On 11 Sep 2013, at 21:40, John Clark wrote:

On Wed, Sep 11, 2013  Bruno Marchal <marc...@ulb.ac.be> wrote:

> Einstein read Kant, and loved Spinoza, and admit his influence in his own research.

He may have read and loved detective stories too. Einstein was interested in things other than science, like politics, and those thinkers may have helped him there, but not in his serious work. As for Spinoza, this is what Richard Feynman had to say:

"My son is taking a course in philosophy, and last night we were looking at something by Spinoza and there was the most childish reasoning! There were all these attributes, and Substances, and all this meaningless chewing around, and we started to laugh. Now how could we do that? Here's this great Dutch philosopher, and we're laughing at him. It's because there's no excuse for it! In the same period there was Newton, there was Harvey studying the circulation of the blood, there were people with methods of analysis by which progress was being made! You can take every one of Spinoza's propositions, and take the contrary propositions, and look at the world and you can't tell which is right."


Feynman was very bad in philosophy. Even in the philosophy of QM, he has avoided all questions, and only put in footnote some remarks showing that he did not believe in the wave collapse. He added often: don't try to understand what happens, Nature just acts like that ... That is bad philosophy and bad science. But Einstein, much better philosopher, perhaps through his understanding of Spinoza and Kant, asked the genuine question, like in the EPR paper, which led to Bell, Aspect, etc.

Bruno






 John K Clark



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