Below, two prominent mathematicians – Dr. Edward Frenkel from UC Berkeley and Oxford professor Dr. Marcus du Sautoy – share insights they’ve gained about the nature of reality by contemplating the numbers and equations of their fields. I found their fervent accounts a wonderful affirmation that Nature will reveal Her wonders in all sorts of remarkable ways.

*“There’s a secret world out there. A hidden parallel universe of beauty and elegance, intricately intertwined with ours. And it’s invisible to most of us.” –Edward Frenkel*

The power of the revelatory experience often moves people to not just eloquent expression but also an increased level of passion and transparency for the work that touches them most deeply. Mathematician Edward Frenkel, author of the bestseller Love and Math, is clearly in love with the world of numbers and this connection has revealed to him a deeper understanding of reality that goes beyond the logical thinking of mathematics. In this SAND14 conference video, Dr. Frenkel tells a very personal story of his journey to discover, through mathematics, the ‘wholly other realm’ spoken of by Martin Gardner and other great mathematicians of the past.

*“The fact that the code provides such a successful description of nature is for many one of the greatest mysteries of science. I think that the only explanation which makes sense for me is that by discovering these connections we have in fact uncovered some deep truth about the world. That perhaps the code is the truth of the universe and it’s numbers that dictate the way the world must be … The ultimate symbol of chance isn’t random at all. It only appears that way. When we don’t understand the Code, the only way we can make sense of our world is to make up stories. But the truth is far more extraordinary. Everything has mathematics at its heart. When everything is stripped away all that remains is the Code.”* *–Marcus du Sautoy*

In this 3-part series, mathematician Marcus du Sautoy hops around the world to show us the important geographical sites and physical objects that reveal the ways in which patterns of numbers and formulae – nature’s code – have shaped the world. Which brings up one of the nice things about this set of films – you get to see a lot of beautiful shots of the planet; I’d love to see the giant salt crystals growing in the Merkers Mine! But the thing I found noteworthy about this series is how it connected to a book I read later, *Infinite Potential* by physicist Lothar Schaferwhich states that matter arises from a field of infinite potentials or numbers. If a Source consciousness is giving rise to all physical matter from a field of infinite ‘numbers’, might this not leave behind ‘fingerprints’ in the form of what looks to us like mathematical codes embedded in the shapes and forms? Interesting to contemplate.

“It is with Bernhard Riemann‘s work that we finally have the mathematical glasses to explore such worlds of the mind. And now my journey through the abstract world of 20th century mathematics has revealed that maths is the true language that the universe is written in, the key to understanding the world around us.”* –Marcus du Sautoy*

This 4-part series looks at the history of math and the way related disciplines unfolded and intertwined over time to bring us a model for understanding our world. Dr. Sautoy begins with a look at some of the earliest mathematical records from ancient Egypt and Greece. Again, we get to visit a lot of beautiful places in the world as Marcus then moves to sites in China and India, the location of the small tablet where the number ‘0’ was first recorded. (It’s the little things!) We then get into the part I found especially interesting about this series; mathematical disciplines as ‘languages’. That realization probably hits most mathematicians early on but to me, calculus and algebra and geometry remained just formulas to memorize in order to pass a test – that sort of thing. These films use the visual medium effectively to explain how formulas describe spaces and shapes and the forces that create them – a much more interesting way to learn complex math.

And there was another surprising benefit from this series. Certain numbers and formulas – the Golden ratio, the Fibonacci sequence, pi – make appearances in several spiritual texts. These mathematical concepts are often associated with physical or emotional characteristics that frankly didn’t make much sense to me. This series discusses some of these same concepts, clarifying their significance in a broader context that made these links to spiritual texts much clearer.

This film doesn’t have much to do with insights that hint at the larger forces in nature or the collective consciousness or the answer to everything (it’s 42). But it *is* an interesting look at algorithms. And it contains THE most amusing math dance I’ve ever seen (@ 20:15).

*top image: agsandrew / shutterstock.com *

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