By Persi Diaconis, Ron Graham
Magical Mathematics unearths the secrets and techniques of wonderful, fun-to-perform card tricks--and the profound mathematical principles at the back of them--that will astound even the main entire magician. Persi Diaconis and Ron Graham offer effortless, step by step directions for every trick, explaining find out how to organize the impression and delivering tips about what to assert and do whereas acting it. every one card trick introduces a brand new mathematical suggestion, and ranging the methods in flip takes readers to the very threshold of today's mathematical wisdom. for instance, the Gilbreath Principle--a amazing impact the place the playing cards stay up to speed regardless of being shuffled--is chanced on to proportion an intimate reference to the Mandelbrot set. different card methods hyperlink to the mathematical secrets and techniques of combinatorics, graph concept, quantity concept, topology, the Riemann speculation, or even Fermat's final theorem.
Diaconis and Graham are mathematicians in addition to expert performers with a long time event among them. during this e-book they percentage a wealth of conjuring lore, together with a few heavily guarded secrets and techniques of mythical magicians. Magical Mathematics covers the maths of juggling and indicates how the I Ching connects to the heritage of likelihood and magic tips either outdated and new. It tells the stories--and finds the easiest tricks--of the eccentric and fantastic inventors of mathematical magic. Magical Mathematics exposes outdated playing secrets and techniques throughout the arithmetic of shuffling playing cards, explains the vintage street-gambling rip-off of three-card monte, lines the background of mathematical magic again to the 13th century and the oldest mathematical trick--and a lot more.
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Additional info for Magical Mathematics: The Mathematical Ideas that Animate Great Magic Tricks
Commonly, of course, magic is held to do with achieving worldly aims through supernatural means; and mysticism is seen as a term describing those who seek and who claim to realize union with the divine. Yet these are problematic distinctions—many magicians seem rather mystical in inclination; and conversely, some mystics seem rather close to magic in what they espouse or claim. To give two examples: the well-known Book of Abramelin the Mage edited by S. L. MacGregor Mathers includes a ritual of seclusion and of a kind of mysticism (seeking union with one’s guardian angel) that on the face of it does not seem to belong to “magic” so much as to mysticism.
Similar pageants were held for the other Mystery traditions at the appropriate times of the year, many held only at night and some traditionally celebrated chiefly or exclusively by women. The Mysteries are most well known, of course, for their orgiastic celebrations, or orgia. While it seems likely that some lurid Roman accounts of drunkenness, orgies, and even ritual murder and cannibalism in the celebration of the Bacchic Mysteries were exaggerated in the manner of tabloid journalism, the fact remains that there are so many allusions to or accusations of orgiastic celebrations among the initiates in antiquity that it becomes impossible to deny that something of the sort went on.
The specific sociological and anthropological controversies over magic and mysticism are simply too extensive to delve into here. Various books that address these controversies include Bruce Kapferer, Beyond Rationalism: Rethinking Magic, Witchcraft, and Sorcery (New York: Berghahn, 2003); Owen Davies, Cunning-folk: Popular Magic in English History (London: Hambledon, 2003); and Paul Mirecki and Marvin Meyer, Magic and Ritual in the Ancient World (Leiden: Brill, 2002), to cite only a handful of the most recent.