Posted by Gan Uesli Starling on February 23, 2001 at 15:20:41:
Monotheists are very fond of quoting Einstein. But here is a quote
from Einstein which you will never hear them repeat. I cite verbatim
from "Science, Philosophy and Religion, A Symposium," published by the
Conference on Science, Philosophy and Religion in Their Relation to
the Democratic Way of Live, Inc., New York, 1941. Reprinted also in
"Ideas and Opinions," by Albert Einstein, ISBN: 0-517-003937.
Here is the quote:
"In their struggle for the ethical good, teachers of religion
must have the stature to give up the doctrine of a personal God,
that is, give up that source of fear and hope which in the past
placed such vast power in the hands of priests. In their labors
they will have to avail themselves of those forces which are
of cultivating the Good, the True, and the Beautiful in
Einstein considered himself to be a religious person, a fact which
monotheists are often happy to remind everyone. But just what did
he mean by that? Let's find out! Here, in Albert's own words is
the full explanation.
Quoted from an address at Princeton Theological Seminary, May 19, 1939;
published in "Out of My Later Years," New York; Philosophical
Einstein's concept of religion:
"[A] person who is religiously enlightened appears to me
to be one who has, to the best of his ability, liberated
himself from the fetters of his selfish desires and is
preoccupied with thoughts, feelings, and aspirations to
which he clings because of their superpersonal value.
I've had to read up on Buddhism for an earlier article in this same
series. So it is that the following quote by Einstein struck me very
oddly indeed. You figure it out...
Quoted from Mein Weltbild, Amsterdam: Querido Verlag, 1934.
"The true value of a human being is determined primarily
by the measure and sense in which he has attained
liberation from the self."
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