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Sunday, November 13, 2005

Einstein & Religion

What Albert Einstein said about religion …

“All religions, arts and sciences are branches of the same tree. All these aspirations are directed toward ennobling man's life, lifting it from the sphere of mere physical existence and leading the individual towards freedom.”

“True religion is real living; living with all one's soul, with all one's goodness and righteousness.”

“I do not believe in the immortality of the individual, and I consider ethics to be an exclusively human concern without any superhuman authority behind it.”

“Scientists were rated as great heretics by the church, but they were truly religious men because of their faith in the orderliness of the universe.”

“What is the meaning of human life, or of organic life altogether? To answer this question at all implies a religion. Is there any sense then, you ask, in putting it? I answer, the man who regards his own life and that of his fellow creatures as meaningless is not merely unfortunate but almost disqualified for life.”

The World as I See It, 1934

3 Comments:

Blogger Too_Lively said...

Excellent quotes!

As always, I enjoy this blog immensely.

11:46 AM  
Blogger GrumbleGrouch said...

I admire Albert Einstein both as a scientist and as a humanitarian. But I can sometimes disagree with him (although with regard to most of his science, I can't disagree because I don't understand it). He excludes ethics from religion and includes science. That makes his definition of religion different from mine and almost everyone else's. But while I can't join him in his use of the word, I have little quarrel with his sentiments.

I would, however, elucidate my view of the last quotation. My life is meaningful to me, as are the lives of all other persons. But our lives are meaningless to the universe, and the universe itself has no meaning except to us. And answering the question in this way does not, I believe, imply a religion (unless secular humanism is one).

I would add that all scientists are people of faith. They have faith that a consensus of trained observers can establish fact, and that reasoning from fact can lead us to truth. This is different from the faith of religious fundamentalists who believe that only certain old books can lead us to truth, but it is faith nonetheless.

2:36 PM  
Blogger Shushan said...

and your position on the relative position of the universe to you is part of your belief system (aka religion, with or without a God. Atheists must also have faith, because you can't truly disprove God)

I am sure you mean what you say but you have yet top realize that your words reflect the taught bias you have received from your ealiest years in education.

You think science and your worldview can be separate at all levels. On some levels it can, as per chemistry and most Mythbusters experiments. But when you get into the age of the world and other Big questions you start accepting some other unproven (and unprovable) hypothesis in order to move forward.

Evolution has been billed to young children (and the general public) as the only good theory that covers all the facts, despites its many contradictions and failures.

The idea behind intelligent design need not be religious per se. There are several possibilities that could account for that framework of reference.

The interesting thing is how many results of known studies change so drastically in significance when the ID framework is adopted.

Yes, the results do encourage Christians...and Hindus and ufologists and certain New Age sects. Christian ID scientists have found that allowing the words they believe came from the Maker of the universe to guide their searches has an illuminating effect.

but that doesn't make their work based on this alternative framework non-scientitfic.

I have any number of quotes and refs that have established beyond doubt that many who pushed the evolutionary framework had their own humanistic faith (bias) to guide them. They did NOT leave their faith at the door, Sir. They left everybody else's there.

Its about time somebody else got a word in.

hhmm.. looks like I wrote my blog for today. *grin*

Susan

5:06 PM  

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