truly sorry and all that stuff - you know? I shall try harder, I promise," said Mankind, virtuously.

"Sadly, it is too late. You have made promises in the past and not abided by them. Your primary concern is you - what's in it for you. You have disregarded that aspect of your nature that is noble and good, to the detriment of everything else. You can not be faithful to yourself, how can you be faithful to us?"

"Okay, so I have been stupid, foolish. I confess to my infidelities and disloyalties. No doubt I have made mistakes but I always returned to you in the end. Those others, avarice, lust, envy, jealousy, arrogance, ignorance, the whole lot of them - they left me entirely dissatisfied and strangely uneasy. I intend to change - of that you can be sure," promised Mankind.

"Alas, time will not permit me to remain. You know my presence was supposed to lend substance to your life. I was designed in order to assist you along the path to knowledge - knowledge that would ultimately lead you to the truth. But you have so distorted the purpose of knowledge that now all truth is lost on you. It seems, therefore, that I have failed in the task assigned to me"

Mankind was in despair, "Why do you always speak to me like this? You burden me with unreasonable expectations. I am weak, vulnerable, innocent. I need you. How am I going to survive without all of you?"

"You ought to have taken this into account much earlier - aeons ago, in fact," said Reason.

"I see, so you are determined upon this course of action?" asked Mankind, his anger rising once more.

"Yes," answered Reason.

"You obviously do not give a damn about me!" wailed Mankind.

"That is not true," said Reason, patiently.

"I think it is."

"Think what you must."

"You think you are so clever, don't you? Well, let me tell you this, O mighty, majestic Reason - I can and will survive without you! I shall not be contesting this petition for divorce - you can get lost, all of you!"

Thus, Mankind and Reason parted company. The petition proceeded. The divorce, on the grounds of unreasonable behaviour, was granted immediately.

Mankind stumbled upon his way, completely senseless and unreasonable, as usual - seeking, escaping he knew not what.

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