New York, Feb 1: If you throw a cricket ball in the air, it follows a roughly parabolic trajectory. Planets and other astrophysical bodies too follow elliptical orbits.
This is no coincidence. The whole universe follows a mathematical pattern or, in other words, the universe itself is maths, so claims Swedish-American cosmologist Max Tegmark.
In Tegmark’s view, everything in the universe – including human mind – is part of a mathematical structure.
Does it mean that even the human mind works in mathematical patterns?
Scientists would probably be able to describe even consciousness using math someday, feels Tegmark, a professor at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT).
“Consciousness is probably the way information feels when it’s being processed in certain, very complicated ways,” Tegmark said.
He pointed out that many great breakthroughs in physics have involved unifying two things once thought to be separate: energy and matter, space and time, electricity and magnetism.
He said he suspects the mind – which is the feeling of a conscious self – will ultimately be unified with the body which is a collection of moving particles.
Some people argue that math is just a tool invented by scientists to explain the natural world.
But Tegmark says the mathematical structure found in the natural world shows that maths exists in reality, not just in the human mind.
“If my idea is wrong, physics is ultimately doomed,” Tegmark was quoted as saying during a talk in New York recently.