"The dividing line between the action of language and the process of math is largely an illusion. Language, both written and spoken, necessarily uses the laws of mathematics, while the flow of a mathematical statement is the very definition of poetry."
- K. Ungeheuer

Ungeheuer spent most of his years in Portugal fine tuning his theory of numerolinguistics. The theory was a merging of the science of linguistics, how language works, with the science of math. Unfortunately, not much is known about the actual inner workings of the theory. Although references and descriptions of numerolinguistics litter Ungeheuer's personal notes, the bulk of our current knowledge comes from just two magazine articles. There is no complete account of the process.

It should be noted that good deal of research has been done linking language to mathematics. Many semiotic and semantic theories conclude that language does indeed follow a mathematical logic. Ciphers and Cryptographers both have been translating text to numbers and back again for centuries. In fact the very text you read on your screen has gone through the same conversion of letters to numbers and back to letters again inside of your computer.

From "2 + 2 = A ?" by Kevin Marcinkowski;  Page 45; Mathematic Anomalies; 1969

The Numerolinguistic theory works on a low level of likenesses (Ungeheuer would often substitute the numbers 0, 1, and 5 for the letters o, l, and s), but it also worked on a high level of concepts, eventually translating complex sentences into logical mathematical equations, and vice versa.

As might be expected, it is at this high level that the theory becomes most complex. The biggest problem was the problem of context. While the word flower may mean something beautiful to one person, it may bring thoughts of allergies to another. On the other hand, the number 23 means basically the same thing to everyone. The end result was that two people could translate the same sentence and get two entirely different math equations. Does this make the entire process ambiguous? Not at all, according to Dr. Steven Emmett, Professor of Statistics at the Newport Universitat and close friend of Mr. Ungeheuer.

"It's a form of automatism really, the allowing of your subconscious to create, unfiltered by the conscious mind. Most people compare it to Burroughs' cut-ups or Ginsberg's stream of consciousness, but this was at a lower subconscious level. You never had an idea of how the sentence would turn out. It is entirely dependent on the mathematical choices you make. The theory rests on the idea that those same mathematical decisions are more "abstract" to the human mind than symbolic decisions using language or pictures. Mathematical decisions rest upon natural laws, not human invention (although this concept too is up for judgment). Being more abstract, they rest at a lower level in the subconscious and will provide a clearer picture of what goes on there.

"The first I had heard of the theory was as an undergraduate. It was published in a literary magazine and was widely considered, at best, a paramathematical novelty. Still, we students really got into it. We used to have competitions, poetry readings really, where we would compare Aspect Poems with the English Department. We always came out on top. They weren't creative enough with their math. Even though the process focused on language, without a solid base in mathematics, you just couldn't get a good poem. We had one guy in our department who retranslated the entire Bhagavad Gita into a series of Aspect Sentences. It was pretty crazy. I still use the process for brainstorming or just to pass the time.".... "

From "NumeroLinguistics" by Sam Dodgsenson; English translation by Oscar Clark;  Page 19; Nova Vida; 1962

The Numerolingual Process

The Numerolingual Process is the practical application of the Numerolingual theory as developed by K. Ungeheuer, Professor of Mathematics at the Technical University of Lisbon. Through using the Process, a coherent sentence can be translated into a mathematical equation, and vice versa. The process usually involves two steps - the Ascending Transition and the Aspect Transition.

The Ascending Transition

The Ascending Transition, also known as "Ascending", begins with an Originating Sentence (the OS), which is broken down into a sentence diagram. The OS then undergoes degrees of Dissolution into its mathematical components. The number of stages involved in Ascending depends upon the complexity of the OS. But three stages are almost always present - the Subject, Action, and Object Dissolutions. Transitional Numbers are a byproduct of these stages of Dissolution. Transitional Numbers are numbers which "jump" cells or are put aside for usage in the Aspect Transition. The Ascending produces the ME, or Mathematical Equivalent.

The Aspect Transition

The Aspect Transition, popularly known as Asping, begins with the ME. Then using Transportational Numbers passed on from Ascending, the ME is processed back into a coherent sentence, known as the Aspect Sentence (AS). The AS, when paired with the OS, provides a logical context for the Originating Sentence, and gives a deeper understanding of the OS. The process involves Solidification of the mathematical components of the ME back into sentence fragments. Again, three stages are almost always present - the Subject, Action, and Object Solidifications.

Asping is very dependent upon the usage of Transportational Numbers. How a Transportational Number can and cannot be used is dependent upon the action of the OS. What this means is that Asping is very lenient. The more complex an OS, the more avenues available for Asping, which means many Aspect Sentences can be revealed from a single OS.

The creation of many Aspect Sentences creates an Aspect Poem. With the OS as its title, the body of the poem reveals truths about its title. The writing out line-by-line of each step of both the Ascending and Asping Transitions produces a Process Poem with three titles, the OS at the beginning, the ME in the middle, and the AS at the end, with two poetic bodies filling the space between.


Example of a Process Poem using an OS of "That dog has fleas."

That Dog Has Fleas.
3(16) has fleas.
48 has fleas.
2(24) has 63.
4(3) weighs 75=23
3(16) weighs 67 little.
Your 16 weighs very little.
Your head weighs very little.


Example of an Aspect Poem using an OS of "That dog has fleas."

That Dog Has Fleas.
Your head weighs very little.
It eats wax fruit.
The fur tastes bitter.
When will its mother cry?
Your jewelry is wrong.
That dog bites you.

Copyright © 2016 Karl Sigler. All Rights Reserved.