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Albert Einstein
German-born physicist; originator of the theory of relativity
(1879-1955)



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If my theory of relativity is proven correct, Germany will claim me as a German and France will declare that I am a citizen of the world. Should my theory prove untrue, France will say that I am a German and Germany will declare that I am a Jew.
-- Albert Einstein, 1929

Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind.
-- Albert Einstein, 1941

The unleashed power of the atom has changed everything save our modes of thinking and we thus drift toward unparalleled catastrophe.
-- Albert Einstein, 1946

Gravitation cannot be held responsible for people falling in love. How on earth can you explain in terms of chemistry and physics so important a biological phenomenon as first love? Put your hand on a stove for a minute and it seems like an hour. Sit with that special girl for an hour and it seems like a minute. That's relativity.
-- Albert Einstein, 1949

The important thing is not to stop questioning. Curiosity has its own reason for existing. One cannot help but be in awe when he contemplates the mysteries of eternity, of life, of the marvelous structure of reality. It is enough if one tries merely to comprehend a little of this mystery every day. Never lose a holy curiosity.
-- Albert Einstein

My religion consists of a humble admiration of the illimitable superior spirit who reveals himself in the slight details we are able to perceive with our frail and feeble mind.
-- Albert Einstein

I do not believe in a personal God and have never denied this but have expressed it clearly. If something is in me which can be called religious then it is the unbounded admiration for the structure of the world so far as our science can reveal it.
-- Quoted in Helen Dukas and Banesh Hoffman, Albert Einstein, the Human Side (1979)

Nothing will benefit human health and increase the chances for survival of life on Earth as much as the evolution to a vegetarian diet.
-- Albert Einstein

Common sense is the collection of prejudices acquired by age eighteen.
-- Quoted by Lincoln Barnett, The Universe and Dr Einstein (1950)

Nationalism is an infantile sickness. It is the measles of the human race.
-- Quoted in Helen Dukas and Banesh Hoffman, Albert Einstein, the Human Side (1979)





Exaggerated respect for athletics, an excess of coarse impressions which the complications of life through the technical discoveries of recent years has brought with it, the increased severity of the struggle for existence due to the economic crisis, the brutalization of political life--all these factors are hostile to the ripening of the character and the desire for real culture, and stamp our age as barbarous, materialistic, and superficial. Specialization in every sphere of intellectual work is producing an ever-widening gulf between the intellectual worker and the non-specialist, which makes it more difficult for the life of the nation to be fertilized and enriched by the achievements of art and science.

But contact between the intellectual and the masses must not be lost. It is necessary for the elevation of society and no less so for renewing the strength of the intellectual worker; for the flower of science does not grow in the desert.

-- Albert Einstein, from "Congratulations to Dr. Solf", in: The World As I See It, translated by Alan Harris (New York. Philosophical Library, 1949), pp. 20-21.

Development of Western science is based on two great achievements: the invention of the formal logical system (in Euclidean geometry) by the Greek philosophers, and the discovery of the possibility to find out causal relationships by systematic experiment (during the Renaissance). In my opinion one has not to be astonished that the Chinese sages have not made those steps. The astonishing thing is that those discoveries were made at all.

-- Letter to J.S. Switzer, April 23, 1953

It would be possible to describe everything scientifically, but it would make no sense. It would be a description without meaning—as if you described a Beethoven symphony as a variation of wave pressure.

-- Albert Einstein, as quoted in The New Quotable Einstein, collected and edited by Alice Calaprice, with a foreword by Freeman Dyson (Princeton, NJ, Princeton University Press, 2005), p. 247. That book in turn drew the quote from: Max Born, Physik im Wandel meiner Zeit, (Braunschweig, Vieweg,
1966).


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The selection of the above quotes and the writing of the accompanying notes was performed by the author David Paul Wagner.

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