12 September 2007

"The significant problems we face cannot be solved at the same level of thinking we were at when we created them."

"Nor do I take into account a danger of starting a chain reaction of a scope great enough to destroy part or all of the planet...But it is not necessary to imagine the earth being destroyed like a nova by a stellar explosion to understand vividly the grow ing scope of atomic war and to recognize that unless another war is prevented it is likely to bring destruction on a scale never before held possible, and even now hardly conceived, and that little civilization would survive it."

"The real problem is in the hearts and minds of men. It is easier to denature plutonium than to denature the evil spirit of man."

"Politics is a pendulum whose swings between anarchy and tyranny are fueled by perpetually rejuvenated illusions."

"Heroism on command, senseless violence, and all the loathsome nonsense that goes by the name of patriotism -- how passionately I hate them!"

"Few are those who see with their own eyes and feel with their own hearts."

"One does not make wars less likely by formulating rules of warfare...

war cannot be humanized. It can only be eliminated..."

“In essence, the conflict that exists today is no more than an old-style struggle for power, once again presented to mankind in semi-religious trappings. The difference is that, this time, the development of atomic power has imbued the struggle with a ghostly character; for both parties know and admit that, should the quarrel deteriorate into actual war, mankind is doomed. Despite this knowledge, statesmen in responsible positions on both sides continue to employ the well-known technique of seeking to intimidate and demoralize the opponent by marshaling superior military strength. They do so even though such a policy entails the risk of war and doom. Not one statesman in a position of responsibility has dared to pursue the only course that holds out any promise of peace, the course of supranational security, since for a statesman to follow such a course would be tantamount to political suicide. Political passions, once they have been fanned into flame, exact their victims .

24 August 2007

Einstein on politics 3

"Force always attracts men of low morality, and I believe it to be an invariable rule that

tyrants of genius are succeeded by scoundrels."

“As long as armies exist, any serious conflict will lead to war.”

“It is characteristic of the military mentality that non-human factors are held essential, while the human being, his desires and thoughts, are considered as unimportant and secondary.”

“You cannot simultaneously prevent and prepare for war.”

“To concentrate on the problems and aspirations which all thinking men share creates a sense of comradeship that is eventually bound to reunite scholars and artists of all nations.”

“Warfare cannot be humanized. It can only be abolished.”

"The pioneers of a warless world are the youth who refuse military service."

“A large part of history is replete with the struggle for human rights, an eternal struggle in which final victory can never be won. But to tire in that struggle would mean the ruin of society.”

“Only understanding for our neighbors, justice in our dealings, and willingness to help our fellow men can give human society permanence and assure security for the individual.”

“We scientists, whose tragic destination has been to help in making the methods of annihilation more gruesome and more effective, must consider it our solemn and transcendent duty to do all in our power in preventing these weapons from being used for the brutal purpose for which they were invented. What task could possibly be more important to us? What social aim could be closer to our hearts?”

“Human beings, vegetables, or cosmic dust; we all dance to a mysterious tune, intoned in the distance by an invisible piper.”

24 July 2007

Einstein on politics 2

"Peace cannot be achieved through violence, it can only be attained through understanding."

"Mankind's desire for peace can be realized

only by the creation of a world government."

"Every thoughtful, well-meaning and conscientious human being

should assume in time of peace,

the solemn and unconditional obligation

not to participate in any war, for any reason

or to lend support of any kind, whether direct or indirect."

"The unleashed power of the atom has changed everything

save our modes of thinking, and thus we drift toward unparalleled catastrophe."

"Technological progress is like an axe in the hands of a pathological criminal."

"Since I do not foresee that atomic energy is to be a great boon for a long time, I have to say that for the present it is a menace. Perhaps it is well that it should be. It many intimidate the human race into bringing order into it's international affairs, which without the pressure of fear, it would not do."

"But could not our situation be compared to one of a menacing epidemic? People are unable to view this situation in its true light, for their eyes are blinded by passion. General fear and anxiety create hatred and aggressiveness. The adaptation to warlike aims and activities has corrupted the mentality of man; as a result, intelligent, objective and humane thinking has hardly any effect and is even suspected and persecuted as unpatriotic."

"In our time the military mentality is still more dangerous than formerly because the offensive weapons have become much more powerful than the defensive ones. Therefore, it leads, by necessity, to preventive war. The general insecurity that goes hand in hand with this results in the sacrifice of the citizen's civil rights to the supposed welfare of the state. Political witch-hunting, controls of all sorts (e.g., control of teaching and research, of the press, and so forth) appear inevitable, and for this reason do not encounter that popular resistance, which, were it not for the military mentality, would provide protection. A reappraisal of all values gradually takes place insofar as everything that does not clearly serve the utopian ends is regarded and treated as inferior."

01 June 2007

Einstein on politics

"An empty stomach is not a good political advisor."

"Nationalism is an infantile sickness. It is the measles of the human race."

"We shall require a substantially new manner of thinking if mankind is to survive."

‘The release of atomic energy has not created a new problem. It has merely made more urgent the necessity of solving an existing one.

“Violence sometimes may have cleared away obstructions quickly, but it never has proved itself creative.”

"Why does this applied science, which saves work and makes life easier, bring us so little happiness? The simple answer runs: Because we have not yet learned to make sensible use of it."

"The discovery of nuclear chain reactions need not bring about the destruction of mankind any more than did the discovery of matches. We only must do everything in our power to safeguard against its abuse. Only a supranational organization, equipped with a sufficiently strong executive power, can protect us."

"Any intelligent fool can make things bigger, more complex, and more violent. It takes a touch of genius -- and a lot of courage -- to move in the opposite direction."

"He who joyfully marches to music in rank and file has already earned my contempt. He has been given a large brain by mistake, since for him the spinal cord would fully suffice. This disgrace to civilization should be done away with at once. Heroism at command, senseless brutality, deplorable love-of-country stance, how violently I hate all this, how despicable and ignoble war is; I would rather be torn to shreds than be a part of so base an action! It is my conviction that killing under the cloak of war is nothing but an act of murder."

“ Peace cannot be kept by force, it can only be kept by understanding.”

24 March 2007

Einstein on religion 3

"In the temple of science are many mansions, and various indeed are they that dwell therein and the motives that have led them hither. Many take to science out of a joyful sense of superior intellectual power; science is their own special sport to which they look for vivid experience and the satisfaction of ambition; many others are to be found in the temple who have offered the products of their brains on this altar for purely utilitarian purposes. Were an angel of the Lord to come and drive all the people belonging to these two categories out of the temple, the assemblage would be seriously depleted, but there would still be some men, of both present and past times, left inside"

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

"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."

"A man's ethical behavior should be based effectually on sympathy, education, and social ties and needs; no religious basis is necessary. Man would indeed be in a poor way if he had to be restrained by fear of punishment and hope of reward after death."

"The mystical trend of our time, which shows itself particularly in the rampant growth of the so-called Theosophy and Spiritualism, is for me no more than a symptom of weakness and confusion. Since our inner experiences consist of reproductions, and combinations of sensory impressions, the concept of a soul without a body seem to me to be empty and devoid of meaning."

"It was, of course, a lie what you read about my religious convictions, a lie which is being systematically repeated. I do not believe in a personal God and I 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."

"I am convinced that some political and social activities and practices of the Catholic

organizations are detrimental and even dangerous for the community as a whole, here and everywhere. I mention here only the fight against birth control at a time when overpopulation in various countries has become a serious threat to the health of people and a grave obstacle to any attempt to organize peace on this planet."

24 January 2007

Einstein on religion

"Few people are capable of expressing with equanimity opinions which differ from the prejudices of their social environment. Most people are even incapable of forming such opinions."

"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."

"The minority, the ruling class at present, has the schools and press, usually the Church as well, under its thumb. This enables it to organize and sway the emotions of the masses, and make its tool of them."

"True religion is real living; living with all one's soul, with all one's goodness and


"When the solution is simple, God is answering."

"The most important function of art and science is to

Awaken the cosmic religious feeling and keep it alive."

"I maintain that cosmic religiousness is the strongest and most noble driving force of scientific research."

"I cannot imagine a God who rewards and punishes the objects of his creation, whose

purposes are modeled after our own -- a God, in short, who is but a reflection of human

frailty. Neither can I believe that the individual survives the death of his body, although feeble souls harbor such thoughts through fear or ridiculous egotisms."

"The religion of the future will be a cosmic religion. The religion which based on experience, which refuses dogmatic. If there's any religion that would cope the scientific needs it will be Buddhism...."

"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."