math.

“If the rigorous scientific method is the stick, math is the carrot”: the former disciplines — censors — your understandings but the latter rewards you with new understandings materializing out of nowhere. Too bad math only gets sustainably interesting far beyond what was, for a long time, considered universally teachable — so evangelizing the stick without the carrot didnt quite work: the age when science was already thoroughly mathified but a minority could see the mathematical sources of its insights was also the age of pseudoscience. E.g. with Newtonian mechanics, the mathematical formulation was simple enough for most to understand — to see that nothing is hiding in dark corners; Einsteinian spacetime wasnt much more difficult but relied on mathematics that few popularizations dared touch — leaving room for speculation, provoking the rebellious, feeding laymens distrust of science.  ■    After millennia of slow brew and centuries of accelerating educational pumping, a few short decades saw math spill out into all of sciences and humanities — flooding, or at least soaking, much of culture in a “rerun of the Pythagorean numeric cult”; this coincided with mathematics' quest for its own elusive foundations (and realizing that an infinity of maths exist, our own just as ascribable to the anthropic principle as is physics). Still, it took Changes boost of human memory and reasoning tenacity (no more drilling or dumbing-down) for mass math literacy to start surging. From education outwards, a movement grew seeking answers for the “new complexity” cravings in mathematics — the “least unfree” of sciences (almost science art!), the “conjurer of meanings,” “provable philosophy,” “universal language of mind” (limitless but guaranteed against divergence); math even invades natural languages (regularizes and complexifies grammars, facilitates semantic combinatorics, powers poetry): few are the lores where “the math of this” would sound unenlightening. ■    “Half-blind without my retinue of curious crunchers”: so ubiquitous are math feeleries and visualizers — the “underlying unity agents” powered by the always-on Arf. With all that, “full mathematical thinking is dead” after the inference sniffers made reasoning too effortless: swarming upon nontrivialities, dazzling you by side vistas at every step, they just wont let you experience a complete proof on your own; like writing, music, or biology, math became irreversibly amplified: “no return to blind groping.” A “new everything,” math has predictably backslid (oversocialization, “loose math,” “cookbook math”); you may tend your tiny number garden under the window but the whole often looms ungraspable — amorphously, unsustainably huge, only tethered together by hard-to-exit speedways of automated proofs.

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