ABSTRACT

It is a fact that Bion did use notation to express some of his key ideas and since this will be with us for the long term within psychoanalysis, I believe facilitating a better understanding of his readings in the history of mathematics is warranted. My purpose is to explain certain notions found in Bion and to review selected books that Bion is known to have read and used. By actually reading some of the books Bion read a number of astonishing things come quickly to light, which might be helpful. The first is that mathematicians have written many books that are very accessible and easily read, with profit, by analysts. They are not arcane and overloaded with so much notation and formulas as to be in a foreign language; rather they write much like us and an astonishing number of better mathematicians had an explicit concept of the unconscious which they employed for their work. I also want to show how Bion’s work in this area could be expanded, followed up and extended, partly by supplying references for future reading. However, first and foremost, I want to pique your curiosity about this truly fascinating world. As a side effect, we will cast a better understanding on ‘model,’ ‘selected fact,’ ‘intuition,’ ‘invariance’ and the mind liberating phenomena of ‘notation.’