16Dec2016

Einstein’s Letter About God

Einstein

Do Scientists Pray? Einstein answers a little girl’s question about Science vs. Religion. He was always being asked his opinion on life, God and the Universe.

“Everyone who is seriously involved in the pursuit of science becomes convinced that some spirit is manifest in the laws of the universe, one that is vastly superior to that of man.”

Whether in their inadvertently brilliant reflections on gender politics or in their seemingly simple but profound questions about how the world works, kids have a singular way of stripping the most complex of cultural phenomena down to their bare essence, forcing us to reexamine our layers of assumptions.

Take, for instance, the age-old tension between science and religion, which has occupied the minds of luminaries from Galileo to Carl Sagan, as well as some of today’s most renowned scientific minds.

The enormous cultural baggage of the question didn’t stop a little girl from New York named Phyllis from posing it to none other than the great Albert Einstein in a 1936 letter found in Dear Professor Einstein: Albert Einstein’s Letters to and from Children (public library) — the same delightful collection that gave us Einstein’s encouraging words to women in science.

The Riverside Church

January 19, 1936

My dear Dr. Einstein,

We have brought up the question: Do scientists pray? in our Sunday school class. It began by asking whether we could believe in both science and religion. We are writing to scientists and other important men, to try and have our own question answered.

We will feel greatly honored if you will answer our question: Do scientists pray, and what do they pray for?

We are in the sixth grade, Miss Ellis’s class.

Respectfully yours,

Phyllis

Only five days later, Einstein wrote back — isn’t it lovely when cultural giants respond to children’s sincere curiosity? — and his answer speaks to the same spiritual quality of science that Carl Sagan extolled decades later and Ptolemy did millennia earlier. Six years prior, Einstein had explored that very subject, in far more complicated language and mind-bending rhetoric, in his legendary conversation with the Indian philosopher Tagore.

January 24, 1936

Dear Phyllis,

I will attempt to reply to your question as simply as I can. Here is my answer:

Scientists believe that every occurrence, including the affairs of human beings, is due to the laws of nature. Therefore a scientist cannot be inclined to believe that the course of events can be influenced by prayer, that is, by a supernaturally manifested wish.

However, we must concede that our actual knowledge of these forces is imperfect, so that in the end the belief in the existence of a final, ultimate spirit rests on a kind of faith. Such belief remains widespread even with the current achievements in science.

But also, everyone who is seriously involved in the pursuit of science becomes convinced that some spirit is manifest in the laws of the universe, one that is vastly superior to that of man. In this way the pursuit of science leads to a religious feeling of a special sort, which is surely quite different from the religiosity of someone more naive.

With cordial greetings, Yours A. Einstein

 

Albert Einstein was an amazing physicist. He figured out so many universal principles and equations that he was way ahead of his fellow scientists at any point of time. But he is also remembered for another thing; a quality which made people call him a genius: his words.

Here are 10 things out of the numerously wonderful things he had said; 10 golden lessons that you can put to use in your everyday life.

1. A person who never made a mistake never tried anything new.

2. Education is what remains after one has forgotten what one has learned in school.

3. I am enough of an artist to draw freely upon my imagination. Imagination is more important than knowledge. Knowledge is limited. Imagination encircles the world.

4. The secret to creativity is knowing how to hide your sources.

5. The value of a man should be seen in what he gives and not in what he is able to receive. Try not to become a man of success, but rather try to become a man of value.

6. There are two ways to live: you can live as if nothing is a miracle; you can live as if everything is a miracle.

7. When I examine myself and my methods of thought, I come to the conclusion that the gift of fantasy has meant more to me than any talent for abstract, positive thinking.

8. In order to be an immaculate member of a flock of sheep, one must above all be a sheep oneself.

9. You have to learn the rules of the game. And then you have to play better than anyone else.

10. The important thing is not to stop questioning. Curiosity has its own reason for existing.

Source: Brain Pickings

 

Definitive Guide to Homeschooling

It is perfectly legal to educate your child at home in the UK. In fact, the government estimates that 0.6% of children are home educated. This means that up to 80, 000 children in the UK do not attend school and are taught either by their parents or private tutors. Reasons for home educating children vary, but parents most commonly cite concerns with the National Curriculum as the main issue affecting their decision. Go HERE for more

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