Thursday, July 27, 2006

Thursday July 27, 2006

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 5:09 PM

Number Sense

The NY lottery numbers for yesterday, 7/26, Jung's birthday, were 726 (mid-day) and 970 (evening).

We may view these numbers as representing the Jungian "sheep" and Freudian "goats" of yesterday's entry Partitions.

For the Jungian coincidence of 726 with 7/26, recall the NY lottery number 911 that was drawn on 9/11 exactly a year after the destruction of the World Trade Center. For more on this coincidence, see For Hemingway's Birthday: Mathematics and Narrative Continued (July 21, 2006).

For 970, Google reveals a strictly skeptical (i.e., like Freud, not Jung) meaning: 970 is the first page of the article "Sources of Mathematical Thinking," in Science, 7 May 1999: Vol. 284. no. 5416, pp. 970 – 974.

That article has been extensively cited in the scholarly literature on the psychology of mathematics.  Its lead author, Stanislas Dehaene, has written a book, The Number Sense.

What sense, if any, is made by 726 and 970?

The mid-day number again (see Hemingway's birthday) illustrates the saying

"Time and chance happeneth to them all."

The evening number again illustrates the saying

"Though truth may be very hard to find in the pages of most books, the page numbers are generally reliable."

— Steven H. Cullinane,
   Zen and Language Games

These sayings may suit the religious outlook of Susan Blackmore, source (along with Matthew 25:31-46) of the sheep/goats partition in yesterday's entry on that topic.  She herself, apparently a former sheep, is now a goat practicing Zen.

Update of later the same evening–

On Space, Time, Life, the Universe, and Everything:

Note that the "sheep" number 726 has a natural interpretation as a date– i.e., in terms of time, while the "goat" number 970 has an interpretation as a page number– i.e., in terms of space.  Rooting, like Jesus and St. Matthew, for the sheep, we may interpret both of today's NY lottery results as dates, as in the next entry, Real Numbers.  That entry may (or may not) pose (and/or answer) The Ultimate Question. Selah.

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Wednesday July 26, 2006

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 1:44 PM

"Mistakes are inevitable and may be either in missing a true signal or in thinking there is a signal when there is not. I am suggesting that believers in the paranormal (called 'sheep' in psychological parlance) are more likely to make the latter kind of error than are disbelievers (called 'goats')."

— "Psychic Experiences:
     Psychic Illusions,"
     by Susan Blackmore,
     Skeptical Inquirer, 1992

For Harvard mathematician
Frederick Mosteller,
dead on Sunday, July 23, 2006:
"… a drama built out of nothing
but numbers and imagination"

— Freeman Dyson, quoted in Log24
on the day Mosteller died

From Log24 on
Mosteller's last birthday,
December 24, 2005:

The Club Dumas

by Arturo Perez-Reverte

One by one, he tore the engravings from the book, until he had all nine.  He looked at them closely.  "It's a pity you can't follow me where I'm going.  As the fourth engraving states, fate is not the same for all."

"Where do you believe you're going?"

Borja dropped the mutilated book on the floor with the others. He was looking at the nine engravings and at the circle, checking strange correspondences between them.

"To meet someone" was his enigmatic answer. "To search for the stone that the Great Architect rejected, the philosopher's stone, the basis of the philosophical work. The stone of power. The devil likes metamorphoses, Corso."

"Only gradually did I discover
what the mandala really is:
'Formation, Transformation,
Eternal Mind's eternal recreation'"
(Faust, Part Two)

Carl Gustav Jung,   
born on this date

Today's other birthday:
Mick Jagger

"Pleased to meet you,
hope you guess my name."

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