LOGICAL / MATHEMATICAL INTELLIGENCE: PATTERN SMART

PATTERN-SMART


At times also referred as scientific thinking, logical or mathematical intelligence involves inductive and deductive thinking and reasoning. It deals with numbers and computing skills, recognizing patters and relationships, timelines and order, proficient use of abstract patterns. This ability to solve problems through logic is backed up by reasoning and calculating. So we can easily say it goes much beyond manipulating numbers and equations, encompassing sequence, pattern, order, relationship, and proportion as well as number sense.

This very intelligence is behind taking a few basic movements and making them into a set to finally place them into a logical order of a dance sequence. The same leads us to making choices on the relative length and efforts of movement, making some more significant than the others, in a choreographed piece of dance. This is what helps us recognise the relationship between two similar or for that matter dissimilar movements and using them optimally to come out with an outstanding composition.

As in everyday life we use the logical intelligence all the time without realising it, we also use it in various aspects of dance, be it sequence, patterns, symmetry, order, proportions etc. The Sapta Taal System is the back bone of any Bharatnatyam dance, so dancers are doing creative mathematical thinking all the time. Choreography of Jatis of any kind is also taking a few basic steps and placing them in a logical order governed by mathematical principles to begin with. Thereafter, dancers and adept choreographers can weave different cross patterns of the jaatis of a talam within a framework of the talam of the song they are dancing to. An avartan of 8 beats, for example, might be broken up into simple 4 beat or 2 beat cycles for beginners. But for seniors who have a deeper understanding of the tala , it could be choreographed with jaatis of 5, 7 or even 9 beats and hence, appropriately ending with a teermanam that fits completely into the talam. With more and more practice, dancers can do so without even planning a sequence of steps and still come up with their own patterns by themselves. Percussionists are even more accomplished in performing the above said skill.

Most exceptional scientists of the last century, be it Einstein, Curie, Fuller or Hawking, have been ones who have produced imaginative work within the realms of science. Similarly the future generations of creators will surely come from the children who have learned to consider aesthetics and logic as complementary rather than contradictory point of view.