Einstein Smoked Pot? - Fact or Fiction?

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In summary: I think it's a sad testament to the society's fascination with notariety and our lack of respect for privacy. People advocate privacy all the time, but when it's a respected scientist like Einstein, we seem willing to expose everything just to disprove him.
  • #1
rune
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A friend of mine recently put my attention to this streaming video advertisement for an entheogenesis conference on Pot-TV: http://pot.tv/archive/shows/pottvshowse-3398.html

In it there is a reference to a prof. Francis Thackeray from South Africa (and a prof. Vandemir[?]; not sure if I made that out correctly) who supposedly has found cannabis-residue in chemical analysis of Einsteins pipes. Couldn't find anything about this on Google so I'm assuming it's BS, especially since Pot-TV doesn't seem like a very credible source of information. Anyone else heard anything about this supposed find?
 
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  • #2
I heard he smoked tobacco brand called 'Revelation'

but even if he did, it won't surprise me much
 
  • #3
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  • #4
Einstein definitely enjoyed the occasional sess crop.
 
  • #5
  • #6
EVERYONE smoked/smokes marijuana- unless they are Alabama bible thumpers- then they just grow it-
 
  • #7
setAI said:
EVERYONE smoked/smokes marijuana- unless they are Alabama bible thumpers- then they just grow it-

Not true at all, you'll find.
 
  • #8
I have to agree with Mathyaouw. Not everyone smokes pot. I really don't think of those sites are really credible. Gza, that picture is pretty funny, but I don't think that is evidence that he smoked pot. He was much to busy unraveling the mysteries of how the universe works to smoke pot. He couldn't screw in a light bulb or figure out how to solve 2+2. Rune, I think your friend was just trying to get a rise out of you.
 
  • #9
And why not - is it any concern of ours what someone else does or did.

Other greats also enjoyed the "forbidden". It is a well known documented fact Hector Berlioz apparently was under the influence of opium while composing "Symphony Fantastique" and listening to it I very well can believe it as no sober man can compose that brilliantly.

Sometimes the mind should be set free, most of us do it daily with the legal habit forming drugs alchohol and tobako and nobody thinks twice about that, and if those two are not enough then valium and other "so called legal" drugs are used.
 
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  • #10
misskitty said:
I have to agree with Mathyaouw. Not everyone smokes pot. I really don't think of those sites are really credible. Gza, that picture is pretty funny, but I don't think that is evidence that he smoked pot. He was much to busy unraveling the mysteries of how the universe works to smoke pot. He couldn't screw in a light bulb or figure out how to solve 2+2. Rune, I think your friend was just trying to get a rise out of you.

i absolutely agree, however, misskitty, it's surprising how many people use this substance. people you wouldn't even think of to be honest...because of the "pothead" stigma, many are just quiet about it.

if this silly little rumor were true, it wouldn't surprise me one bit.
 
  • #11
What difference does it make either way??
 
  • #12
infidel said:
What difference does it make either way??
if it were ever proven true, it could mean that many would lose a great deal of respect for him, and using it against him in trying to disprove his theories and work. it's good to know that you don't seem to think it matters. besides, this is the content of the thread, we are discussing this very matter.
 
  • #13
Kerrie said:
i absolutely agree, however, misskitty, it's surprising how many people use this substance. people you wouldn't even think of to be honest...because of the "pothead" stigma, many are just quiet about it.

if this silly little rumor were true, it wouldn't surprise me one bit.

This is very true. Sometimes it surprises me how much we agree on. :smile:
 
  • #14
Kerrie said:
if it were ever proven true, it could mean that many would lose a great deal of respect for him, and using it against him in trying to disprove his theories and work. it's good to know that you don't seem to think it matters. besides, this is the content of the thread, we are discussing this very matter.

Agreed. That would be aweful. Especially considering how much physics rests on his work. Can you imagine the reaction of the scientific community? There is probably a great number of people who would jump at the chance to discredit Einstein. Although it wouldn't surprise me either if he had smoked some marijuana.
 
  • #15
Kerrie said:
if it were ever proven true, it could mean that many would lose a great deal of respect for him, and using it against him in trying to disprove his theories and work. it's good to know that you don't seem to think it matters. besides, this is the content of the thread, we are discussing this very matter.


While this may hold true, I think it's a sad testament to the society's fascination with notariety and our lack of respect for privacy. People advocate privacy all the time, but when it's a public figure, a double standard comes to light. Wether or not he smoked pot is irrelavent. That doesn't change the work he's done. It may change people's view on the man, but the work speaks for itsself. It's the same as with Clinton and the lewinsky scandal. Everyone wanted to forget the fact that he was doing an excellent job as president, and focus on his personal life. which didn't change the work that he'd done as president. People never remember the billion things you did right, just the one thing you did wrong.
 
  • #16
Kerrie said:
if it were ever proven true, it could mean that many would lose a great deal of respect for him, and using it against him in trying to disprove his theories and work. it's good to know that you don't seem to think it matters. besides, this is the content of the thread, we are discussing this very matter.

Perhaps I should elaborate what I meant by "What difference does it make either way??".

1. He made his accomplishments. If he smoked pot every day I still don't see how it matters. His accomplishments stand separate from what anyone thinks of him personally.

2. Someone might "...[use] it against him to disprove his theories and work"? How? The only arbiter there is experiment. Anyone dumb enough to say his theories, proven by countless experiments, are irrelevant because he smoked pot is a moron not worth paying any attention to. If anything it could be used to show that smoking pot does not necessarily prevent you from making important contributions.
 
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  • #17
As it happens... He happened to die the same year that Hemp farming became illegal.

Perhaps not having it to smoke lead to his death and the world has lost out on much of his unfinished work. :cry:
 
  • #18
Zantra said:
While this may hold true, I think it's a sad testament to the society's fascination with notariety and our lack of respect for privacy. People advocate privacy all the time, but when it's a public figure, a double standard comes to light. Wether or not he smoked pot is irrelavent. That doesn't change the work he's done. It may change people's view on the man, but the work speaks for itsself. It's the same as with Clinton and the lewinsky scandal. Everyone wanted to forget the fact that he was doing an excellent job as president, and focus on his personal life. which didn't change the work that he'd done as president. People never remember the billion things you did right, just the one thing you did wrong.


very true zanta, very true.
 
  • #19
infidel said:
Perhaps I should elaborate what I meant by "What difference does it make either way??".

1. He made his accomplishments. If he smoked pot every day I still don't see how it matters. His accomplishments stand separate from what anyone thinks of him personally.

2. Someone might "...[use] it against him to disprove his theories and work"? How? The only arbiter there is experiment. Anyone dumb enough to say his theories, proven by countless experiments, are irrelevant because he smoked pot is a moron not worth paying any attention to. If anything it could be used to show that smoking pot does not necessarily prevent you from making important contributions.

i agree wholeheartedly with #1. i should clarify that judgement passed of Einstein could cloud those who question him because of their own ignorance. and i completely agree with your last sentence.

you would be amazed at the ignorance of highly educated people-for example: the other day i spoke about how my 5 year old son wanted me to read him "Through the looking glass" to a person whom i have a great deal of respect for and this person holds a college degree and has traveled all over the world. this person gave me a funny look and replied, "talk about LSD!". me being the one with less general education set them straight by telling them that the "Alice" books were written by a mathematican/philosopher and the books are actually a british satire, not to mention LSD wasn't even invented at that time.

long story short, when people get a stigma set in their minds, it can be contagious, thus causing widespread ignorance.
 
  • #20
Kerrie said:
i agree wholeheartedly with #1. i should clarify that judgement passed of Einstein could cloud those who question him because of their own ignorance. and i completely agree with your last sentence.

you would be amazed at the ignorance of highly educated people-for example: the other day i spoke about how my 5 year old son wanted me to read him "Through the looking glass" to a person whom i have a great deal of respect for and this person holds a college degree and has traveled all over the world. this person gave me a funny look and replied, "talk about LSD!". me being the one with less general education set them straight by telling them that the "Alice" books were written by a mathematican/philosopher and the books are actually a british satire, not to mention LSD wasn't even invented at that time.

long story short, when people get a stigma set in their minds, it can be contagious, thus causing widespread ignorance.

That doesn't alter the fact that his theories can only be overthrown by experiment. If some ignorant lay person decides Einstein is 'wrong' or whatever because he smoked pot, again, what difference does it make? Few people understand what he said anyway.

Now I don't suppose anyone should be spreading this rumor, at least not without proof it's true. But still, I don't think it matters. As someone mentioned, Carl Sagan admitted to smoking pot his whole life. I don't see anyone saying his work is compromised therefore.
 
  • #21
i guess my point isn't coming across...nevermind.
 
  • #22
I can see this has exploded into quite the 'hot-button issue' so to speak since I last posted. Kerrie, I see and understand your point completely. I also entirely agree with you. Just because the rest of the scientific community doesn't believe it and knows it is not true, does not mean the general public will choose to believe that over the person who cries 'wolf'.
 
  • #23
I don't mean to be 'hot' or thick. Honest. :smile:

I just don't see why it matters what some misinformed segment of the general public thinks. I hear what you're saying, I guess I just don't think it's anything to worry about.

It's well known that Einstein treated his first wife very badly and basically abandoned his (child? children?) with her. Does that make people think less of his ideas?

I'll reiterate that it should not be said at all if it's not true, but consider the source. No one's even going to hear about it. And if you think badly of pot smokers, why would you even believe them when they say this?
 
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  • #24
If he did or did not makes no difference to any scholar. His theories are ither shown to be right or he is shown to be wrong. It has no basis on weather or not he did smoke somthing that was not illegal. He could be a chilled molester and his work would not be affected in any way.

Pot was not even illegal while he was alive. Why would he not smoke it if he felt like? Many famous philosophers, artists and scientist did all sorts of drugs and there work has in no way been affected by it. Why would Einstein be any different?
 
  • #25
I see what I you are saying Infidel. I don't worry about it about it. :smile: It was merely an obeservation of the general public.
 
  • #26
I was only joking- of course not everyone smokes pot-







...many people just eat brownies instead :)


<bu-dump-bump-kshhhhhhh>
 
  • #27
xJuggleboy said:
Many famous philosophers, artists and scientist did all sorts of drugs and there work has in no way been affected by it.

I wouldn't say their works wasn't affected. :-p In fact, the effect was often quite terrible. Taking jazz musicians as an example, many people said that when Charlie Parker was high, his playing suffered greatly. And he (and many others) ultimately died from it.

But for scientists anyway, experiment is the final arbiter of the merit of their work, not public opinion.
 
  • #28
I don't think that figuring out whether or not Einstein smoked pot would change the reputation of Einstein in anyway. The only people who would likely hold it against him, probably already don't like him on account of him having been a Jew. Frankly, if somebody stopped liking Einstein because of marijuana use, that would say much more about the person than Einstein. No, I think more likely that at least some people's opinions of potheads would change if they knew Einstein was one. There's still a lot of people in denial about weed.

But I wonder about the availibility of marijuana of in Austria in the beginning of the 20th century. The popular drugs of the day were things like opium and absinthe, at least in cultural centers like Paris. And I wonder what kind of connections a swiss patent clerk would have. I think it rather unlikely.

Just to clarify a couple of things. Einstein could certainly screw in light bulbs and add two plus two. Anybody who knows anything about Einstein knows he was a god at math. I think it's a myth that some people perpetuate because they feel insecure about their own math skills.

And Carl Sagan rarely if ever admitted to marijuana use. He wrote about marijuana under the pseudonym "Professor X" (do I have that right?), and it wasn't revealed they were one and the same until after his death. And that, unfortunately, says a lot about modern society.

Anywho, it's April 20th. I'm going to smoke a bowl and go attend a research seminar.

Peace out, y'all.
 
  • #29
TRCSF said:
Anywho, it's April 20th. I'm going to smoke a bowl and go attend a research seminar.

Peace out, y'all.


:rolleyes: isn't it ironic...
 
  • #30
hey just a question here - again not meant to be a generalisation - but have any of you guys observed amongst your friends/acquaintances that there is a high percentage of the most significantly screwed up that have a bit of a pot problem? i am just aware of a few sad circumstances where it seems to lead to them really dumbing out and getting demotivated.. is this a statistical anomoly of my life, or have you guys noticed this to? (i don't know anyone who has seemed too hooked on class A stuff, mind)
btw, I've been told Einstien's inspirational trigger was the smell of rotten apples.
 
  • #31
Marijuana shouldn't be illegal. The prohibition is ridiculous, and I think (hope) my generation will be the one to fix it.

It should be regulated, of course, but most of the marijuana smokers I know are extremely intelligent. I wouldn't be surprised at all if Einstain smoked marijuana - it helps one to consider connections that haven't been thought of before. It makes you think differently. I think slower but far deeper on marijuana, and the insights that I come up with are usually surprisingly astute.

hey just a question here - again not meant to be a generalisation - but have any of you guys observed amongst your friends/acquaintances that there is a high percentage of the most significantly screwed up that have a bit of a pot problem?

Most of the people who are willing to defy social traditions and try something they've been told is harmful are a bit out there, yes. People who use/deal illegal drugs tend to have rougher backgrounds. But I definitely wouldn't say marijuana is the cause of that trouble - for many, it's an escape, but everyone has things they escape to. It's also less addictive than any other drug.

I've seen a lot of clean-cut, preppy kids who didn't use much marijuana but started using the painkillers, ritalin, xanax and stuff...now they have problems. Big ones. You seriously don't know any of these people?

I've been smoking marijuana since my freshman year in high-school. Now I'm a freshman at a good liberal arts school and I'm pulling a 3.7 GPA.

I've noticed that frequent, long-term use can depress me...I use it in moderation. Now I'm going to go smoke a bowl. :smile:
 
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  • #32
Who cares? He probably dabbled with opium as well. After all none of it was illegal until the 20s or 30s thereabout. Some years ago I read a history of opium, apparently right up to WWI you could buy soothers for teething babies.The main ingredient? Opium. Soft drinks? Where do you think they get the coca in Coke? The pep in Pepsi? Did the old patent medicines work? Maybe wouldn't cure you but did make you feel better. Main ingredients of laudanum, alcohol and opium. So why should anyone care if Einstein did or didn't partake of the holy weed? At least he got to inhale if he did.
 

Related to Einstein Smoked Pot? - Fact or Fiction?

1. Did Albert Einstein really smoke pot?

There is no concrete evidence that Albert Einstein smoked marijuana. While there are some claims that he tried it once or twice, there is no proof that he was a regular user.

2. Is there any scientific evidence that supports the idea that Einstein smoked pot?

No, there is no scientific evidence that supports the idea that Einstein smoked marijuana. The claims that he did are based on anecdotal stories and rumors.

3. What is the origin of the rumor that Einstein smoked pot?

The rumor that Einstein smoked pot likely originated from a quote attributed to him in which he supposedly said, "The prestige of government has undoubtedly been lowered considerably by the prohibition law. For nothing is more destructive of respect for the government and the law of the land than passing laws which cannot be enforced. It is an open secret that the dangerous increase of crime in this country is closely connected with this."

4. Did Einstein's use of marijuana affect his scientific work?

There is no evidence to suggest that Einstein's potential use of marijuana had any impact on his scientific work. He was known for his incredible intelligence and dedication to his research, and there is no indication that marijuana use hindered his abilities in any way.

5. Is it possible that Einstein's use of marijuana influenced his theories or ideas?

While it is possible that Einstein's potential use of marijuana may have influenced his thinking in some way, there is no scientific evidence to support this claim. Einstein's theories and ideas were based on extensive research and experimentation, not drug use.

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