Here is a passage that comes close, I think, to a concise description by Einstein of his quintessential “faith”:
A knowledge of the existence of something we cannot penetrate, of the manifestations of the profoundest reason and the most radiant beauty — it is this knowledge and this emotion that constitute the truly religious attitude; in this sense, and in this alone, I am a deeply religious man. I cannot conceive of a God who rewards and punishes his creatures, or has a will of the type of which we are conscious in ourselves … Enough for me the mystery of the eternity of life, and the inkling of the marvelous structure of reality, together with the single-hearted endeavor to comprehend a portion, be it ever so tiny, of the reason that manifests itself in nature.
This is a short article and I recommend reading it to get at the subtlety of thought that Tippett brings to her interpretation of Einstein’s thoughts. For those that have watched a Start Wars movie or read Arthur C. Clarke’ 2010: A Space Odyssey, or Einstein himself this is not particularly new territory. The universe seems to exist ( we’ll skip that on going debate for today). Aesthetics are subjective, but most people can find something about the universe they think of as beautiful. Whatever all this existence is, is a wonder. It probably did not all come about by way of a breaded man partly draped in a white sheet who occupies a throne on an ethereal plain. The Big Bang, matter, anti-matter, black holes and quantum theory have a majesty much their own and not really matched by fables.
“The ultimate male status symbol,” according to respondents, isn’t a fancy car or a Budweiser-sponsored man cave — it’s having a family. (Not to interrupt the chorus of “aww’s” — but “a beautiful wife or girlfriend” ranked third.) As for what “defines a ‘real man’ in 2010,” they say it’s “being a great father and husband who takes care of his family.” That’s either retro (man brings home the bacon) or progressive (man helps to support his family both financially and emotionally), depending on how you look at it; the same can be said for the rise of a family as the ultimate status symbol.
Frankly, you men make us women look a little superficial: Cosmopolitan magazine did a sister survey of their female audience and found that 46 percent rank a “beautiful house” as the ultimate status symbol, and a successful husband or boyfriend came in at second. Let me just point out, though, that the self-selecting survey was conducted by Cosmopolitan magazine; I’d hardly expect the results to be any different. While I’m at it, it’s worth pointing out that the self-selecting bit applies to AskMen.com’s side of the survey as well — so, grain of salt, ya’ll.
A nice discussion starter over coffee after dinner, but the stats are a little questionable. Only 29% of men can and enjoy cooking. That seems a little low. I’m not sure why Tracy gives grilling technique a shrug. When did things out of a teflon pan start to taste better? Women value, I mean really value owning a house. I wonder if that isn’t younger women or women owning their first house. I’d like to see those numbers again after a few years of maintenance, cleaning and utility bills. Houses are greedy and clingy entities that take possession of their occupants over time. Some people like that, for others it becomes a trade-off for the irritations that come with apartment or row townhouse living. 62 percent of men say it is wrong to be deceptive about their feelings in order to get a woman to sleep with them. Just judging from casual conversation that seems about right. A lot of romcoms and Fox TV dramas make it seems as though it would be 62% who would lie.