Mathematics: Essay Questions

For homework, we have to come up with 3 TOK-style essay questions that may derive from the quote: “God used beautiful mathematics in creating the world.”.

Here are some answers to questions, which will help me come up with the questions:

a. What areas of knowledge & ways of knowing should be investigated?

AOK: Mathematics, Religious Knowledge Systems,  Indigenous Knowledge Systems

WOK: Reason, Language, Intuition, Faith

b. What’s the question getting at?

First of all, the question is putting us to think if whether or not mathematics was used to create the world, on the premise that the student agrees to the existence of ‘God’. This question is discussing three different topics:

  1. ‘Did God exist?’
  2. ‘Did God create the world?’
  3. ‘Did God use Mathematics to create the world?’

The first and second question asks the student to explore Religious and Indigenous Knowledge systems, referring to Reason, Intuition, Emotion, and Faith. These WOKs require the student to give an opinion of their own religious beliefs. The third question can only be answered if the answers are both ‘Yes’ to the first and second question. The AOKs the student would explore here is, Mathematics. The question asks the student to define the relationship between God and mathematics. This can be answered using Reason, Language (Mathematics as a form of language: Axioms, Theories, Proofs, etc), Intuition, and Faith. It is difficult to tackle real life situations, which support claims on the existence of God. However, the student can use real-life situations, which help support the Axioms advocated in math (for example: to give evidence to the golden ratio, use the patterns seen in sunflower seeds as a real life situation).

c. What are the potential knowledge issues? (The 3 Essay-Style Questions)

  1. In the field of Mathematics, to what extent do axioms conflict with theories that support the existence of God?
  2. If God used Mathematics, then to what extent can Mathematics be used to prove the existence of God?
  3. If Mathematics is a form of language consisted of Mathematical symbols invented by mankind, then to what extent can Gödel’s ontological proof be proved to be true?

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