If you live inside Facebook, I’m pretty sure you’ve already seen someone posting this video, (or maybe you’ve posted it yourself to perpetuate the chain). However, on several occasions I’ve pointed out that the alleged account of a classroom encounter between young Albert Einstein and an atheist professor is FICTION. The exchanges never took place, and Albert Einstein, whom many deem the most intelligent person who ever lived, is not a Christian.
Moreover, we know it’s not true because Einstein, the most famous scientist of the 20th century responsible for the famous E=mc2 equation, was a careful thinker who would never have put forward the specious logic attributed to him.
Comparing Apples to Oranges
Does cold exist? or is it simply the absence of heat? Well, both heat and cold are actually labels physicists give to varying degrees in temperature. What exists is temperature. High or low. We call “cold” the lowest level of heat.
Does darkness exist? or is it simply the absence of light? Well, there are degrees of darkness as there are degrees of light, since light is made of sub-atomic particles called photons. Hence, a dark object reflects fewer visible photons than other objects, and therefore appears dim in comparison. (One example is Dark Matter. Astronomers theorize it makes up 25% of the known universe. This could be classified as darkness because it is invisible matter.)
Now, does evil exist? or is it simply the absence of good? Here is the heart of the problem, the previous two given contrasts — cold VS heat, dark VS light — concern physical properties of the universe, meaning material existence. Evil is not physical, because it has no mass, energy, etc., and it’s not quantifiable. So evil is not the same as cold and darkness, as the young student (not Einstein) wrongfully said.
Therefore the whole proposition of the video crumbles into pieces when you notice that the analogy is wrong. Saying evil happens when man does not have God’s love present in his heart is no help either, since it’s basically a self-serving non-argument without the slightest foundation of fact.
The Real Albert Einstein
“I do not believe in a personal God and I have never denied this but have expressed it clearly. If something is in me which can be called religious then it is the unbounded admiration for the structure of the world so far as our science can reveal it. “
-Albert Enstein, letter to an atheist (1954), quoted in Albert Einstein: The Human Side, edited by Helen Dukas & Banesh Hoffman
“A man’s ethical behavior should be based effectually on sympathy, education, and social ties and needs; no religious basis is necessary. Man would indeed be in a poor way if he had to be restrained by fear of punishment and hope of reward after death. “
- Albert Einstein, “Religion and Science,” New York Times Magazine, November 9, 1930