Saturday, November 10, 2007

Science, philosophy and Einstein's fraud!

The following was one of the replies that I sent in a mail discussion with my friends this evening. Have fun!

Science and Philosophy have never been contradictory. Theology especially abrahamic ones clash with Science. Ramar Sethu clashes with Science. Hindu philosophy doesn't.

Irrespective of how infinitesimal your point of analysis is, you'll have to come to some conclusion at some point. My guess is you are more likely to become an atheist or possibly remain agnostic all your life. Theism i.e. belief, mostly comes from social pressures or personal miraculous experiences. When someone claims the later, he is a goner in my opinion!

Looking at physics is one way of analyzing 'Creation' to figure if there is anything supernatural to it. But please be aware that the most famous physicist of our times, Einstein believed in God. He famously said "I want to know God's thoughts. The rest are all details." So Einstein said Physics is a secondary detail when compared to Philosophy/Theology.

But I personally think Einstein was a fraud when it comes to GOD. He was a Jew and a great supporter of the Zionist movement (Israel - Holy Land). To appear politically correct, he may have fooled himself to believe in God. Besides his religion (Judaism) has absolutely moronic beliefs like 'God created earth 6000 years ago'. (Thats called creationism.)

I don't think Vivekananda would have called himself a Monotheist. Brahmanical religion (Hindusim), since it derives heavily from a 'misreading' of the Upanishads, appears to be monotheistic. Its actually Monism. But such western definitions are never suitable for Hindu Philosophy. Better to avoid them.

However, there is no need to belittle western thought and experiments with Philosophy. The mayans, incas, egyptians etc would have also acquired some understanding of GOD and philosophy. But since their religion/race/language etc were destroyed, the world may have lost that knowledge. We in India are merely fortunate that we can delve deep into our ancient scriptures.

Self realization - ah, this is the crux of my next blog post to prove Sankara/Krishna as atheists. So I won't reveal it here! But I can say Hindu philosophy has tried both the top down (world view) and the bottom up (self) approaches.

ok. On reading more about Einstein, he seems to have played a jugglery with words to hide his belief. He later in life seems to have claimed to not believe in a Personal God but thinks God (as in Brahman) may have designed the world. I still think he was a fraud.


Arun said...

why did Einstein come into picture suddenly?
Einstein shud be known only for his scientific contributions. Whatever spiritual or philosophical beliefs or his-views-abt-his-friend's-wife he had or rather www claims he had, nobody shud care. That being said the title of the post is outrageously inappropriate.
Another blog post,ridiculing and lashing ppl's beliefs(readers and some no-way related Einstein, Vivekanada etc) and making baseless stmts like "Science and Philosophy have never been contradictory" or "Hindu philosophy doesn't".
Highly disappointed with the general nature of opinioniated posts.

Balaji said...

huh, you also got this mail y'day. you should know the context. whose feelings have been hurt now?

Einstein, as I said in the mail, had very funny opinions about god. His "I want to know Gods thoughts..." is heady stuff for creationist morons...

Arun said...

nobody is going to get hurt(since the readers know the nature of ur blog). but obviously it doesnt look good to keep bashing ppl(whom u dont have any clue abt).
again, as a scientist Einstein shud ONLY be brought for his works. Obviously we are not interested in his works :)

Balaji said...

>> as a scientist Einstein shud ONLY be brought for his works.

hmm... I disagree. But I must admit I haven't taken too much effort to find out/verify Einstein's religious views. But from what I see he was a creationist.

A very famous scientist supporting creationism (which incidentally is fundamental to his own religion and politics - zionism), seems very irresponsible or abuse of position.

Just like Ram Bhakts defend Rama, claiming that even Gandhi worshiped him, Judeo-Christian preachers seem to have made full use of Einstein's statements for their Conversion efforts.

Bashing... I think thats what I have been doing forever! You seem to have noticed now b'cos some of my recent posts may have gone against your religious beliefs. For me, attacking creationism is not very different from say attacking nazism!

Balaji said...

changed the title from "Einstein was a fraud!" to explain the context!

Vijay said...

You claim that einstein supports creationism. I dont think it is an accepted fact. So you need to back your claim.

Anyway, einstein's views about god is a subject of huge interest and there have been several books and scholarly publications written on the subject.

I think it is more or less accepted that einstein was close to an agnostic/pantheist. I will provide you with his quotes from wiki:

I believe in Spinoza's God, Who reveals Himself in the lawful harmony of the world, not in a God Who concerns Himself with the fate and the doings of mankind.

-- In response the telegrammed question of New York's Rabbi Herbert S. Goldstein in (24 April 1929): "Do you believe in God? Stop. Answer paid 50 words." Einstein replied in only 25 (German) words. Spinoza's ideas of God are often characterized as being pantheistic.

Although he himself later says...

My position concerning God is that of an agnostic. I am convinced that a vivid consciousness of the primary importance of moral principles for the betterment and ennoblement of life does not need the idea of a law-giver, especially a law-giver who works on the basis of reward and punishment.

It seems to me, that he was close to an agnostic/pantheist, certainly not a creationist.

Anyway, I read the article about panthesim today -- note that how it is close to the "set of all things" definition of god, which we had discussed earlier. Also I found these lines from wikipedia...

Some critics argue that pantheism is little more than a redefinition of the word "God" to mean "existence", "life" or "reality". Many pantheists reply that even if this is so, such a shift in the way we think about these ideas can serve to create both a new and a potentially far more insightful conception of both existence and God.

"Atheists" think there is no need for this definiton of god, and the "theists" differ. Whether that definition is "useful" or not is mostly subjective. I dont think there is any need to make a big fuss about this.

Balaji said...

I agree with most of your quotes. And obviously I have read most of them already.

I don't think agnosticism and creationism are mutually exclusive. I agree with many of Spinoza's views and can understand Einstein quoting him.

But Einstein as a renowned physicist was in a unique position to offer very informed opinion on 'creationism'. The question of whether GOD irrespective of what his/its definition 'created' or 'designed' the world.

His "God's thought's" (I know many and probably he himself have denied that statement) and "who reveals Himself in the lawful harmony of the world" etc are clearly creationist. No, I'm not claiming that Einstein supported the 6000 year old earth crap.

On the other hand, Spinzoa, I think made it a point to emphasize that he sees god and nature as the same. Einstein's opinion if when offered in isolation would have only intrigued me and given more reasons to try and understand this "God's harmony in the world".

But when viewed in the backdrop of his support for Zionism and the fact he himself was (to some extent) a victim of nazism, it make me suspicious of his intentions.

I see him 'dishonest' in two ways.

1. Either he believed in a Judeo-Christian creationist God which when threatened by his own science, confused him. He was not willing to acknowledge this confusion and hid himself as an agnostic, plague hating Spinzoaite.

2. He was just being politically correct to balance his support for zionism with his science. This coming from a famous Physicist seems very inappropriate.

I think case 2 is more possible.


I hate zionism because I believe Israel as a Jewish state has no right to exist. It would have been better if Palestine had been the home of the three major religions. The basic premise that, Jews irrespective of where they were born and lived for generations had a right to their creationist God's land (Israel) is unacceptable to me. Nazism bred Zionism which later revived Islamic terrorism. By that logic Einstein perhaps was also a fundamentalist!


Your "set of all knowledge is God" premise was ok with me simply because I don't expect you to say "and that God created this world". I just opined that no entity possesses that kind of knowledge. And that knowledge when left to itself is just part of reality. If you worship that part of reality, then its your personal God. Thats ok with me.

Vijay said...

His "God's thought's" (I know many and probably he himself have denied that statement) and "who reveals Himself in the lawful harmony of the world" etc are clearly creationist.

To me, it is not clear.

Even if it were true that he was being politically correct, I empathise with him. It is highly debatable as to whether he was "right" or "wrong" and I dont think you can call him a "fraud".

Balaji said...

yeah ok. 'fraud' was perhaps too harsh. but then this is balajiworld! I'm probably less charitable to him because of my views on Zionism.

Arun said...

im least concerned if u were bashing my beliefs(although I think u didnt).
I only dont like bashing ppl like Einstein or Vivekanada(EV) for thier spiritual beliefs(even if they were atheists and u supported theism). Its like blaming a CEO incompetent bcos of his impotency.
Granted that u were bashing all the time(although i dont read ur news' posts), but bashing non-existant Krishna or Rama is different from bashing EV.

Arun said...

not to mention the title of previous post. i think u shud change it(ofcourse its ur blog though)

Balaji said...

what, where did I criticize Vivekananda? In that mail discussion, I had said Vivekananda may himself been an atheist. Thats hardly criticism. I have already said, Krishna is my hero! Rama may also have existed albeit as a racist.

title of the previous post? you mean "the land of the impure?". Come on, thats pun.