A Philosopher Of Nature Essay Research Paper

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A Philosopher Of Nature Essay, Research Paper A PHILOSOPHER OF NATURE December 1, 1998 Paper # 2 Intro to Philosophy Fifty years ago the single greatest philosopher walked upon this earth. How can I be so dauntless as to refer to one man as The Greatest philosopher? The answer is simple. All philosophers ask questions. Few of these questions will produce earth-shattering revelations and even fewer will change the world. Out of the handful of philosophers who have made a difference in the world I can think of only one who has, by use of an amazing mind and knowledge of complex mathematics, changed the world forever. Albert Einstein was born in Ulm Germany on March 14, 1879, and spent his youth in Munich, where his family owned a small shop that manufactured electric machinery.

He did not talk until the age of three, but even as a youth he showed a brilliant curiosity about nature and an ability to understand difficult mathematical concepts. At the age of twelve he taught himself Euclidean geometry. Einstein hated the dull regimentation and unimaginative spirit of school in Munich. When repeated business failure led the family to leave Germany for Milan, Italy, Einstein, who was then fifteen years old, used the opportunity to withdraw from the school. He spent a year with his parents in Milan, and when it became clear that he would have to make his own way in the world, he finished secondary school in Arrau Switzerland, and entered the Swiss National Polytechnic in Z?rich. Einstein did not enjoy the methods of instruction there. He often cut classes and

used the time to study Physics on his own or to play his beloved violin. He passed his examinations and graduated in 1900 by studying the notes of a classmate. His professors did not think highly of him and would not recommend him for a university position. For two years Einstein worked as a tutor and substitute teacher. In 1902 he secured a position as an examiner in the Swiss patent office in Bern. In 1903 he married Mileva Maric who had been a classmate of his at the Polytechnic (“Einstein, Albert”). They had two sons but eventually divorced. Einstein later remarried. After 1919, Einstein became internationally renowned. He accrued honors and awards, including the Nobel Prize in physics in 1921, from various world scientific societies. His visit to any part of the world

became a national event; photographers and reporters followed him everywhere. While regretting his loss of privacy, Einstein capitalized on his fame to further his own personal and political views. The two social movements that received his full personal support were Pacifism, opposition to war and other violence, and Zionism, movement to unite the Jewish people of the Diaspora (exile) and settle them in Palestine. During World War I he was one of a handful of academics willing to publicly decry Germany’s involvement in the war. After the war his continued support of Pacifist and Zionist goals made him the target of viscous attacks by anti-Semitic and right –wing elements in Germany. Even his scientific theories were publicly ridiculed, especially the theory of relativity

(“Einstein, Albert”). When Hitler came to power, Einstein immediately decided to leave Germany for the United States. He took a position at the Institute for Advanced Study at Princeton. While continuing his efforts on behalf of world Zionism, Einstein renounced his former Pacifist stand in the face of the awesome threat to humankind posed by the Nazi regime in Germany. In 1939 Einstein collaborated with several other physicists in writing a letter to President Franklin D. Roosevelt, pointing out the possibility of making an atomic bomb and the likelihood that the German government was embarking on such a course. The letter, which bore only Einstein’s signature, helped lend urgency to efforts in the U.S. to build the atomic bomb, but Einstein played no role in the work and