It's magic.

Wasn’t it Albert Einstein who described science as a sort of magic or alchemy?

Is there any merit to this perception?

It’s a metaphor which gives light to the ignorance of the common people at the time that he probably said it. Science is not magic, it’s a method.

If he had said magic is nothing but science and alchemy, then the statement would have merit.

From the point of view of those who practice magic (black magic), everything is magic, including science.
It’s like “mind/awareness over matter” type of perspective, and it allows them to think that they have control over the world.

So, it has the merit of (temporally) calming the anxiety caused by the uncertainty and sufferings.

An example: