It sometimes happens that 1D problems are easier to solve by somehow adding a dimension. For example, we convert linear differential equations for a real unknown to a complex unknown (to use complex exponentials), or we compute a power series' radius of convergence by thinking in the complex plane (or use complex analytic properties in path integrals), or we evaluate $\int^\infty_{-\infty} e^{-x^2}\ dx$ by squaring it...