This distinction of mathematics from physics is why I had so much trouble with physics. It was taught (in the schools I went to) as a mathematics course; just do the math! But what I wanted was the “real world meaning” (an intuitive grasp; an experiential inclusion of physics as part of myself). Whenever I brought up “meaning” I was chastised for “polluting the purity of physics”.
This reflects Asperger thinking, I think. Abstract reasoning is just not “complete” or satisfying. It’s necessary tool, not an end to thinking.
It’s wonderful to stop thinking and listen.