Max Planck's `Christmas Article' (1930) a Key to his Attitude towards Religion?

Autor(en): Loehr, Gebhard
Stichwörter: History
Erscheinungsdatum: 2019
Volumen: 69
Ausgabe: 2
Startseite: 343+
Max Planck is usually considered a physicist who practiced Christianity and who believed Christian faith to be compatible with the physical world view of his time. However, a short article published around Christmas 1930 raises serious doubts. In it, Planck characterizes a life dedicated to science as a viable alternative to a more conventional religious life, because science can fulfill, or so Planck argues, all essential functions usually associated with religion. These functions, it is argued here, can be interpreted as elements of a basic, existential attitude below the surface of Planck's publicly avowed Lutheran faith. The exposure of Planck's `real faith' helps to explain seemingly contradictory statements on his religious beliefs in personal documents from his last years of life.
ISSN: 00805319

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