Einstein letter doubting God auctioned for US$2.89m

The famous handwritten'God letter from scientist Albert Einstein

It was a record for an Einstein letter and far surpassed its estimated value of $1-1.5m, auctioneers Christie's said. It will be auctioned by Christie's in NY, the BBC reported.

Einstein wrote what was dubbed "The God Letter" to philosopher Eric Gutkind, in 1954.

"For me the unadulterated Jewish religion is, like all other religions, an incarnation of primitive superstition", he writes to Gutkind.

Einstein says: "The word God is for me nothing more than the expression and product of human weaknesses, the Bible a collection of honourable, but still primitive, legends which are nevertheless pretty childish".

"The Jewish people to whom I gladly belong, and in whose mentality I feel profoundly anchored, still for me does not have any different kind of dignity from all other peoples", he writes.

"In the broadest sense, it is similar to Einstein's 1939 letter to (US president) F.D.R. warning of German efforts to build the bomb that we sold for $2 million in 2002", he added.

The letter deals with Einstein's thoughts on religion, his Jewish identity, and his search for meaning in life.

"I can not see anything "chosen" about them".

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A handwritten letter by Albert Einstein in which he grapples with the concept of religion has sold for almost $2.9 million (roughly Rs. 20 crores) smashing predictions.

The letter was written in response to a book by Gutkind, called Choose Life: The Biblical Call to Revolt.

Einstein was unequivocal in his critique of Gutkind's book in his letter.

The letter had previously sold for US$404,000 at Bloomsbury Auctions in London in 2008.

In this file photo, Albert Einstein delivers a recorded lecture some time in 1955 at an unspecified location.

Acknowledging his disappointment in failing to secure the item, Dawkins said: "This letter was about something very important to Einstein I suspect".

According to a 1996 biography-Einstein: A Life-he was an extremely religious child, but by age 13 had "abandoned his uncritical religious fervour, feeling he had been deceived into believing lies", The Guardian explained.

Specifically, Einstein did not believe that if there was a God, he answered individual prayers and intervened directly in human affairs.

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