ôMy Views,ö an essay by Albert Einstein (p. 543), seeks to convince readers that ôserious scientific workersö are the ôonly profoundly religious people.ö In this essay, Einstein (p. 541) discusses his views on the purpose, nature and meaning of life, coming to the conclusion that only those individuals who ascend to a ôthird stage of religious experienceàcosmic religious feelingö keep true religious feeling alive through the arts and sciences. This essay will discuss EinsteinÆs influences in life, his views on human existence and meaning and his belief in the arts and science as a means of conveying and keeping alive the most profound and true religious feeling.
In ôMy Views,ö Albert Einstein is literally trying to undermine notions and beliefs associated with what he views as incomplete or misdirected religious feeling. Instead, he insists that organized religion (with their attendant dogma and anthropomorphic conceptions of God) is incapable of leading to true religious feeling. True religious feeling, Einstein (p. 541) maintains, ôknows no dogma and no God conceived in manÆs image,ö a characteristic he claims is common to all of the ôreligious geniusesö of all ages. Einstein believes that manmade conceptions of religion and God, due to fear and necessity, have promoted misguided notions and beliefs of religious feeling that tend to undermine rather than empower the universal connection among all human beings.
Due to the scholarly source from which EinsteinÆs essay is reprinted, it is highly certain he is the author of it and its views. Influenced by the advances of science and the increasingly dogmatic nature of organized religion, Einstein (p. 537) comes to believe that only the arts and science can perpetuate and keep alive true religious feeling by expressing the values most important to human existence, ôKindness, beauty and truth.ö Most human endeavors