TED Conversations

Poch Peralta

Freelance Writer / Blogger,


This conversation is closed.

Can Mathematics Make Us Emotional?

I believe that there is Math in Music but I find hard to understand that it elicits reaction similar to great art since Math is cold logic while Music is basically emotional

'Mathematicians were shown "ugly" and "beautiful" equations while in a brain scanner at University College London.

'The same emotional brain centres used to appreciate art were being activated by "beautiful" maths.

'The researchers suggest there may be a neurobiological basis to beauty.

'The likes of Euler's identity or the Pythagorean identity are rarely mentioned in the same breath as the best of Mozart, Shakespeare and Van Gogh.

'The study in the journal Frontiers in Human Neuroscience gave 15 mathematicians 60 formula to rate...'


Showing single comment thread. View the full conversation.

  • thumb
    Mar 2 2014: Poch, Again I scramble to answer another thought provoking conversation.

    The answer is YES.

    There is a commonality in Art, Nature, Music, Architecture, and even the human body. It is called the Golden Ratio and has fascinated Western intellectuals of diverse interests for at least 2,400 years.

    Take a second and look up the Golden Ration and have a better understanding of the relationship.


    Ya keep me young with all the lookin I gotta do ...

    Be well my friend. Bob.
    • thumb
      Mar 2 2014: Great seeing you again Bob.
      How about the Philosopher's Stone? Do you think it's factual sir?
      Will check your link and be back later.
      • thumb
        Mar 3 2014: Probaly more sought after than the Holy Grail. If it had once existed then there would be a glut of gold and silver and the secret would have been as well kept as the secrets of the builders / masons. However, there is no evidence that it ever existed. Such a secret would have been passed on or extored by Kings and rulers.

        How about you Poch ... Do you think it is factual or a myth? Explain.

        Thanks for the reply. Bob.
        • thumb
          Mar 3 2014: I'm not sure yet Bob but I surely wish it's factual. If it's a fiction story, it could have been based on facts as most fiction are.
    • thumb
      Mar 2 2014: Although I can calculate simple percentages with just my head, I consider myself dumb with Math. As I see it, the Golden Ratio or Divine Proportion is a permanent formula for solutions. But Vera says:
      '...we can get only rough approximations and make endless mistakes. Rough approximations might work for awhile though, even help us to shoot a vessel into space.'
      Is one of us wrong?
      • thumb
        Mar 3 2014: In what sense do you consider the Golden ratio, which is (1 + root5)/2 "a permanent fornula for solutions. Do you understand how it is derived?

        The ratio is of the long side to the short side of a rectangle that has the characteristic that when you chop of a square with a side length equal to its short side, the rectangle remaining is "similar" in the mathematical meaning to the rectangle with which you started.

        This condition will hold only if the ratio of long to short side is the Golden Ratio.

        Many things in nature have approximately the value of the Golden Ratio and few precisely that ratio..
        • thumb
          Mar 3 2014: I'll let Robert reply on that since he understand math more than me. I'm really bad with Physics.

Showing single comment thread. View the full conversation.