Einstein letter doubting God auctioned for $2.89m

05 Décembre, 2018, 18:58 | Auteur: Anatole Charbonneau
  • Письмо Альберта Эйнштейна религии продали на аукционе в США

Even now, more than 60 years later, Albert Einstein's words carry some shock value-which is why auction house Christie's expects to nab up to $1.5 million New York Times.

A handwritten letter from Albert Einstein about his thoughts on God, religion and his search for meaning sold for nearly $3 million at an auction in NY on Tuesday, Christie's said. Einstein said that while he "gladly" belonged to the Jewish people, he believed the religion "like all other religions is an incarnation of the most childish superstitions".

"The word God is for me nothing but the expression of and product of human weaknesses, the Bible a collection of venerable but still rather primitive legends". It sold for $404,000 at auction.

The missive is referred to as the "God letter" because it addresses how Einstein felt about the characterization of God and Judaism in a then-recently published book on the subject by Eric Gutkind.

"As far as my experience goes, they are no better than other human groups, although they are protected from the worst cancers by a lack of power. Otherwise I can not perceive anything "chosen" about them", the letter says.

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The 1954 letter surfaced in 2008 after being held by Gutkind's family.

Acknowledging his disappointment in failing to secure the item, Dawkins said: "This letter was about something very important to Einstein I suspect". Indeed, in his 2007 biography, Isaacson recounted Einstein's "passionate zeal for Judaism" in his early life.

Though Einstein was unequivocal in his critique of Gutkind's work, he sought to establish a common ground between them, noting that they still agreed on "the essentials."Prefacing his frank remarks on God and religion, he observed diplomatically that he and Gutkind both believed in the importance of a strong moral foundation that rose above self-interest and instead sought to benefit humanity".

On another occasion, he criticised "fanatical atheists whose intolerance is of the same kind as the intolerance of the religious fanatics". His cosmic religion and distant deistic God fits neither the agenda of religious believers or that of tribal atheists.

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