Weekend Einstein

One thing I have learned in a long life: that all our science, measured against reality, is primitive and childlike—and yet it is the most precious thing we have.

—Quoted in Albert Einstein: Creator and Rebel, by Banesh Hoffmann (New York: Viking, 1972), v; The Expanded Quotable Einstein, collected and edited by Alice Calaprice (Princeton University Press, 2000), p. 261

Knowledge:

The search for truth and knowledge is one of the finest attributes of a man, though often is most loudly voiced by those who strive for it the least.

Authority:

To punish me for my contempt of authority, fate has made me an authority myself.

Truth:

It is difficult to say what truth is, but sometimes it is easy to recognize a falsehood.

Cooperation:

A hundred times a day I remind myself that my inner and outer lives are based on the labors of other people, living and dead, and that I must exert myself in order to give in the same measure as I have received and am still receiving.

Wisdom:

Wisdom is not a product of schooling, but of the lifelong attempt to acquire it.

Greatness:

There is only one road to human greatness: through the school of hard knocks.

Happiness:

A happy man is too satisfied with the present to dwell too much on the future.

Fame:

With fame I become more and more stupid, which of course is a very common phenomenon.

Life:

Life is sacred, that is to say, it is the supreme value, to which all other values are subordinate.

Ageing:

I have reached an age when, if someone tells me to wear socks, I don’t have to.

Praise:

The only way to escape the personal corruption of praise is to go on working.

Problems:

Fear or stupidity has always been the basis of most human actions.

Relativity:

An hour sitting with a pretty girl on a park bench passes like a minute, but a minute sitting on a hot stove seems like an hour.

Goals:

One should not pursue goals that are easily achieved. One must develop an instinct for what one can barely achieve through one’s greatest efforts.

Racism:

The only remedies against race and prejudice are enlightenment and education. This is a slow and painstaking process.

Solitude:

I lived in that solitude which is so painful in youth, but delicious in the years of maturity.

Value:

Try not to become a man of success but rather try to become a man of value.

Imagination:

When I examine myself and my methods of thought, I come close to the conclusion that the gift of imagination has meant more to me than my talent for absorbing absolute knowledge.

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