2 1 6 D O C S . 2 5 9 , 2 6 0 J A N U A R Y 1 9 2 0 259. From Friedrich Paschen Tübingen, 13 January 1920 Highly esteemed Colleague, At today’s meeting for the purpose of refilling the physics professorship vacated by my departure, I was charged with collecting authoritative references on the most suitable successor.[1] In the opinion that the theoretician who conceived the novel ideas of relativity theory from the finest analysis of empirical facts and who dem- onstrated in an admirable experimental paper the existence of magnetic molecular currents[2] would have a particularly good nose for really good physicists, I permit myself to humbly ask whom you would recommend for Tübingen. The faculty re- quests permission to use your opinion at a higher level. In high admiration and with best regards, yours truly, F. Paschen. 260. To Georg Count von Arco [Berlin,] 14 January 1920 Highly esteemed Count Arco, I properly and fully appreciate the sign of exceptional confidence behind your proposal. I also see how I would be particularly suited to the extent that, as a stead- fast internationalist, I could be useful in upholding your international associa- tion.[1] Nonetheless, it is impossible for me to take on such a mission, because I have always had basic reservations about practical Monism.[2] Specifically, I am of the conviction that Monism’s aggressive stance toward religious organizations is not justified in principle. The suprapersonal content conveyed by religion, primi- tive in form though it is, is more valuable, according to my conviction, than Haeck- el’s materialism.[3] I believe that, even nowadays, elimination of the pious tradition would still mean spiritual and moral impoverishment, gross and ugly though the at- titude and actions of the clergy may be in many respects. The deficiencies of the existing tradition are merely much more strikingly apparent than its modest vir- tues! Monism’s fight for freedom of the individual against encroachments by reli- gious communities is, however, a thoroughly creditable and necessary one, in my eyes as well. After what I have said, you will certainly understand that I cannot be considered in every respect as an adherent of Monism nor assume the chairmanship intended for me. With kind regards, I am yours.
Previous Page Next Page