A beautiful mind and life, indeed

The book by Sylvia Nasar and the Russell Crowe-starrer 2001 biopic by the same name – A beautiful mind – might not tell much about John F Nash’s work but will surely tell something about his life and struggle which were no less inspiring than his mathematical equations.

shishir

Shishir Tripathi | May 25, 2015


#john nash   #john nash death   #nohn nash car crash   #john nash a beautiful mind   #a beautiful mind  

Fighting one’s fears requires mettle extraordinaire. Nash’s life was a perfect lesson in this regard. A mathematician, Nash won the Nobel prize for economics in 1994 and Abel prize in 2005. A certain measure of eccentricity is an understandable corollary to being a mathematical genius, but in Nash’s case it went further to become a mental illness. In 1959 he was diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia which marked the beginning of an eventful life.

Apart from his contribution to the field of mathematics, economics and international trade, his life was also an inspiring tale of a conqueror who fought unimaginable odds to emerge a winner. He fought his delusional thinking and made a comeback only to be awarded John von Neumann Theory Prize for his discovery of non-cooperative equilibrium, now called Nash equilibrium, in 1978.

His fight against the fear that his mental condition brought to him is an inspiring tale chronicled beautifully by Nasar in her Pulitzer Prize-nominated 1998 book and Ron Howard in his four Academy award winner film adaptation.

Being a student of political science and international relations, Nash was not an unknown figure for me. Nash equilibrium which stresses that rational actors behaving in a mutually benefiting way always creates a win-win situation for all was a part of the curriculum . A dialogue from the movie can help to bring out the beauty of his idea and hypothesis, even more clearly.

 
Nash: In competitive behaviour someone always loses.

Charles: Well, my niece knows that, John, and she's about this high.

Nash: See if I derive an equilibrium where prevalence is a non-singular event where nobody loses, can you imagine the effect that would have on conflict scenarios, arm negotiations...

 
However, for me, Nash was transformed from a remote intellectual into an inspiring figure through Nasar’s book and Crowe’s portrayal of the genius. The movie while depicting Nash’s struggle to get rid of his delusions ends with an amazing antidote to a complex rational mind.

Towards the end of the movie Nash is shown giving his Nobel acceptance speech. He tells the audience in the jam packed auditorium, “I’ve made the most important discovery of my life. It's only in the mysterious equation of love that any logic or reasons can be found”.

Looking at his wife with tears welling up in his eyes, he Crowe’s Nash adds, “I’m only here tonight because of you. You are the only reason I am... you are all my reasons”.

Perhaps, he treasured his most important finding more than anything. He left for a better world with his love and wife on May 23.

Comments

 

Other News

Government sanctions new posts to hire cyber security professionals

The government has sanctioned 111 posts of cyber security professionals for the Indian computer emergency response team (ICERT) under the ministry of electronics and information technology (MEITY), according to a ministry official, who added that the posts were sanctioned earlier this year. 

Bhutan’s pursuit of happiness, shortage of health sub-centres in UP, and role of digitisation in IGNOU

In many ways the story of Gross National Happiness in a country is the story of Bhutan and its modern history. There are two major transition points in Bhutan’s recent history, the beginning of the monarchy in 1907, and the transition to a Constitutional monarchy in 2008, and the pursuit of happine

Do you agree with the ban on the sale of cattle for slaughter through animal markets?

Do you agree with the ban on the sale of cattle for slaughter through animal markets?

Modi inaugurates India’s longest bridge in Assam

  Prime minister Narendra Modi celebrated three-year of his government on May 26 by inaugurating Dhola-Sadiya bridge over the Brahmaputra river in Assam’s Tinsukia district. It is the longest bridge in India, which runs 9.15 km from end to end and connects Assam with Arunachal Pradesh.

IndianOil registers highest ever profit of Rs 19,106 crore

 IndianOil posted a net profit of Rs 19,106 crore for 2016-17 fiscal as compared to a profit of Rs 11,242 crore in the last fiscal. The income from operations for the financial year 2016-17 was Rs 4,45,373 crore as compared to Rs 4,06,828 crore in the previous fiscal. IndianOil`s income from

Maiden flight of HAL’s light utility helicopter

 Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) carried out first flight of light utility helicopter (LUH)-PT-2 on May 22 at its Bengaluru-based facility. The flight duration was about 22 minutes and pilots reported nil snag, HAL said.   “These maiden flights of indig



Video

कालेधन पर किया हुआ अपना वादा पूरा करूंगा - मोदी

Current Issue

Opinion

Facebook    Twitter    Google Plus    Linkedin    Subscribe Newsletter

Twitter