I came to these forums with the question how do I understand math intuitively. I joined and started this topic https://www.physicsforums.com/showthread.php?t=614527. I wanted to be able apply the methods quickly, without any calculation, so I could gain some further understanding. I read a few books, but they didn't contain the exact answer I was looking for. I ended up giving up and reading a seemingly unrelated book instead called "Thinking Fast and Slow". It's a cognitive science book that had a few profound implications We cannot apply mathematical knowledge without making a conscious effort I thought if I learned math it could run in the background, so to speak, and give me useful insights. I wasn't looking for exact answers, just broad behaviors that may be manipulated. We are susceptible to the same mistakes as the uneducated In the book, the author gathers professional statisticians and asks them basic questions that any high school statistics student could answer. The questions could be solved in your head by using basic stat concepts. Almost all of them got the answers wrong. The problem was not even the experts used their knowledge. Since that part of the brain isn't accessed when solving the problem it didn't matter that he knew it or not. This is troublesome because it greatly restricts application to problems where you are already mathematically focused (priming effect). For most people this only includes their job. True intuitive thinking like simple comparisons or reading someones expression is impossible As the book states, fast and intuitive thinking only includes a predetermined set of mental operations. None of these include any form of critical thinking whatsoever. TL;DR For those who believe that you can get a feel for mathematics (like I did) that can be applied to everyday situations you are wrong. The brain is lazy (for evolutionary purposes) and only grants you access to that knowledge through conscious effort.