Saturday, May 17, 2008

The Echoes of the Mind

I personally have always maintained Roger Penrose  to be far more superior to understanding universe rather than Stephen Hawking.

One of my favoritest works by the author was The Emperor's New Mind on which an excellent review is posted by one Mr. Ananth in his blog Thermal Noise. His allusion to the following passage in the book somehow jogged my memory lane and brought back to life one of those pondering questions in my collegiate days.  Ahh! To be thinking of those things :)

“Admittedly there are some such as Newton or Einstein or Archimedes, Galileo, Maxwell or Dirac - or Darwin, Leonardo Da Vinci, Rembrandt, Picasso, Bach, Mozart, or Plato, or those great minds who could conceive Iliad or Hamlet - who seem to have more of this faculty of being able to ’smell’ out truth or beauty than is given to the rest of us. But a unity with the workings of Nature is potentially present within all of us and is revealed in our very faculties of conscious comprehension and sensitivity, at whatever level they may be operating. Everyone of our conscious brains is woven from subtle physical ingredients that somehow enable us to take advantage of the profound organization of our mathematically underpinned universe - so that we, in turn, are capable of some kind of direct access, through that Platonic quality of ‘understanding’, to the very ways in which our universe behaves at many different levels.“

My favorite one that nails the whole bridging of the gap between art and science in math is the following:

“The Whole point of our mathematical heritage and training is that we do not bow down to the authority of some obscure rules that we can never hope to understand. We must see - atleast in principle- that each step in an argument can be reduced to something  simple and obvious."

That "seeing" part is our consciousness which makes Godel and myself happy :)

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