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    Very interesting – I am reading The Mystery of the Aleph – my question – what caused the madness of a genius like George Cantor? A math teacher referred me to your website…marie

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    Well, I started a reply to your comment yesterday, and it turned into a long, loooong walk on thin ice. Let’s see if it sounds better in summary, and in the harsh light of the following day.

    There’ve been a number of great thinkers (not just in math) who seemed to have suffered ill effects from their approach to some fundamental truth. I’d like to believe in that line of thought because it hints at a higher power at work, some guiding intellect greater than our own that guards these secrets until we’re ready to receive them.

    But it could also simply be that some of the same rare minds predisposed to outstanding achievements in mathematics are also “gifted” with a weakened mental attachment to the real world around them. There may be no magic to it at all, just a unique correlation between ability and disability. This is by far the less romantic and interesting explanation, but science, as you know, assigns no points for dramatic merit in its truths.

    It’s an intriguing area in any case, and I’d be very interested in your own conclusions as you pursue this subject.

    All the best,


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