The controversial Einstein God Letter, written by Albert Einstein and outlining his thoughts on God to philosopher Eric Gutkind, is set to sell at Christie’s New York in December, with an estimate of $1,000,000 to $1,500,000.
Recognised as one of the most important manuscript of the 20th century, the Einstein God Letter reveals the scientist’s thoughts on religion, his Jewish identity and his own search for meaning in life.
Written a year before Einstein’s death in 1955, it remains the most fully articulated expression of his religious and philosophical views.
Peter Klarnet, Senior Specialist Books & Manuscripts, Christie’s remarked, “Christie’s is honoured to present this important Albert Einstein letter at auction as it concerns themes that have been central to human enquiry since the dawn of human consciousness, and it is one of the definitive statements in the Religion vs Science debate.”
Einstein wrote this remarkable private letter in response to Gutkind’s book, Choose Life: The Biblical Call to Revolt.
He offers his candid and unvarnished opinion that: “The word God is for me is nothing but the expression and product of human weaknesses, the Bible a collection of venerable but still rather primitive legends. No interpretation, no matter how subtle, can (for me) change anything about this.”
And despite a strong cultural affinity with the Jewish people, Einstein did not exclude Judaism from his critique: he admired and loved his people, but is clear in his belief that they were not “chosen” above others.
The letter will sell in Christie’s Books and Manuscripts sale on December 4.