What Einstein’s Final Hours Teach Us About God

The theory the great scientist was working on that day long ago sheds light on a far larger issue

For Albert Einstein, “The most incomprehensible thing about the world is that it is at all comprehensible.”

The day before he died in Princeton Hospital in New Jersey in 1955, he spent hours speculating about a “unified field theory,” a project he had begun in the 1920s. Roughly put, it is a “theory of everything” that melds general relativity and quantum field theory to explain all the physical aspects of the universe.

John Archibald Wheeler of Johns Hopkins — a close associate of Einstein’s who often conducted seminars at Einstein’s house at 112 Mercer Street in Princeton — said shortly before his own death in 2008 that if such a theory were discovered, the most astonishing thing about it would be its simplicity.

[lz_ndn video=32546748]

All of this is pretty obscure to me since, if we yield to the cognitive experts on how the brain works, my right lobe may be active and even overactive, but my left lobe is atrophied. I know, however, that the divine intelligence who made all things came into His own creation and told us all we need to know in order to live forever: “The word (logos) was made flesh and dwelt among us” (John 1:14) — and the darkness of ignorance has never canceled out that light of truth.

As for a unified theory of everything, Christ the Logos showed that everything in creation is “contingent,” that is, connected to Him, from the light at the farthest rim of the universe to the light that shone in Bethlehem at His earthly birth. All that exists is related to Him and depends on Him: “Not that we are sufficient in ourselves to consider anything as coming from ourselves, but our sufficiency is in him” (2 Corinthians 3:5).

A unified field theory is child’s play compared to the mystery that explains eternity as well as time. Jesus knew this would be beyond our intelligence, even with right and left brain lobes combined, so He allowed: “I have yet many things to say to you: but you cannot bear them now” (John 16:12).

Do you support individual military members being able to opt out of getting the COVID vaccine?

By completing the poll, you agree to receive emails from LifeZette, occasional offers from our partners and that you've read and agree to our privacy policy and legal statement.

Related: Sermon Spotlight: The Greatest Spiritual Gift

He was hinting at that theological contingency by which everything influences everything else. For the moment, all we need to know is that God who “-ists” enables us to “exist,” and that we can become what He wants us to be by our association with Him, in the sacramental life. Christ’s unified fact, not a theory, transcends the most cogent speculations of the earthly physicists.

He prayed to his Divine Father: “I in them and you in me, that they may become perfectly one, so that the world may know that you sent me and loved them even as you loved me” (John 17:23).

If our world seems to be spinning out of control in its terrors and perversions, that is only because it has separated from Christ. “In him all things hold together” (Col. 1:17).

Fr. George William Rutler is a Catholic priest and the pastor of the Church of St. Michael in Manhattan. This article originally appeared in his parish church bulletin and is used by permission.

Join the Discussion

Comments are currently closed.