I have to study maths since nine years and I hate it. It isn´t logical for me and I can´t understand the meaning of it and this is the case since I began to study it. I am sure that I won´t need for example powers, theorem of Pythagoras and logarithm later in my life. Maths, reason and logic aren´t important for me, my friends and a lot of other people. But for our protagonist Christopher, who has the Asperger syndrome, it is very important. Without these aspects he is lost. I´ll show this on the basis of a few different examples from the book.
Maths, reason and logic are always reproducible and predictable, so he can prepare himself for these problems. He likes solving maths problems, which are difficult, because he knows that there is always a straightforward answer at the end. Also there is always the same way to solve these problems, so it’s logical and this makes him feel safe. Therefore he spends a lot of time on solving maths problems in his free time.
The Asperger syndrome helps him to solve it faster, because he is able to concentrate on it better and he notices everything clearer than other people. You can read this in chapter 181.
Unfortunately, our life isn´t as logical and projectable as maths. And when there is something, like going on holidays and meeting new people, which you can´t plan with pure logic, it´s difficult for him to handle the situation. In chapter 233, for example, you can read that when he thinks about the future it starts a panic in him. Because the future isn´t predictable and you can´t know what happens this afternoon or tomorrow and this makes him feel unsafe.
Powers, maths problems and puzzles as well as counting cars or cardinal numbers help him to handle difficult situations. In chapter 167 for example, after he has experienced that his mother is still alive and his father has lied, he is troubled. So he does some powers like 2^25 and this makes him tranquilized and he feels calm. Maths puzzles distract him, during he sits in the shelve in the train (chapter 211), so he doesn´t have to think at bad things. But it doesn´t only make him calm and distracted, it also helps him not to be bored. In chapter 233 he has to drive with his mother from London to Swindon and it takes more than three hours. So he does some maths in his brain and avoid becoming bored.
Maths explains a lot of things in our life. It also explains some mysteries, which aren´t really mysteries, because you can explain it with maths. So it´s logical. In chapter 151 Christopher explains that there is a different number of frogs in the school pond in each year. It doesn´t depend on the weather or a heron, who ate the frogs. You can explain it only with a maths formula. Generally, this formula doesn´t make sense, but for Christopher it´s important, that there is a reason why during the last year there were more frogs than this year. So you can see that he doesn´t like it, when something isn´t clear or when there isn´t a reason. This is clarified, when he says that when you can´t solve a problem or a mystery or there isn´t a reason for something, it´s not like that there isn´t an answer for it. Scientists only haven´t found the answer yet. And he thinks, that scientists also will discover something that explains ghosts for example.
In a nutshell it means that Christopher´s life would be even more difficult without reason, logic and maths, because he couldn´t understand situations, the meaning of objects around him and the whole world. He wouldn´t come down when there are problems and that would be a big problem. People with the Asperger syndrome really need it to understand the reality, because they can´t trust in their sense. So unfortunately, I think that he would kill himself if there wouldn´t be maths, logic and reason. But for people not suffering from this syndrome, maths isn´t so essentially important. We only have it to think that we are very clever, but we don´t need it to understand life.