Wednesday, August 11, 2004

Wednesday August 11, 2004

Filed under: General,Geometry — Tags: , — m759 @ 5:35 AM

Battle of Gods and Giants,
Part II:

Wonders of the Invisible World

Yesterday at about 5 PM I added a section titled "Invariants" to the 3:01 PM entry Battle of Gods and Giants.  Within this added section was the sentence

"This sort of mathematics illustrates the invisible 'form' or 'idea' behind the visible two-color pattern."

Now, at about 5 AM, I see in today's New York Times a review of a book titled The Invisible Century, by Richard Panek.  The reviewer, David Gelernter, says the "invisible" of the title refers to

"science that is done not by studying what you can see…. but by repairing instead to the privacy of your own mind, with the shades drawn and the lights off: the inner sanctum of intellectual history."

The book concerns the research of Einstein and Freud.  Gelernter says

"As Mr. Panek usefully notes, Einstein himself first called his work an 'invariant theory,' not a 'relativity theory.' Einstein does not say 'everything is relative,' or anything remotely like it."

The reader who clicks on the word "invariants" in Battle of Gods and Giants will receive the same information.

Gelernter's conclusion:

"The Invisible Century is a complex book about a complex topic. Mr. Panek's own topic is not so much invisibility, it seems to me, as a different kind of visibility, centering on mind-pictures revealed by introspection, which are just as sharp and clear as (for example) the mind-music Beethoven heard when he was deaf.

Inner visibility is a fascinating topic…."

As is synchronicity, a topic in the work of a greater man than Freud– Carl Jung.  The above remarks may be viewed as "synchronicity made visible."

All of this was, of course, foreshadowed in my web page "A Mathematician's Aesthetics" of August 2000:

C. G. Jung on Archetypes
and Visible Reality:

"All the most powerful ideas in history go back to archetypes. This is particularly true of religious ideas, but the central concepts of science, philosophy, and ethics are no exception to this rule. In their present form they are variants of archetypal ideas, created by consciously applying and adapting these ideas to reality. For it is the function of consciousness not only to recognize and assimilate the external world through the gateway of the senses, but to translate into visible reality the world within us."

— Carl Gustav Jung, "The Structure of the Psyche" (1927), in Collected Works Vol. 8, Structure and Dynamics of the Psyche, P. 342

Paul Klee on Visible Reality:

"Art does not reproduce the visible; rather, it makes visible…. My aim is always to get hold of the magic of reality and to transfer this reality into painting– to make the invisible visible through reality. It may sound paradoxical, but it is, in fact, reality which forms the mystery of our existence."

— Paul Klee, "Creative Credo" from The Inward Vision: Watercolors, Drawings, Writings. Abrams, not dated; published c. 1958.

Wallace Stevens on
the Visibility of Archetypes:

"These forms are visible
     to the eye that needs,
Needs out of the whole
     necessity of sight."

— Wallace Stevens, "The Owl in the Sarcophagus," (first publ. 1950) in
Collected Poetry and Prose, Library of America, 1997

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