A great quote from Marcus du Sautoy, speaking to New Scientist in this article.
I think that our brain is evolutionarily programmed to do mathematics. Because that’s the way that you survive this world. Those who managed to understand geometry were able to avoid things being thrown at them and able to hit things that they wanted to aim at. Those who could count were able to assess whether to fight or flee – they could work out whether they were bigger than the other lot. So those who can do mathematics have survived.
When people say, “I don’t have a brain for mathematics,” I would say that’s not true – that everyone has a brain to do mathematics. [Popular chef] Jamie Oliver has done Anyone Can Learn to Cook in 24 Hours – maybe I should do.