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. To raise new questions, new possibilities, to regard old problems from a new angle, requires creative imagination and marks real advance in science. Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not sure about the former. All that is valuable in human society depends upon the opportunity for development accorded the individual. If people are good only because they fear punishment, and hope for reward, then we are a sorry lot indeed. Anyone who doesn't take truth seriously in small matters cannot be trusted in large ones either.
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.
He who can no longer pause to wonder and stand rapt in awe, is as good as dead; his eyes are closed. 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. 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. The fear of death is the most unjustified of all fears, for there's no risk of accident for someone who's dead. Whoever is careless with the truth in small matters cannot be trusted with important matters.
The pursuit of truth and beauty is a sphere of activity in which we are permitted to remain children all our lives.
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. In order to be an immaculate member of a flock of sheep, one must above all be a sheep oneself.


All these primary impulses, not easily described in words, are the springs of man's actions. Only one who devotes himself to a cause with his whole strength and soul can be a true master. I know not with what weapons World War III will be fought, but World War IV will be fought with sticks and stones.
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. True religion is real living; living with all one's soul, with all one's goodness and righteousness.
Nothing is more destructive of respect for the government and the law of the land than passing laws which cannot be enforced. The attempt to combine wisdom and power has only rarely been successful and then only for a short while. Few people are capable of expressing with equanimity opinions which differ from the prejudices of their social environment.
Heroism on command, senseless violence, and all the loathsome nonsense that goes by the name of patriotism - how passionately I hate them! 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. Concern for man and his fate must always form the chief interest of all technical endeavors. That deep emotional conviction of the presence of a superior reasoning power, which is revealed in the incomprehensible universe, forms my idea of God.
The unleashed power of the atom has changed everything save our modes of thinking and we thus drift toward unparalleled catastrophe.
To the Master's honor all must turn, each in its track, without a sound, forever tracing Newton's ground.
Whoever undertakes to set himself up as a judge of Truth and Knowledge is shipwrecked by the laughter of the gods.


The distinction between the past, present and future is only a stubbornly persistent illusion.
I cannot imagine a God who rewards and punishes the objects of his creation and is but a reflection of human frailty. Mozart's music is so pure and beautiful that I see it as a reflection of the inner beauty of the universe.
It gives me great pleasure indeed to see the stubbornness of an incorrigible nonconformist warmly acclaimed.
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. 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. There comes a time when the mind takes a higher plane of knowledge but can never prove how it got there.
We should take care not to make the intellect our god; it has, of course, powerful muscles, but no personality. Most of the fundamental ideas of science are essentially simple, and may, as a rule, be expressed in a language comprehensible to everyone.
Isn't it strange that I who have written only unpopular books should be such a popular fellow?
Any man who reads too much and uses his own brain too little falls into lazy habits of thinking. There is only the way of intuition, which is helped by a feeling for the order lying behind the appearance.



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