(14 January 1875 – 4 September 1965) was a German
, philosopher, physician, and medical missionary. He was born in Kaysersberg
in the province of Alsace-Lorraine
, at that time part of the German Empire
. Schweitzer, a Lutheran, challenged both the secular view of Jesus as depicted by historical-critical methodology
current at his time in certain academic circles, as well as the traditional Christian view. He depicted Jesus as one who literally believed the end of the world was coming in his own lifetime and believed himself to be a world savior.
What has been presented as Christianity during these nineteen centuries is only a beginning, full of mistakes, not full blown Christianity springing from the spirit of Jesus.
To the question whether I am a pessimist or an optimist, I answer that my knowledge is pessimistic, but my willing and hoping are optimistic.
Let me give you a definition of ethics: It is good to maintain and further life — it is bad to damage and destroy life. And this ethic, profound and universal, has the significance of a religion. It is religion.
The awareness that we are all human beings together has become lost in war and through politics.
Any religion or philosophy which is not based on a respect for life is not a true religion or philosophy.
Until he extends the circle of his compassion to all living things, man will not himself find peace.
The quiet conscience is an invention of the devil.