Science, Math and Feelings


I have always wondered if scientists and mathematicians have deep feelings the way artists do. As far as I am concerned I associate objectivity with science and mathematics, and subjectivity with art. I have always been one to be fascinated by science and math. I have been rather matter-of-fact toward the subjectivity that art dispalys.

Am I missing out on feelings?

Recently, I had an opportunity to examine the following poem while in discussion with a student.


Fire and Ice


Some say the world will end in fire,

Some say in ice.

From what I’ve tasted of desire

I hold with those who favor fire.

But if it had to perish twice,

I think I know enough of hate

To say that for destruction ice

Is also great

And would suffice.


The student got it right away as was obvious from the deep feelings that the poem aroused in her, but I am still searching for the feelings that I may be missing. What I get out of this poem is this:

Fiery passion as demonstrated by a person consumed with lust and greed is as destructive as the coldness and lack of compassion demonstrated by a person consumed with hate.

“That sounds right.” I would say. And then I’ll get busy with the problem at hand.

I know I shall never be a great actor, or a musician, or a painter. But I do feel great passion for helping others solve their problems. For me, each person is an interesting puzzle to solve.

Do I have passion? Or, am I coldly objective?


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  • Chris Thompson  On December 11, 2013 at 8:48 PM

    What a great topic! I would never describe you as cold or without passion. Because you measure your speech and weigh and try to get insight before concluding is not sign that you are without passion. Loose cannon, knee-jerk, out-of-control, irresponsible flying off the handle reactions to what we run into in life is not passion.


    • vinaire  On December 11, 2013 at 8:59 PM

      I love Frankenstein. 😦

      Frankenstein by James Whale 1931 from Ezequiel Lavaca on Vimeo.


      • Chris Thompson  On December 11, 2013 at 9:55 PM

        LOL. Another thing. When perusing the internet and landing on math and physics sites and Quora and Brian Koberlein’s blog, I’ve never notices any lack of passion on the part of those geeks.


        • vinaire  On December 11, 2013 at 10:05 PM

          Yes, it is a different kind of passion that frowns on “inconsequential gossip”, which may not be so “incosequential” to others.


        • Chris Thompson  On December 11, 2013 at 10:08 PM

          I don’t know brother, it seems that you just like what you like. Nothing un-passionate about it.


        • vinaire  On December 11, 2013 at 10:10 PM

          Now that is philosophical indeed!


    • vinaire  On December 11, 2013 at 9:01 PM

      And I love Mozart


      • vinaire  On December 11, 2013 at 10:07 PM

        I read the following again. It is a beautiful piece of research.

        The Power of Vulnerability


        • Chris Thompson  On December 11, 2013 at 10:14 PM

          This is for me, the metaphor of letting go of fixed ideas, ferreting out assumptions, being open to being wrong so that I can change and grow in knowledge and wisdom. Like hanging onto the side of the river bank and fighting the water. Just let go and let the river of life carry you. The metaphor to me is like, life wants to take and show us. It is- is- is, I guess I will call it an aberration, and congenital or possibly a pathological inconsistency to resist this. The Muslim says Allah Akbar, and the Christian says, Let go and let god. I don’t know what the Hindu says but if we are mindful, we are being natural and listening and watching and waiting and allowing the universe reveal itself. Not as a weak or passive activity but with energy and passion and excitement and thankfulness.


        • vinaire  On December 11, 2013 at 10:16 PM



  • MarkNR  On December 11, 2013 at 8:57 PM



  • Chris Thompson  On December 11, 2013 at 10:35 PM

    Lastly for the evening, must see movie, “The Host” on Netflix. Stay up and watch it tonight. Unusual treatment and presentation of space aliens.


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