Einstein Quote

“A man should look for what is and not for what he thinks should be.”

I recently saw this quote attributed to Einstein with no reference. Would anyone have one? Is this a misquote?


It’s apparently first quoted in this 1962 biography of Einstein. That’s legit enough for me. But others may disagree as to its reliability.

That may be verbattim what is in the book, but it seems a bit of a rehash, or a reference…

“What is essential in the life of a man of my kind is what he thinks and how he thinks, and not what he does or suffers.” OR, “ … the essential in the being of a man of my type lies precisely in what he thinks and how he thinks, not in what he does or suffers.”

—Albert Einstein —From “Autobiographical Notes” in P. Schilpp ed., Albert Einstein : Philosopher – Scientist,(1949) 33.

That’s a completely different sentiment, how could that be a rehash? One is about empirics v normativity, the other is about beliefs v behavior.

BTW, it’s verbatim, one t.

  • If one conceives of religion and science according to these definitions then a conflict between them appears impossible. For science can only ascertain what is, but not what should be, and outside of its domain value judgments of all kinds remain necessary.


Also: Albert Einstein - Wikiquote

What we call science has the sole purpose of determining what is. The determining of what ought to be is unrelated to it and cannot be accomplished methodically

Letter to his friend Maurice Solovine (1 January 1951)

Is Einstein the anti-George Bernard Shaw? Or, was George Bernard Shaw taking a stab at Einstein? Or, is George Bernard Shaw’s famous quote perfectly innocent and unrelated to this altogether?

Which GB Shaw quote would that be?