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egm wrote:
> Physics does not not why math describes the world
> so well, that is foundational. Einstein, e.g.,
> deduced the special theory of relativity on
> purely mathematical thinking and deriving, to the
> point that he believed it way before any
> experimental data came about. Why is math, our
> creation, so well "adapted" to explain the
> physical world? NO ONE KNOWS.
While not the most trodden track of study, there are many who do know
something about this question. Philosophy of mathematics is fairly
obscure but very rewarding of the effort! Mathematics has its origins in
observations, e.g. circles in the sand, number of T-Rex sightings, deer
captured, husbands possessed :-), etc.; thus, these physical origins
explain much of the success of pure and applied math; i.e. measurements
and their mutual relations. However, it is the mathematical
manipulations and ideas that are not derivative from observations (e.g.
sqrt(-1), sin^2 + cos^2 = 1, exp(iw) = cos(w) + i sin(w), etc.) that
really fascinate me! After the "uncorrelated to physical entities
manipulations" are complete, many mathematical results "find"
physically observable correlates. This is what mathematical physicists
do for a living including your example or the general theory of
relativity.
The next questions are: what is math? Does it have a foundation? NO!
says post-modernism. What is worthy to be called mathematically "true"
and how do we know? (proofs)
As George M. said that Plato said that "God is always doing geometry";
so we, - being both creature and image barer - goes a long way in my
mind explaining why we see nature in mathematical terms.
I think the best argument for God's existence is found here: why is
nature rational (mathematical or logically); because God is! Secular
thought merely has the Anthropic Principle to fall back upon which is
reasonable when religious answers are eliminated a priori.
George A.
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egm wrote:
Physics does not not why math describes the worldWhile not the most trodden track of study, there are many who do know something about this question. Philosophy of mathematics is fairly obscure but very rewarding of the effort! Mathematics has its origins in observations, e.g. circles in the sand, number of T-Rex sightings, deer captured, husbands possessed :-), etc.; thus, these physical origins explain much of the success of pure and applied math; i.e. measurements and their mutual relations. However, it is the mathematical manipulations and ideas that are not derivative from observations (e.g. sqrt(-1), sin^2 + cos^2 = 1, exp(iw) = cos(w) + i sin(w), etc.) that really fascinate me! After the "uncorrelated to physical entities manipulations" are complete, many mathematical results "find" physically observable correlates. This is what mathematical physicists do for a living including your example or the general theory of relativity.
so well, that is foundational. Einstein, e.g.,
deduced the special theory of relativity on
purely mathematical thinking and deriving, to the
point that he believed it way before any
experimental data came about. Why is math, our
creation, so well "adapted" to explain the
physical world? NO ONE KNOWS.
The next questions are: what is math? Does it have a foundation? NO! says post-modernism. What is worthy to be called mathematically "true" and how do we know? (proofs)
As George M. said that Plato said that "God is always doing geometry"; so we, - being both creature and image barer - goes a long way in my mind explaining why we see nature in mathematical terms.
I think the best argument for God's existence is found here: why is nature rational (mathematical or logically); because God is! Secular thought merely has the Anthropic Principle to fall back upon which is reasonable when religious answers are eliminated a priori.
George A. --------------8202FF0CAE87ACAD363CD04B-- --------------0FDE8F9402757013225D68A2 Content-Type: text/x-vcard; charset=us-ascii; name="gandrews.vcf" Content-Transfer-Encoding: 7bit Content-Description: Card for George Andrews Content-Disposition: attachment; filename="gandrews.vcf" begin:vcard n:Andrews Jr.;George tel;home:757 565 2890 x-mozilla-html:TRUE org:College of William & Mary;Department of Applied Sciences adr:;;;Williamsburg;VA;23188;USA version:2.1 email;internet:gandrews@as.wm.edu title:Graduate Student fn:George A. Andrews Jr. end:vcard --------------0FDE8F9402757013225D68A2--