For Easter this season, I thought I would go back to my old school notes and share what convinced that it's worth believing in God. It may be hard to comprehend, but it's interesting :)
This is taken from my metaphysics philosophy notes:
3 stances toward a statement
1. belief- argument, affirmation--> theist
2. disbelief- denial, rejection--> atheist
3. nonbelief- no commitment, without judgment--> agnostic
Pascal was a theist. He had some advice for his agnostic friends. If one makes a sincere effort, then one will see that God exists. If you are still in denial, then you must take a risk. You have to set out time.
betting on God
~living as if God exists
~ praying (or trying to), reading what others say inspires them, reflecting about God, being concerned, etc....
betting on atheism
~ being indifferent
~ living as if God does not exist
how should you choose?
Factors involved in any betting situation:
- probability: likelihood that what you bet on will win.
- payoff: what you get if you win
- cost: what you pay up front to make the bet.
Pascal's two assumptions:
1. If God does not exist, there is no afterlife.
2. If God exists, seeking God leads to eternal fulfillment and happiness.
For betting on God-
Satisfaction guarantee- if you bet on God and you're right, you will experience the satisfaction of realizing you made the right choice (heaven, etc)
No satisfaction guarantee- if you bet on God and you're wrong, you will never experience thedissatisfaction at realizing you made the wrong choice.
For betting on Atheism-
No Satisfaction guarantee- if you bet on atheism and you're right, you will never experience the satisfaction at realizing you made the right choice.
Dissatisfaction guarantee- if you bet on atheism and you lose, you will always experience the dissatisfaction of realizing you made the wrong choice.
- if you bet on God, you will only know you made the right choice.
- if you bet on atheism, you experience nothing or dissatisfaction.