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Pascal's Wager Essay

1069 words - 5 pages

Blaise Pascal was born on June 19, 1623. Pascal was a mathematician along with a Christian philosopher who wrote the Pensees which included his work called Pascal’s wager. The crucial outline of this wagers was that it cannot be proved or disprove that God does exists. There are four main parts to the wager that include his reasoning to that statement. It has been acknowledged that Pascal makes it clear that he is referring to the Christian God in his wager. This is the Christian God that promises his people will be rewarded with eternal life along with infinite bliss.
And by stating this, Pascal gives the decision for the individual to choose between believing that God exists along with ...view middle of the document...

The third assumption that Pascal displays in the wager states the option that God is in no means existent. But the individual believes that there is an existent God. However, they learn he seizes to exist. In this case the person does not have any gains or losses. One would have basically lived a very religious life, but there would be no reward for living this way. Although they most likely did not get the opportunity to engage in some of the so called “poisonous pleasures” that one who was not a believer would have engaged in. This option would leave the individual with several gains in result for the life style and also some loses. As a final point in the wager the individual is in no means a believer in God. However this point has the result that God does exist. This option seems to be the least appealing to Pascal. For the reason that if someone was to not believe, and God does exist. At that time you would be “rewarded” with eternal damnation. If one does choose to not have faith, the only gains they would have were the pleasures that were engaged in the present existence. This choice of not having faith would seem to have very slim rewards. Perhaps one would have accomplished a very pleasure filled life, with the unfortunate addition of not receiving the eternal life in heaven because of their actions.
This adds to the argument Pascal’s uses about how the rational person would choose to believe in God. The life in which the person believes in God would be the most gratifying in the ending no matter what the outcome of Gods existents is. Pascal states “if you win you win everything; if you lose you lose nothing. Do not hesitate then; wager that he does exist” (418). One of his questions is why a rational person would not prefer to believe in God. Logically, it is more beneficial to not deny that there is a God.
Of course just like any other idea, this one also has its share of problems. One problem with the wager is that it does not define which...

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