So I have a question or two that I've wondered about for a while and am hoping that this is the right forum to (maybe) get some answers. The thing I've been wondering about is how important the visualization process is in dealing with more abstract, theoretical problems, especially as it relates to mathematics and physics, in particular cosmology. What I'm really curious about is to what extent visualization is used as the basis for formulating such things as string theory, the many worlds hypothesis, and other really complicated ideas based on, shall we say, more esoteric bits of math, at least to a lay scientist such as myself. Does the analogy or math come first, or do they come about in tandem, and if so, which is the main driver (if any)? Would it even be possible to come up with such a theory without the ability to visualize some sort of geometric-spatial analogy? I am completely ignorant about this, as I've never really been able to engage with theoretical physics, and suspect that my inability to visualize has something to do with this. I'm interested in both your own understanding, as well as what you may know about the individuals who originated such theories. Edit by mentor: Sorry we don't allow this. I'm trying to determine if this question, which doesn't seem to be addressed by the current psychological research (whose focus has been primarily on learning and performance), is one worth pursuing further. The assumption is always made that people are able to visualize without further investigation. I suspect that how well -- or even if -- a person is able to visualize things in their mind fundamentally affects the way they conceive of reality and the beliefs that creates. In this case, the belief revolves around cosmology and, more broadly, math and physics. In my case, my across the board score would be 1. Thanks in advance. I'm very curious to hear from you all. NOTE: I posted on here because this question doesn't necessarily fit into other categories. The closest I can think of is cosmology, but it's a bit more general than that. I can move it there if people think it belongs there. .