Lot #119
Albert Einstein Typed Letter Signed

"The present quantum theory, in spite of its many successes, is far from the truth"
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Estimate: $30000+


"The present quantum theory, in spite of its many successes, is far from the truth"

TLS signed “A. Einstein,” one page, 8.5 x 11, Institute for Advanced Study letterhead, July 5, 1952. Letter to mathematical physicist Daniel M. Lipkin, with a few handwritten additions including the equation in question and the word "general" in "general relativity." In full: "It is, of course, an obstacle for the testing of the theory that it is practically impossible to operate with the solution of the equation gikl=0 with respect to the T. Your point of view to try to operate on the basis of certain lines analogous to the geodetical line seem to me not appropriate for reasons of principles. A relativistic theory of the total field should, according to my opinion, not admit singularities. Particles concentrated in a point can therefore not be used in such theory. For this reason I do not believe that any lines should play a fundamental role.

The conviction that only solutions without any singularities can claim physical meaning creates a tremendous difficulty, because there are for non-linear differential equations—as far as I know—no methods to find them out systematically or even to find the general theorems.

I too have many reasons to believe that the present quantum theory, in spite of its many successes, is far from the truth. This theory reminds me a little of the system of delusion of an exceedingly intelligent paranoiac concocted of incoherent elements of thought. As you also seem to believe I believe it impossible to get a real insight without satisfying from the start the principle of general relativity. I feel, however, by no means sure that my own approach is the right one.

I do also not believe that de Broglie-Bohm's approach is very hopeful. It leads, f.i., to the consequence that a particle belonging to a standing wave has no speed. This is contrary to the well-founded conviction that a nearly free particle should approximately behave according to classical mechanics." In fine condition. Accompanied by the original mailing envelope.

Auction Info

  • Auction Title: Fine Autograph and Artifacts
  • Dates: #635 - Ended May 11, 2022

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