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The search for truth should be the goal of our activities; it is the sole aim worthy of them.

Doubtless, we should first bend our efforts to assuage human suffering, but why not to suffer..? is a negative ideal more surely attained by the annihilation of the world. If we wish to free man from material cares, it is that he may be able to employ the liberty obtained in the study and contemplation of truth. But sometimes, truth frightens us, and in fact we know that it is sometimes deceptive, that it is a phantom never showing itself except to ceaselessly flee, that it must be pursued further and further and even further without being attained. Yet to work, one must stop, as some Greek, Aristotle or another has said. We also know how cruel truth often is, and we wonder whether illusion is not more consoling, even more bracing, for illusion it is which gives confidence. When it shall have vanished will hope remain..? and shall we have the courage to achieve..? And then to seek truth, it is necessary to be independent. If on the contrary we wish to act, to be strong, we should be united. This is why many of us fear truth; we consider it cause of weakness, yet truth should not be feared for it alone is beautiful. When I speak of truth, assuredly I refer to scientific truth; but also mean moral truth, of which what we call justice is only one aspect. It may seem that I am misusing words that I combine thus under the same sense two things, having nothing in common; that scientific truth which is demonstrated can in no way be likened to moral truth, which is a fact. And yet I am not able to separate them, and whosoever loves the one cannot help loving the other. To find the one, as well as to find the other, it is necessary to free the soul completely from blinding prejudice and passion; it is necessary to attain absolute sincerity. These two sorts of truth when discovered give same joy; each when perceived beams with the same splendour, so that we must see it or close or eyes; lastly, both attract us and flee from us. They are never fixed when we think to have reached them, we find that we still have to advance, and he who pursues them is condemned never to know repose. It must be added that those who fear the one, will also fear the other; for they are the ones who in everything are concerned with consequences. In a word, I liken the two truths, because the same reason make us love them, and because the same reason make us fear them. If we ought not to fear moral truth, still less should we dread scientific truth. In first place it cannot conflict with ethics. Ethics and science have their own domains, which touch each other but do not interpenetrate. The one shows us to what goal we should aspire, the other given the goal, teaches us how to attain it. So they can never conflict since they never meet. There can no more be immoral science than there can be scientific morals. But if science is feared, it is above all because it cannot give us happiness. Does the harmony the human intelligence thinks it discovers in nature exist outside of this intelligence? No, doubt a reality completely independent of the mind which conceives it is impossibility. A world as exterior as that, even if it existed, would be for us be forever inaccessible. But what we call objective reality is, common to many thinking beings, and could be common to all; this common part, we shall see,

can only be the harmony expressed by Mathematical Laws. It is the harmony then which is the sole Objective Reality, the only truth we can attain; and when I add that the universal harmony of the world is the source of all beauty, it will be understood what price we should attach to the slow and difficult process which little by little enables us to know it better. It is impossible to study the works of the great mathematicians or even those of the lesser, without noticing and distinguishing two opposite tendencies, or rather entirely different kinds of minds. The one sort are above all preoccupied with logic; to read their works, one is tempted to believe they have only advanced step-by-step, the other sorts are guided by intuition and at the first stroke make quick but precarious conquests. The method is not imposed by the matter treated. Though one often says at first they are analysts and the others geometers, this does not prevent one sort from remaining analysts and even when they work at geometry, while the others are still geometers even when the occupy themselves with pure analysis . It is the nature of their minds which makes them logicians or intuitionalists, and they cannot lay it aside when they approach a new subject. Nor is it education which has developed in them one of the two tendencies and stifled the other. The mathematician is born not made, and it seems he is born a geometer or as an analyst. Among our students we notice the same differences: some prefer to treat their problems by analysis others by geometry. The analysts are incapable of seeing in space, and the others are quickly tired of long calculations. What is the cause of this evolution is not hard to find. Intuition can never give us rigor, nor even certainty; this has been recognized more and more. This is why the evolution had to happen. We believe in our reasonings, we no longer appeal to intuition, the philosophers tells us this is an illusion. Pure logic can never lead us to anything new but tautologies; not from it alone can any science issue. In one sense these philosophers are right; to make arithmetic, as to make geometry, or to make any science something else we have no other word than intuition. Logic is not enough; that the science of demonstration is not ALL SCIENCE, and that intuition must retain its role as a complement, I was about to say as counterpoise, or antidote of logic. Pure analysis puts before at our disposal a multitude of procedures whose infallibility it guarantees; it opens to us a thousand different ways on which we can embark on all confidence; we are assured of meeting there no obstacles; but of all these ways, which will lead us promptly to our goal. Who shall tell us which to choose..?

We need a faculty which makes us see the end from afar, and intuition is this faculty. It is necessary for the explorer for choosing his route or path. If you are present at a game of chess, it will not suffice, for the understanding of the game, to know the rules for moving the pieces. That will only enable you to recognize that each move has been made in conformity to these rules, and this knowledge will truly have very little value. Yet this is what the reader of the book would do if he were a logician only. To understand the game is wholly another matter, it is to know why the player moves this piece rather than the other piece which he could have moved without breaking the rules of the game . It is to perceive the Inner reason which makes this series of successive moves a sort of organized whole. In mathematics, logic is called division, dissection. Thus logic and intuition have each their necessary role. Each is indispensable. Logic which alone can give certainty, in the instrument of demonstration; intuition is the instrument of invention/discovery. Law springs from experiment, but not immediately. Experiment is individual; the law deduced from it is general; experiment is only approximate; the law is precise or at least pretends to be; Experiments is made conditions always complex, the enunciation of the law eliminates these complications. In a word, to get the law from the experiment, it is necessary to generalize; this is a necessity imposed on the circumspect observer. But how to generalize every particular truth may be extended in infinity of ways. Among these thousand routes opening before us, it is necessary to make a choice, at least provisional. What we ask of him is to help us to see, to discern our way in the labyrinth which opens before us now, he sees best who stands highest. The first will show us how to change the language, which suffices to reveal generalizations not before suspected. But what we must aim at is not so much to ascertain similarities and differences, as to discover similarities hidden under apparent differences. The individual rules appear at first discordant, but on looking closer we can detect a similarity; though differing in matter; they approximate in form and the order of their parts. When we examine them from this point of view, we shall see them widen and tend to embrace everything. This is what gives value to certain facts that tend to complete a whole; and shows that it is a faithful image of other known wholes. The scientist does not study nature because it is useful to do so. He studies it because he takes pleasure in it, and he takes pleasure in it because it is beautiful. If nature were not beautiful, it would not be worth knowing, and life would not be worth living.

By beauty I mean is the more intimate beauty which comes from the harmonious order of is parts, and which a pure intelligence can grasp. It is then the search for special beauty, the sense of the harmony of the world that makes us select the facts best suited to contribute to this harmony, just as the artist which complete the portrait and give it character and life. Facts would be barren if there were not minds capable of selecting between them and distinguishing those which have something hidden behind them, and recognizing what is hidden- minds which , behind the bare fact, can detect the soul of the fact. The invention of a new word will often be sufficient to bring out the relation, and the world would be creative. The invention of a new word will often be sufficient to bring out the relation/structure/order, and the word would be creative. The importance of a fact is measured by the return it gives that is, by the amount of thought it enables to economize. If a new result is to have any value, it must unite elements long since unknown, but till then scattered and seemingly foreign to each other, and suddenly introduce order where the appearance of disorder reigned. Then it enables us to see at a glance each of these elements in the place it occupies in the whole. Not only in the new fact valuable on its own account, but it alone given a value to the old facts has it incited. The only facts worthy of our attention are those which introduce order in to this complexity and so make it accessible to us. How vain it would be to attempt to replace the mathematicians free initiative by a mechanical process of any kind. It is not order only, but unexpected order that has a value. A machine can take hold of the bare fact, but the soul of the fact always escapes it. A mathematical demonstration is not a simple juxtaposition of syllogisms, it consists of syllogisms placed in a certain order and the order in which it is placed is much more important than the elements themselves. If I have the feeling so to speak the intuition of the order, so that I can perceive the whole of the argument at a glance, I need no longer be afraid of forgetting one of the elements; each of them will place itself naturally in the position prepared for it, without my moving to make any efforts of memory. Discovery is discernment /selection. The rules which guide this choice are extremely subtle and delicate, as it is practically impossible to state them in precise language; they must be felt rather than formulated.

To doubt everything and to believe everything are two equally convenient solutions; both dispense with the necessity of reflection. Experience leaves us the freedom of choice, but it guides us by helping us to discern the most convenient path to follow. The aim of science is not things themselves as the dogmatists in their simplicity imagine, but the relations between things; outside these relations there is no reality knowable. Thinking must never submit itself, neither to dogma, nor to an interest, nor to a preconceived idea, nor to whatever it may be, if not to fact themselves, because for it to submit, would be to cease to be. Science is build up with facts as a house is with stones. But a collection of facts is no more a science than a heap of stones a house. It is by logic that we prove, but by intuition that we discover. To know how to criticize is good; to know how to create is better. Logic teaches us that on such and such a road we are sure of not meeting an obstacle; it does not tell us which the road that leads to the desired end is. For this it is necessary to see the end from afar; and the faculty which teaches us to see is intuition. Without it a geometrician would be like a writer well up in grammar but destitute of ideas.