Albert Einstein – Quotes

  1. You have to learn the rules of the game. And then you have to play better than anyone else.

  2. You can’t blame gravity for falling in love.

  3. You cannot simultaneously prevent and prepare for war.

  4. You can never solve a problem on the level on which it was created.

  5. You ask me if I keep a notebook to record my great ideas. I’ve only ever had one.

  6. Without deep reflection one knows from daily life that one exists for other people.

  7. Whoever undertakes to set himself up as a judge of Truth and Knowledge is shipwrecked by the laughter of the gods.

  8. Whoever is careless with the truth in small matters cannot be trusted with important matters.

  9. When you are courting a nice girl an hour seems like a second. When you sit on a red-hot cinder a second seems like an hour. That’s relativity.

  10. When the solution is simple, God is answering.

  11. Weakness of attitude becomes weakness of character.

  12. We still do not know one thousandth of one percent of what nature has revealed to us.

  13. We should take care not to make the intellect our god; it has, of course, powerful muscles, but no personality.

  14. We shall require a substantially new manner of thinking if mankind is to survive.

  15. We can’t solve problems by using the same kind of thinking we used when we created them.

  16. We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them.

  17. We cannot despair of humanity, since we ourselves are human beings.

  18. Two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity; and I’m not sure about the universe.

  19. Try not to become a man of success, but rather try to become a man of value.

  20. True religion is real living; living with all one’s soul, with all one’s goodness and righteousness.

  21. True art is characterized by an irresistible urge in the creative artist.

  22. Too many of us look upon Americans as dollar chasers. This is a cruel libel, even if it is reiterated thoughtlessly by the Americans themselves.

  23. To the Master’s honor all must turn, each in its track, without a sound, forever tracing Newton’s ground.

  24. To raise new questions, new possibilities, to regard old problems from a new angle, requires creative imagination and marks real advance in science.

  25. There is no logical way to the discovery of these elemental laws. There is only the way of intuition, which is helped by a feeling for the order lying behind the appearance.

  26. There could be no fairer destiny for any physical theory than that it should point the way to a more comprehensive theory in which it lives on as a limiting case.

  27. There comes a time when the mind takes a higher plane of knowledge but can never prove how it got there.

  28. There are only two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is a miracle.

  29. The world is a dangerous place to live; not because of the people who are evil, but because of the people who don’t do anything about it.

  30. The whole of science is nothing more than a refinement of everyday thinking.

  31. The value of a man should be seen in what he gives and not in what he is able to receive.

  32. The unleashed power of the atom has changed everything save our modes of thinking and we thus drift toward unparalleled catastrophe.

  33. The true sign of intelligence is not knowledge but imagination.

  34. The road to perdition has ever been accompanied by lip service to an ideal.

  35. The release of atomic energy has not created a new problem. It has merely made more urgent the necessity of solving an existing one.

  36. The pursuit of truth and beauty is a sphere of activity in which we are permitted to remain children all our lives.

  37. The process of scientific discovery is, in effect, a continual flight from wonder.

  38. The only thing that interferes with my learning is my education.

  39. The only source of knowledge is experience.

  40. The only reason for time is so that everything doesn’t happen at once.

  41. The only real valuable thing is intuition.

  42. The most incomprehensible thing about the world is that it is comprehensible.

  43. The most beautiful thing we can experience is the mysterious. It is the source of all true art and science.

  44. The monotony and solitude of a quiet life stimulates the creative mind.

  45. The man of science is a poor philosopher.

  46. The important thing is not to stop questioning. Curiosity has its own reason for existing.

  47. The high destiny of the individual is to serve rather than to rule.

  48. The hardest thing to understand in the world is the income tax.

  49. The grand aim of all science is to cover the greatest number of empirical facts by logical deduction from the smallest number of hypotheses or axioms.

  50. The gift of fantasy has meant more to me than my talent for absorbing positive knowledge.

  51. The fear of death is the most unjustified of all fears, for there’s no risk of accident for someone who’s dead.

  52. The faster you go, the shorter you are.

  53. The environment is everything that isn’t me.

  54. The distinction between the past, present and future is only a stubbornly persistent illusion.

  55. The difference between stupidity and genius is that genius has its limits.

  56. The devil has put a penalty on all things we enjoy in life. Either we suffer in health or we suffer in soul or we get fat.

  57. The attempt to combine wisdom and power has only rarely been successful and then only for a short while.

  58. That deep emotional conviction of the presence of a superior reasoning power, which is revealed in the incomprehensible universe, forms my idea of God.

  59. Technological progress is like an axe in the hands of a pathological criminal.

  60. Strive not to be a success, but rather to be of value.

  61. Sometimes one pays most for the things one gets for nothing.

  62. Solitude is painful when one is young, but delightful when one is more mature.

  63. Small is the number of people who see with their eyes and think with their minds.

  64. Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind.

  65. Science is a wonderful thing if one does not have to earn one’s living at it.

  66. Reality is merely an illusion, albeit a very persistent one.

  67. Reading, after a certain age, diverts the mind too much from its creative pursuits. Any man who reads too much and uses his own brain too little falls into lazy habits of thinking.

  68. Put your hand on a hot stove for a minute and it seems like an hour. Sit with a pretty girl for an hour, and it seems like a minute.

  69. Pure mathematics is, in its way, the poetry of logical ideas.

  70. Politics is for the present, but an equation is for eternity.

  71. People love chopping wood. In this activity one immediately sees results.

  72. Peace cannot be kept by force; it can only be achieved by understanding.

  73. Our task must be to free ourselves by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature and its beauty.

  74. 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.

  75. Only a life lived for others is a life worthwhile.

  76. One strength of the communist system of the East is that it has some of the character of a religion and inspires the emotions of a religion.

  77. One may say the eternal mystery of the world is its comprehensibility.

  78. Once we accept our limits, we go beyond them.

  79. Occurrences in this domain are beyond the reach of exact prediction because of the variety of factors in operation, not because of any lack of order in nature.

  80. Nothing is more destructive of respect for the government and the law of the land than passing laws which cannot be enforced.

  81. No problem can be solved from the same level of consciousness that created it.

  82. No amount of experimentation can ever prove me right; a single experiment can prove me wrong.

  83. Never lose a holy curiosity.

  84. Never do anything against conscience even if the state demands it.

  85. Nationalism is an infantile disease. It is the measles of mankind.

  86. My religion consists of a humble admiration of the illimitable superior spirit who reveals himself in the slight details we are able to perceive with our frail and feeble mind.

  87. Mozart’s music is so pure and beautiful that I see it as a reflection of the inner beauty of the universe.

  88. Most people say that it is the intellect which makes a great scientist. They are wrong: it is character.

  89. Most of the fundamental ideas of science are essentially simple, and may, as a rule, be expressed in a language comprehensible to everyone.

  90. Morality is of the highest importance – but for us, not for God.

  91. Memory is deceptive because it is colored by today’s events.

  92. Love is a better teacher than duty.

  93. Look deep into nature, and then you will understand everything better.

  94. Logic will get you from A to B. Imagination will take you everywhere.

  95. Let every man be respected as an individual and no man idolized.

  96. Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope for tomorrow. The important thing is not to stop questioning.

  97. Knowledge of what is does not open the door directly to what should be.

  98. Joy in looking and comprehending is nature’s most beautiful gift.

  99. It’s not that I’m so smart, it’s just that I stay with problems longer.

  100. It was the experience of mystery – even if mixed with fear – that engendered religion.

  101. It stands to the everlasting credit of science that by acting on the human mind it has overcome man’s insecurity before himself and before nature.

  102. It should be possible to explain the laws of physics to a barmaid.

  103. It is the supreme art of the teacher to awaken joy in creative expression and knowledge.

  104. It is strange to be known so universally and yet to be so lonely.

  105. It is only to the individual that a soul is given.

  106. It is my conviction that killing under the cloak of war is nothing but an act of murder.

  107. It is a miracle that curiosity survives formal education.

  108. It has become appallingly obvious that our technology has exceeded our humanity.

  109. It gives me great pleasure indeed to see the stubbornness of an incorrigible nonconformist warmly acclaimed.

  110. Isn’t it strange that I who have written only unpopular books should be such a popular fellow?

  111. Intellectuals solve problems, geniuses prevent them.

  112. Intellectual growth should commence at birth and cease only at death.

  113. Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.

  114. Information is not knowledge.

  115. In order to be an immaculate member of a flock of sheep, one must above all be a sheep oneself.

  116. In matters of truth and justice, there is no difference between large and small problems, for issues concerning the treatment of people are all the same.

  117. Imagination is more important than knowledge.

  118. Imagination is everything. It is the preview of life’s coming attractions.

  119. If you can’t explain it simply, you don’t understand it well enough.

  120. If you are out to describe the truth, leave elegance to the tailor.

  121. If we knew what it was we were doing, it would not be called research, would it?

  122. If the facts don’t fit the theory, change the facts.

  123. If people are good only because they fear punishment, and hope for reward, then we are a sorry lot indeed.

  124. If I were not a physicist, I would probably be a musician. I often think in music. I live my daydreams in music. I see my life in terms of music.

  125. I want to know all Gods thoughts; all the rest are just details.

  126. I want to go when I want. It is tasteless to prolong life artificially. I have done my share; it is time to go. I will do it elegantly.

  127. I very rarely think in words at all. A thought comes, and I may try to express it in words afterwards.

  128. I used to go away for weeks in a state of confusion.

  129. I think and think for months and years. Ninety-nine times, the conclusion is false. The hundredth time I am right.

  130. I shall never believe that God plays dice with the world.

  131. I never think of the future – it comes soon enough.

  132. I live in that solitude which is painful in youth, but delicious in the years of maturity.

  133. I know not with what weapons World War III will be fought, but World War IV will be fought with sticks and stones.

  134. I have no special talent. I am only passionately curious.

  135. I have just got a new theory of eternity.

  136. I do not believe that civilization will be wiped out in a war fought with the atomic bomb. Perhaps two-thirds of the people of the earth will be killed.

  137. I do not believe in the God of theology who rewards good and punishes evil.

  138. I do not believe in immortality of the individual, and I consider ethics to be an exclusively human concern with no superhuman authority behind it.

  139. I cannot imagine a God who rewards and punishes the objects of his creation and is but a reflection of human frailty.

  140. I believe that a simple and unassuming manner of life is best for everyone, best both for the body and the mind.

  141. I am not only a pacifist but a militant pacifist. I am willing to fight for peace. Nothing will end war unless the people themselves refuse to go to war.

  142. I am enough of an artist to draw freely upon my imagination.

  143. I am a deeply religious nonbeliever – this is a somewhat new kind of religion.

  144. Human beings must have action; and they will make it if they cannot find it.

  145. Heroism on command, senseless violence, and all the loathsome nonsense that goes by the name of patriotism – how passionately I hate them!

  146. He who joyfully marches to music in rank and file has already earned my contempt. He has been given a large brain by mistake, since for him the spinal cord would suffice.

  147. He who can no longer pause to wonder and stand rapt in awe, is as good as dead; his eyes are closed.

  148. Great spirits have always encountered violent opposition from mediocre minds.

  149. Gravitation cannot be held responsible for people falling in love.

  150. God may be subtle, but he isn’t plain mean.

  151. God does not play dice.

  152. God always takes the simplest way.

  153. Force always attracts men of low morality.

  154. Few people are capable of expressing with equanimity opinions which differ from the prejudices of their social environment. Most people are even incapable of forming such opinions.

  155. Few are those who see with their own eyes and feel with their own hearts.

  156. Everything should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler.

  157. Everyone should be respected as an individual, but no one idolized.

  158. Education is what remains after one has forgotten what one has learned in school.

  159. Do not worry about your difficulties in Mathematics. I can assure you mine are still greater.

  160. Confusion of goals and perfection of means seems, in my opinion, to characterize our age.

  161. Concern for man and his fate must always form the chief interest of all technical endeavors. Never forget this in the midst of your diagrams and equations.

  162. Common sense is the collection of prejudices acquired by age eighteen.

  163. Coincidence is God’s way of remaining anonymous.

  164. Before God we are all equally wise – and equally foolish.

  165. As far as the laws of mathematics refer to reality, they are not certain, and as far as they are certain, they do not refer to reality.

  166. As far as I’m concerned, I prefer silent vice to ostentatious virtue.

  167. Anyone who has never made a mistake has never tried anything new.

  168. Anyone who doesn’t take truth seriously in small matters cannot be trusted in large ones either.

  169. Any man who reads too much and uses his own brain too little falls into lazy habits of thinking.

  170. Any man who can drive safely while kissing a pretty girl is simply not giving the kiss the attention it deserves.

  171. Anger dwells only in the bosom of fools.

  172. An empty stomach is not a good political adviser.

  173. All these primary impulses, not easily described in words, are the springs of man’s actions.

  174. All that is valuable in human society depends upon the opportunity for development accorded the individual.

  175. All religions, arts and sciences are branches of the same tree.

  176. A table, a chair, a bowl of fruit and a violin; what else does a man need to be happy?

  177. A question that sometimes drives me hazy: am I or are the others crazy?

  178. A person who never made a mistake never tried anything new.

  179. A man should look for what is, and not for what he thinks should be.