Max Planck Quotes

Who was Max Planck?

Max Karl Ernst Ludwig Planck was a German theoretical physicist and Nobel Prize laureate.

He is best known as the originator of quantum theory.

Born April 23, 1858
Died October 4, 1947
Aged 89 years old

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Best 41 Quotes by Max Planck – Page 1 of 2

“An important scientific innovation rarely makes its way by gradually winning over and converting its opponents: What does happen is that the opponents gradually die out.”

“Before an experiment can be performed, it must be planned — the question to nature must be formulated before being posed. Before the result of a measurement can be used, it must be interpreted — nature's answer must be understood properly.

These two tasks are those of the theorist, who finds himself always more and more dependent on the tools of abstract mathematics. Of course, this does not mean that the experimenter does not also engage in theoretical deliberations.

The foremost classical example of a major achievement produced by such a division of labor is the creation of spectrum analysis by the joint efforts of Robert Bunsen, the experimenter, and Gustav Kirchhoff, the theorist. Since then, spectrum analysis has been continually developing and bearing ever richer fruit.”

“Ego is the immediate dictate of human consciousness.”

“Experiment is the only means of knowledge at our disposal. Everything else is poetry, imagination.”

“I regard consciousness as fundamental. I regard matter as derivative from consciousness. We cannot get behind consciousness. Everything that we talk about, everything that we regard as existing, postulates consciousness.”

“In all my research I have never come across matter. To me the term matter implies a bundle of energy which is given form by an intelligent spirit.”

“In all striving and research I reverently seek the secret of the divine spirit behind the secret of the ray of light.”

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“Insight must precede application.”

“It was not by accident that the greatest thinkers of all ages were deeply religious souls.”

“Modern physics has taught us that the nature of any system cannot be discovered by dividing it into its component parts and studying each part by itself. We must keep our attention fixed on the whole and on the interconnection between the parts.

The same is true of our intellectual life. It is impossible to make a clear cut between science, religion, and art. The whole is never equal simply to the sum of its various parts.”

“Nature never undertakes any change unless her interests are served by an increase in entropy.”

“New scientific ideas never spring from a communal body, however organized, but rather from the head of an individually inspired researcher who struggles with his problems in lonely thought and unites all his thought on one single point which is his whole world for the moment.”

“No burden is so heavy for a man to bear as a succession of happy days.”

“Religion and natural science are fighting a joint battle in an incessant, never relaxing crusade against skepticism and against dogmatism, against unbelief and superstition... and therefore on to God!”

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“Science advances one funeral at a time.”

“Science means unresting endeavor and continually progressing development toward an aim which the poetic intuition may apprehend, but the intellect can never fully grasp.”

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“As cheesy as this sounds, from day one on this planet I knew I was put here for a reason. And that reason is to invent, to bring the future.

My true goal is to help. It is to invent a future where people can be happy, where they can be safe and sound.”

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“Scientific discovery and scientific knowledge have been achieved only by those who have gone in pursuit of it without any practical purpose whatsoever in view.”

“The scientist needs an artistically creative imagination.”

“There is a real world independent of our senses; the laws of nature were not invented by man, but forced on him by the natural world. They are the expression of a natural world order.”

“Truth never triumphs — its opponents just die out.”

“When you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change.”

“Whence come I and whither go I? That is the great unfathomable question, the same for every one of us. Science has no answer to it.”

A Survey of Physical Theory Quotes

“A new truth always has to conend with many difficulties. If it were not so, it would have been discovered much sooner.”

A Survey of Physical Theory

Scientific Autobiography Quotes

“A new scientific truth does not triumph by convincing its opponents and making them see the light, but rather because its opponents eventually die, and a new generation grows up that is familiar with it.”

Scientific Autobiography

“An experiment is a question which science poses to Nature and a measurement is the recording of Nature's answer.”

Scientific Autobiography

“The Theory of Relativity confers an absolute meaning on a magnitude which in classical theory has only a relative significance: the velocity of light.

The velocity of light is to the Theory of Relativity as the elementary quantum of action is to the Quantum Theory: it is its absolute core.”

Scientific Autobiography

The Dilemmas of an Upright Man Quotes

“I do not believe in a personal God, let alone a Christian God.”

The Dilemmas of an Upright Man

“The assumption of an absolute determinism is the essential foundation of every scientific enquiry.”

The Dilemmas of an Upright Man

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“The goal is nothing other than the coherence and completeness of the system not only in respect of all details, but also in respect of all physicists of all places, all times, all peoples, and all cultures.”

The Dilemmas of an Upright Man

“The highest court is in the end one’s own conscience and conviction—that goes for you and for Einstein and every other physicist — and before any science there is first of all belief.”

The Dilemmas of an Upright Man

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“About all we know about consciousness is that it has something to do with the head, rather than the foot.”

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