Friday, July 16, 2010

On Not Regretting Isolation

I was watching an old Nova show about Einstein this evening -- a recent Netflix shipment -- and the actor portraying him spoke a butchered version of something actually written by Einstein. I looked it up later and I'm copying it here. I like the part about not regretting the isolation that is a consequence of withdrawing into oneself. There's an upside to being an introvert; in fact, there are many.

The quote:

My passionate interest in social justice and social responsibility has always stood in curious contrast to a marked lack of desire for direct association with men and women. I am a horse for single harness, not cut out for tandem or teamwork. I have never belonged wholeheartedly to any country or state, to my circle of friends, or even to my own family. These ties have always been accompanied by a vague aloofness, and the wish to withdraw into myself increases with the years.

Such isolation is sometimes bitter, but I do not regret being cut off from the understanding and sympathy of other men. I lose something by it, to be sure, but I am compensated for it in being rendered independent of the customs, opinions, and prejudices of others, and am not tempted to rest my peace of mind upon such shifting foundations.

written by Einstein, 1930


 

7 comments:

Anonymous said...

interesting blog. Was going to say well written, but really the words are just vehicles for some really great thinking. I would say that wouldn't I? I share your penchant for introversion.

Hypothetical said...

Anon, thanks. You could say "well written." I'd appreciate it. :-)

Anonymous said...

OK, then - 'well written'. I confess I have been wondering about your hypothetical profession as you seem rather good at spelling.

Moose said...

ahhhh, I like this.

Zeri said...

Anon, unfortunately, I'm not a writer. Nor an editor.

Moose, thanks.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for posting this qoute. Sums up my feeling exactly.

Zeri Kyd said...

Anonymous, it is a good quote.