Sam Ghandchiسام قندچي 2nd Grade: How did Multiplication Table Get into my Brain
Sam Ghandchi

کلاس دوم: چگونه جدول ضرب وارد مغز من شد

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When I was in the second grade, my teacher told my parents that I already knew the multiplication table! Nobody at home ever worked math with me! Also although I went to kindergarten for three years (ages 3 to 6), all I remember from that period was eating cookie and milk (or its Persian equivalent of rusk and milk)! And my mom told me when I was a baby, I would just take buttons or beads, arrange and rearrange them apparently to play! Generally I was always bad in memorization and when in Iranian school system, we often had to memorize poems, I always failed! Even to this age of 70, I am still bad at memorization and do not know how much of it is Dementia or Alzheimer:) Then how was it that I knew multiplication table even before going to the second grade? This was always a question for me. Yesterday I read a book entitled Brainscapes by Rebecca Schwarzlose. An excellent book which has a very simple model. It says the same way that we have maps of the universe from the time of Ptolemy to the time of Copernicus to our times, in which our place in the world is demonstrated, the same way there are maps in our head (actual brain maps and not metaphorical) that show the place of the world in us! In other words, these Brain Maps are created by the interaction of our body with the world. In language of Kantian philosophy, we can say that these brain maps depict the synthetic truth by checking our sense perceptions against the concrete facts. I like her concept of 'Brain Maps' and find it very useful. But the multiplication table in my head at the second grade could not have been created the way she is describing these maps being formed, and actually again in Kantian language, they would be 'Analytic Truth,' not Synthetic Truth. I like her model but cannot explain how multiplication tables had gotten into my brain without being taught! Four months ago, I discussed some related topics in history of Euclidean geometry in an article entitled 'Kurzweil's Mind-Making, My Blind Thinking, and Euclid's Achievement.' Maybe I should revisit those thoughts!


Hoping for a democratic and secular futurist republic in Iran,


Sam Ghandchi

February 19,















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For a Secular Democratic & Futurist Republican Party in Iran