Quote for the Day – Einstein’s Louse and the Limits of Scientific Understanding

Nature is showing us only the tail of the lion, but I have no doubt that the lion belongs to it even though, because of its large size, it cannot totally reveal itself all at once. We can see it only the way a louse that is sitting on it would.

 ~Albert Einstein to Heinrich Zangger, quoted in Clifford Pickover, Archimedes to Hawking

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3 Comments

Filed under Books, Philosophy, Philosophy of science, Science

3 responses to “Quote for the Day – Einstein’s Louse and the Limits of Scientific Understanding

  1. This is is a strange one. I like this one:
    “The eternal mystery of the world is its comprehensibility … The fact that it is comprehensible is a miracle.”
    Einstein: His Life and Universe by Walter Isaacson, p. 462
    I’d have used it — Hawking is used — saying:
    “I do not agree with the view that the universe is a mystery. …I feel that this view does not do justice to the
    scientific revolution that was started almost four hundred years ago by Galileo and carried on by Newton. They showed that at least some areas of the universe …are governed by precise mathematical laws. Over the years since then, we have extended the work of Galileo and Newton. …We now have mathematical laws that govern everything we normally experience.”
    —Stephen Hawking, Black Holes and Baby Universes and Other Essays
    Anyway — The book is about the Laws of Science and the Great Minds Behind Them … let it be known that I am not mentioned in the book. 🙂
    ~ Eric

  2. Reblogged this on Framework 21 and commented:
    When it comes to big problems, with many factors that include human behavior, science seems to be doomed to help us understand what was, rather than what is.

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