In our culture, though, this will to dematerialize remains, perhaps somewhat ironically, unarticulated and inchoate. This may explain our strange, indeed neurotic, sense that the needs of the “system”—whether it is the system of government or the system of markets or the system of technological innovation—are now more important than the needs of the individuals such systems were once assumed to serve. We are a nation of closeted Pythagoreans, ashamed of and enthralled by our secret desire to assume the eternal nature of numbers, and made powerless by that shame.

Luke Mitchell, “Sick in the Head”