Einstein comments on Jesus

White-Haired EinsteinDespite growing up as a Jew, Einstein admits to being “enthralled by the luminous figure of the Nazarene” (“What Life Means to Einstein: An Interview by George Sylvester Viereck,”The Saturday Evening Post, Oct. 26, 1929, p. 17). As he got older, Einstein began to fall away from his faith and has soon become enthralled in the sciences.

During an interview by George Sylvester Viereck (cited above), Einstein had the following to say about Jesus. It isn’t much, but it demonstrates how the truth of Jesus is apparent to anyone (Atheist included) when it is approached with an open heart and mind.

George Viereck: “You accept the historical existence of Jesus?”

Einstein: “Unquestionably. No one can read the Gospels without feeling the actual presence of Jesus. His personality pulsates in every word. No myth is filled with such life. How different, for instance, is the impression which we receive from an account of legendary heroes of antiquity like Theseus. Theseus and other heroes of his type lack the authentic vitality of Jesus.”

George Viereck: “Ludwig Lewisohn, in one of his recent books, claims that many of the sayings of Jesus paraphrase the sayings of other prophets.”

Einstein: “No man,” Einstein replied, “can deny the fact that Jesus existed, nor that his sayings are beautiful. Even if some them have been said before, no one has expressed them so divinely as he.”

Amen Einstein, Amen.


11 Responses

  1. Thanks for sharing that.
    I had never come accross it before.
    Very interesting.
    God bless you,

  2. Any man, real or imaginary who is able to leave his imprint on the psyche’s of billions of people is worth studying.

    I would caution you to consider the possibility that Einstein comments in no way communicate the truth of the sayings or of the divinity of Jesus.

  3. Hi roguememe,
    yes, i dont read it that way as i know that he was an atheist…but at least he has an open mind towards religion and Jesus. (contrary to many atheists i run into).
    He also recognizes the <b>valuable impact</b> of Jesus instead of bantering on the typical “war’s are started by religion” blah blah rhetoric.

    hi Ray,
    no problem, I always try to find things that are interesting and not very common (It seems i succeeded this time) 🙂 !

  4. While I am an Atheist, I do not believe that ‘religion’ is the source of war and all things evil. It takes amazing leaps of logic to justify war from the teachings of Jesus (not however from the old testament or the teachings of Mohamed).

    As a former Christian, I do firmly believe that a Christian belief system can help many people be more caring, compassionate giving people.

  5. That is indeed a most bueatiful quote about Jesus. Add this for his view on church

    December 23, 1940 issue of Time magazine on page 38, Einstein said:

    “Being a lover of freedom…I looked to the universities to defend it, knowing that they had always boasted of their devotion to the cause of truth; but, no, the universities immediately were silenced. Then I looked to the great editors of the newspapers whose flaming editorials in days gone by had proclaimed their love of freedom, but they, like the universities, were silenced in a few short weeks.
    Only the church stood squarely across the path of Hitler’s campaign for suppressing the truth. I never had any special interest in the church before, but now I feel a great affection and admiration because the church alone has had the courage and persistence to stand for intellectual truth and moral freedom. I am forced to confess that what I once despised I now praise unreservedly. ”

    PS – Einstein was in fact no athiest (just a little research will show that).

  6. Nathaniel,
    thank you for sharing that quote – I was touched.

  7. You are wrong roguememe I can feel the presence of Jesus everywhere.

  8. Roguememe: “It takes amazing leaps of logic to justify war from the teachings of Jesus (not however from the old testament[…].”

    I disagree. (I’ll skip the OT part, assuming we agree on the merits of OT.)

    Matthew 5:18 For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled.
    5:19 Whosoever therefore shall break one of these least commandments, and shall teach men so, he shall be called the least in the kingdom of heaven: but whosoever shall do and teach them, the same shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.
    5:20 For I say unto you, That except your righteousness shall exceed the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees, ye shall in no case enter into the kingdom of heaven.

    Then there’s also Luke 16:17.

    Of course, Jesus also said other things, but contradictions don’t settle anything. Contradictions only confuse people, and then they have to pick and choose. Some choose the above verses, while some choose the golden rule. But unless we get down to research as to which gospels are reliable (I always forget which) we can not say that the golden rule is any more Jesus-like than obeying the law.

  9. […] Einstein on Jesus […]

  10. Thanks for sharing these quotes.

  11. I’m not exactly sure why you all seem to be in agreement that Einstein was an atheist when, in fact, he was most certainly not. Just because someone does not have the same Christian beliefs as you do does not automatically classify them as an atheist. Anyway, take a look at his response when he was asked, “Do you believe in the God of Spinoza?”

    “I can’t answer with a simple yes or no. I’m not an atheist and I don’t think I can call myself a pantheist. We are in the position of a little child entering a huge library filled with books in many different languages. The child knows someone must have written those books. It does not know how. The child dimly suspects a mysterious order in the arrangement of the books but doesn’t know what it is. That, it seems to me, is the attitude of even the most intelligent human being toward God. We see a universe marvellously arranged and obeying certain laws, but only dimly understand these laws. Our limited minds cannot grasp the mysterious force that moves the constellations. I am fascinated by Spinoza’s pantheism, but admire even more his contributions to modern thought because he is the first philosopher to deal with the soul and the body as one, not two separate things. “

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