Hypothesis on the truth of things II

On one way of considering the truth of things, we are led to identify it with mathematical structure. What is harmonious or beautiful in the arch Augustine remembered below, or the proportions of an animal, or the structure of the face? The more these are studied according to mathematical proportion, the more mathematics seems to be the answer. The structure of the face and body clearly is according to mean and extreme ratio (the “golden ratio”), and the majority of natural motions follow rather simple ratios.    

Seeing the essences of thing in this way is one part of the scientific way of looking at the world. The other essential part is that the sort of mathematics we look for or impose on things is one that allows for pragmatic use and power. This is why we ignore real differences in quantity if they are not under our control. The first step in this is to ignore mathematics as a science and see it as an art. The second step is to ignore the difference between numbers and extended quantities. The third step is to ignore the difference between numerals and numbers.  

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