Courageous Life of Beidermeier

Musings from the Life and Times of Prof. Albert Einstein

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Image by Robert Csipa from Pixabay

“We live in a world in which courage is in less supply than genius.” — Peter Theil

Whenever we see or hear the name Albert Einstein, the word “genius” pops up in our minds. But what’s often overlooked is that his courage was far more prominent than his seemingly infinite genius, evidences of which are explained in the forthcoming words.

Annus Mirabilis

1905 was a special year for Einstein — a miracle year, or annus mirabilis. He published four pioneering papers — on photoelectric effect, Brownian motion, special relativity and mass-energy equivalence. These were inspiring works from him, not only because he employed sheer hard work and genius (his wife said that Einstein used to stay locked in his room for days while developing the theory on special relativity), but because he showed tremendous courage. Note that by this time Newton’s theory of mechanics was already established for more than 200 years. Challenging such a widely accepted and established work was not a job of cowards. But Einstein did that without hesitation and didn’t back down after the obvious initial criticism and mockery that followed. Eventually however, academics started realising the insight behind his works and soon he was a star figure — a revered scientist whose name was in almost every household on the planet during that time. For his work on photoelectric effect, he won the Nobel Prize in Physics 15 years later, in 1921.

“Pardon me, sorry! Always I am mistaken for Professor Einstein.” — Albert Einstein

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Einstein was eccentric and often funny. On his 72nd birthday, a photographer was trying to persuade him to smile for the camera, but having smiled for photos many times that day, Einstein stuck out his tongue instead. Image source:

The Other Side

No human is perfect, and Einstein was no exception. It is speculated that he engaged in adultery during 1910’s, when he began an extramarital affair Elsa Einstein, who was both his first maternal and paternal cousin. He eventually divorced Mileva and married Elsa few years later. During the last years of his first marriage, it is speculated that he developed a very cold-hearted attitude towards his wife and one of their sons.

“Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance you must keep moving.”

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Passionate. Pythonist. Perfectionist.

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