It is better to believe than to disbelieve;
in so doing you bring everything to the realm of possibility.
I don’t know if you had an opportunity to catch the biopic miniseries on the
National Geographic Channel based on the life of Albert Einstein entitled Genius,
of which finished up last week with the airing of the final episode…
it was actually quite good and extremely fascinating.
And I suspect that they will be rerunning the series.
The series spanned about 10 consecutive Tuesday evenings for an hour long episode
and was based on the book by Walter Isaacson Einstein: His Life and Universe
The movie was produced by Ron Howard and Brian Grazer.
Actors Geoffrey Rush and Johnny Flynn each played both the
elder(Rush) and younger(Flynn) Einsteins.
It was a well done series with a few little exceptions…
such as the scenes of Professor’s Einstein’s many trysts and dalliances
with various women…in particular a scene with his much younger secretary as they
“enjoyed” themselves in his office one afternoon up against the black board…
which was a bit too graphic and realistic for what I care for in a historical biography
that could otherwise have been so readily utilized within the classroom of say
high school age kids.
Other than that, the film was very informative and exceptionally well done.
One thing that struck me from the very beginning was how selfish Einstein was in
his relationships with people.
It took a much older Einstein to fully grasp this notion when he was confronted
with the blatant candidness from his then second wife, who
just also happened to be his first cousin…
and then later, near the end of his life,
by his estranged grown son Hans Albert.
Each berated the Professor for his utterly blind selfishness and insensitivity to and in
regard to the feelings and love of those who he should have been putting foremost
in his personal life.
From his many extramarital affairs to his total physical absence from the lives of his sons…
all of which he’d flippantly quip “they’ll understand”…..was a glaring flaw of character.
The other thing that struck me was how, as a young man, he renounced his German citizenship…
declaring himself a free citizen of the world who was null and void of all things political…
and hence responsibility to something larger than himself.
And also, in almost the same breath, proclaiming to be void of any sort of religious view…
And yet it was the older man who studied hard to become a citizen of the United States
and who also lobbied for the creation of the Jewish state of Israel.
One would most aptly presume that a man such as Einstein would have no use for religion
or the belief of an Omnipotent God.
Science and proof was his sole life’s purpose.
And for a while during his younger life, the lack of any sort or belief,
was indeed the case.
His was a life of physics and the quest of testing, defining and discovery.
To unlock and solve the mysteries behind what makes the universe just that…
the awesome mysterious universe that it is.
He had failures, he had frustrations, he had set backs, he had doors slammed in his face,
he struggled financially, he lived in dysfunctional relationships,
he suffered loss and sorrow, he was discriminated against,
he was betrayed and undermined by colleagues and scrutinized
for his convictions….plus he made some very poor choices…
And yet there is no disputing the fact that he was indeed brilliant none the less.
On more than one occasion he was asked about his belief in God.
“To sense that behind everything that can be experienced there is something that
our minds cannot grasp, whose beauty and sublimity reaches us only indirectly:
this is religiousness.
In this sense…I am a devoutly religious man.”
In response to a young girl who had asked him whether he believed in God, he wrote: “everyone who is seriously involved in the pursuit of science becomes convinced that a spirit is manifest
in the laws of the Universe—-
a Spirit vastly superior to that of man.”
And during a talk at Union Theological Seminary on the relationship between religion and science,
Einstein declared: “the situation may be expressed by an image:
science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind.”
(quotes from an article by Bishop Robert Barron)
Einstein was born a Jew—and when he was younger and,
more or less very much a know it all…
thoughts of the God of Israel had very little if any appeal.
Remember this was a selfish young man as far as relationships were concerned….
he was never willing to give to a relationship the emotional commitment required…
or to invest in such for any real length of time.
Yet living and working in Berlin while Adolph Hitler rose to power and being a Jew,
a very famous Jew at that…despite being a non practicing Jew,
actually became a matter literally of either life or death for Einstein.
This was a time of a turning point for Einstein…
a turning point for his feelings and belief about being a Jew,
a free thinking man, and the responsibility that humans have to
something greater than themselves…
something even greater than his beloved physics.
I’m including NatGeo’s link to the series as viewing episodes from the homepage is possible.
just in case you’d like to watch one or two, or all….
I may not ever understand his science,
I many not always agree with his life’s choices or views…
but I can appreciate the fact that as brilliant as Einstein was…he eventually
understood the idea that there was a true connectiveness in man to that which is much
greater than himself…
“For my thoughts are not your thoughts,
neither are your ways my ways,”
declares the Lord.
“As the heavens are higher than the earth,
so are my ways higher than your ways
and my thoughts than your thought
I read that biography and it is quite good. It does mention Eintein’s affairs, but it doesn’t get graphic (thankfully). I was also amazed that this man felt the existence of a God was more likely than the absence of one. Thank you for this post! 😊
I wondered about getting the book–I think I will now, thank you — I never knew much about the man just more about his theories and accomplishments –the series allowed for a glimpse of the fact that despite seeming larger than life and almost super human– Einstein was no different from anyone else– as in he was full of faults and and a most imperfect human being–those who worship at the feet of great thinking men must always remember that they too are merely human!
Amen to that!
I did not know he was a philanderer..would not have thought that for some reason
From a ripe early age until very late in life —
It took him a lifetime to realize there was a higher power. It’s taken me that long too, Does that make me a genius?
Why of course it does 😜
I thought my view about the connection between science and God was truly nuevo.
But Good Albert stole my thunder a hundred years ago.
We all have feet of clay in one way or another.
I find it interesting that you quoted Isaiah 55 and I’m using most of that chapter as the opening prayer for a four-part Bible study that I’m presenting at another parish over the summer. It is a powerful chapter indeed!
our thoughts always seem to overlap Lynda—that Holy Spirit again 😉
Reblogged this on Talmidimblogging.
Thank you my little glowing wonder 🙂
My glowing pleasure Cookie 😍
I have always been interested and fascinated by Einstein,and I looked forward to the series, but I could not enjoy the flipping back and forth in time nor the awful German accents.
I quit watching after the third chapter.
well I hung in there—I suppose I’m use to bad accents from hollywood living here in the south and every picture about the south has those oh so contrived sappy sugary bless my soul sort of accents—bad German was tolerable—not to mention the heavy Serbian accent of his first wife Malava—-
But all in all I thought the historic settings most appropriate–the switching time periods at first worried me as I hate that jumping back and forth but after about that third episode they followed more along the lines of a single time line up until the end episode when it did switch back and forth a bit more.
I do look forward to reading the book
I watched bits and pieces with my husband. Rather disappointing to see his feet of clay, but I was surprised that he indicated more appreciation that there must be a God who exists than I had thought before.
I loved that about him too. I find him to be a most fascinating kind of kindred spirit. 🙂 ❤
It is hard to picture Einstein being an unfaithful man…because in my head I always picture him just an intellectual. I know its true, but its hard to picture. And thanks for the Nat Geo link
I know…looking into those kindly old eyes it’s hard to believe…and I was surprised to learn about his “poor choices” as it were…but it seems that it was an ongoing underlying little foible of his…..
Today I learned: Don’t let that grandpa looks fool ya!
You got that right!