I am exclusively occupied with the problem of gravitation and hope with the help of a local mathematician friend [marcel grossman] to overcome all the difficulties. One thing is certain, however, that never in life have i been quite so tormented. A great respect for mathematics has been instilled within me, the subtler aspects of which, in my stupidity, i regarded until now as pure luxury.
In spiritual growth, it is important to avoid imbalances between academic or intellectual learning and practical implementation. Otherwise there is a danger that too much intellectualiza tion will kill the more contemplative practices and too much emphasis on practical implementation without study will kill the understanding. There has got to be a balance.
The inconveniences and horrors of the pox are perfectly well known to every one; but still the disease flourishes and spreads. Several million people were killed in a recent war and half the world ruined; but we all busily go on in courses that make another event of the same sort inevitable. Experientia docet? Experientia doesn't.
A young man is not a proper hearer of lectures on political science; for he is inexperienced in the actions that occur in life, but its discussions start from these and are about these; and, further, since he tends to follow his passions, his study will be vain and unprofitable, because the end that is aimed at is not knowledge but action. And it makes no difference whether he is young in years or youthful in character.