I have been doing mathematics for some time now. I am currently a UG in Mathematics and Computer Science. I like doing mathematics but as I progress, I notice that I don't remember certain theorems at all. I forget how to divide/multiply at times. I have forgotten almost all of the theorems that I learnt. And whatever I am studying I am likely to forget it soon enough too. So what are we expected to do ? Gain understanding and then move on, the theorems/results don't matter ?

All books on a subject have different theorems on a topic? Am I supposed to read all of them? I can write proofs but certain theorems are listed in the books that I hardly encounter again, why are they mentioned over others in the book ?

How do you know that you have proved a new theorem that hasn't been proved before ?


closed as too broad by Grigory M, rschwieb, hardmath, TZakrevskiy, Nick Peterson Dec 18 '13 at 14:24

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    $\begingroup$ Good question, but you should probably modify the title, since it makes your question sound more controversial than it really is. $\endgroup$ – goblin Dec 18 '13 at 14:05
  • $\begingroup$ I'm afraid this Question needs to be revised to make it suitable for the Math.SE content. See the Help Center for guidelines on asking Questions that can be Answered in fairly concise ways. $\endgroup$ – hardmath Dec 18 '13 at 14:22
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    $\begingroup$ What do we learn from Mathematics ? About the same thing we also ‘learn’ when eating a delicious dinner, or being in the company of a beautiful and attractive woman: absolutely nothing! We do it cause it's fun. All those excuses about its supposed ‘real-life applications’ are just rationalizations we tell ourselves and others to justify our addiction, while desperately trying to preserve some illusory sense of usefulness. (Or sanity, for that matter). :-) $\endgroup$ – Lucian Dec 18 '13 at 14:27
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    $\begingroup$ @Lucian. Beautiful answer ! and so true. $\endgroup$ – Claude Leibovici Dec 18 '13 at 14:47