Philosophers and mathematicians have been arguing for centuries whether math is a system that humans invented or if it is of cosmic origin, perhaps even a
divine knowledge that we simply discovered. This raises the question if God has the mind of a mathematician?
According to the mathematical Universe hypothesis, all structures that exist mathematically also exist physically.
"If you believe in an external reality independent of humans, then you must also believe in what I call the mathematical universe hypothesis:
that our physical reality is a mathematical structure.
In other words, we all live in a gigantic mathematical object- one that is more elaborate
than a dodecahedron, and probably also more complex than objects [...] which appear in today's most advanced theories.
Everything in our world is purely mathematical - including you," Max Tegmark , Professor of Physics says.
There are naturally scientists who disagree with this theory.
"I've always had an extreme case of mixed feelings about this, thinking that Tegmark manages to bring together the extremely deep and the extremely dumb.
Thinking of the universe as a mathematical structure has turned out to be extremely fruitful, both for mathematics and for physics.
What is important though is that not all mathematical structures are equally important, central, or interesting, and this is the crucial point that Tegmark seems
to me to be missing," said Physicist Peter Woit.
Physicist Michio Kaku on the other hand, says that God could in fact be a mathematician.
"The mind of God we believe is cosmic music, the music of strings resonating through 11 dimensional hyperspace. That is the mind of God."
"Some people ask the question "Of what good is math?" What is the relationship between math and physics?
Well, sometimes math leads. Sometimes physics leads. Sometimes they come together because, of course, there's a use for the mathematics.
For example, in the 1600s Isaac Newton asked a simple question: if an apple falls then does the moon also fall? That is perhaps one of the greatest
questions ever asked by a member of Homo sapiens since the six million years since we parted ways with the apes. If an apple falls, does the moon also fall?
Is God a mathematician?
Isaac Newton said yes, the moon falls because of the Inverse Square Law. So does an apple. He had a unified theory of the heavens, but he didn't have the
mathematics to solve the falling moon problem. So what did he do? He invented calculus.
So calculus is a direct consequence of solving the falling moon problem.
In fact, when you learn calculus for the first time, what is the first thing you do? The first thing you do with calculus is you calculate the motion of falling
bodies, which is exactly how Newton calculated the falling moon, which opened up celestial mechanics.
So here is a situation where math and physics were almost conjoined like Siamese twins, born together for a very practical question, how do you calculate
the motion of celestial bodies? Then here comes Einstein asking a different question and that is, what is the nature and origin of gravity?
Einstein said that gravity is nothing but the byproduct of curved space. So why am I sitting in this chair?
A normal person would say I'm sitting in this chair because gravity pulls me to the ground, but Einstein said no, no, no, there is no such thing as gravitational
pull; the earth has curved the space over my head and around my body, so space is pushing me into my chair.
So to summarize Einstein's theory, gravity does not pull; space pushes. But, you see, the pushing of the fabric of space and time requires
differential calculus. That is the language of curved surfaces, differential calculus, which you learn in fourth year calculus.
So again, here is a situation where math and physics were very closely combined, but this time math came first. The theory of curved surfaces came first.
Einstein took that theory of curved surfaces and then imported it into physics.
Now we have string theory. It turns out that 100 years ago math and physics parted ways. In fact, when Einstein proposed special relativity in 1905,
that was also around the time of the birth of topology, the topology of hyper-dimensional objects, spheres in 10, 11, 12, 26, whatever dimension you
want, so physics and mathematics parted ways.
Math went into hyperspace and mathematicians said to themselves, aha, finally we have found an area of mathematics that has no physical application whatsoever.
Mathematicians pride themselves on being useless. They love being useless. It's a badge of courage being useless, and they said the most useless thing of all is a
theory of differential topology and higher dimensions.
From ancient times to the present, scientists and philosophers have marveled at how such a
seemingly abstract discipline as mathematics could so perfectly explain the natural world.
Well, physics plotted along for many decades. We worked out atomic bombs. We worked out stars. We worked out laser beams, but recently we discovered
string theory, and string theory exists in 10 and 11 dimensional hyperspace. Not only that, but these dimensions are super. They're super symmetric.
A new kind of numbers that mathematicians never talked about evolved within string theory. That's how we call it "super string theory."
Well, the mathematicians
were floored. They were shocked because all of a sudden out of physics came new mathematics, super numbers, super topology, super differential geometry.
All of a sudden we had super symmetric theories coming out of physics that then revolutionized mathematics, and so the goal of physics we believe is to
find an equation perhaps no more than one inch long which will allow us to unify all the forces of nature and allow us to read the mind of God.
And what is the key to that one inch equation? Super symmetry, a symmetry that comes out of physics, not mathematics, and has shocked the world of mathematics.
But you see, all this is pure mathematics and so the final resolution could be that God is a mathematician. And when you read the mind of God, we actually have a
candidate for the mind of God. The mind of God we believe is cosmic music, the music of strings resonating through 11 dimensional hyperspace.
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Have you ever had a déjà vu experience? It's the feeling, or impression that you have already witnessed or experienced a current situation.
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