The Pensees were a marvelous work of Blaise Pascal, as he seamlessly attributed so many aspects of his society’s views and beliefs of religion. Firstly, he stressed how pathetic and meaningless the life of a man is, who doesn’t believe in God. His first action is directly faulting the methods of Montaigne. Montaigne, he states, is fickle about his beliefs, switching them by the moment. He further criticizes Montaigne’s beliefs on suicide, death, and salvation.
Pascal also believes that man should know himself. By this, he infers that people should attempt to find themselves, and discover their role on Earth. Blaise furthers the criticism on his fellow philosophers by insulting Descartes, and his principle of doubt. Natural intuition, he states, is completely erased by factors in everyday life such as education and other activities. This belief that a life could not be completed without the presence of God made Pascal’s work controversial yet very intriguing.
Pascal saw God in a way that many other philosophic thinkers of his time could not. He believed that God is not simply a mythical being who creates seasons and controls the world’s processes. His belief of God was much higher, as he believed God was responsible for the great human emotions that we possess. These emotions include love, patience, confidence, and benevolence. God, he said, teaches the condition of man, but understands this as well.
Blaise also believed that nobody really knows the extent of God’s power, or the Christian religion for that matter, as it is God who selects those that he wishes to enlighten. By laying out these fundamentals for the Christian religion, he sought to enlighten the community on the ways of God and how they should behave in their lives while living a religious life. Jesus Christ consumed an entire section of Pascal’s work, as he was an important figure for Pascal’s research.
Pascal stated that there was discrepancy in the Gospels, and that both the Old and the New testaments regarded different attributes of Jesus. He wrote that the Church’s difficulty in broadening the perspective as just a human being was comparable to the difficulty in displaying him as a God. Lastly, he stated that Jesus only partakes in the sorrows of people’s lives, not the joys, and sends his love only to his enemies, as if to unify all under his teachings. Pascal was a genius in bringing together historical beliefs about religion, revolutionizing his world at the time.