2 0 V O L U M E 8 , D O C U M E N T 1 6 1 a
experience new bitter disappointments. The boy’s soul is being systematically poi-
soned to make sure that he doesn’t trust me. Under these conditions, by attempting
any approaches I harm the boy indirectly. Come, dear old friend, Lady Resignation,
and sing me your familiar old song so that I can continue to spin quietly in my
So we’ll see each other again at Easter then. I have to attend a meeting of the
Anti-War Council in Berne, the international council into which I let myself be
In these times everyone must do whatever he can for the community as
a whole, even if it is only slight and ineffectual.
Young Rohrer, who wrote his doctorate under you, sent me his dissertation. If he
got the initial idea for the thesis from you, it is ugly of him not to breathe a word
Currently I am also having quite a curious experiences with my dear col-
leagues. All but one of them is trying to poke holes in my discovery or to refute the
matter, if only so very superficially; just one of them acknowledges it, insofar as he
is seeking to “partake” in it, with great fanfare, after I had initiated him, with much
effort, into the gist of the
Astronomers, however, are behaving like an
ants’ nest that has been disturbed from its mindless humdrum by a walker’s
thoughtless misstep; they’re biting away at the walker, without making the least
impression on his
All of this is very droll without being unpleasant for me.
If one is pressed into playing one’s role as an actor in this farce, one is richly com-
pensated for the pain and effort by being able to watch as a spectator the others’
As I read, Meyer has now become Kleiner’s successor. I can’t disapprove of the
choice, despite the special argument we put forward against it. P[iccard]’s character
appears to me in a somewhat tarnished light because of his unkind attitude toward
his teacher and honest benefactor W[eiss], to whom he owes his knowledge and
Heartfelt greetings, yours,
Vol. 8, 161a. To Heinrich Zangger
[Berlin,] 9 December 1915
Dear friend Zangger,
Late yesterday your letter arrived, today the enclosed one from my
last letter, which I am enclosing, makes such a very convincing impression of
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