The Heart Is Not a Pump #2
M.J. Rodermund, M.D. (“Does the Heart Circulate the Blood? A Startling View as to the Power that Circulates the Blood Throughout the Body,” 1909) wrote …
“The very size of the heart itself refutes the idea that it could accomplish such a heroic task as circulating the blood as, all other things equal, size is a measure of power. Think of a two hundred pound man sitting between board and bone, and you will readily see the impossibility of the blood being able to circulate if it had not a powerful attractive force.
“The reader can plainly see that I have not presented a theory. I have simply explained what most any one with a little practice can demonstrate for himself upon a living animal.
“A little reflection will make it appear plain that no machinery would stand the terrible strain that it would take by an organ to pump the blood throughout the body. Nature has provided a more rational means — one not so liable to degenerate, as well as not contradicted by every law of nature.
“These facts just reverse our present opinions and beliefs as to the cause of disease. I will just give one little illustration. Our soldiers at Chickamauga Park during the war with Spain were composed of about fifty thousand of the physical cream of our young manhood, selected from all over the country. General Alger was given the blame of furnishing these soldiers with poor and adulterated foods, and to this, it was said, all the blame for the terrible amount of sickness among those strong and healthy men was due. Yet, there would be no doubt that, if these very men were placed under similar conditions in Northern Wisconsin and given the same food, they would generally be healthy and flourish, for the identical same reason that feeding a stove or furnace with good fuel, but not receiving the necessary amount of oxygen to burn it up, the fire would be poor and produce much more smoke, ashes and clinkers. These soldiers being taken away from a colder climate to which their system was adapted and being placed in this sudden warm atmosphere, the sudden change would have about the same effect upon the human furnace as it would upon an artificial one.
“Another point that demonstrates positively that the heart is not the real propelling power of the blood is the fact, known to the ancients, that after death the arteries are empty. It was from this phenomenon that the belief arose that the arteries contained no blood, but that they contained air, hence the name artery, which means air pipe. Now, if the heart were a pump, it would be impossible for the arteries to be empty after death, for when a pump ceases to do its work the fluid pumped would cease to flow, especially straight upwards, consequently the blood would remain in the arterial system.
“To make it as clear as the noon day sun that the heart does not circulate the blood is an experiment made by taking a fluid, injecting it into the arteries after they have been allowed to empty themselves. You can use all of the force possible, yes, ten times as much as the heart can supply, and you can send the fluid only to the end of the arteries. Enough force can be used to rupture the arteries, but the fluid cannot be carried into the veins, but some will gradually pass through these minute blood vessels. There must be a positive and a negative; this is the law that governs universal nature, which includes the human body. To make it more clear, the veins contain venous or impure or negative blood, due to the oxygen consumed in combustion and nourishing process; and the arteries pure, arterial or positive blood, and these as well as the tissues have an attraction for each other which is the cause of the blood passing readily and quickly from the arteries into the veins. This experiment alone is all that would be necessary to forever brand the old theory as positively wrong.
“Is not this problem plain as well as simple, that it is the oxygen from the air that we breathe that creates the proper conditions to circulate the blood, and not the muscular contraction of the heart? And this force is not like dynamic pressure, which would strain or even burst the heart while the other works on a different principle – that of mutual antagonism and not of pressure.
“To know the real power that propels the blood is of more value and importance to all human beings and all those yet to be born than any physiological question brought out for centuries. It is of great importance to the physician in the information it gives in understanding the cause and in diagnosing and treating diseases. It tells him that the old theories are wrong, and that he must look to the physical law of balance and proportion between the internal or bodily and external elements and forces for the cause of all diseases, such as typhoid fever, scarlet fever, small-pox, etc. It tells how typhoid fever and like conditions are often brought about by the person going around full of grief, down-hearted, letting his head hang, and seldom, if ever, taking a full breath to send the blood bounding through the capillaries and gradually choking up the fires of life. It is almost impossible to keep up the blues if you keep the normal blood bounding through the system by filling the lungs full at every breath with pure air. It also tells us why the people in hot climates (where heat expands the air, hence contains less oxygen per volume), get lazy and indolent. This well-known fact would indicate not only that every physiological fact goes to show that energy or nervous force is mainly created in the process of combustion and should depend almost entirely upon the blood being charged properly with pure air so as to keep up the functions of the body normally, which is health.
“Everything in the universe is governed by what is differently called power, energy, force, electricity, affinity, attraction, etc. The earth, sun, moon, and stars are so accurate in their movements that time is entirely measured by them — each and every one is entirely dependent and related to one another. Man himself is dependent, related and united to them.
“There is one thought that I would like to indelibly impress upon every human mind, and it is this, that there is nothing in all the Creator’s laws but what is especially arranged for the pleasure, health, and happiness of every human being, and that it is our own fault, through our neglect and false education, that humanity is deteriorating in her constitution and that she is suffering and afflicted with the untold misery in her midst. It is not due so much to the ignorance of the human being regarding these laws of nature; this truth is demonstrated by the fact that all animals, the savages and the Indians are afflicted with very little sickness in proportion to ourselves; but it is due to the false conditions created by themselves, through false ideas and notions created by their own intellect, while if we should follow our instinct like the animal, we should suffer as little as they do.
“There is no organ in the body and no element taken into the body that has as much influence, directly and indirectly, upon our health and upon the disease we are tortured with as the neglect or proper use of the lungs and air and the taking of the proper kind of food and proper quantity. Why is this so? We know that the system is continually burning used up tissues of the body, which must be carried off by the different organs; we also know that oxygen is the element that burns; when this element is furnished in less than the needed quantity this process of combustion or burning in the system cannot be good, just as the fire in your stove will not be good if you do not have oxygen enough in the air. You not only have a poor fire but you have more clinkers and ashes than if you had a good fire and the clinkers and ashes will soon clog up the stove so that you have a poor fire in spite of your efforts, good air or not. So with the system; if your lungs do not furnish plenty of this oxygen to burn up the fuel which is needed, you have a poor fire and poor nourishment to the body, but causing more clinkers and ashes to accumulate in the system. You may think it is peculiar reasoning to compare the body to a stove; it is not only a fair comparison, but they are identically alike with this difference, that the fire burns the carbon in the wood and the coal for heat and the remainder goes to smoke and ashes, while the human system burns up the carbon in the food to furnish the heat of the body and create energy; so far they are alike, but the food of man contains other elements which the body uses to nourish it; the rest is smoke and ashes and is carried off by the lungs, skin, kidneys, etc.”