Thursday, February 23, 2023

What Albert Einstein really said!


All photos courtesy of Unsplash

Albert Einstein is supposed to have said, ‘Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid.’ From these words, many people have got great comfort and encouragement, and rightly so. However, there’s every indication that this quotation is, in fact, a fake as far as Einstein is concerned. The quotation is not in any definitive, authenticated list of Einstein’s many sourced sayings or quotable quotes. Actually, the first written reference you can find to it is in a book written by Matthew Kelly, published in 2004, nearly half a century after Albert Einstein’s death in 1955. 


However, at the same time, there are quite a number of genuine Albert Einstein quotations about spiritual matters. Let’s have a look at some of them for a few minutes. The first area we’ll look at is Einstein’s view of the universe and its creator. 


He wrote: ‘In view of such harmony in the cosmos which I, with my limited human mind, am able to recognize, there are yet people who say there is no God. But what really makes me angry is that they quote me for the support of such views.’ 


He beautifully illustrated his thoughts on a creator in imagining: ‘We are in the position of a little child, entering a huge library whose walls are covered to the ceiling with books in many different [languages]. The child knows that someone must have written those books. It does not know who or how. It does not understand the languages in which they are written. [But] the child notes a definite plan in the arrangement of the books, a mysterious order, which it does not comprehend, but only dimly suspects. That, it seems to me, is the attitude of the human mind, even the greatest and most cultured, toward God.’ He concluded that ‘God is a mystery. But a comprehensible mystery. I have nothing but awe when I observe the laws of nature. There are not laws without a lawgiver, but how does this lawgiver look? Certainly not like a man magnified."

In talking about the likes of today’s Richard Dawkins, he said, ‘I do not share the crusading spirit of the professional atheist’. In this respect, although he certainly did not believe in a personal God, Einstein indicated that he would never seek to oppose such a belief in anyone because ‘such a belief seems to me preferable to the lack of any [supernatural] outlook.’


Secondly, we note that Albert Einstein had a favourable view of the Lord Jesus Christ. He said - ‘I am enthralled by the luminous figure of the Nazarene’, and ‘No one can read the Gospels without feeling the actual presence of Jesus. His personality pulsates in every word. No myth is filled with such life.’ He also said, ‘If one purges the Judaism of the Prophets and [the] Christianity as Jesus Christ taught it of all subsequent additions, especially those of the priests, one is left with a teaching which is capable of curing all the social ills of humanity’.


Sadly, he also said things that went against the teaching of Jesus, whom he admired. He said, ‘I do not believe in the God of theology who rewards good and punishes evil.’ Einstein never considered that Jesus spoke more on the subject of what we might call ‘heaven-and-hell’ theology than any other person whose words are recorded in the New Testament. 


Many so-called Christian thoughts today can be proved to be of merely human origin, while at the same time, we have all the views we need, provided by God and inspired in the Bible. Why not check out the authentic sayings of Jesus for yourself? For instance, Jesus said, ‘I am the way, the truth and the life’, which He said meant that no one can come to God the Father except through Him. Jesus also said, ‘I am the good shepherd: the good shepherd giveth his life for the sheep’. Jesus died that those who believe in Him – the sheep - should not die spiritually but have everlasting life. If only Einstein had believed that. 


Mahatma Gandhi was quite right when he said about Jesus: ‘A man who was completely innocent, offered himself as a sacrifice for the good of others, including his enemies, and became the ransom of the world. It was a perfect act.’  Thanks for reading this.

Written by a guest blogger



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