Which Albert Einstein Mind Blowing Quotes Of Life, Religion, Learning And Science Are Highly Praised And Hotly Debated?

Read to find out which Albert Einstein mind blowing quotes of life, religion, learning and science that claimed to be so popular and provocative.

Although Albert Einstein is lauded for his scientific mind, he was also a great philosopher.

This German-born theoretical physicist strongly agreed the significance and educational value of methodology as well as history and philosophy of science.

In other words, science and philosophy complement each other.

Albert Einstein mind blowing quotes

In 1944, Einstein wrote to professor of physical sciences, Robert Ambrose Thornton:

“So many people today — and even professional scientists—seem to me like somebody who has seen thousands of trees but has never seen a forest. A knowledge of the historic and philosophical background gives that kind of independence from prejudices of his generation from which most scientists are suffering. This independence created by philosophical insight is — in my opinion — the mark of distinction between a mere artisan or specialist and a real seeker after truth.”

(I fully agree with you about the significance and educational value, Archival Call Number: 61-574, Thornton, Robert A. (Receiver), 1944-12-07, Einstein Archives Online)

(Read the full letter here.)

If you read up his essays, articles, letters, giving interviews and speeches, you would discover that he looked up to great philosophers, from Ernst Mach, Immanuel Kant, David Hume, to Baruch Spinoza and Arthur Schopenhauer.

In 1915, he wrote a letter to Moritz Schlick, saying that he was very inspired by Scottish philosopher David Hume’s ‘A Treatise of Human Nature‘ just before proposing special relativity in 1905:

“In this also you saw correctly that this line of thought [Positivism] had a great influence on my efforts, and more specifically, E. Mach, and even more so Hume, whose Treatise of Human Nature I had studied avidly and with admiration shortly before discovering the theory of relativity. It is very possible that without these philosophical studies I would not have arrived at the solution.”

“Auch darin haben Sie richtig gesehen, dass diese Denkrichtung [Positivismus] von grossem Einfluss auf meine Bestrebungen gewesen ist, und zwar E. Mach und noch viel mehr Hume, dessen Traktat über den Verstand ich kurz vor Auffindung der Relativitätstheorie mit Eifer und Bewunderung studierte. Es ist sehr gut möglich, dass ich ohne diese philosophischen Studien nicht auf die Lösung gekommen wäre.” (German)

(The Collected Papers Of Albert Einstein, Volume 8, The Berlin Years: Correspondence, 1914-1918 (English Translation Supplement), Translated By Ann M. Hentschel, Doc. 165, To Moritz Schlick, Berlin, 13 Wittelsbacher St., Tuesday. 14 December 1915, P. 161)

(The quote in German is found in: The Collected Papers Of Albert Einstein, Volume 8A, The Berlin Years: Correspondence, 1914-1917, Edited by Robert Schulmann, A. J. Kox, Michel Janssen, and József Illy, Doc. 165, To Moritz Schlick, Berlin, 13 Wittelsbacher St., Dienstag. 14 December 1915, P. 220)

(The quote in German is also found in: Ich habe gestern Ihre Abhandlung erhalten, Archival Call Number: 21-610, Schlick, Moritz (Receiver), 1915-12-14)

Einstein’s own philosophical ideas were wide-ranging,and often very profound.

Albert Einstein Mind Blowing Quotes

Now, let’s check out this authentic selection of Albert Einstein mind blowing quotes of life, religion, science,  so we can make our own decision.


“I know that philosophically a murderer is not responsible for his crime; nevertheless, I must protect myself from unpleasant contacts.” – Albert Einstein

(What Life Means To Einstein: An Interview By George Sylvester Viereck, The Contemporary Great, The Saturday Evening Post, October 26, 1929, P. 114)


“The word God is for me nothing more than the expression and product of human weaknesses, the Bible a collection of honorable, but still primitive legends which are nevertheless pretty childish.” – Albert Einstein

“Das Wort Gott ist für mich nichts als Ausdruck und Produkt menschlicher Schwächen, die Bibel eine Sammlung ehrwürdiger aber doch reichlich primitiver Legenden.” (German)

(Einstein And Heisenberg: The Controversy Over Quantum Physics By Konrad Kleinknecht, Springer, 2019 , Ch. 6, Social Affinities, Einstein’s Religion, P. 152)

(The quote in German is found in: Jüdisches Denken: Theologie – Philosophie – Mystik: Band 3: Von Der Religions – Kritik Der Renaissance Zu Orthodoxie Und Reform Im 19 Jahrhundert By Karl Erich Grözinger, Campus Verlag GmbH, 2009, P. 161)

(The original letter together with the English translation is found here.)

Note: From the letter by Einstein sent to Princeton University letterhead, to Eric B. Gutkind, on January 3, 1954, as response to Gutkind’s book “Choose Life: The Biblical Call to Revolt”.


“I would not think that philosophy and reason itself will be man’s guide in the foreseeable future; however, they will remain the most beautiful sanctuary they have always been for the chosen.” – Albert Einstein

(Einstein Lived Here By Abraham Pais, Clarendon Press, 1994, P. 122)

(The quote in German is found in: Ich erfahre von einem hiesigen Lümmel, der das Glück hatte, Sie besuchen zu dürfen, Archival Call Number: 34-75, Croce, Benedetto (Receiver), 1944-06-07, Einstein Archives Online)

Note: From the letter to Italian idealist philosopher, Benedetto Croce, June 7, 1944.


“The fact that man produces a concept “I” besides the totality of his mental and emotional experiences or perceptions does not prove that there must be any specific existence behind such a concept. We are succumbing to illusions produced by our self-created language, without reaching a better understanding of anything.” – Albert Einstein

(Einstein’s God: Albert Einstein’s Quest As A Scientist And As A Jew To Replace A Forsaken God By Robert N. Goldman, Jason Aronson, Inc., 1997, P. 89)


“Because our spiritual experiences consist of reproductions and combinations of sensory impressions, it seems to me that the conception of a soul without a body is empty and meaningless.” – Albert Einstein

“Da unsere seelischen Erlebnisse in Reproduktionen und Kombinationen sinnlicher Eindrücke bestehen, so scheint mir die Konzep- tion einer Seele ohne Körper leer und nichtssagend.” (German)

(The Collected Papers Of Albert Einstein, Volume 12, The Berlin Years: Correspondence, January-December 1921 (English Translation Supplement), Edited By Diana Kormos Buchwald, Ze’ev Rosenkranz, Tilman Sauer, Jözsef Illy, and Virginia Iris Holmes Translated By Ann M. Hentschel, Doc. 42, To Lili Halpern-Neuda, Berlin, 5, February 1921, P. 36)

(The German quote is found in: The Collected Papers Of Albert Einstein, Volume 12: The Berlin Years: Correspondence, January-December 1921, Edited By Diana Kormos Buchwald, Ze’ev Rosenkranz, Tilman Sauer, József Illy, & Virginia Iris Holmes, Doc.41, To Lili Halpern-Neuda, Berlin, Den, 5. II.21, P. 71)

Note: From the Letter to Viennese poet Lili Halpern-Neuda, February 5, 1921.


“From reading philosophical books I had to learn that I stand there like a blind man before a painting. I grasp only the inductive method at work … but the works of speculative philosophy are inaccessible to me…” – Albert Einstein

“Bei der Lektüre philosophischer Bücher habe ich erfahren müssen, dass ich dastehe wie ein Blinder vor einem Gemälde. Ich begreife nur die induktiv zu Werke gehende Methode … die Werke der spekulativen Philosophie sind mir aber unzugänglich…” (German)

(The Collected Papers Of Albert Einstein, Volume 8, The Berlin Years: Correspondence, 1914-1918 (English Translation Supplement), Translated By Ann M. Hentschel, Doc. 330, To Eduard Hartman, Berlin, 27, April 1917, P. 321)

(The German quote is found in: The Collected Papers Of Albert Einstein, Volume 8, Part A: The Berlin Years: Correspondence, January 1914-1917, Edited By Robert Schulmann, A. J. Kox, Michel Janssen, and József Illy, Doc. 330, To Eduard Hartman, Berlin, 27 April 1917, P. 440)

Note: From the letter to German philosopher, author of ‘Philosophy of the Unconscious‘, Eduard Hartmann, April 27, 1917.


“To assume the existence of an unperceivable being . . .does not facilitate understanding the orderliness we find in the perceivable world.” – Albert Einstein

(The Ultimate Quotable Einstein Collected And Edited By Alice Calaprice, With A Foreword By Freeman Dyson, Princeton University Press, 2010, On Religion, God, And Philosophy, P. 341)

(The quote in German is found in: Die Frage sollte wohl besser lauten, Archival Call Number: 59-83, Albaugh, David Hinson (Receiver), 1953-07-21, Einstein Archives Online)

Note: From the letter to David Hinson Albaugh, an Iowa student who asked, “What is God?” July 21, 1953.


“The knowledge of truth as such is wonderful, but it is so little capable of acting as a guide that it cannot prove even the justification and the value of the aspiration toward that very knowledge of truth. Here we face, therefore, the limits of the purely rational conception of our existence.” – Albert Einstein

“Wie herrlich auch die Erkenntnis der Wahrheit als solche sein mag, als Führerin ist sie so ohnmächtig, dass sie nicht einmal die Berechtigung und den Wert des Strebens nach eben dieser Erkenntnis der Wahrheit zu begründen vermag. Hier liegt also die Grenze der rein rationalen Erfassung unseres Daseins.” (German)

(Out Of My Later Years: The Scientist, Philosopher, And Man Portrayed Through His Own Words By Albert Einstein, Open Road Media, 2011, 8. Science And Religion, I)

(The quote in German is found in: Das Ziel, Lichtig, Ignaz (Mentioned In), Archival Call Number: 28-493, 1939-05-19)


“A difficult existence suits men better, after all…Read a pretty translation of Odysseus.When I was going through hard times I used to read it.” – Albert Einstein

(Item No. 54, Historical Auction 84, April 18, 2016, P. 58)

(The quote in German is found in: Ich habe so lange nicht geschrieben, weil ich mein altes Gehirn mit einem schweren Problem zermartert habe.., Archival Call Number: 75-933, Einstein, Eduard (Receiver), Einstein, Hans Albert (Mentioned In), 1937-05-25, Einstein Archives Online)

Note: From the letter to his son Eduard Einstein, sharing his philosophy about the world, life and aging.

The image of the original letters in German, together with the English translation is found here.


“There’s nothing more joyful and satisfying than what you’ve fought to create and shape into the best form possible.” – Albert Einstein

(Item No. 56, Historical Auction 84, April 18, 2016, P. 61)

(The quote in German is found in: Nach so langer Zeit ist endlich die Schweiz von der, Archival Call Number: 75-807, Einstein, Eduard (Receiver), 1944-11-19, Einstein Archives Online)

The image of the original letters in German, together with the English translation is found here.)

Note: From the letter to his son Eduard Einstein, Einstein philosophisized about old age, encouraged his son to write and recommended him reading materials.


“Study and in general the pursuit of truth and beauty is a sphere of activity in which we are permitted to remain children all our lives.” – Albert Einstein

“Das Studium und allgemein das Streben nach Wahrheit und Schönheit ist ein Gebiet, auf dem wir das ganze Leben lang Kinder bleiben dürfen.” (German)

(Albert Einstein, The Human Side: Glimpses From His Archives, Edited By Helen Dukas And Banesh Hoffmann, With A New Foreword By Ze’ev Rosenkranz, Princeton University Press, 2013, Glimpses From His Archives, P. 83)

(The quote in German is found in: Albert Einstein, The Human Side: Glimpses From His Archives, Edited By Helen Dukas And Banesh Hoffmann, With A New Foreword By Ze’ev Rosenkranz, Princeton University Press, 2013, German Originals, P. 151)

(The quote in German is also found in: Das Studium und allgemein das Streben nach Wahrheit, Archival Call Number: 36-588, Enriques, Adriana (Receiver), 1921-10-01, Einstein Archives Online)

Note: Handwritten autographed note to Adriana Enriques, the young daughter of a fellow professor Federigo Enriques in Bologna, Italy, October 1, 1921)


“To think with fear of the end of one’s life is pretty general with human beings. It is one of the means nature uses to conserve the life of the species. Approached rationally that fear is the most unjustified of all fears, for there is no risk of any accidents to one who is dead or not yet born. In short, the fear is stupid but it cannot be helped.” – Albert Einstein

(Letter To The Editor, The New York Times, March 25, 1979, P. 26)

(The quote in English is also found in: To think with fear of the end of, Archival Call Number: 59-472, Dannheisser, Eileen (Receiver), 1953-10-24, Einstein Archives Online)

(Another source of the quote is found in: Time, Volume 144, Issues 10-18, Time Inc., 1994, P. 10)

Note: From the letter to Eileen Danniheisser, a consulting engineer, New Rochelle, N.Y, 1953.


“…on every field poisonous weeds can grow alongside the good corn, when conditions are right I believe these matter more than the soil.”- Albert Einstein

“…auf jedem Acker neben dem guten Getreide giftiges Unkraut wachsen kann, wenn es die Umstände begünstigen; ich glaube an denen liegt es mehr als an dem Boden.” (German)

(The Collected Papers Of Albert Einstein, Volume 9, The Berlin Years: Correspondence, January 1919-April 1920 (English Translation Supplement), Translated By Ann M. Hentschel, Doc. 114, To Jean Perrin, Berlin, 27, September 1919, P. 98)

(The German quote is found in: The Collected Papers Of Albert Einstein, Volume 9: The Berlin Years: Correspondence, January 1919-April 1920, Edited By Diana Kormos Buchwald, Robert Schulmann, József Illy, Daniel J. Kennefick, & Tilman Sauer, Doc. 597, To Jean Perrin, Berlin, 27 IX 1919, P. 171)

Note: From a letter to French physicist Jean Baptiste Perrin, September 27, 1919.


“Where the world ceases to be the scene of our personal hopes and wishes, where we face it as free beings, admiring, questioning, and observing, there we enter the realm of art and science.” – Albert Einstein

“Wo die Welt aufhört, Schauplatz des persönlichen Hoffens Wünschens und Wollens zu sein wo wir uns ihr als freie Geschöpfe bewundernd, fragend,  schauend gegenüberstellen, da treten wir ins Reich der Kunst und Wissenschaft ein.” (German)

(The Ultimate Quotable Einstein Collected And Edited By Alice Calaprice, With A Foreword By Freeman Dyson, Princeton University Press, 2010, On Miscellaneous Subjects, Art And Science, P. 415)

(The quote in German is also found in: The Collected Papers Of Albert Einstein, Volume 7: The Berlin Years: Writings, 1918-1921, Edited by Michael Janssen, Robert Schulmann, József Illy, Christoph Lehner, and Diana Kormos Buchwald, Doc. 51, Artistic And Scientific Experience, P. 380)

Note: From an article published on a magazine on modern art, “Menschen: Zeitschrift Neuer Kunst“, 4 February 1921, P. 19)


“Good acts are like good poetry. They are sensed easily but are only partially understood.” – Albert Einstein

(Letters To Solovine, 1906–1955 By Albert Einstein, Open Road Media, 2011, Letters to Solovine: 1906–1955, April 9, 1947)

(The quote is also found here.)

(The quote in German is found in: Sie waeren schon allein imstande, mein schlechtes Gewissen, Archival Call Number: 21-250, Solovine, Maurice (Moritz) (Receiver), 1947-04-09, Einstein Archives Online)

Note: From a letter to Romanian philosopher and mathematician,  Maurice Solovine, April 9, 1947.


“Authority gone to one’s head is the greatest enemy of truth.” – Albert Einstein

“Autoritätsdusel ist der größte Feind der Wahrheit.” (German)

(The Collected Papers Of Albert Einstein, Volume 1: The Early Years, 1879-1902 (English Translation Supplement), Translated by Anna Beck, Doc. 115, To Jost Winteler, Winterthur, Monday, 8 July, 1901, P. 177)

(The quote in German is found in: The Collected Papers Of Albert Einstein, Volume 1: The Early Years, 1879-1902, Edited By John Stachel, David C. Cassidy, And Robert Schulmann, Doc. 116, To Jost Winteler, Winterthur, Montag, 8 July, 1901, P. 310)


“Behind each cause is still another cause; the end or beginning of all causes has yet to be found.” – Albert Einstein

(Einstein and the Poet: In Search of the Cosmic Man By William Hermanns, Branden Press, 1983, Second Conversation (1943), P. 31)


“Enjoying the joys of others and suffering with them – these are the best guides for man.” – Albert Einstein

“Freude an der Freude und Leid am Leid des Anderen, das sind die besten Führer der Menschen.” (German)

(The Ultimate Quotable Einstein Collected And Edited By Alice Calaprice, With A Foreword By Freeman Dyson, Princeton University Press, 2010, On Humankind, P. 176)

(The quote in German is found in: Besten Dank für den interessanten Brief und die feine Photographie, Archival Call Number: 45-702, Bulgakov, Valentin (Receiver), 1931-11-04, Einstein Archives Online)

Note: From the letter to Valentin Bulgakov, the last secretary of Leo Tolstoy, November 4, 1931.


“He who was never deceived by such a lie (lie of an obliging imagination) does not know the meaning of bliss.” – Albert Einstein

“Wenn sie nie belogen hat (lügt eine liebenswürdige Phantasie), der weiss nicht was selig heisst.” (German)

(The Collected Papers Of Albert Einstein, Volume 5, The Swiss Years: Correspondence, 1902-1914 (English Translation Supplement), Translated By Anna Beck, Doc. 398, To Elsa Löwenthal, Prague, Tuesday, 30 April 1912, P. 291)

(The quote in German is found in: The Collected Papers Of Albert Einstein, Volume 5, The Swiss Years: Correspondence, 1902-1914, Edited by Martin J. Klein, A. J. Kox, and Robert Schulmann, Doc. 389, To Elsa Löwenthal, Prague, Dienstag 30 April 1912, P. 456)

Note: From the letter to Elsa Löwenthal, his second wife and cousin, April 30, 1912.


“Nothing truly valuable arises from ambition or from a mere sense of duty; it stems rather from love and devotion towards men and towards objective things.” – Albert Einstein

(Albert Einstein, The Human Side: New Glimpses From His Archives Selected And Edited By Helen Dukas & Banesh Hoffmann, Princeton University Press, 1981, P. 46)

(The quote in English is also found in: Nothing truly valuable arises from ambition or from mere sense of duty, Archival Call Number: 58-934, Wada, Albert (child) (Receiver), 1947-07-30, Einstein Archives Online)

Note: Letter to an Idaho famer, F.S. Wada, who requested some words that his son, Albert Wada, July 30, 1947.


“It is difficult to say what truth is, but sometimes it is so easy to recognize a falsehood.” – Albert Einstein

(The Ultimate Quotable Einstein Collected And Edited By Alice Calaprice, With A Foreword By Freeman Dyson, Princeton University Press, 2010, On Miscellaneous Subjects, Truth, P. 453)

(The quote in German is found in: Besten Dank für den interessanten Brief und die feine Photographie, Archival Call Number: 60-483, McGuire, Jeremiah (Receiver), 1953-10-24, Einstein Archives Online)

Note: From the letter to American lawyer and politician, Jeremiah McGuire, October 24, 1953


“Whoever is careless with the truth in small matters cannot be trusted in important affairs.” – Albert Einstein

“Wenn es sich um Wahrheit und Gerechtigkeit handelt, gibt es nicht die Unterscheidung zwischen kleinen und großen Problemen.” (German)

(Einstein On Politics: His Private Thoughts And Public Stands On Nationalism, Zionism, War, Peace And The Bomb, Ch. 10. Political Freedom And The Threat Of Nuclear War, 1931-1955, A Final Undelivered Message To The World April 1955, Princeton Univeristy Press, 2013, P. 506)

(The quote in German is also found in: Ich spreche zu Euch heute nicht als ein amerikanischer Bürger und auch nicht als Jude, Archival Call Number: 28-1098, Laue, 1955-04-11, Einstein Archives Online)

Note: Another English translation of this quote is:

“Who does not take the truth seriously in small matters cannot be expected to be truthful in larger matters.” – Albert Einstein

(The speech in both German and English translation is found here.)

Note: From “Albert Einstein On Israeli-Arab Relations” published in New Outlook: Middle East Monthly, Volume 1, Number 1, July 1957, P. 5.

It was said that Einstein was supposed to deliver this speech on Israel’s 7th Independence Day, but died before he could ever finish and deliver the address.


“Truth is a verbal concept, which cannot be submitted to mathematical proof.” – Albert Einstein

(Death Of A Genius: His Fourth Dimension, Time Overtakes Einstein By William Miller, Life Magazine Vol.38, No.18, May 2, 1955, P. 64)


“…do not be angry at my wild ranting; people must vent themselves in order not to burst.” – Albert Einstein

“…der Mensch muss sich ausreden, um nicht zu zerplatzen.” (German)

(The Collected Papers Of Albert Einstein, Volume 8, The Berlin Years: Correspondence, 1914-1918 (English Translation Supplement), Translated by Ann M. Hentschel, Doc. 403, To Heinrich Zangger, Berlin, 6 December 1917, P. 412)

(The German quote is found in: The Collected Papers Of Albert Einstein, Volume 8, Part A: The Berlin Years: Correspondence, 1914-1917, Edited by Robert Schulmann, A. J. Kox, Michel Janssen, and József Illy, Doc. 403, To Heinrich Zangger, Berlin, 6 XII 17, P. 562)

Note: From a letter to Heinrich Zangger, December 6, 1917.


“Truth tends to appear modestly and in simple dress.” – Albert Einstein

“Wahrheit pflegt bescheiden und in schlichtem Gewande einherzugehen.” (German)

(The Berlin Years: Correspondence, May-December 1920, And Supplementary Correspondence, 1909-1920 (English Translation Supplement), Edited by Diana Kormos Buchwald, Tilman Sauer, Ze’ev Rosenkranz, Josef Illy & Virginia Iris Holmes, Translated By Ann Hentschel, Doc. 5, To Hans Wittig, Berlin, 3 May 1920, P. 151)

(The quote in German is found in: The Collected Papers Of Albert Einstein, Volume 10: The Berlin Years: Correspondence May-December 1920 / Supplementary Correspondence 1909-1920, Edited By Diana Kormos Buchwald, Tilman Sauer, Ze’ev Rosenkranz, József Illy, And Virgina Iris Holmes, Doc. 5, To Hans Wittig, Berlin, den 3. Mai 20, P. 245)

(The quote in German is also found in: Ich bin gerne bereit, Ihre Arbeit zu prüfen, Archival Call: 45-274, Wittig, Hans (Receiver), 1920-05-03, Einstein Archive Online)

Note: From the letter to Hans Wittig, May 3, 1920.


“…the desire for truth must take precedence over all other desires.” – Albert Einstein

“…das Streben nach Wahrheit allem anderen Streben vorangestellt werden muß.” (German)

(Ideas And Opinions By Albert Einstein, Based On Mein Weltbild, Edited By Carl Seelig, And Other Sources, New Translations And Revisions By Sonja Bargmann, New York: Crown Publishers, Inc., 1954, Part I: Ideas And Opinions, About Freedom, Fascism And Science, P. 30)

(The quote is also found here.)

(The quote in German is found in: Mein Weltbild Von Albert Einstein, Herausgegeben Von Carl Seelig, Ullstein-Taschenbuch-Verlag 2005, I. Wie Ich Die Welt Sehe, Faschismus Und Wissenschaft, Brief An Minister Rocco In Rom, P. 21)

(The quote in German is also found in: Ich bin gerne bereit, Ihre Arbeit zu prüfen, Archival Call: 34-725, Rocco, Alfredo (Receiver), 1931-11-16, Einstein Archive Online)

Note: From the letter to Signor Rocco, Minister of Justice and Education under Mussolini, November 16, 1931.


“There is nothing divine about morality; it is a purely human affair.” – Albert Einstein

“Das Moralische ist ihm keine göttliche,sondern eine rein menschliche Angelegenheit.” (German)

(Ideas And Opinions by Albert Einstein based on Mein Weltbild, translated By Sonja Bargmann, New York: Crown Publishers, Inc., 1954, Pt. I: Ideas And Opinions, The Religious Spirit Of Science, P. 40)

(The quote in German is found in: Mein Weltbild Von Albert Einstein, Herausgegeben Von Carl Seelig, Ullstein-Taschenbuch-Verlag 2005, I. Wie Ich Die Welt Sehe, Die Religiosität der Forschung, P. 18)

(The quote in German is also found in: Albert Einstein: Mein Weltbild. Hrsg. Von Carl Seelig, I. Wie Ich Die Welt Sehe, Die Religiosität der Forschung, P. 21)


“If there is no price to be paid, it is also not of value.” – Albert Einstein

“Was nichts kostet ist auch nichts wert.” (German)

(The Ultimate Quotable Einstein Collected And Edited By Alice Calaprice, With A Foreword By Freeman Dyson, Princeton University Press, 2010, On Life, P. 229)

(The quote in German is also found in: Was nichts kostet ist auch nichts wert., Archival Call Number: 36-572, 1920-06-27, Einstein Archives Online)


“Every reminiscence is colored by today’s being what it is, and therefore by a deceptive point of view.” – Albert Einstein

“Jede Erinnerung ist gefärbt durch das jetzige So-Sein, also durch einen trügerischen Blickpunkt.” (German)

(Albert Einstein: Philosopher-Scientist Edited And Translated By Paul Arthur Schilpp, Tudor Publishing Company, 1967, I. Einstein’s Autobiography, Albert Einstein: “Autobiographical Notes” (in German And English Translation), P. 3)

(The quote is also found in: Notes For An Autobiography By Albert Einstein, P. 9, The Saturday Review Of Literature, November, 29 1949)

(The quote in German is found in: Albert Einstein: Philosopher-Scientist Edited And Translated By Paul Arthur Schilpp, Tudor Publishing Company, 1967, I. Einstein’s Autobiography, Albert Einstein: “Autobiographical Notes” (in German And English Translation), P. 2)

Note: Another English translation is:

“Every reminiscence is colored by one’s present state, hence by a deceptive point of view.” – Albert Einstein

(Autobiographical Notes, Translated And Edited By Paul Arthur Schilpp, Open Court, 1949, P. 3)


“Life is short, and the boulder against which one pushes with all one’s might moves from its spot only with long intermissions.” – Albert Einstein

(The Ultimate Quotable Einstein Collected And Edited By Alice Calaprice, With A Foreword By Freeman Dyson, Princeton University Press, 2010, On Life, P. 231)

(The quote in German is found in: Ihr letzter Brief hat mein Gewissen wie ein Dolch getroffen, Archival Call Number: 120-835, Mühsam [Muehsam], Hans (Receiver), 1947-01-22, Einstein Archives Online)

Note: From the letter to physician Hans Muehsam, January 22, 1947.


“Personal existence makes sense through the conviction of the objective value of one’s own strife and action. But if this conviction is not softened by humor, one becomes insufferable.” – Albert Einstein

(The Ultimate Quotable Einstein Collected And Edited By Alice Calaprice, With A Foreword By Freeman Dyson, Princeton University Press, 2010, On Life, P. 231)

(The quote in German is found in: Sinnvolles Leben / Kompromiss / Individuum und Staat., Archival Call Number: 87-347, Fantova, Johanna (Hanne) (Receiver), 1948-10-9, Einstein Archives Online)

Note: From a aphorism to close companion Johanna Fantova, October 9, 1948.


“A life directed chiefly toward the fulfillment of personal desires will sooner or later always lead to bitter disappointment.” – Albert Einstein

“Ein Leben, das vor allem auf die Erfüllung persönlicher Bedürfnisse ausgerichtet ist, führt früher oder später zu bitterer Enttäuschung.” (German)

(The Ultimate Quotable Einstein Collected And Edited By Alice Calaprice, With A Foreword By Freeman Dyson, Princeton University Press, 2010, On Life, P. 232)

(The quote in English is also found in: It does not seem reasonable to me, Archival Call Number: 60-235, Lee, Olga (Receiver), 1954-01-16, Einstein Archives Online)

Note: From the letter to Olga Lee, January 16, 1954.


“A genius is one to whom ideas occur.” – Albert Einstein

“Genie ist, wenn einem etwas einfällt.” (German)

(Einstein, The Searcher: His Work Explained From Dialogues With Einstein By Alexander Moszkowski, Translated By Henry L. Brose, London: Methuen & Co. Ltd., 1921, Ch. V: The Discoverer, P. 95)

(The quote is also found here.)

(Another source is found here.)

(The quote in German is found in: Einstein: Einblicke In seine Gedankenwelt; Gemeinverständliche Betrachtungen Über Die Relativitätstheorie Und Ein Neuses Weltsystem, Entwickelt Aus Gesprächen Mit Einstein Von Alexander Moszkowski, Hamburg: Hoffmann Und Campe, 1921, Der Entdecker, P. 100)

(The quote in German is also found here.)


“If you would live a happy life, tie it to a goal, not to people or things.” – Albert Einstein

“Wenn du ein glückliches Leben willst, verbinde es mit einem Ziel, nicht aber mit Menschen oder Dingen.” (German)

(Einstein: A Centenary Volume By Albert Einstein, Edited By Anthony Philip French, Harvard University Press, 1979, P. 32)


“The most important human endeavor is the striving for morality in our actions. Our inner balance and even our very existence depend on it. Only morality in our actions can give beauty and dignity to life.” – Albert Einstein

“Das Streben nach moralischem Handeln ist das wichtigste Streben der Menschen. Sein inneres Gleichgewicht ja seine Existenz hängen davon ab. Moralisches Handeln allein kann dem Leben Schönheit und Würde verleihen.” (German)

(Einstein In America: The Scientist’s Conscience in The Age Of Hitler And Hiroshima By Jamie Sayen, Crown Publishing Group, 1985, P. 162)

(The quote in German is found in: Albert Einstein, The Human Side: New Glimpses From His Archives Selected And Edited By Helen Dukas & Banesh Hoffmann, Princeton University Press, 1981, German Originals, P. 156)

(The quote in German is also found in: Das Streben nach moralischem Handeln ist das wichtigste Streben des Menschen, Archival Call Number: 28-894, Laue, 1950-11-20, Greenway, Cornelius (Receiver), Einstein Archives Online)

Note: From the letter to Cornelius Greenway, a Brooklyn minister, 20 November 1950.


“The basic laws of the universe are simple, but because our senses are limited, we can’t grasp them. There is a pattern in creation.” – Albert Einstein

(Einstein And The Poet: In Search Of the Cosmic Man By William Hermanns, Branden Press, 1983, Fourth Conversation (1954), First Conversation (1930), P. 10)


“The value of a man,…should be seen in what he gives and not in what he is able to receive.” – Albert Einstein

“Der Wert eines Mannes…. sollte in dem bestehen, was er gibt, und nicht in dem, was er zu erlangen vermag.” (German)

(Ideas And Opinions By Albert Einstein, Based On Mein Weltbild, Edited By Carl Seelig, And Other Sources, New Translations And Revisions By Sonja Bargmann, New York: Crown Publishers, Inc., 1954, Part I: Ideas And Opinions, About Education, On Education, P. 62)

(The quote is also found in: Out Of My Later Years: The Scientist, Philosopher, And Man Portrayed Through His Own Words By Albert Einstein, Open Road Media, 2011, 9. Convictions And Beliefs, On Education)

(The quote in German is found in: Albert Einstein: Ausgewahlte Texte, Herausgegeben von Hans Christian Meiser, Munich: Wilhelm Goldmann Verlag, 1986, Über Erziehung (1936), P. 37)

Note: From an address at Albany, New York, on the occasion of the celebration of the tercentenary of higher education in America, October 15, 1936.

Translated by Lina Arranet.


“A forced faithfulness is a bitter fruit for all concerned.” – Albert Einstein

“Erzwungene Treue aber ist für alle Beteiligten eine bittere Frucht.” (German)

(The Ultimate Quotable Einstein Collected And Edited By Alice Calaprice, With A Foreword By Freeman Dyson, Princeton University Press, 2010, On Humankind, P. 186)

(The quote in French is found in: Albert Einstein: Eine Biographie By Albrecht Fölsing, Suhrkamp, 1993, P. 699)

(The quote in German is also found in: Ich kann es gut nachfühlen, dass die von Ihnen beschriebene Situation, Archival Call Number: 59-97, Anderman, Eugenie (Receiver), 1953-06-02, Einstein Archives Online)

Note: From the letter to a woman by the name of Eugenie Anderson, who was seeking advice from Einstein regarding her husband’s infidelity, June 2, 1953.


“The search and striving for truth and knowledge is one of the highest of man’s qualities -though often the pride is most loudly voiced by those who strive the least.” – Albert Einstein

“Das Streben nach Wahrheit und Erkenntnis gehört zum Schönsten, dessen der Mensch fähig ist, wenn auch der Stolz auf dieses Streben meist im Munde derjenigen ist, die am wenigsten von solchem Streben erfüllt sind.” (German)

(The Albert Einstein Collection Volume One: Essays In Humanism, The Theory Of Relativity, And The World As I See It By Albert Einstein, Open Road Media, 2016, 34. The Goal Of Human existence)

(The quote in German is found in: Aus Meinen Späten Jahren By Albert Einstein, Deutsche Verlags-Anstalt, 1979, P. 252)

(The quote in German is also found in: Unsere Zeit ist stolz darauf, dass sie es weit gebracht hat in der intellektuellen Entwicklung der Menschen, Archival Call Number: 28-587, 1943-04-11, Einstein Archives Online)


“Human beings can attain a worthy and harmonious life only if they are able to rid themselves, within the limits of human nature, of striving to fulfill wishes of the material kind. The goal is to raise the spiritual values of society.” – Albert Einstein

(The Ultimate Quotable Einstein Collected And Edited By Alice Calaprice, With A Foreword By Freeman Dyson, Princeton University Press, 2010, On Miscellaneous Subjects, Materialism, P. 443)

(The quote in English is also found in: What has united the Jewry of the world are common tradition and common faith, Archival Call Number: 37-354, 1954-09-19, Einstein Archives Online)

Note: From a planning conference in Princeton of American Friends of Hebrew University, September 19, 1954.


“All my life I have been a friend of well-chosen, sober words and of concise presentation. Pompous phrases and words give me goose bumps whether they deal with the theory of relativity or with anything else.” – Albert Einstein

(The Ultimate Quotable Einstein Collected And Edited By Alice Calaprice, With A Foreword By Freeman Dyson, Princeton University Press, 2010, On Miscellaneous Subjects, Clarity, P. 420)

(The quote in German is found in: Berliner Tageblatt, August 27, 1920, PP. 1-2)

(The quote in German is also found in: The Collected Papers Of Albert Einstein, Volume 7: The Berlin Years: Writings, 1918-1921, Edited by Michael Janssen, Robert Schulmann, József Illy, Christoph Lehner, and Diana Kormos Buchwald, Doc. 45, Anti-Relativity Company, P. 345)


“Propositions arrived at by purely logical means are completely empty as regards reality.” – Albert Einstein

“Durch bloßes logisches Denken vermögen wir keinerlei Wissen über die Erfahrungswelt zu erlangen; alles Wissen über die Wirklichkeit geht von der Erfahrung aus und mündet in ihr.” (German)

(Ideas And Opinions By Albert Einstein, Based On Mein Weltbild, Edited By Carl Seelig, And Other Sources, New Translations And Revisions By Sonja Bargmann, New York: Crown Publishers, Inc., 1954, Part V: Contributions To Science, On The Method Of Theoretical Physics, The Herbert Spencer Lecture, Delivered At Oxford, June 10, 1933, P. 271)

(The quote in German is found in: Mein Weltbild. Hrsg. von Carl Seelig,Europa Verlag, 1953, V. Wissenschaftliche Beitrage, Zur Methodik Der Theoretischen Physik, P. 150)

(The quote in German is also found in: Mein Weltbild Von Albert Einstein, Herausgegeben Von Carl Seelig, Ullstein-Taschenbuch-Verlag 2005, V. Wissenschaftliche Beitrage, Zur Methodik Der Theoretischen Physik, P. 114)


“In human freedom in the philosophical sense I am definitely a disbeliever. Everybody acts not only under external compulsion but also in accordance with inner necessity.” – Albert Einstein

“An Freiheit des Menschen Im Philosophischen Sinne Glaube Ich Keineswegs. Jeder handelt nicht nur unter äußerem Zwang, sondern auch gemäß innerer Notwendigkeit.” (German)

(The World As I See It By Albert Einstein, Translated By Alan Harris, California: The Book Tree, 2007, Part I, The World As I See It, P. 2)

(The quote is also found here.)

(The quote in German is found in: Mein Weltbild Von Albert Einstein, Herausgegeben Von Carl Seelig, Ullstein-Taschenbuch-Verlag 2005, I. Wie Ich Die Welt Sehe, Wie Ich Die Welt Sehe, P. 8)

(The quote in German is also found here.)


“There are two different conceptions about the nature of the universe — the world as a unity dependent on humanity, and the world as reality independent of the human factor.” – Albert Einstein

(Einstein And Tagore Plumb The Truth; Scientist And Poet Exchange Thoughts On The Possibility Of Its Existence Without Relation To Humanity By Dmitri Marianoff, Aug. 10, 1930, P. T2)

(The quote is found in the full article over here.)

(The full article is also found here.)

Note: Conversation between Albert Einstein and poet Rabindranath Tagore, on July 14, 1930.


“Our situation on this earth seems strange. Every one of us appears here involuntarily and uninvited for a short stay, without knowing the whys and the wherefore.” – Albert Einstein

“Seltsam erscheint unsere Lage auf dieser Erde. Jeder von uns erscheint da unfreiwillig und ungebeten zu kurzem Aufenthalt, ohne zu wissen, warum und wozu.” (German)

(Einstein: A Life In Science By Michael White & John R. Gribbin, Plume, 1995, P. 262)

(The quote is also found here.)

(The quote in German & English translation is found here.)

(The quote in German is also found in: Mein Glaubensbekenntnis, Archival Call Number: 28-218, 1932-09-01, Einstein Archives Online)

Note: From a speech titled “My Credo” (Mein Glaubensbekenntnis) by Albert Einstein to the German League of Human Rights, Berlin, in the autumn of 1932.


“Only one who devotes himself to a cause with his whole strength and soul can be a true master. For this reason mastery demands all of a person.” – Albert Einstein

“Ein wirklicher Meister kann nur einer sein, der sich einer Sache mit ganzer Kraft und ganzer Seele hingibt. Deshalb verlangt Meisterschaft einen ganzen Mann.” (German)

(Albert Einstein, The Human Side: New Glimpses From His Archives Selected And Edited By Helen Dukas & Banesh Hoffmann, Princeton University Press, 1981, Glimses From His Archives, P. 78)

(The quote in German is found in: Albert Einstein, The Human Side: New Glimpses From His Archives Selected And Edited By Helen Dukas & Banesh Hoffmann, Princeton University Press, 1981, German Originals, P. 148)


“I know quite certainly that I myself have no special talent; curiosity, obsession and dogged endurance, combined with self-criticism, have brought me to my ideas.” – Albert Einstein

“Übrigens weiß ich ganz genau, daß ich selbst gar keine besondere Begabung habe. Neugier, Besessenheit und sture Ausdauer, verbunden mit Selbstkritik, haben mich zu meinen Gedanken gebracht.” (German)

(The Fascinating Life And Theory Of Albert Einstein By Walter C. Mih, Nova Publishers, 2000, P. 124)

(The quote in German is found in: Helle Zeit — Dunkle Zeit: In memoriam Albert Einstein By Carl Seelig, Springer-Verlag, 2013, P. 56)


“A large part of our attitude toward things is conditioned by opinions and emotions which we unconsciously absorb as children from our environment.” – Albert Einstein

(Out Of My Later Years: The Scientist, Philosopher, And Man Portrayed Through His Own Words By Albert Einstein, Open Road Media, 2011, 11. Public Affairs, The Negro Question(1946))

(The quote is also found in: Einstein On Race And Racism By Fred Jerome And Rodger Taylor, Rutgers University Press, 2006, Doc. C, The Negro Question, Pageant, January 1946, P. 141)


“I am very much reminded of my youth. In one’s thoughts, one tends to set oneself against the world. One compares one’s strengths with everything else, one alternates between despondency and self-assurance. One has the feeling that life is eternal and that everything one does and thinks is so important.” – Albert Einstein

“Wenn ich Deine Briefe lese, dann werde ich sehr an meine Jugend erinnert. Da ist man so geneigt, sich in Gedanken der Welt gegenüberzustellen. An allem misst man seine Kräfte, wechselt zwischen Verzagtheit und Selbstsicherheit. Man hat das Gefühl, dass das Leben unendlich ist und dass alles, was man thut und denkt, so wichtig ist.” (German)

(The Ultimate Quotable Einstein Collected And Edited By Alice Calaprice, With A Foreword By Freeman Dyson, Princeton University Press, 2010, On Miscellaneous Subjects, Youth, P. 458)

(The quote in German is found in: Ich kann mir keinen persönlichen Gott denken, der die Handlungen, Archival Call Number: 75-645, Einstein, Eduard (Receiver), 1926-11-16, Einstein Archives Online)

Note: From the letter to his son Eduard Einstein, November 16, 1926.


“…man owes his strength in the struggle for existence to the fact that he is a socially living animal.” – Albert Einstein

“…der Mensch seine Kraft im Kampf um das Dasein dem Umstand verdankt, daß er ein geselliges Wesen ist.” (German)

(Ideas And Opinions By Albert Einstein, Based On Mein Weltbild, Edited By Carl Seelig, And Other Sources, New Translations And Revisions By Sonja Bargmann, New York: Crown Publishers, Inc., 1954, Part I: Ideas And Opinions, About Education, On Education, P. 62)

(The quote is also found in: Out of My Later Years: The Scientist, Philosopher, And Man Portrayed Through His Own Words By Albert Einstein, Open Road Media, 2011, Part One: Convictions And Beliefs, 9. On Education (1936))

(The German quote is found in: Albert Einstein: Ausgewählte Texte, Munich: Wilhelm Goldmann Verlag, 1986, Über Erziehung (1936), P. 37)

Note: From an address at Albany, New York, on the occasion of the celebration of the tercentenary of higher education in America, October 15, 1936.

Translated by Lina Arranet.


“But personalities are not formed by what is heard and said, but by labor and activity.” – Albert Einstein

Persönlichkeiten aber formen sich nicht durch das, was sie hören und sagen, sondern durch Arbeit und Handeln.” (German)

(Out of My Later Years: The Scientist, Philosopher, And Man Portrayed Through His Own Words By Albert Einstein, Open Road Media, 2011, Part One: Convictions And Beliefs, 9. On Education(1936))

(The quote is also found in: Ideas And Opinions By Albert Einstein, Based On Mein Weltbild, Edited By Carl Seelig, And Other Sources, New Translations And Revisions By Sonja Bargmann, New York: Crown Publishers, Inc., 1954, Part I: Ideas And Opinions, About Education, On Education, P. 60))

(The quote in German is found in: Aus Meinen Späten Jahren By Albert Einstein, Deutsche Verlags-Anstalt, 1979, P. 23)

Note: From an address at Albany, New York, on the occasion of the celebration of the tercentenary of higher education in America, October 15, 1936.

Translated by Lina Arranet.

(The full address in German is over here.)


“Where there is love, there is no imposition.” – Albert Einstein

(The Ultimate Quotable Einstein Collected And Edited By Alice Calaprice, With A Foreword By Freeman Dyson, Princeton University Press, 2010, On Miscellaneous Subjects, Love, P. 440)

Note: From the letter to editor and friend Saxe Commins, Summer 1953.


“A human being is a part of the whole world, called by us “Universe,” a part limited in time and space. He experiences himself, his thoughts and feelings as something separate from the rest — a kind of optical delusion of his consciousness. The striving to free oneself from this delusion is the one issue of true religion. Not to nourish it but to try to overcome it is the way to reach the attainable measure of peace of mind.” – Albert Einstein

(Dear Professor Einstein: Albert Einstein’s Letters To And From Children By Albert Einstein, Edited By Alice Calaprice, Prometheus Books, 2002, P. 184)

(The quote in English is also found in: A human being is a part of the whole, called, Archival Call Number: 60-424, Marcus, Robert S. (Receiver), 1950-02-12, Einstein Archives Online)

Note: From the letter to Robert Marcus, a distraught father who asked Einstein for some comforting words after the death of his young son, February 12, 1950.


“I do not believe in free will. Schopenhauer’s words: ‘Man can do what he wants, but he cannot will what he wills,’ accompany me in all situations throughout my life and reconcile me with the actions of others, even if they are rather painful to me. This awareness of the lack of free will keeps me from taking myself and my fellow men too seriously as acting and deciding individuals, and from losing my temper.” – Albert Einstein

“Ich glaube nicht an die Freiheit des Willens. Schopenhauers Wort: ‘Der Mensch kann wohl tun, was er will, aber er kann nicht wollen, was er will’, begleitet mich in allen Lebenslagen und versöhnt mich mit den Handlungen der Menschen, auch wenn sie mir recht schmerzlich sind. Diese Erkenntnis von der Unfreiheit des Willens schützt mich davor, mich selbst und die Mitmenschen als handelnde und urteilende Individuen allzu ernst zu nehmen und den guten Humor zu verlieren.” (German)

(My Credo By Albert Einstein, Part I )


“Human beings in their thinking, feeling and acting are not free but are as causally bound as the stars in their motions.” – Albert Einstein

(American Sketches: Great Leaders, Creative Thinkers, And Heroes Of A Hurricane By Walter Isaacson, Einstein’s God, P. 139)

Note: From what Einstein declared to a Spinoza Society, 1932)


“The destiny of civilized humanity depends more than ever on the moral forces it is capable of generating.” – Albert Einstein

“Mehr als je hängt das Schicksal der zivilisierten Menschheit von den moralischen Kräften ab, die sie aufzubringen imstande ist.” (German)

(Ideas And Opinions By Albert Einstein, Based On Mein Weltbild, Edited By Carl Seelig, And Other Sources, New Translations And Revisions By Sonja Bargmann, New York: Crown Publishers, Inc., 1954, Part II: On Politics, Government, And Pacifism, Address To Student’s Disarmament Meeting, P. 94)

(The quote is also found in: The World As I See It, Einstein’s Views On Life, Science & Human Nature By Albert Einstein, General Press, 2018, Address To Student’s Disarmament Meeting)

(The quote in German is found in: Mein Weltbild Von Albert Einstein, Herausgegeben Von Carl Seelig, Ullstein-Taschenbuch-Verlag 2005, II. Politik Und Pazifismus, Ansprache vor Der Abrüstungsversammlung Der Studenten, P. 48)

Note: From an address before a group of German pacifist students, about 1930.


“People like us, who believe in physics, know that the distinction between past, present and future is only a stubbornly persistent illusion.” – Albert Einstein

“Für uns gläubige Physiker hat der Unterschied von Vergangenheit, Gegenwart und Zukunft nur den Charakter einer, wenngleich hartnäckigen, Illusion.” (German)

(The Science In Science Fiction By Peter Nicholls Crescent Books, 1988, P. 91)

(The quote in German is found in: Zeit Und Wissen By Carl Friedrich von Weizsäcker, München–Wien: Hanser, 1992,  P. 83)

Note: This quote is taken from the letter of condolence written by Einstein to Michele Besso’s son, Vero, and sister, Bice Rusconi, dated Princeton, 21 March 1955.

This quote has been rewritten and widely shared as:

“Reality is merely an illusion, albeit a very persistent one.” – Albert Einstein


“Man stands powerless before all the tragedies that are allotted to him…” – Albert Einstein

“Machtlos steht der Mensch vor all dem Fruchtbaren…” (German)

(The Ultimate Quotable Einstein Collected And Edited By Alice Calaprice, With A Foreword By Freeman Dyson, Princeton University Press, 2010, On Death, P. 94)

(The quote in German is found in: Machtlos steht der Mensch vor all dem Fruchtbaren, Archival Call Number: 59-630, Fankhauser, Gerhard (Receiver), 1941-11-10, Einstein Archives Online)

Note: To Gerhard Fankhauser, a professor of biology at Princeton, whose wife died in a car accident.


“…the dependence of the individual upon society is a fact of nature which cannot be abolished — just as in the case of ants and bees.” – Albert Einstein

(Why Socialism? By Albert Einstein, Monthly Review, May 01, 2009)

Note: This article was originally published in the first issue of Monthly Review (May 1949).


“Body and soul are not two different things, but only two different ways of perceiving the same thing. Similarly, physics and psychology are only different attempts to link our experiences together by way of systematic thought.” – Albert Einstein

“Körper und Seele sind nicht zwei verschiedene Dinge, sondern nur zwei Arten, dasselbe Ding wahrzunehmen. Entsprechend sind Physik und Psychologie nur zwei verschiedenartige Versuche, unsere Erlebnisse auf dem Weg systemtischen Denkens miteinander zu verknupfen.” (German)

(Albert Einstein, The Human Side: New Glimpses From His Archives Selected By Helen Dukas And Banesh Hoffmann, Princeton University Press, 1981, P. 38)

(Albert Einstein, The Human Side: New Glimpses From His Archives Selected By Helen Dukas And Banesh Hoffmann, Princeton University Press, 1981, P. 132)

(The quote in German is also found in: Körper und Seele sind nicht zwei verschiedene Dinge, sondern nur zwei verschiedene Arten, dasselbe Ding wahrzunehmen, Archival Call Number: 73-88, 1937-01-01, Einstein Archives Online)


“The abstract concept “society” means to the individual human being the sum total of his direct and indirect relations to his contemporaries and to all the people of earlier generations.” – Albert Einstein

(Why Socialism? By Albert Einstein, Monthly Review, May 01, 2009)

Note: This article was originally published in the first issue of Monthly Review (May 1949).


“A person starts to live when he can live outside himself.” – Albert Einstein

(The Big Picture: The Meaning Of Life, Philosophers, Pundits And Plain Folk Ponder What It’s All About, Industrialist/Physician Armand Hammer, LIFE Magazine, December 1988)


“Where the world ceases to be the scene of our personal hopes and wishes, where we face it as free beings admiring, asking, observing, there we enter the realm of Art and Science.” – Albert Einstein

(Albert Einstein, The Human Side: New Glimpses From His Archives Selected By Helen Dukas And Banesh Hoffmann, Princeton University Press, 1981, What Artistic And Scientific Experience Have In Common, P. 37)


“…wisdom is not a product of schooling, but of the lifelong attempt to acquire it.” – Albert Einstein

“Weisheit ist nicht das Ergebnis von Schulbildung, sondern des lebenslangen Versuchs, sie zu erwerben.” (German)

(Albert Einstein, The Human Side: Glimpses From His Archives, Edited By Helen Dukas And Banesh Hoffmann, With A New Foreword By Ze’ev Rosenkranz, Princeton University Press, 2013, Glimpses From His Archives, P. 44)

(The quote in English is also found in: I get hunderd[sic] and hundred of letters but seldom, Dispentiere, Joseph (Receiver), Archival Call Number: 59-495, 1954-03-24, Einstein Archives Online)

Note: From the letter Albert replied to J. Dispentiere, an Italian immigrant on March 24, 1954.


“Nothing truly valuable arises from ambition or from a mere sense of duty; it stems rather from love and devotion towards men and towards objective things.” – Albert Einstein

(Albert Einstein, The Human Side: New Glimpses From His Archives Selected And Edited By Helen Dukas & Banesh Hoffmann, Princeton University Press, 1981, P. 46)

(The quote in English is also found in: Nothing truly valuable arises from ambition or from mere sense of duty, Archival Call Number: 58-934, Wada, Albert (child) (Receiver), 1947-07-30, Einstein Archives Online)

Note: From the letter to an Idaho famer, F.S. Wada, who requested some words that his son, Albert Wada, July 30, 1947.


“The disparity between what you are and what others believe, or at least, say about you, is far too great. But you have to bear it with humor.” – Albert Einstein

“Das Missverhältnis zwischen dem, was man ist, und dem, was die andern von einem glauben oder wenigsten sagen, ist gar zu gross. Man muss es aber mit Humor tragen.” (German)

(The Collected Papers Of Albert Einstein, Volume 9: The Berlin Years: Correspondence, January 1919-April 1920 (English translation supplement), Translated By Ann Hentschel, Doc. 234, To Heinrich Zangger, Berlin, Christmas Eve. 24 December 1919, P. 198)

(The quote in German is found in: The Collected Papers Of Albert Einstein, Volume 9: The Berlin Years: Correspondence, January 1919-April 1920, Edited By Diana Kormos Buchwald, Robert Schulmann, József Illy, Daniel J. Kennefick, & Tilman Saue, Doc. 233, To Heinrich Zangger, Berlin, Weihnachtsaben. 24 December 1919, P. 326)

Note: From the letter to Heinrich Zangger, a professor of physiology at the University of Zürich, December 24, 1919.


“The reciprocal relationship of epistemology and science is of a noteworthy kind. They are dependent upon each other. Epistemology without contact with science becomes an empty scheme. Science without epistemology is – insofaras it is thinkable at all – primitive and muddled.” – Albert Einstein

(Albert Einstein: Philosopher-Scientist, Volume 1, Library Of Living philosophers Edited By Paul Arthur Schilpp, Open Court, 1970, Reply To Criticisms, PP. 683-684)

(The second part of the quote is found here.)

(The third part of the quote is found here.)


“Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind.” – Albert Einstein

“Wissenschaft ohne Religion ist lahm, Religion ohne Wissenschaft ist blind.” (German)

(Ideas And Opinions By Albert Einstein, Based On Mein Weltbild, Edited By Carl Seelig, And Other Sources, New Translations And Revisions By Sonja Bargmann, New York: Crown Publishers, Inc., 1954, Part I: Ideas And Opinions, About Religion, Religion And Science, II, P. 46)

(The quote is also found in: Science, Philosophy, And Religion: A Symposium, Volume 1, the Conference on Science, Philosophy And Religion in Their Relation To The Democratic Way of Life, Inc., New York, 1941, P. 211)

Note: The full article: “Science, Philosophy And Religion, A Symposium, The Conference On Science, Philosophy And Religion In Their Relation To The Democratic Way Of Life”, Inc., New York, 1941, over here and here.

*The article: “Religion And Science By Profesor Albert Einstein“, Nov 9, 1930.


“The most beautiful thing we can experience is the mysterious. It is the source of all true art and all science. He to whom this emotion is a stranger, who can no longer pause to wonder and stand rapt in awe, is as good as dead: his eyes are closed.” – Albert Einstein

“Das Schönste, was wir erleben können, ist das Geheimnisvolle. Es ist das Grundgefühl, das an der Wiege von wahrer Kunst und Wissenschaft steht. Wer es nicht kennt und sich nicht mehr wundern kann, der ist sozusagen tot und sein Auge erloschen.” (German)

(Living Philosophies, Contributed by Albert Einstein, AMS Press, 1979, P. 6)

(The quote is also found here.)

(The quote in German is found in: Mein Weltbild Von Albert Einstein, Herausgegeben Von Carl Seelig, Ullstein-Taschenbuch-Verlag 2005, I. Wie Ich Die Welt Sehe, P. 10)

(The quote in German is also found here.)


“It is difficult even to attach a precise meaning to the term ‘scientific truth’. So different is the meaning of the word ‘truth’ according to whether we deal with a fact of experience, a mathematical proposition or a scientific theory. “Religious truth” conveys nothing clear to me at all.” – Albert Einstein

“Es ist schon nicht leicht, mit dem Wort >>Wissenschaftliche Wahrheit<< einen klaren Sinn zu verbinden. So ist der Sinn des Wortes >>Wahrheit<< verschieden, je nachdem es sich um eine Erlebnistatsache, einen mathematischen Satz oder eine naturwissenschaftliche Theorie handelt. Unter» religiöser Wahrheit «kann ich mir etwas Klares überhaupt nicht denken.” (German)

(Ideas And Opinions By Albert Einstein Based on Mein Weltbild, Edited By Carl Seelig, And Other Sources, New Translations And Revisions By Sonja Bargmann, New York: Crown Publishers, Inc., 1954, Pt. I: Ideas And Opinions, The World As I See It, On Scientific Truth, P. 261)

(The quote is also found here.)

(The quote in German is found in: Mein Weltbild Von Albert Einstein, Herausgegeben Von Carl Seelig, Ullstein-Taschenbuch-Verlag 2005, V. Wissenschaftliche Beiträge, Über Wissenschaftliche Wahrheit, 1., P. 171)

(The quote in German is also found in: Mein Weltbild. Hrsg. von Carl Seelig By Albert Einstein, Europa Verlag, 1953, PP. 222-223)

Note: From answers to questions of a Japanese scholar on Dec 14, 1922, published in Kaizo 5, no. 2, 197 (1923). Published in Gelegentliches, 1929, which appeared in a limited edition on the occasion of Einstein’s fiftieth birthday.


“Morality is of the highest importance — but for us, not for God.” – Albert Einstein

“Moral ist eine wichtige Sache, aber für uns, nicht für Gott.” (German)

(Albert Einstein, The Human Side: New Glimpses From His Archives Selected And Edited By Helen Dukas And Banesh Hoffman, Princeton University Press, 1981, Glimpses From His Archives, P. 66)

(The quote in German is found in: Ich kann mir keinen persönlichen Gott denken, der die Handlungen, Archival Call Number: 48-380, Schayer, Milton M. (Receiver), 1927-08-06, Einstein Archives Online)

Note: From the letter to Milton M. Schayer, August 6, 1927.


“It is the same with people as it is with riding a bike. Only when moving can one comfortably maintain one’s balance.” – Albert Einstein

“Beim Menschen ist es wie beim Velo. Nur wenn er faehrt, kann er bequem die Balance halten.” (German)

(Einstein: His Life And Universe By Walter Isaacson, Simon and Schuster, 2008, Notes, Epigraph: 1, P. 565)

Note: The more popular version of this quote is:

“Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance you must keep moving.” – Albert Einstein

(Einstein: His Life And Universe By Walter Isaacson, Simon and Schuster, 2017, Illustrated, Ch. Sixteen, Turning Fifty, 1929-1931, P. 367)


“… the eternal mystery of the world is its comprehensibility.” – Albert Einstein

(Physics And Reality By Albert Einstein, Translated By Jean Piccard, March 1936, p. 3)

(The quote is also found in: Out Of My Later Years: The Scientist, Philosopher And Man Portrayed Through His Own Words By Albert Einstein, Open Road Media, 2011, Science, 56, Physics and Reality, § 1. General Consideration Concerning the Method of Science)

(Another source of the quote is found here.)


“Pure logical thinking cannot yield us any knowledge of the empirical world. All knowledge of reality starts from experience and ends in it.” – Albert Einstein

“Durch bloßes logisches Denken vermögen wir keinerlei Wissen über die Erfahrungswelt zu erlangen; alles Wissen über die Wirklichkeit geht von der Erfahrung aus und mündet in ihr.” (German)

(Ideas And Opinions By Albert Einstein, Based On Mein Weltbild, Edited By Carl Seelig, And Other Sources, New Translations And Revisions By Sonja Bargmann, New York: Crown Publishers, Inc., 1954, Part V: Contributions To Science, On The Method Of Theoretical Physics, The Herbert Spencer lecture, Delivered At Oxford, June 10, 1933. , P. 271)

(The quote is also found in: Essays In Science By Albert Einstein, Open Road Media, 2011, On The Methods Of Theoretical Physics)

(The quote in German is found in: Mein Weltbild Von Albert Einstein, Herausgegeben Von Carl Seelig, Ullstein-Taschenbuch-Verlag 2005, Zur Methodik Der Theoretischen Physik, P. 114)


“It is the supreme art of the teacher to awaken joy in creative expression and knowledge.” – Albert Einstein

“Es ist die wichtigste Kunst des Lehrers, die Freude am Schaffen und am Erkennen zu wecken.” (German)

(The Ultimate Quotable Einstein Collected And Edited By Alice Calaprice, With A Foreword By Freeman Dyson, Princeton University Press, 2010, On Education, Students, Academic Freedom, P. 100)

(The quote in German is found in: Es ist die wichtigste Kunst des Lehrers, die Freude am Schaffen und am Erkennen zu erwecken, National Council Of Supervisors Of Elementary Science (Receiver), Archival Call Number: 28-145, 1931-01-01, Einstein Archives Online)

(The quote in German is also found in: Mein Weltbild Von Albert Einstein, Herausgegeben Von Carl Seelig, Ullstein-Taschenbuch-Verlag 2005, I, Lehrer Und Schüler, Eine Ansprache An Kinder, P. 25)

(Another source of the quote in German is found in: Albert Einstein: Mein Weltbild. Hrsg. Von Carl Seelig, Europa Verlag, 1953, P. 30)

Note: On February 26, 1931, Einstein dedicated the astronomy observatory of Pasadena Junior College (PJC).

He gave a short speech in German and he also contributed the above quote to be inscribed on the small bronze dedicatory plaque inside the building.

*Here is a short write up together with pictures of Einstein at the event.


“A happy man is too satisfied with the present to think too much about the future.” – Albert Einstein

“Un homme heureux et trop content de la présence pour penser beaucoup à l’avenir.” (French)

(The Collected Papers Of Albert Einstein, Volume 1: The Early Years, 1879-1902 (English Translation Supplement), Translated By Anna Beck, Doc. 22, Matura Examination (B) French: “My Future Plans”, 18 September, 1896, Mes Projets D’Avenir, P. 15)

(The quote in German is found in: The Collected Papers Of Albert Einstein, Volume 1: The Early Years, 1879-1902, Edited By John Stachel, David C. Cassidy, and Robert Schulmann, Doc. 22, Matura Examination (B) French: “My Future Plans”, 18 September, 1896, P. 28)

Note: From a school French essay entitled “My Future Plans.” written at age seventeen (September 18, 1896.


“Try not to become a man of success but rather try to become a man of value.” – Albert Einstein

“Versuche nicht, ein erfolgreicher, sondern ein wertvoller Mensch zu werden.” (German)

(Death Of A Genius: His Fourth Dimension, Time Overtakes Einstein By William Miller, Life Magazine, Vol. 38, No.18, May 2, 1955, P. 64)


“The man who regards his own life and that of his fellow creatures as meaningless is not merely unhappy but hardly fit for life.” – Albert Einstein

“Wer sein eigenes Leben und das seiner Mitmenschen als sinnlos empfindet, der ist nicht nur unglücklich, sondern auch kaum lebensfähig.” (German)

(Ideas And Opinions By Albert Einstein, Based On Mein Weltbild, Edited By Carl Seelig, And Other sources, New Translations And Revisions By Sonja Bargmann, New York: Crown Publishers, Inc., 1954, Part I: Ideas And Opinions, The Meaning Of Life, Mein Weltbild, Amsterdam: Querida Verlag, 1934, P. 11)

(The quote is also found here.)

(The quote in German is found in: Mein Weltbild Von Albert Einstein, Herausgegeben Von Carl Seelig, Ullstein-Taschenbuch-Verlag 2005, I. Wie Ich Die Welt Sehe, Vom Sinn Des Lebens, P. 10)

(The quote in German is also found here.)


“The true value of a human being is determined primarily by the measure and the sense in which he has attained to liberation from the self.” – Albert Einstein

“Der wahre Wert eines Menschen ist in erster Linie dadurch bestimmt, in welchem Grad und in welchem Sinn er zur Befreiung vom Ich gelangt ist.” (German)

(The World As I See It By Albert Einstein, Translated By Alan Harris, California: The Book Tree, 2007, Part I, The World As I See It, Good And Evil, PP. 7-8)

(The quote is also found in: Ideas And Opinions By Albert Einstein, Based On Mein Weltbild, Edited By Carl Seelig, And Other Sources, New Translations And Revisions By Sonja Bargmann, New York: Crown Publishers, Inc., 1954, Part I: Ideas And Opinions, The True Value Of a Human Being, Mein Weltbild, Amsterdam: Querido Verlag, 1934, P. 12)

(Another source of the quote is also found here.)

(The quote in German is found in: Mein Weltbild Von Albert Einstein, Herausgegeben Von Carl Seelig, Ullstein-Taschenbuch-Verlag 2005, I. Wie Ich Die Welt Sehe, Der wahre Wert Eines Menschen, P. 10)

(The German quote is also found in: Mein Weltbild. Hrsg. Von Carl Seelig, Europa Verlag, 1953, P. 11)


“We have been endowed with just enough intelligence to be able to see clearly just how utterly inadequate that intelligence is when we are confronted with what exists. If this humility could be imparted to everybody, the world of human endeavors would become more appealing.” – Albert Einstein

(The Ultimate Quotable Einstein Collected And Edited By Alice Calaprice, With A Foreword By Freeman Dyson, Princeton University Press, 2010, On Miscellaneous Subjects, Intelligence, PP. 434-435)

(The quote in German is found in: Meine Freude über die Photographien und den ungemein feinen Brief, Archival Call Number: 32-353, 1932-09-19, Elisabeth, Queen of the Belgians (Receiver), Elisabeth of Bavaria, Queen of Belgium, Einstein Archives Online)

Note: From the letter to Queen Elisabeth of Belgium, September 19, 1932.


Note: All the above Albert Einstein mind blowing quotes of life philosophy are taken from reliable sources.

*Here is list of authentic Albert Einstein quotes our death is not an end.

Quotationize is authentic quotations with valid citations