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Why Einstein Said We're All Deluded

- and that we should all try to free ourselves from this delusion. Because maybe he was on to something...

Big Al is pretty much everyone's go-to "smart guy."

When we're looking to name a token smart guy, he's usually the first one that comes to mind.

Which means, when he says something, he's probably onto something.

Here's something he said:

"A human being is a part of the whole
called by us "Universe",

a part limited in time and space.

He experiences himself,
his thoughts and feelings as something separated from the rest,
- a kind of optical delusion
of his consciousness.

The striving to free oneself from this delusion
is the one issue of true religion.

Not to nourish the delusion
but to try to overcome it
is the way to reach the attainable measure of peace of mind."
- Albert Einstein


So, what did Uncle Al mean by this,
exactly?

This seems like a pretty great clue he left us.

But what is this "delusion" he's talking about?

Are we really in a kind of "prison"? If so, what is this "prison"? Why are we there?

How do we accomplish this "task" he talks about of
of "freeing ourselves from this prison"?

What? I've got a job?

This sounds like a job for your valiant, brave, loveable, huggable LiveReal Agents.

So here, for your viewing pleasure, is one shot at it:

Maybe the delusion he's talking about is something like what we call "The Radical Hypothesis":

That although we all act like we know who we really are...
in fact, we actually don't.

Einstein letter

Photo credit: AFP/Getty Images

In a way, it almost seems like he could be talking about"The Matrix."

But...what is "The Matrix," really?

And of course, seeing how the movie wasn't really out yet when Uncle Al was around, maybe he's actually talking about that old age concept of something called "ego."

 

This seems to fit.

After all, he left us another clue along the same lines, when he said this:

"The true value of a human being is determined primarily by the mesaure and the sense in which he has attained liberation from the self."

What is "the self," in the sense that he means?

We could also use the word "ego."

If something along those lines is the case - that the "optical delusion of our consciousness" he's talking about could also be described by the word "ego"...

- and if, as he says, we should "try to overcome it"...

- then the trillion-dollar question is this:

How do you overcome it?

And is that really, as he says, the way to real "peace of mind" or "happiness"?

Well, we're working on figuring out exactly that problem.

While we're working on that, in true scientific fashion that might make Uncle Al himself proud...there are a few "scientific experiments" here (seven, actually) that we can suggest that might help with this task of "overcoming it."

What do you think?

We'll keep working on it. Stay tuned.

If you liked this, you might also like...

What is "ego"?

The Radical Hypothesis

Spirituality for Skeptics

What is "Spiritual Enlightenment"?

Why are we here?

The Essence of Religion

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