Thursday, January 17, 2008


Beginning sometime in December or late November, I have been reading a recent biography of Albert Einstein, written by Walter Isaacson. I had previously seen the book in a bookstore and picked it up and glanced through it, drawn by the photo of Einstein on the cover. Later, a copy of the book showed up at a free lending library in my community. I took the book home, thinking that I would read it before I started school in January. Having only a primitive understanding of physics and mathematics, the extensive sections involving those disciplines are excruciatingly slow reading indeed. I am reading them anyway in hopes of learning something. I'm not recommending spending money on this biography but the book does have its moments.

Last night I skipped ahead, looking for a photograph of Elsa Einstein and found this at the beginning of the chapter titled "Einstein's God."

"At this point the host tried to silence him by invoking the fact that even Einstein harbored religious beliefs.

"It isn't possible!" the skeptical guest said, turning to Einstein to ask if he was, in fact, religious.

"Yes, you can call it that," Einstein replied calmly. "Try and penetrate with our limited means the secrets of nature and you will find that, behind all the discernible laws and connections, there remains something subtle, intangible and inexplicable. Veneration for this force beyond anything that we can comprehend is my religion. To that extent I am, in fact, religious."

(the photo is of a little "collage" which has rested at the side of my refrigerator, next to my stove, for the past 4-1/2 years.)


robin andrea said...

Interestingly, I read another Einstein quote today on The Buddha Diaries. It was this: "I am a deeply religious non-believer... This is a somewhat new kind of religion."

There is something out there, profound and compelling, but what we've made of it is a total freakin' mess.

I like your refrigerator collage.

The Solitary Walker said...

I like this quote. I have copied it out. A refreshing change from comments by religion-despising scientists like Richard Dawkins et al.