Quotes Collected by Ken Knowlton
MATHEMATICS |

God forbid that Truth should be Confined
to Mathematical Demonstrations. Dr. J. Bronowski among others has pointed out that mathematics, which
most of us see as the most factual of all sciences, constitutes the
most colossal metaphor imaginable, and must be judged, aesthetically
as well as intellectually, in terms of the success of this metaphor.
Not everything that can be counted counts, and not everything that
counts can be counted. A mathematician is a device for turning coffee into theorems. The geometrical mind is not so closely bound to geometry that it cannot
be drawn aside and transferred to other departments of knowledge. A
work of morality, politics, criticism, perhaps even eloquence will be
more elegant, other things being equal, if it is shaped by the hand
of geometry. The grand book of the universe is written in the language of mathematics.
The union of the mathematician with the poet, fervor with measure,
passion with correctness, this surely is the ideal. I have hardly ever known a mathematician who was capable of reasoning.
Mathematics may be defined as the subject in which we never know what
we are talking about, nor whether what we are saying is true. |