By Greta Christina:
So glad to have come across this post about Pascal’s Wager from Greta Christina. I always find it a pleasure to read her writing. I’ll be adding it to my previous post on this topic but wanted to post it here for anyone wanting yet another perspective on the matter. I hope you enjoy it and I hope it makes you think.
I’m posting this because the idea behind Pascal’s Wager has been coming up in some online discussions I’ve been a part of. It can be a huge issue for someone doubting Christianity and considering leaving their faith.
Here’s a basic definition for anyone new to the argument:
The argument that it is in one’s rational self-interest to act as if God exists, since the infinite punishments of hell, provided they have a positive probability, however small, outweigh any countervailing advantage.
Here’s a wikipedia article if you want to read up on it:
So essentially, if you decide not to believe in god you could be punished (likely for eternity), but if you stay on the god team you’re safe. And heck – if you choose the god team and you’re wrong – oh well – you’ve lived a nice life anyway – so no loss. So it’s just rational to make sure you’re safe and stay on the team with the best probability of a good outcome.
I have a link on My Story page to a wonderful book by a former Christian missionary named Ken Daniels that recounts his intellectual deconversion:
He’s got a great section in there on Pascal’s Wager that is a must-read for anyone struggling with this argument:
Here’s another great post regarding Pascal’s Wager by Greta Christina. I love her writing in general and her in-depth rant on this topic:
If you are doubting Christianity, I would encourage you not to let Pascal’s Wager frighten you into being dishonest with yourself. Hopefully the above information can help you see what a weak argument it really is and then you can continue on your path of searching for truth.
Is Greta Christina ever going to write something I don’t want to stand up and cheer about???
From Greta Christina
If you have any interest in religion and morality – you need to read this entire post. I used to follow Greta Christina but for some reason didn’t keep up with her stuff. But this excellent, well-thought out article has reignited my interest in her writings.
The Top One Reason Religion is Harmful by Greta Christina
Atheists and Anger by Greta Christina
Game of Twister by Greta Christina