Blaise Pascal's Argument Analysis

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Blackburn claims that Pascals argument is set-up in a way that presumes something about god, but Blackburn does not consider the fact that Pascal sets his argument up on faith and belief, not presumption.

Pascals Wager, an argument not about the whether the existence of God is valid, but rather the rationality of it. Blaise Pascal, compares the belief in God to the metaphorical equivalent of a gamble, or a wager. Arguing that God poses an infinite power, Pascal describes how "He is infinitely incomprehensible"(Pascal's 4) mentioning how "He has no Affinity to us". (Pascal's 4). Concluding that we cannot come up with a conclusion for god's existence, he argues instead we should utilize the possibility of reward , or impede possible punishments
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Because Pascal initially concludes God to be "infinitely incomprehensible"(Pascal's 4), putting us in a "position of metaphysical ignorance." (Blackburn's 20) we are unable to understand anything of God, yet Pascal assumes that we can create assumptions about rewards and punishments associated with such a being. Pascal also says that the belief in God can only have two answers. Blackburn takes this as a case of false options saying that the belief in God has more than two answers. As humans, are unable to understand an incomprehensible and powerful being, especially because "He has no affinity to us"(Pascal's 4), so Blackburn questions the premise of Pascal's argument, where it seems as if his set up assumes something about God. Blackburn's most important point raised is the case of false options, referring to the outcomes presented in Pascal's…show more content…
What Blackburn fails to see about the setup of Pascal's argument is that his "presumptions" are in fact not presumptions, but rather belief in his religion; Christianity. Christianity believes that the bible is the word of God, and as a result, Pascal does not assume how God would act, but rather believes that God instructs Pascal on how he will act (because the bible is the word of God). This refutes Blackburn's statement, saying that Pascal assumes something about God, when in fact Pascal just believes it is what God has told him. As for the case of false options, Blackburn argues that we do not have to choose, and there are more than two options to choose from. This is true and is a fallacy of Pascal, as he does not explain in his argument that God will punish those who do not believe in him, as well as those who do not believe in him. Again this is interpreted through the "word of God". Blackburn turns back to his initial statement and main premise, that Pascal's setup assumes something about God, when he is actually not. As a result, Blackburn's initial premises are false, refuting his conclusion that Pascal assumes something about the "infinitely incomprehensible"
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