Wait a Minute, Does Math Actually Exist?

If you're studying for the algebra test tomorrow or thinking about how little you use math now after you failed it a million times in high school, here's something to melt your brain with just a tad: math might not actually exist. It's not an actual thing of the universe, it's just something humans invented. Or is it the other way around?


PBS Idea Channel tackles the subject of whether math really exists or not. It's a legitimate question because math, unlike physics or chemistry or biology, can't be seen or smelled or observed. Idea Channel writes:

Do we live in a mathless universe? Or if math is a real entity that exists, are there formulas and mathematical concepts out there in the universe that are undiscovered? Or is it all fiction?

It's definitely an interesting way to look at the thing that frustrates most humans to no end. Though I guess frustratingly trying to explain something so frustrating shouldn't be this much fun. Math is important! Study for that test now. Even if it might not exist. [PBS Idea Channel via Geekosystem]



It's like the color red, or any other color. It doesn't truly exist except in our perception. It is simply how we describe our observations. Math may not exist, but patterns and order do, and math is how we describe those orders, patterns, and observations.