Source: Creative Thinking

“The greatest scientists are artists as well,” said Albert Einstein. For Einstein, insight did not come from logic or mathematics. It came, as it does for artists, from intuition and inspiration. As he told one friend, “When I examine myself and my methods of thought, I come close to the conclusion that the gift of imagination has meant more to me than any talent for absorbing absolute knowledge.” Elaborating, he added, “All great achievements of science must start from intuitive knowledge. I believe in intuition and inspiration…. At times I feel certain I am right while not knowing the reason.” Thus, his famous statement that, for creative work in science, “Imagination is more important than knowledge”

Einstein  indicated that he used images to solve his problems and found words later. Einstein explicated this bold idea that he never thought in logical symbols or mathematical equations, but in images,  feelings, and even musical architectures (intuitive mind ).

Einstein only employed words or other symbols after he was able to solve his problems through the manipulation of internally imagined images, feelings, and architectures. “I very rarely think in words at all. A thought (rational mind ) comes, and I may try to express it in words afterwards,”

He attributed his scientific insight and intuition mainly to music. “If I were not a physicist,” he once said, “I would probably be a musician. I often think in music. I live my daydreams in music. I see my life in terms of music…. I get most joy in life out of music” . His son, Hans, amplified what Einstein meant by recounting that “whenever he felt that he had come to the end of the road or into a difficult situation in his work, he would take refuge in music, and that would usually resolve all his difficulties”.

Einstein recognized an unexplainable connection between music and his science, and notes that his mentor Ernst Mach had indicated that music and the aural experience were the organ to describe space” . Music also embodies time. He was in a constant struggle for musical experiences which helped him build a rich mental perceptual fabric of space and time in which to perform his scientific theorizing”

Einstein said “The theory of relativity occurred to me by intuition, and music is the driving force behind this intuition. My parents had me study the violin from the time I was six. My new discovery is the result of musical perception”.They also fit with the manner in which Einstein expressed his greatest praise for a fellow scientist. Neils Bohr’s work on the structure of the atom, Einstein said, was “the highest form of musicality in the realm of thought”

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