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Jr. Buyer/Procurement Specialist Resume. Twitter Plugin! I am seeking opportunities in purchasing and procurement as either a Jr. Essaysreasy Code! Buyer, Buyer, Procurement Specialist, Purchasing agent or allied role with a manufacturing or service organization. In turn, I'm looking for a company who will afford me the opportunity for thesis plugin, growth and development in the scope of my job to assume those duties and skills necessary to make me a highly effective contributor in my role with the company. Joseph J. Macowski.
145 Cynthia Drive. Hackettstown, NJ 07840 908.684.2354. Strong background encompassing purchasing, inventory, shipping, receiving, customer service and production management within a variety of industries. Committed to excellence with a proven record of outstanding performance. Possess a broad range of abilities including sales and punctuation dispatching processes, inventory tracking and control, and customer service with emphasis on building and generating customer loyalty. Strengths include: • Outstanding expediter to meet and exceed company’s needs, priorities and deadlines. • Dedicated team player. Achieved an inventory efficiency rating of 99% daily. Performed cross-functional duties to accomplish departmental goals. • Organizational ability in maintaining a smooth running efficient operation while effectively multi-tasking. • Ensured strict compliance to company quality standards, external FDA and OSHA regulations, cGMP’s and Standard Operating Procedures. • Effective oral and written communication skills. Twitter Plugin! Experienced liaison between various departments within company. Solid and concise writing skills for accurate records and management reports. • Strong ability to prioritize, delegate, multitask and control administrative workflow to manage office. • Computer skilled.
Proficient in SAP, Oracle and Macola systems as well as Microsoft Word and Excel. Adept at american x racism, learning and applying other computer systems. • Trained colleagues on inventory software and processes. Veeco Instruments Inc., Somerset, NJ. Thesis! • Authorized to issue purchase orders up to 50K before receiving management approval. • Utilized SAP automated purchasing system to issue purchase orders and verified purchase. requisitions by responding to MRP demands. • Expedited 150+ purchase orders weekly to meet production scheduling and strict deadlines. • Facilitated quote process from qualified vendors to cut costs thru competitive purchasing. Degree Essays Autobiography! • Issued service repair orders and RTV notifications (return to vendor) to maintain clients. machinery in the field. • Issued manually requisitioned purchase orders for inventory and MRO items to meet R D. and maintenance project deadlines. • Ensured on-time delivery of purchased items from domestic and international suppliers by. Plugin! regular contact while maintaining positive vendor relations. Argumentative! • Efficiently updated and monitored supplier purchase orders and purchasing information. schedules as to maintain accurate records. • Effectively collaborated with internal departments and commodities managers to thesis twitter plugin, determine. suitability of items purchased and vendor related issues. • Investigated and administered to reconciliation of invoices thru internal company computer. website to effectively resolve discrepancies and issues to meet payment terms conditions. departments to resolve product quality, capacity, specification and delivery issues in a. diplomatic manner; met informally with vendor representatives to code, negotiate and improve. standards of quality, delivery and customer service. • Located alternate suppliers to obtain obsolete/substitute parts to sustain planned production. Thesis Twitter Plugin! • Efficiently set-up new vendor accounts in system upon qualification by commodity. • Performed effective administrative functions of filing purchase orders/support. documentation, faxing, and scanning to maintain accurate records. • Monitored and evaluated supplier metrics for capability, performance and delivery to meet. organizations planning and forecasting needs. Purchasing Specialist 2007- 2009. Amerlux Lighting Solutions LLC, Fairfield, NJ. • Investigated and researched inadequate purchase orders and delinquent deliveries through utilizing Oracle database management system. • Communicated with warehouse and literature autobiography purchasing staff to resolve inventory/purchase order issues and perform customer service follow-up; this included monitoring inventory in computer system , performing daily MRP data analysis of item database, processing related reports and twitter submitting findings to departmental buyers and punctuation for essays manager so as to properly process purchase orders based on accurate records. • Efficiently processed sales order costing reports and inventory analysis reports for thesis, upper management to expedite ordering deficient inventory for delivery within strict timeframe. • Processed/issued purchase orders to vendors/suppliers via computer system, phone and fax; this included requesting delivery confirmation, backorder status and theme custom navigation pricing confirmation. • Resolved inaccuracies in inventory levels/material shortages by performing inventory transactions and updating item costing in database to promote pricing accuracy. • Initiated resolution of credit issues between vendors and finance/accounting department to maintain delivery schedule of parts/materials. • Expedited ordering of parts/materials through issuance of thesis twitter technical documents/blueprints and requested price quotation based on volume ordered; initiated cost data management for accurate maintenance in business system. • Conducted daily cycle counts to maintain accurate inventory records and correct discrepancies.
• Participated in preparation and implementation of year-end physical inventory. • Served in a clerical capacity by punctuation, updating and maintaining purchase order files. Uhlmann Packaging Systems LP, Towaco, NJ. • Expedited daily shipments for manufacturer of twitter pharmaceutical packaging machinery within an ISO 9000 environment. Processed sales orders, tracked deliveries, and expedited processing of between phd returns and credits. Resolved credit problems. Arranged all shipping utilizing diverse carriers according to plugin, nature of product. Handled internal transactions and processed customer repairs. Summary Argumentative! Utilized automated shipping systems for expediting daily shipments.
Efficiently worked with suppliers to insure JIT delivery of partial orders. • Oversaw inventory department valued at $8 million. Maintained accurate internal computer records for inventory. Twitter! Sustained optimum stock levels consistent with production requirements of the plant as well as for sales to customer base. Conducted daily cycle count, random and annual physical inventory to maintain accuracy. Reorganized current inventory department as well as researched, located and code labeled previously unidentifiable parts.
Achieved an inventory accuracy of 99% annually. • Received and processed all in-house manufactured and vendor materials and parts for company use in a timely manner consistent with internal production requirements. Inspected all shipments prior to thesis, acceptance to essaysreasy code, ensure quality control; cross- trained department personnel in thesis twitter SAP computer operation and processing. Heisler Industries, Inc., Fairfield, NJ. • Managed an inventory department of over 10,000 parts valued at 2 million for packaging equipment manufacturer. • Processed and expedited incoming parts from vendors and inspected materials for thesis theme custom, quality control in twitter plugin a timely manner. • Performed effectively in a customer service capacity while processing customer orders and expediting daily shipments. • Prepared weekly inventory reports to confirm accuracy/verification in resolving inventory/computer record discrepancies. • Monitored and examined purchased commercial and non-commercial parts as to dissertation, ensure 100% satisfaction. • Oversaw inventory levels within budget allowances and production requirements. Refined an thesis twitter plugin inventory requisitioning system for hardware used in essay production. • Coordinated efforts of supervisors, administration and purchasing to meet company requirements, priorities and deadlines. B.S. Thesis Plugin! Business Administration, West Chester University, West Chester PA.
West Chester University, Pa. , Major: Business Administration. Degree: Bachelor's Degree. High School Graduate, 1976. 1984 at Southwest State University, MN; and degree literature Montclair State University, NJ. R.E.T.S. Campus, Nutley, NJ. Received certificate of plugin graduation; coursework involved. three classes per week for one year. Orange, NJ. Received certificate of completion; coursework involved once/week classes. for three months. Punctuation! SAP MRP software, Oracle ERP software, Macola software, MS Suite (incl.
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Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy. Blaise Pascal was a French philosopher, mathematician, scientist, inventor, and theologian. In mathematics, he was an early pioneer in the fields of game theory and probability theory. In philosophy he was an thesis plugin, early pioneer in existentialism. Degree Literature Autobiography? As a writer on theology and religion he was a defender of Christianity. Despite chronic ill health, Pascal made historic contributions to mathematics and to twitter plugin, physical science, including both experimental and theoretical work on hydraulics, atmospheric pressure, and the existence and nature of the vacuum. As a scientist and philosopher of science, Pascal championed strict empirical observation and degree literature autobiography the use of controlled experiments; he opposed the rationalism and logico-deductive method of the Cartesians; and he opposed the metaphysical speculations and reverence for authority of the theologians of the Middle Ages. Although he never fully abandoned his scientific and mathematical interests, after his uncanny “Night of thesis twitter, Fire” (the intense mystical illumination and midnight conversion that he experienced on the evening of November 23, 1654), Pascal turned his talents almost exclusively to correct punctuation for essays, religious writing. It was during the thesis twitter plugin, period from 1656 until his death in discount, 1662 that he wrote the thesis plugin, Lettres Provinciales and the Pensees . The Lettres Provinciales is a satirical attack on history essay Jesuit casuistry and thesis plugin a polemical defense of Jansenism.
The Pensees is a posthumously published collection of discount code, unfinished notes for what was intended to be a systematic apologia for the Christian religion. Along with his scientific writings, these two great literary works have attracted the admiration and critical interest of twitter plugin, philosophers and serious readers of thesis dissertation phd, every generation. “Pascal’s life is plugin inseparable from his work.”—A. Punctuation? J. Krailsheimer. Pascal’s life has stirred the same fascination and generated as much lively discussion and learned commentary as his writings. This is largely attributable to his intriguing, enigmatic personality. Thesis Twitter? To read him is to come into direct contact with both his strangeness and his charm. Argumentative? It is also to encounter a tangle of incongruities and seeming contradictions. For Pascal himself – humble yet forceful; fanatical as well as skeptical; mild and empathetic, yet also capable of withering scorn – personified the very “chimera” he famously declared man to be ( Pensees , 131/164). [Note: Throughout this article, fragments of the twitter, Pensees are identified first (that is, before the slash) by the numeration system of Lafuma and second (after the slash) by that of Sellier – L/S.] Interest in difference dissertation phd, his life is also due to our natural desire to learn more about twitter, this “scary genius” , or effrayant g enie – Chateaubriand’s memorable phrase, whose unique combination of talents enabled him to make revolutionary contributions not only to mathematics and physical science but also to the theology and literature of his age. American History X Racism? Merely to list his achievements is once again to encounter Pascal the “chimera,”— the thesis plugin, human riddle who was both an between dissertation, avant-garde crusader for empirical science as well as an avid supporter of ancient prophecy, mysticism, miracles, and Biblical hermeneutics.
Modern readers are usually shocked to discover that the father of gambling odds and thesis twitter the mechanical computer wore a spiked girdle to chastise himself and further mortify a body already tormented by recurrent illness and chronic pain. He has been the subject of dozens of biographies, beginning with La Vie de M. Degree Literature? Pascal , the brief hagiographic sketch composed by twitter plugin his sister Gilberte Perier shortly after his death in 1662 and first published in 1684. New treatments of the author’s life have appeared in both French and English with remarkable regularity ever since. Perier’s memoir established a precedent by applying an underlying pattern and symmetry to her brother’s life. The implied form is that of a well-made play with classic five-act structure. In Perier’s treatment this life-drama is a divine comedy showing the spiritual rise and eventual salvation of a distressed soul who, after a series of trials and setbacks, reunites with God.
Meanwhile Pascal’s secular biographers and commentators, beginning with Voltaire, offer an opposite american x racism essay, view. They portray Pascal’s career as essentially a tragedy, a descending arc tracing the decline into timidity and superstition of a once bold and independent thinker. Nietzsche’s characterization of Pascal as “the most instructive victim of twitter, Christianity, murdered slowly, first physically, then psychologically” is a typical summation ( Ecce Homo , II, 3, p. 243). Both views are oversimplified. First of all, at no point during his lifetime was Pascal ever a libertine or libre-penseur . So portraying his life as though it consisted of two sudden and powerful “conversions,” with an intervening slide into correct, worldliness and sins of the flesh, seems a bit too pat and melodramatic. Similarly, since Pascal was a lifelong supporter of the thesis twitter, Catholic faith, and since he also maintained an interest in scientific and mathematical problems well after his commitment to Jansenism and essaysreasy Port-Royal, it seems unfair to portray his final years as a betrayal of his scientific principles rather than as an thesis twitter, intensification or culmination of his religious views. Despite these and other distortions, the traditional division of Pascal’s biography into five stages or periods remains a convenient way of reviewing his career.
Blaise Pascal was born on June 19, 1623, in autobiography, Clermont (now Clermont-Ferrand) in the Auvergne region of central France. His parents were Etienne Pascal (1588 – 1651), a magistrate, civil servant, and member of the aristocratic and professional class known as the noblesse de robe , and Antoinette Begon Pascal (1596-1626), the daughter of a Clermont merchant. Pascal was named for his paternal uncle as well as for St. Blaise, the 3rd-century Armenian saint martyred by having his flesh flayed by iron carding combs as his namesake would later punish his own flesh by wearing a belt studded with sharp nails. The Pascal family, including Pascal’s older sister Gilberte (b. 1620) and younger sister Jacqueline (b. 1625), enjoyed a comfortable, upper-bourgeois lifestyle. Etienne, in addition to being a lawyer, public official, and tax administrator, was proficient in Latin and thesis twitter Greek, a dabbler in natural philosophy, and an expert mathematician.
He was also a demanding but loving father who took great pride in his children’s accomplishments. Gilberte would go on to become Pascal’s first biographer and serve as a fierce guardian of his reputation. Jacqueline displayed an early literary genius and punctuation for essays earned acclaim as a poet and dramatist before becoming a nun at Port-Royal. Pascal’s mother, who was known for her piety and charitable work, died when Pascal was only three years old and Jacqueline was but an thesis twitter plugin, infant. Pascal was a sickly child who suffered various pains and diseases throughout his life. According to a family anecdote related by his niece, at age one he supposedly fell victim to a strange illness. His abdomen became distended and swollen, and the slightest annoyance triggered fits of crying and screaming. Correct? This affliction supposedly continued for more than a year, and the child often seemed on the verge of thesis, death.
Hearing of the boy’s condition, neighbors attributed it to witchcraft and blamed a poor elderly woman who occasionally performed household chores for the Pascal family. Etienne, as an educated gentleman, at first scoffed at the accusation, but when his patience eventually wore thin he confronted the woman and threatened her with hanging if she didn’t come forward with the truth. Degree Essays? The woman reportedly fell to the floor and thesis twitter plugin promised to discount, divulge everything if her life would be spared. She confessed that in thesis, a moment of punctuation, anger and resentment she had cast a spell on the child – a fatal spell that could be undone only by having it transferred to some other living creature. Supposedly the family cat was given to her and made a scapegoat for the otherwise doomed child. The old woman then prescribed that a poultice of special herbs be applied to Pascal’s stomach. After an thesis, intense crisis, during which he appeared to be comatose and close to death, Pascal awoke from his “spell” and eventually recovered his health.
This strange and improbable “witch” tale is scarcely credible today. But that Pascal endured a serious and potentially fatal childhood illness during which his parents desperately tried all kinds of fanciful cures and treatments seems very likely. In fact, the anecdote is perfectly consistent with the american x racism, wild and paradoxical world of thesis twitter, 17 th_ century culture and especially the medical practice of the time – a time when empirical science and correct punctuation natural magic, enlightened new techniques and antique superstitions, were routinely intermingled and practiced side by thesis side. The exact cause and basis of essaysreasy discount code, Pascal’s lifelong health problems have never been fully settled or accounted for. According to Gilberte, after his 18 th birthday Pascal never lived a day of his life free from pain or from some sort of illness or medical affliction. The most common medical opinion is twitter that he contracted gastrointestinal tuberculosis in correct punctuation for essays, early childhood and that manifestations of the disease, along with signs of possible concurrent nephritis or rheumatoid arthritis, recurred periodically throughout his lifetime. The accounts of his pathology are also consistent with migraine, irritable bowel syndrome, and fibromyalgia – a complex of illnesses often found together and which also frequently occur in combination with symptoms of anxiety, depression, and plugin emotional distress. Scholarly interest in this matter involves more than just idle curiosity and medical detective-work. The question of Pascal’s physical and mental health goes to theme navigation, the heart of desires to learn more about the conditions and circumstances that produce extraordinary genius.
Affliction and disease, physical or emotional trauma, a natural disadvantage or disability have often served as an added motive or accelerator for high-level creative achievement. Thesis Twitter Plugin? Examples abound – from the ancient legend of the blind and vagabond Homer to the documented histories of modern creative figures like Isaac Newton, Van Gogh, Stephen Hawking, and Christy Brown. We can only speculate whether and to what extent Pascal’s physical ailments and disabilities, instead of retarding his career, may have actually spurred and given rise to his intellectual triumphs. In 1631, a few years after the death of his wife, Etienne sold his government post (a common practice of the day) along with most of his property and moved with his children to correct punctuation for essays, Paris. Over the next nine years he devoted himself to thesis twitter plugin, his amateur scientific and essay mathematical pursuits and took personal charge of his children’s education. Recognizing early on his son’s exceptional intellectual gifts, Etienne designed and supervised a special program and curriculum for the boy based on thesis plugin his own anti-scholastic and progressive educational principles. Young Pascal was taught Latin and between dissertation phd Greek as well as history, geography, and philosophy – all on an impromptu schedule, including during meals and at various hours throughout the day.
Science, or natural philosophy as the discipline was then known, ignited Pascal’s imagination, and he demonstrated an early inquisitiveness about natural phenomena and a fondness for devising experiments. Civil and canon law were also part of thesis, a varied curriculum that included study of the Bible and the Church Fathers. The latter studies were in accordance with Etienne’s personal religious views, which were plain and respectful and as progressive as his views on education. He taught his son his own cardinal principle that whatever is a matter of faith should not also be treated as a matter of history, reason; and vice-versa. Thesis Plugin? It is a tenet that Pascal took to summary argumentative, heart and followed throughout his career.
In the belief that, once exposed to mathematics, his son would be so captivated by it that he would forsake or ignore his other studies, Etienne determined to withhold instruction in math and geometry until Pascal had completed the thesis, rest of his training. However, upon discovering that the boy had already achieved an intuitive understanding of the discipline including his own independently worked out demonstration of a proof in summary essay, Euclid, Etienne acquiesced. The pages of Euclid were finally opened to the youth, and thus began Pascal’s belated introduction to thesis plugin, mathematics – the subject with which he would conduct, at times guiltily, a lifelong love affair. Pascal’s education was unique for thesis phd, his own time and would be unusual in plugin, any era. A passionate student who delved earnestly into each new subject, he absorbed new material, including, at a later period, the most arcane and thesis technical components of theology quickly and effortlessly. However, his learning, while deep in a few areas, was never broad and was in some ways less remarkable for thesis twitter, what it included than for argumentative essay, what it left out.
For example, due to his assorted maladies, Pascal’s regimen included no physical training or any form of exercise. In addition, because of the sequestered, hermetic, entirely private form of his schooling, he never experienced any of the personal contacts or opportunities for social development that most young people, including even novice monks in monastic schools, commonly do. To what extent this may have deformed or limited his social and interpersonal skills it is thesis hard to say. He was known to be temperamentally impatient with and demanding of others while sometimes seeming arrogant and self-absorbed. Punctuation? At a later point in his career, he fully acknowledged his deficiencies and indeed chastised himself for his social ambition and intellectual vanity. Pascal was not widely read in the classics or in twitter, contemporary literature. Though he was well acquainted with Aristotelian and Scholastic thought, philosophy for him consisted mainly of Epictetus, Montaigne, and the traditional debate between Stoicism and Epicureanism. Profane literature was foreign to for essays, him, and thesis plugin given his tastes and habits it’s impossible to imagine him reading, say, Ovid or Catullus, much less Rabelais. In fact it’s uncertain whether he had even read Homer or Virgil or for that matter any verses other than the Psalms and his sister Jacqueline’s religious poems. For Essays? As for drama, Corneille was a family friend who at one time personally championed Jacqueline’s poetry and dramaturgy, and the young Racine studied classical literature and rhetoric at the school at Port-Royal while Jacqueline and thesis Pascal were also there.
Yet Pascal never mentions the work of correct punctuation, either great writer and indeed – other than to refer to the stage as a “dangerous diversion” ( Pensees , 764/630) – seems to have taken little interest at all in contemporary French theatre, which was then at its artistic zenith. But whatever he may have lacked in physical education, humanistic studies, and art appreciation, Pascal more than made up for in his favored pursuits. In fact, so rapidly did he advance in physics and thesis mathematics that Etienne boldly introduced the boy at the age of only thirteen into his small Parisian academic circle known as the Acad emie libre. The central figure of this group was the polymathic philosopher, mathematician, theologian, and music theorist Pere Marin Mersenne, one of the degree essays literature autobiography, leading intellectuals of the age. Mersenne corresponded with Descartes, Huygens, Hobbes, and other luminaries of the period and plugin actively promoted the work of controversial thinkers like Galileo and Gassendi. The Mersenne circle also included such notable mathematicians as Girard Desargues and Gilles de Roberval. Correct? These inspirational figures served the young Pascal as mentors, examiners, intellectual models, and academic guides.
It was during his involvement with the Mersenne circle that Pascal published, at age sixteen, his Essai pour les Coniques , an important contribution to the relatively new field of projective geometry. The essay includes an original proof concerning the special properties of hexagons inscribed within conic sections that is still known today as Pascal’s Theorem. Around the same time that Pascal was working on his Theorem, Etienne, who had at one time served as an adviser to Cardinal Richelieu, incurred the wrath of the First Minister by leading a protest over a government bond default. Threatened with prison, he sought refuge in Auvergne. He was eventually restored to the Cardinal’s good graces by the intervention of his daughter Jacqueline. (The Cardinal, a patron of the theatre, was charmed not only by Jacqueline’s poetic and thesis dramatic skills but also by for essays her beauty and courtly manners.) It’s also likely that Richelieu had an additional motive for thesis twitter plugin, welcoming Etienne back. For no sooner was Etienne returned to royal favor than Richelieu appointed him the essaysreasy code, chief tax administrator for Rouen. Twitter Plugin? At the Cardinal’s behest, the Pascal family moved from Paris to Rouen in early January of 1640. Rouen was a city in crisis, beset by street violence, crop failures, a tax revolt, and essaysreasy code an outbreak of plague. It was Etienne’s job to thesis twitter plugin, handle the taxpayer revolt, which he eventually managed to custom, do by working with the local citizens and earning their confidence and respect. Pascal meanwhile seems to have been little affected by the change of scene and continued with his mathematical studies.
He also undertook a new project. Impressed by the massive number of calculations required in his father’s work of accounting and thesis plugin tax assessment, he wondered if the drudgery of such labor might not be relieved by some type of mechanical device. Setting to work on the idea in 1642, he eventually conceived, designed, and oversaw the construction of american history x racism, what was presented to the public in thesis plugin, 1645 as la machine arithmetique , later known as the Pascaline. His simple design consisted of a sequence of essay, interconnected wheels, arranged in such a fashion that a full revolution of thesis twitter, one wheel nudged its neighbor to the left ahead one tenth of a revolution. The Pascaline thus became the world’s first fully functional mechanical calculator, and in 1649 Pascal received a royal patent on the device.
Over the next five years he continued tinkering with his design, experimenting with various materials and trying out different linkage arrangements and gear mechanisms. Nine working models survive today and serve as a reminder that Pascal was not just a mathematical Platonist absorbed in a higher world of pure number but also a practical minded, down-to-earth engineering type interested in thesis theme custom menu, applying the insights of science and thesis plugin mathematics to the solution of argumentative, real-world problems. On an icy day in January of 1646, Etienne Pascal, in plugin, his capacity as a public official, was summoned to prevent a duel that was to take place in a field outside Rouen. While en route, he slipped on the ice, fracturing a leg and injuring his hip. History X Racism Essay? The family called in plugin, two local bonesetters, the brothers Deschamps, who moved into the Pascal household for a period of three months to care for Etienne and oversee his recovery. The brothers turned out to be members of the difference dissertation, small, saintly community of Augustinian worshippers established at Port-Royal by the Jansenist priest Jean du Vergier de Hauranne, more simply known as the abbe Saint-Cyran.
The Jansenists (named for the Dutch theologian Cornelius Jansen) accepted the strict Augustinian creed that salvation is achieved not by human virtue or merit but solely by the grace of God. At Port-Royal they practiced an ascetic lifestyle emphasizing penance, austerity, devotional exercises, and good works. While treating Etienne, the Deschamps brothers shared their stringent, exacting, and somewhat cheerless religious views with the Pascal family. Thesis Twitter Plugin? Pascal himself, along with his father and sisters, had never displayed much in the way of theme custom navigation menu, genuine religious fervor. They were good upper-middle-class Catholics, mild and respectful in their beliefs rather than zealous, neither God-fearing nor, to any extraordinary degree, God-seeking. Yet the ardor of the Deschamps brothers proved contagious. Pascal caught the fire and read with avidity the Jansenist texts that were given to him – sermons by Saint-Cyran along with doctrinal works by Augustine, Antoine Arnauld (Saint-Cyran’s successor), and Jansen himself. Gradually, with growing assurance, and eventually with complete sincerity and conviction, Pascal embraced the Jansenist creed. According to thesis twitter plugin, Gilberte’s account, he was the correct for essays, first in twitter, the family to discount, convert to the new faith, and thesis twitter no sooner had he done so than he set about to convert the rest of family, first Jacqueline, then Etienne, and finally Gilberte and punctuation her husband Florin Perier. It should be added, however, that from Pascal’s own point of view he wasn’t so much “converting” to twitter plugin, Jansenism, or any particular group or sect, as he was declaring or reaffirming his commitment to the true faith.
In her memoir, Gilberte refers to the events of degree essays, this period as Pascal’s “intellectual conversion,” distinguishing it from his later, more emotional, and thesis twitter traumatic “second conversion” of 1654. She also asserts that at this time Pascal formally renounced all his scientific and mathematical researches and ever afterward devoted himself entirely and exclusively to the love and service of God. This claim is inaccurate and indeed hard to fathom given that only discount code a year later Florin Perier, Gilberte’s own husband, assisted in what is probably Pascal’s most famous scientific investigation, the celebrated Puy-de-Dome experiment measuring air pressure and proving the existence of the vacuum. Twitter? In fact, despite Gilberte’s claim, it would probably be closer to difference between thesis phd, the truth to say that, shortly after his conversion to plugin, Jansenism, Pascal resumed his scientific endeavors with even more zest and energy than before. In the spring of 1647, partly on the advice of his physicians, he returned to summary argumentative, Paris where he linked up once again with former colleagues and began organizing several new essays and treatises for publication. His supposed renunciation of natural philosophy and the bright world of Parisian intellectual life had lasted all of six months. Contrary to Gilberte’s account, most biographers have accepted the years 1649 -1654 as a periode mondaine in Pascal’s career – that is, as a time when he retreated from his pledge to serve only God and resumed to a significant degree the life of a gentleman-scientist. It was not a period of debauchery and libertinism or anything of the kind. Although he showed an occasional weakness for plugin, silk and brocade and enjoyed the amenities of both a valet and a coach-and-six, Pascal did not become a salon habitue or even much of a bon vivant. Argumentative Essay? He was simply a young man who sought the company of fellow experts, savored the spotlight of recognition for personal achievement, and delighted in the social world of learned conversation and sparkling intellectual debate. Thesis? His lapse or personal failing, if it can be called that, was what the Port-Royalists referred to as libido excellendi – a concupiscence of the mind rather than of the flesh and an example of the natural human desire for fame that his contemporary, John Milton, called “that last infirmity of noble mind.”
Pascal’s companions during this period included such stars of the degree essays literature, Paris social scene as Artus Gouffier, the Duc de Roannez, a former military officer, noted courtier, and amateur dabbler in plugin, science and mathematics; Antoine Gombaud, the american history x racism essay, Chevalier de Mere, a soldier, gambler, author, and thesis paragon of honnetete (more than mere “honesty,” this term connotes an entire code of conduct and american x racism essay the gallant, cheerful lifestyle of an independent-minded man of the thesis twitter plugin, world); and Damien Mitton, another champion of honnetete whose name became a byword for debonair charm and colorful raconteurship. Correct? Several commentators on twitter the Pens ees argue that the work is thesis dissertation phd directly aimed at the culture of honnetete and that it specifically targets figures like Mere and Mitton, that is, persons who seek a life of virtue and happiness apart from God. Shortly after his return to Paris in 1647 and during a turn for thesis, the worse in his health, Pascal reunited with his old circle of friends and dissertation fellow intellectuals and thesis was also introduced into polite society. Descartes himself paid a visit (and according to reports wisely suggested that Pascal follow a regimen of bed-rest and custom navigation menu bouillon rather than the steady diet of enemas, purgings, and blood-lettings favored by his doctors). The historic meeting between the two scientific and philosophical rivals reportedly did not go well. Pascal’s new life in Paris was interrupted in thesis twitter, 1648 by the outbreak of the Fronde , the violent civil clash that began as a power struggle between Chief Minister Mazurin and leaders of Parliament and which continued as a conflict between the crown and various aristocratic factions over the next five years. To escape the mob havoc and pervasive military presence in Paris, Pascal returned to Clermont along with his sisters, brother-in-law, and father. There he effectively inserted himself into the Auvergne equivalent of Parisian high society and degree essays literature resumed his temporary infatuation with la vie honnetete . He returned to Paris in thesis, 1650, reconnected with his old friends, and began revising and polishing several scientific papers, including portions of a never completed or partially lost version of his Treatise on the Vacuum . On September 24, 1651, Etienne died; he was 63.
Pascal and Jacqueline were at his bedside. Gilberte was in Clermont awaiting the birth of a child who would be named Etienne Perier in honor of his grandfather. Pascal’s letter of consolation to Gilberte, preserved among his complete works, has disappointed some of his admirers due to its austere tone and cold Jansenist view of death (we should not grieve but rejoice at God’s will; the deceased is now in a better world; and so forth.). Correct Punctuation? However, the letter includes a note of affection for the man who had taken personal charge of his education and who was the first to twitter, introduce him to the world of science and essaysreasy code mathematics. Pascal ends the letter with a pledge that he, Gilberte, and Jacqueline should redouble on one another the love that they shared for their late father. Thesis Twitter Plugin? A few months later, Jacqueline finally made good on her determination (long postponed in obedience to her father’s and brother’s wishes) to dedicate her life to holy service and enter Port-Royal as a nun. In the summer of navigation, 1654 Pascal exchanged a series of letters with Fermat on the problem of calculating gambling odds and plugin probabilities. It was also at this time (although many have doubted his authorship) that he completed his Discourse on Love . Correct For Essays? And according to at least two of his biographers (Faugere and Bishop) it was during this same period (1653-54) that Pascal himself fell victim to amorous passion and even contemplated marriage (supposedly to thesis twitter plugin, the comely Charlotte de Rouannez, his frequent correspondent and thesis theme custom navigation menu the sister of his good friend the Duke). On the twitter plugin, other hand, Gilberte in her account of her brother’s life makes no mention whatsoever of a love affair, and the evidence that Pascal ever succumbed to romance or became a suitor remains sketchy at best. One other oft-cited, but dubious and discount code unverified, event in Pascal’s life also dates from this period. According to twitter plugin, various sources, none wholly reliable, in October of 1654, Pascal was supposedly involved in a nearly fatal accident while crossing the Pont de Neuilly in his coach.
His affrighted horses reportedly reared, bolted, and plunged over punctuation the side of the bridge into the Seine, nearly dragging the coach and Pascal after them. Fortunately, the main coupling broke and the coach, with Pascal inside, miraculously hung on to the edge and stabilized. The commentators who credit this tale attribute Pascal’s “second conversion” to it and view his return to Jansenism as an thesis twitter, immediate and direct consequence of his near-death experience. Sigmund Freud accepted the story and even used it as an american x racism essay, example of how severe trauma can trigger an obsessive or phobic reaction. However, there is no conclusive evidence that the event ever happened.
The crucial event of Pascal’s life and career occurred on November 23, 1654, between the hours of 10:30 pm and 12:30 am. Pascal lay in bed at his home in the Marais district in Paris when he experienced the religious ecstasy or revelation that his biographers refer to as his “second conversion” or “night of fire.” He produced a written record of this momentous experience on a sheet of paper, which he then inserted into a piece of folded parchment inscribed with a duplicate account of the same vision. This dual record, known as the Memorial, he kept sewed into the lining of his jacket as a kind of secret token or private testament of his new life and total commitment to Jesus Christ. Thesis Twitter Plugin? No one, not even Gilberte or Jacqueline, was aware of the existence of this document, which was not discovered until after his death. The text of the Memorial is cryptic, ejaculatory, portentous. At the top of the sheet stands a cross followed by a few lines establishing the time and date, then the word FEU (fire) in thesis dissertation, all upper case and centered near the top of the page. Then:
Dieu d'Abraham, Dieu d'Isaac, Dieu de Jacob, non des philosophes et des savants. Certitude. Certitude. Sentiment. Joie. Paix. Dieu de Jesus-Christ. Deum meum et Deum vestrum. Ton Dieu sera mon Dieu. (God of Abraham, God of twitter plugin, Isaac, God of Jacob, not of the discount code, philosophers and scholars.
Certitude, certitude, feeling, joy, peace. God of Jesus Christ. My God and plugin your God. Thesis Menu? Thy God will be my God.) And so on, in a similarly ecstatic vein for about eighteen more lines. The parchment copy ends with the solemn pledge: “Total submission to Jesus Christ and to my director. Eternally in joy for a day’s trial on earth. I shall not forget thy word.” As the thesis, name Memorial implies, Pascal’s words were written down to preserve them indelibly in his memory and to bear tangible witness to summary argumentative essay, what was for him a soul-piercing and truly life-altering event. His account, despite its brevity and twitter gnomic style, accords closely with the reports of conversion and mysticism classically described and analyzed by William James. In the weeks leading up to discount code, November 23, 1654, Pascal had on twitter plugin several occasions visited Jacqueline at summary argumentative Port-Royal and had complained, despite his active social life and ongoing scientific work, of feelings of dissatisfaction, guilt, lack of purpose, and ennui.
As in the story of his carriage accident by the Seine, he seemed to be a man teetering on the edge – in thesis plugin, this case between anxiety and hope. His “Night of Fire” dramatically changed his outlook and brought him back from the brink of custom navigation menu, despair. After his conversion Pascal formally renounced, but did not totally abandon, his scientific and mathematical studies. He instead vowed to dedicate his time and talents to the glorification of God, the edification of his fellow believers, and plugin the salvation of the larger human community. It wasn’t long before he got an degree literature autobiography, early test of his new resolve. In fact, hardly had Pascal committed himself to Port-Royal than the Jansenist enclave, never secure and always under the watchful suspicion of the greater Catholic community, found itself under theological siege.
Antoine Arnauld, the thesis twitter, spiritual leader of Port-Royal and the uncompromising voice and authority for its strict Augustinian beliefs and values, was embroiled in for essays, a bitter controversy pitting Jansenism against the Pope, the Jesuit order, and a majority of the bishops of twitter, France. In effect, opponents charged that the entire Jansenist system was based on a foundation of error. Degree Essays? At issue were matters of thesis plugin, Catholic doctrine involving grace, election, human righteousness, divine power, and free will. Thesis? Arnauld denied the twitter, charges and published a series of vehement counter-attacks. Unfortunately, these only served to make the thesis custom navigation, hostility towards himself and the Port-Royal community more intense. He ended up being censored by the Faculty of Theology at the Sorbonne and stood threatened with official accusations of heresy. He sought sanctuary at Port-Royal-des-Champs and awaited the judgment of Paris and Rome. With the thesis plugin, official voice of Port-Royal effectively muted, the cause of Jansenism needed a new champion.
Pascal stood ready to fill the role. During the period 1656-57, under the correct for essays, pseudonym Louis de Montalte, he produced a series of 18 public letters attacking the Jesuits and thesis twitter defending Arnauld and Jansenist doctrine. The Lettres provinciales , as they became known, introduced an summary essay, entirely new tone and thesis plugin style into code, contemporary theological debate. From time to time, the genre had served as a forum for obfuscation, vituperation, abstruse technical language, and stodgy academic prose. Pascal’s Lettres injected a new note of wit and humor and ran the gamut from light irony and sarcasm to thesis twitter plugin, outright mockery and scorn. They also featured a popular idiom and conversational tone and made use of theme custom navigation, literary devices such as characterization, dialog, dramatization, and narrative voice. They became a sensation and attracted the twitter, amused attention of readers throughout France. Who, people wondered, is this clever fellow Montalte? The Jesuits, stunned and slow to respond, seemed to have met their intellectual match. During the same week that Pascal’s fifth provinciale (a polemic against Jesuit casuistry) was published, and argumentative just when rumors of new antagonism and thesis royal disfavor with Jansenism began to circulate, an between thesis phd, extraordinary event occurred at Port-Royal.
As a gift from a benefactor, the community had accepted and agreed to thesis plugin, display a holy relic – a true thorn, so it was claimed, from the Savior’s crown. Partly as an act of faith and partly out of desperation, Pascal’s ten-year-old niece Marguerite, Gilberte’s daughter, was put forward to receive a healing incision from the holy object. For more than three years she had suffered from a lacrimal fistula, a horrible swelling or tumor around her eye that, according to her physicians, had no known cure and was thought to be treatable if at summary argumentative essay all only by cauterization with a red hot stylus. Yet remarkably, within a few days of being pricked by thesis twitter the sacred thorn, Marguerite’s eye completely healed. The seeming miracle excited the Pascal family and the entire Port-Royal community; news of the event soon spread outside the punctuation, walls of Port-Royal and around the nation.
After an inquiry, the cure was confirmed as a bona fide miracle and officially accepted as such. Thesis Plugin? Port-Royal rejoiced, and for a while the antagonism against it from the larger Catholic community abated. X Racism Essay? Pascal regarded the miracle as a sign of divine favor for his Lettres project and for the cause of thesis plugin, Jansenism in general. It also confirmed his belief in miracles, a belief that would form part of the foundation for his view of religious faith as set forth in the Pens ees . Despite the auspicious sign of heavenly favor, and essays autobiography even though the twitter plugin, Lettres were brilliantly successful in the short term, they failed in their ultimate goal of vindicating Arnauld and Port-Royal. A papal “bull” condemning Jansenism was issued by Alexander VII in punctuation, October of 1656 and approved in France in December of thesis twitter plugin, 1657.
An official oath decreeing that Jansenist doctrine was contaminated by heresy was circulated and all French priests, monks, and nuns, including the Port-Royalists and Pascal’s sister Jacqueline, were compelled to sign. In 1660 the “little schools” of Port Royal, renowned for excellence and models of progressive education, were closed. In 1661 the monastery was no longer allowed to accept novices. Thesis Theme Custom Navigation Menu? Early in the next century the abbey would be abolished, the community of worshippers disbanded, and the buildings razed. Overwhelmed by thesis plugin a combined force of royal politics and papal power, Port-Royal would lie in ruins and Jansenism, though it would inspire a few random offshoots and essaysreasy latter-day imitations, would find itself largely reduced to an interesting but brief chapter in the history of French Catholicism.
Meanwhile, in thesis, the spring of 1658, as he was studying the Bible and doing preparatory work for what was to be his magnum opus – the great Apology for Christianity that would become the punctuation for essays, Pensees – Pascal turned his attention once again to mathematics and to the problem of the roulette or cycloid. Gilberte blames this “reversion” to worldly pursuits on Pascal’s physicians, who recommended that he leave off his serious theological investigations for lighter activities. She also claims that the solution to the problem, which had challenged the likes of Galileo, Torricelli, and Descartes, came to him almost despite himself and during a bout of sleeplessness caused by a toothache. She finally alleges that Pascal decided to thesis plugin, make his discovery public only when he was at length persuaded by others that it was God’s will. Gilberte’s claims are questionable. What is known is that when Pascal, under the pseudonym Amos Dettonville, actually did publish his solution, which was done within the context of a contest or challenge that he had thrown out to some of the thesis theme custom menu, best mathematical minds of Europe, the result was a controversy that occupied his time and energy for several months and which distracted him from working on his new project. The Pensees occupied Pascal’s final years and were undertaken at a time when his health, which was never robust, deteriorated and thesis twitter plugin grew progressively worse. Originally conceived as a comprehensive defense of the essay, Christian faith against twitter plugin non-believers, the work in its existing form is a rich assortment of notes, fragments, aphorisms, homilies, short essays, sermonettes, and apercus that even in their disorganized and unfinished state constitute a powerful and fascinating contribution to philosophy, theology, and literary art. Pascal worked determinedly on the Pensees to argumentative essay, the extent that his health permitted him, which was unfortunately not very often or for twitter, very long. By early 1659 he was already seriously ill and could work for only short spurts before succumbing to mental and physical exhaustion.
His condition improved somewhat a year later when he was moved from Paris to his native Clermont, but this relief lasted only a few months. When he returned to essaysreasy, Paris he mustered enough energy to work out his plan for a public shuttle system of omnibuses for the city. When this novel idea was realized and twitter put into american x racism, actual operation in 1662, Paris had the first such transit system in the world. The last two years of Pascal’s life were spent in Paris under the twitter plugin, care and supervision of Gilberte and Florin, who had taken a home nearby. It was a grim period for all the Pascals; Jacqueline died in 1661, only a few months after being forced to subscribe to the formulary condemning Jansen’s Augustinus as heretical. Thesis? As Pascal’s physical health declined, his mental powers weakened and his personal habits and spiritual outlook became even more harsh and austere. According to Gilberte, he regarded any sort of dining pleasure or gastronomic delight as a hateful form of sensuality and adopted the (very un-Gallic) view that one should eat strictly for nourishment and plugin not for enjoyment. He championed the ideal of poverty and correct punctuation for essays claimed that one should prefer and use goods crafted by the poorest and most honest artisans, not those manufactured by twitter plugin the best and american x racism most accomplished.
He purged his home of luxuries and pretty furnishings and took in a homeless family. He even cautioned Gilberte not to be publicly affectionate with her children – on grounds that caresses can be a form of sensuality, dependency, and self-indulgence. In his opinion, a life devoted to God did not allow for close personal attachments – not even to family. During his last days he burned with fever and thesis twitter plugin colic. His doctors assaulted him with their customary cures. He wavered in and out of consciousness and suffered a series of recurrent violent convulsions. However, Gilberte attests that he recovered his clarity of mind in time to make a final confession, take the Blessed Sacrament, and receive extreme unction.
His last coherent words were reportedly “May God never abandon me.” He died at 1:00 AM August 19, 1662, at the age of 39. Even post-mortem Pascal was unable to escape the correct for essays, curiosity and intrusiveness of thesis twitter plugin, his physicians. Shortly after his death an autopsy was performed and revealed, among other pathologies, stomach cancer, a diseased liver, and brain lesions. Essays Autobiography? Nor after death, was he granted peace from the still ongoing crossfire between Jesuits and Port-Royal. Was Pascal, it was asked, truly orthodox and twitter a good Catholic? A sincere believer and supporter of the powers of the Pope and the priesthood and the efficacious intervention of the Saints? Did he reject the Jansenist heresy on his deathbed and accept a more moderate and forgiving theology? Those questions have been taken up and debated by a succession of biographers, critics, latter-day devil’s advocates, and posthumous grand inquisitors. His works have fared better, having received, during the three and a half centuries since his death, first-rate editorial attention, a number of essaysreasy discount code, superb translations, and an abundance of expert scholarly commentary.
The Pensees and the Provincial Letters have earned him a place in the pantheon of French philosophical non-fiction alongside names like Montaigne, Descartes, Voltaire, Rousseau, and Sartre. Pascal’s Provincial Letters (henceforth Letters or provinciales ) are a series of 18 letters plus a fictional “Reply” and an unfinished fragment composed and published between January, 1656, and thesis twitter plugin March, 1657. Difference Between Thesis Dissertation? Their aim was to defend the Jansenist community of Port-Royal and its principal spokesman and spiritual leader Antoine Arnauld from defamation and accusations of heresy while at the same time leading a counter-offensive against the accusers (mainly the thesis, Jesuits). Polemical exchanges, often acrimonious and personal, were a common feature of the 17 th -century theological landscape. Essaysreasy? Pascal ventured into this particular fray with a unique set of weapons – a mind honed by mathematical exercise and scientific debate, a pointed wit, and sharp-edged literary and dramatic skills. In the background of the letters stand two notable events: (1) In May of 1653, Pope Innocent X in a bull entitled Cum Occasione declared five propositions supposedly contained in Cornelius Jansen’s Augustinus to be heretical. (2) In January of 1656, after a long and twitter heated trial, Arnauld, who had repeatedly denied that the five propositions were in Jansen’s text, was officially censured and degree literature expelled from the Sorbonne.
The five propositions can be stated as follows: 1. Even the just, no matter how hard they may strive, lack the power and grace to thesis twitter plugin, keep all the correct punctuation for essays, commandments. 2. In our fallen condition it is thesis twitter impossible for us to resist interior grace. 3. In order to deserve merit or condemnation we must be free from external compulsion though not from internal necessity. 4. Thesis Theme Custom? It is heresy to twitter plugin, say that we can either accept grace or resist it. 5. Christ did not die for everyone, but only for the elect. Two separate questions were at stake: (1) Are the american history x racism essay, propositions actually in Jansen, if not explicitly and verbatim , then implicitly in meaning or intention?
This was the thesis twitter plugin, so-called question of fact ( de fait ). (2) Are the propositions, as plainly and ordinarily understood, indeed heretical? This was the question of essaysreasy discount, right or law ( de droit ). The Port-Royal position was yes in the case of the second question, no in the case of the first. Arnauld claimed that the propositions do not occur, verbatim or otherwise, anywhere in Jansen’s text, but he acknowledged that if they did occur there (or for that matter anywhere), they were indeed heretical. Despite the fact that he disavowed any support for the five propositions, he and the Port-Royal community as a whole stood under suspicion of secretly approving, if not openly embracing them. Such was the situation that Pascal found himself in when he sat down to compose the first provinciale . What he produced was something utterly new in the annals of religious controversy. Thesis Plugin? In place of the american, usual fury and technical quibbling, he adopts a tone of easy-going candor and colloquial simplicity. He presents himself as a modest, ordinary, private citizen (originally anonymous, but later identified in the collected letters by the pseudonym Louis de Montalte) who is writing from Paris to a “provincial friend.” “Montalte’s” purpose is to twitter plugin, pass along his personal observations, insights, and commentary on the learned and mighty disputes that recently took place at the Sorbonne. In essence, via his fictional persona, Pascal provides an essay, account of l’affaire Arnauld and the case against Jansenism as viewed by a coolly observant, playful outsider.
In the course of the letter, Pascal/Montalte introduces a series of fictional interlocutors who explain or advocate for the Jansenist, Jesuit, and Thomistic views on a range of theological issues, most notably the doctrines of sufficient grace vis-a-vis efficacious grace and twitter the notion of proximate power. Difference Thesis Dissertation? These happen to be exactly the sort of thesis, deeply esoteric, highly technical, theological matters that “Montalte” and his “provincial friend” (and thus, by extension and more importantly, his target audience of plain-spoken, commonsense, fellow citizens) were likely to find strained, incomprehensible, and somewhat silly. Through devices of discount, interview and dialogue Montalte manages to present these issues in relatively clear, understandable terms and persuade the reader that the Jansenist and Thomist views on each are virtually identical and perfectly orthodox. He goes on to show that any apparent discrepancy between the two positions – and in thesis plugin, fact the whole attack on Jansenism and Arnauld – is based not on doctrine, but is essaysreasy code entirely political and personal, a product of Jesuit calumny and conspiracy. In effect, a complicated theological conflict is presented in the form of thesis twitter plugin, a simple human drama. Irony and stinging satire are delivered with the suave aplomb of a Horatian epistle. Not all of the provinciales deal with the same issues and concerns as the first.
Nor do they all display the same playful style and tone of “ plaisanterie ” that Voltaire so much admired. Discount Code? In fact some of the later letters, far from being breezy and thesis plugin affable, are passionate and argumentative essay achieve sublime eloquence; others are downright vicious and blistering in their attack. Thesis? Letters 1-3 offer a defense of Arnauld, challenging his trial and between thesis censure. Letter 4, pitting a Jesuit against a Jansenist, serves as a bridge between provinciales 1-3 and thesis 5-10. Letters 5-10 attack Jesuit casuistry and doctrine; in them Montalte accuses the Society of hypocrisy and moral laxity and of placing ease of conscience and the glory of the Order above true Christian duty and love of God. Letters 11-16 are no longer addressed to the “provincial friend,” but instead address the Jesuit fathers directly. Letter 14 includes an extended discussion of both natural and divine law and makes an important ethical distinction between homicide, capital punishment, and suicide.
Letter 16 ends with Pascal’s famous apology for prolixity: “The present letter is a very long one, simply because I had no leisure to difference between thesis, make it shorter.”) Letters 17 and 18 are addressed to Father Annat, SJ, confessor to the King, and are direct and personal. Here Pascal virtually abandons the artifice of “Montalte” and thesis seems almost to come forward in his own person. In Letter 17, a virtual reprise and summation of the summary argumentative essay, case of the five propositions, he repeats once again that he writes purely as a private citizen and denies that he is a member of thesis, Port Royal. Since Pascal was neither a monk nor a solitaire within the community, the discount code, claim is technically accurate, though it arguably leaves him open to the same charges of truth-bending and casuistry that he levels against twitter the Jesuits. Although the Letters gained a wide readership and enjoyed a period of popular success, they failed to thesis custom menu, achieve their strategic goal of preserving Port-Royal and thesis plugin Jansenist doctrine from external attack. They also had a few unfortunate, unintended consequences. They were blamed, for instance, for punctuation for essays, stirring up cynicism, disrespect, and even contempt for the clergy in the minds of ordinary citizens. Quickly translated into English and Latin, they also became popular with Protestant readers happy to extend Pascal’s wounding attack on Jesuit morality into a satirical broadside against Catholicism as a whole.
After the thesis twitter plugin, publication of the provinciales , the term Jesuitical would become synonymous with crafty and subtle and the words casuistry and casuistical would never again be entirely free from a connotation of sophistry and excuse-making. Banned by order of Louis XIV in essaysreasy, 1660 and placed on the Index and burned by the Inquisition, the provinciales nevertheless lived on twitter plugin underground and abroad with their popularity undimmed. Today, the provinciales retain documentary value both as relics of Jansenism and punctuation for essays as surviving specimens of 17 th -century religious polemic, but modern readers prize them mainly for their literary excellence. They represent the thesis twitter, original model not only for the genre of satirical non-fiction, but for classic French prose style in all other genres as well. Rabelais and Montaigne were basically inimitable and degree far too quirky and idiosyncratic to serve as a style model for later writers.
Pascal’s combination of brisk clarity and concise elegance set a pattern for French authors from La Rochefoucauld, Voltaire, and twitter plugin Diderot to Anatole France. Even Paul Valery, arguably Pascal’s most severe critic, excoriated his predecessor in a prose style heavily indebted to him. Boileau claimed to base his own terse and vigorous poetic style on the prose of the provinciales : “If I write four words,” he said, “I efface three,” which had been Pascal’s habit as well. Voltaire declared the collected Letters to be “the best-written book” yet to appear in France. Summary Essay? D’Alembert also cherished the work but wished that Pascal had aimed his sharp wit and irony at his own absurd beliefs. He argued that Jansenism is every bit as “shocking,” and as deserving of scorn and ridicule, as the doctrines of thesis plugin, Molina and the Jesuits. Of Pascal’s modern readers only the theme navigation menu, arch conservative Joseph de Maistre, spearhead of the counter-Enlightenment, utterly scorned the work, calling Jansenism a “vile” and “unblushing” heresy and finding the style of the Letters rancorous and bitter. In the end, it’s unfortunate that the principal debate in the provinciales was theological rather than philosophical, for it would have been useful and thesis plugin interesting to have Pascal’s candid discussion of free will vs. psychological determinism, instead of a tortuous doctrinal showdown between efficacious and sufficient grace. Jansen’s own formula – that “man irresistibly, although voluntarily, does either good or evil, according as he is dominated by grace or by concupiscence” – is paradoxical and tries to have it both ways. (Can an act be both voluntary and discount irresistible?) Pascal also seems equivocal on the issue, though he insists that his views are consistent with Catholic orthodoxy.
He wrestled with the problem of grace and twitter plugin free will not only in the Letters, but also in difference between dissertation, portions of the Pensees and plugin especially in his Ecrits sur la grace (1657-58), where he offers an extensive commentary on Augustine and compares the Calvinist, Jansenist, and Jesuit views. History? However, even there his account is abstruse and plugin theological rather than blunt and philosophical and is thus of interest mainly to specialists rather than general readers. i. Plan and Purpose of the Work and its Textual History. The Pensees are a rarity among literary and for essays philosophical works – a magnum opus by twitter plugin a major author that has achieved classic status despite being unfinished, fragmentary, and almost scrapbook-like in degree literature, form. Thesis Plugin? The Aeneid , The Canterbury Tales , De Rerum Natura , Kafka’s manuscripts all had work remaining or were incomplete when their authors died, but they seem like final drafts compared to the Pensees . American History Essay? Sainte-Beuve compared the work to thesis plugin, a tower in which the stones have been piled up but not cemented. The text, as we have it today, represents the autobiography, assembled notes, fragments, miscellaneous aphorisms, and short essays-in-progress of what was to be a detailed and thesis comprehensive Apology for Christianity – a defense of the argumentative, faith against atheism, deism, libertinism, pagan philosophy, and the cult of honnetete . Inspired by the force and certainty of his own conversion and by the late excitement of the Holy Thorn, Pascal was further encouraged by thesis plugin the recent success of the difference between phd, provinciales . Confident in his powers of argument and thesis twitter persuasion, both logical and literary, he felt called upon to thesis menu, undertake a bold new project. The new work was to be nothing less than a definitive affirmation and thesis twitter plugin justification of Christianity against its detractors and critics. It would also be an discount code, exercise in spiritual outreach and proselytization – an earnest appeal, addressed to both the thesis twitter plugin, reason and the heart, inviting scoffers, doubters, the undecided, and the lost to join the punctuation, Catholic communion.
In the thesis twitter plugin, Pensees , Pascal would assume the role of both Apologist and Apostle. In the summary argumentative, spring of 1658, he presented a detailed outline of his project, explaining its scope and goals, to thesis twitter, an audience of friends and members of Port-Royal. Degree? The plan was greeted enthusiastically and given the group’s full approval and endorsement. The work would be unified, but layered and textured, with multiple sections and two main parts: First part : Misery of man without God. Second part : Happiness of man with God. First part : That nature is corrupt. Proved by nature itself. Second part : That there is a Redeemer. Proved by Scripture. Thesis? (6/40). The project was designed as an example of what is today termed immanent apologetics . In simple terms, this means that Pascal won’t base his presentation on objective argument, systematic logic, and metaphysical proofs of God’s existence.
Indeed, except for a few instances, such as 135/167, where he finds evidence in degree essays literature, nature for a Being who is “necessary, infinite, and eternal,” Pascal eschews most of the traditional proofs of thesis, God, even Augustine’s. He will instead appeal to degree, the unfolding history of the twitter plugin, Christian faith from its roots in Old Testament prophecy through its early development to custom menu, the modern Church. Further, he will appeal directly to the subjective human spirit and to thesis plugin, each reader’s personal experience, emphasizing our existential human need for God and our feelings of incompleteness and wretchedness apart from Him. In essence, Pascal will leave it to american essay, readers to thesis twitter plugin, decide whether his account of the human condition and his descriptions of their social and physical worlds (not as they might wish them to punctuation for essays, be, but as they actually experience them in our daily lives) are credible and persuasive. If the reader accepts his accounts, Pascal will be halfway to his goal.
It will remain for him to further convince readers that the solution to our wretchedness, to the disorder and thesis plugin unfairness of life, is acceptance of Jesus Christ. American X Racism? He will argue that not only is thesis belief in discount, Christianity not contrary to reason, but that it’s the only religion that is fully compatible with it. To support this claim, he will offer historical evidence in its favor from the authority of Scripture and plugin ancient witnesses, and also in the form of miracles, prophecies, and figural (typological) hermeneutics. However, he admits that this evidence will not be conclusive – for Christianity can never be proved by reason or authority alone. It must be accepted in the heart ( coeur – a special term in Pascal’s vocabulary that includes connotations of “spirit,” “soul,” “natural human instinct,” and even “love,”): “It is the heart which experiences God, and not the reason. This, then, is faith: God felt by the heart, not by the reason” (424/680). Such in essence was the plan. Its execution, limited by Pascal’s nearly constant illness and fatigue, continued off and on difference between phd over his remaining four years. Upon his death, his manuscripts were placed in the custody of Arnauld and a committee of fellow Jansenists.
While transcribing the thesis, manuscripts, the committee produced two variant copies. The original Port Royal edition of Pascal’s works came out in 1670, incomplete and carefully screened to x racism, avoid offending the government. Prosper Faugere brought out a revised and authoritative edition of the work in 1844. Several new editions, with different arrangements of the material, appeared over the next century. The numerical ordering used in Leon Brunschvicg’s 1897 edition became standard, but was superseded first by the 1951 edition of Louis Lafuma (which was based on the First Copy) and thesis then again by the 1976 edition of Phillipe Sellier (which was based on correct for essays the Second Copy). The publication of Jean Mesnard’s 1993 edition gives French readers yet another excellent text. Death, God, infinity, the nature of the universe, the limits of reason, the meaning of life – these are just a few of the big ideas and philosophical topics that Pascal reflects on in the short space of the Pensees . Indeed, other than the gnomic fragments of Heraclitus or the terse aphoristic texts of twitter plugin, Wittgenstein, it’s hard to think of a work that packs as many provocative philosophical musings into so few pages. Yet even with its multiple subject headings and wide range of degree essays literature autobiography, topics, the work can still be read as the deep exploration of a single great theme: the thesis plugin, Human Condition, viewed under its two opposing yet interrelated aspects – our wretchedness without God, and our greatness with Him. Pascal argues that without God our spiritual condition is essentially a state of punctuation for essays, misery characterized by anxiety, alienation, loneliness, and ennui. He suggests that if we could only sit still for an instant and honestly look within ourselves, we would recognize our desperation. However, we spend most of our time blocking out or concealing our true condition from ourselves via forms of self-deception and amour-propre. (Like Augustine before him, Pascal accurately describes mechanisms of denial and ego-defense long before they were clinically and technically defined by Sigmund Freud).
Chief among these ego-protective devices is plugin divertissement (distraction or diversion), Pascal’s term for our continual need and almost addictive tendency to seek out mindless or soul-numbing forms of entertainment and amusement. Such “distractions” may sometimes involve behavior that is immoral or culpable, for example, prostitution, drunkenness, sexual promiscuity, but more often take the form of habits and activities that are merely wasteful or self-indulgent, like gaming or the salon. They may even consist of pastimes that are basically innocent, but which are nevertheless vain, trivial, or unedifying, for example, sports like tennis and fencing. From Pascal’s severe point of view, even the arts, and especially dance and theatre, are but species of divertissement . So are all the luxuries, consumer goods, and worldly delights with which we proudly surround ourselves. According to thesis theme custom navigation menu, Pascal, we use these goods and activities not, as we self-flatteringly suppose, to certify our achievements or add a touch of bonheur to our inner life. On the contrary, we use them mainly as a way of plugin, concealing our bleak inner reality from ourselves and from one another. They are a means of denying our own mortality and hollowness. (136/168; 139/171.) In effect diversions prevent us from punctuation for essays acknowledging our essential misery. They create a false sense of security that hides the abyss or vacuum within.
On the other hand, wretchedness and insecurity are only part of our nature. Twitter Plugin? Our condition, as Pascal points out repeatedly in the Pensees and also in his “conversation” with Sacy, is summary dual. We are one part misery and thesis twitter plugin one part grandeur; and alongside our feelings of isolation and destitution we also have a profound sense of our intrinsic dignity and worth. Pascal calls us “thinking reeds,” though his stress is on thinking . For thought, he argues, is the whole basis of degree, our dignity, the attribute of our nature that elevates and separates us from the thesis, rest of the material universe. Thesis? It’s an accident of history that Pascal’s collection of notes came to be called Pensees . But the title is thesis twitter plugin appropriate, since the american history x racism essay, work as a whole could well be described as an extended meditation on human consciousness, on what it means to plugin, think . iv. Difference Between Thesis Phd? Critical Approaches and Interpretation. Criticism and interpretation of the Pensees have followed two main approaches. The first, which could be called the conventional or historical approach, is the one favored by most literary scholars and historians of religion, including most notably Philippe Sellier, David Wetsel, and Jean Mesnard. According to this view the thesis plugin, Pensees are to be understood within the essays, context and thesis twitter framework of traditional Christian apologetics. Moreover, the author’s original design and purpose (so far as modern scholarship can determine them) are to be carefully reconstructed and fully respected.
Most of the biographers and critics who follow this approach agree that Pascal’s primary purpose was to articulate and defend Christianity – and especially the Augustinian-Jansenist form of degree autobiography, Christianity practiced at Port-Royal – against thesis plugin its skeptical, atheistic, and deistic opponents. In particular, they argued, Pascal aims to convert the contemporary free-thinker and honnete homme – that is to say, a figure much like his friends Mitton and Mere and indeed not unlike a secular, rationalistic, and american essay worldly version of himself. The work is thus understood to be not an inner drama enacting Pascal’s own personal struggles with religious belief but rather an artfully contrived dialog with and rhetorical proselytization of an thesis, imagined adversary. The “I” of the work, in this view, is not Pascal himself in essaysreasy code, propria persona but a polyphonic fiction – a range of literary voices and twitter masks adopted by Pascal strictly as a rhetorical device and as a means of persuasion. Thus, any time we seem to hear the narrative voice of the Pensees expressing fear, doubt, conflict, or existential agony we are to understand that voice not as Pascal’s own, but as that of a literary creation or persona whose utterances are to be interpreted ironically or as presented for dramatic or rhetorical effect.
Although he was neither a literary scholar nor a historian of religion (but more like a cantankerous version of each), Voltaire seems to have read and understood the Pensees in this traditional way. That is, he interpreted the work as an example of Christian apologetics aimed at a scoffer or doubter pretty much like himself. Essay? Needless to say, he was not swayed by Pascal’s arguments. To the claim that the human condition is one of anxiety and wretchedness, he responds that we are neither as wicked nor as miserable as Pascal says. As for Pascal’s extensive discussion of miracles, prophecy, the figurative interpretation of Scripture, and twitter plugin the like, Voltaire regards the degree autobiography, effort as so much wasted breath. He even suggests that Christianity would be better off without such strained and thesis plugin overwrought apologetics, which he compared to trying to prop up an oak tree by surrounding it with reeds. The poet and critic T. S. Eliot, in his 1933 introductory essay to the Pensees , also interprets the work in this traditional way. However, in direct opposition to Voltaire, whom he acknowledges to be Pascal’s greatest critic, he finds Pascal’s arguments on the whole sincere and psychologically persuasive. Essaysreasy Discount? He departs from the traditional reading only to the extent that he considers the Pensees not only as a work of Christian apologetics but also as an example of spiritual biography, an expression of Pascal’s forceful and idiosyncratic personality and unique combination of passion and thesis twitter plugin intellect (360). In opposition to this essentially historical and scholarly way of reading the between dissertation phd, Pensees , several critics and commentators, from Chateaubriand and Walter Pater to Paul Valery, AJ Krailsheimer, and Lucien Goldmann, have offered versions of what might be called a “romantic,” “confessional,” or “phenomenological” approach.
According to this line of interpretation, Pascal’s fragmentary narrative represents either a fictional portrait of a soul in crisis or a true personal confession in the manner of Augustine (and later Rousseau). That is, it presents a cri de coeur or cri de triomphe that provides a direct look into twitter, the heart and soul of a penitent former sinner who, after a long and agonizing struggle, finds Christ and renounces the world. Thesis? Romantic readers themselves disagree on the extent to which this exercise in self-revelation is a conscious product – that is, a carefully arranged and skillfully made artifact – or, in a more psychoanalytic vein, the expression of the author’s actual inner conflicts and unconscious motives and thesis plugin intentions. They also offer different interpretations of the audience or addressee of the work. American History X Racism? Are the Pensees a dramatic monologue?
A private confession addressed to God? A dialog between Pascal and twitter plugin the reader? Between Pascal and himself? Are they truly intended to convert a Mere or a Mitton, and are they addressed only to skeptics and those lacking faith? Or are they meant also as a meditative exercise and inspiration for active Christians, a spiritual tool to help guide believers and strengthen their faith? Or perhaps Pascal, in the manner of St. Paul, is trying to be all things to all people and thus to a certain extent trying to do some or all of the above at the same time? The great Victorian critic Walter Pater compares the Pensees to Shakespearian tragedy and notes that Pascal is not a converted skeptic or former infidel who has seen the light. Instead, he seems caught “at the very centre of a perpetually maintained tragic crisis holding the faith steadfastly, but amid the history x racism essay, well-poised points of twitter, essential doubt all around him.” The Pensees , Pater goes on to claim, dramatize an intense inner dialectic: “no mere calm supersession of a state of doubt by a state of faith; the doubts never die, they are only just kept down in a perpetual agonia .”
This view of the Pens e es as an interior dialogue or psychomachia dramatizing Pascal’s own personal struggle between faith and doubt is thoroughly rejected by thesis theme custom menu Jean Mesnard and other scholars who insist that any hint of such a struggle is merely a rhetorical pose on Pascal’s part and employed for dramatic effect. Pascal was proclaimed a heretic and thesis plugin a Calvinist during his lifetime and has been called everything from a skeptic to a nihilist by modern readers. So to a certain extent Paul Valery in his controversial essay “Variations on a Pens e e ” was for essaysreasy discount code, the most part only repeating criticisms of the author that earlier critics, many of them Catholic clergymen, had made before (for example, that he was a poor theologian, that he was insensitive to natural beauty and to art, and so forth). Valery seems to recognize a distinction between Pascal the author and the “I” of the Pensees , but he finds the “I” of the thesis plugin, work so artificial and overwrought that he accuses the author of being hypocritical and essaysreasy discount code insincere. Thinking of the passage in the Pensees about the twitter plugin, terror induced by “the eternal silence” of infinite space (201/233), he says, here is a “strange Christian,” who gazes upon the starry heavens yet fails to discover his Heavenly Father.
Echoing a criticism formerly made by Voltaire, Valery likens Pascal to a tragic poet who portrays the human condition as much bleaker and harsher than it actually is; who describes the essays literature, fears and twitter torments of life vividly, but who depicts its delights and summary essay joys, its moments of thesis plugin, excitement and intensity, hardly at all. Lucien Goldmann has argued that the fragmentary form of the Pensees may be an accident due to Pascal’s death, but it also qualifies as a brilliantly achieved creative product, an aesthetically and psychologically appropriate form that not only reflects the true style and state of mind of Pascal himself and of his narrative persona but also captures the mood and temper of his time. Writing from a Lukacsian-Marxist and evolutionary perspective that he calls “genetic structuralism,” Goldmann views Pascal as both a cutting-edge, creative force and at code the same time a product of thesis plugin, his personal circumstances and historical era. In this interpretation, Pascal sets up dialectical polarities in the Pensees –man’s wretchedness vs. his greatness; concupiscence vs. Degree Essays Literature? godliness and sacrifice; Old Testament type vs. New Testament antitype; reason vs. the heart; and so forth, all of which are polarities that are supposedly resolved and reconciled in the person of Jesus Christ. Those polarities are homologous with and paralleled by the larger historical oppositions of the period: the new science vs. Thesis Twitter Plugin? ancient philosophy and traditional theology; Cartesian rationalism vs. skepticism; the administrative class ( noblesse de robe ) and bourgeoisie vs. the dissertation, nobility; Protestantism and thesis plugin Jansenism vs. Catholicism; and so forth. Viewed in summary argumentative, this way, the Pensees can be seen to encapsulate and effectively dramatize the main intellectual and social dynamics of an entire era.
One of the more remarkable developments in Western philosophy is the fact that one sliver of the Pensees , a single fragment of a fragmentary text and but a small portion of the untidy, multi-part, unfinished work that contains it, has achieved a full literary life of its own, with its own lively history of commentary and criticism. Thesis? This is the famous fragment (418/680) known as Le Pari de Pascal , or “Pascal’s Wager.” Extensive discussions of the Wager can be found both in print and online, including an article in this encyclopedia. These discussions address a range of issues relating to the Wager, such as its status in the development of decision theory and probability theory, the various objections that have been made against summary it, and twitter the numerous revised or alternate versions and american history x racism applications that have been derived from it. This section will take up only two matters related to the topic: (1) the question of whether or not Pascal himself sincerely approved the Wager and believed that it presents a legitimate and persuasive argument for faith in God; (2) the response to thesis plugin, the Wager on the part of a few selected philosophers and critics along with a glance at some of its precedents in literary history. Simply characterized, the Wager is difference a second-person dialog in twitter, which Pascal imagines an individual forced to choose between belief in difference between dissertation, God and disbelief in Him. He analyzes the twitter, situation as if the reader-protagonist (the “you” of the difference dissertation, imaginary dialog) were involved in a great existential coin-toss game. The conditions and possible outcomes of the Wager are presented in the following table: Pascal argues that given the terms of the Wager it is not simply prudent, it is practically obligatory to bet on God’s existence and illogical and thesis twitter utterly foolish to bet against Him. For consider: if you bet on His existence, you stand to win an infinite reward (an eternity in paradise) at the risk of only a small loss (whatever earthly pleasures you would be required to forego during your mortal life). On the other hand, if you bet against His existence, you risk the possibility of an infinite loss (loss of american history essay, paradise – along with the possibility of an eternity in Hell) for only a limited gain (the opportunity to enjoy a few years’ worth of worldly delights). Pascal was a lifelong Catholic whose personal conversion from lukewarm to whole-hearted faith was accomplished not by rational argument but by a life-changing mystical experience.
So it’s unlikely that he himself ever gave serious personal consideration to an argument like the Wager. He simply didn’t need any further incentive or rational inducement to belief other than the thesis, passionate conviction within his own heart. On the other hand, it’s not unlikely that he thought the Wager might appeal to summary argumentative, and perhaps even sway a libertine, a skeptic, or a Deist who might be teetering on the brink of belief. And that goes even more for thesis twitter plugin, a figure like a Mere or Mitton or any of the other young gallants and connoisseurs of american, honnetete whom Pascal came to know in the salons and gaming rooms of Paris. After all, what better than a wager to thesis twitter, entice a gambler? “Follow me,” Jesus had said to degree autobiography, the fishermen Peter and Andrew, “and I will make you fishers of men” (Matthew 4:19). Similarly, Pascal, in the role a latter-day apostle, uses a game of chance as a net to bring sinners to salvation.
The concept of the thesis twitter, Wager was by no means original with Pascal. Versions of it can be found as far back as Euripides’ The Bacchae . In the play, when Dionysus proclaims himself a deity and demands to be worshipped, Cadmus argues that it’s prudent, even if we don’t believe him, to honor him like a god since there’s no harm in doing so. (On the other hand, we risk a great deal of personal hardship by summary argumentative failing to thesis twitter plugin, show him proper reverence if he truly is a god.) Sir Thomas More’s anecdote of the Gallant and the Friar presents in theme navigation, an inverted form a similar conflict and plugin moral: When a gallant sees a friar walking barefoot in the snow, he asks him why he endures such pain. The friar responds that the difference between thesis, pain is thesis twitter trivial, if we remember Hell. “But what if there is no hell?” inquires the amused gallant, adding “then art thou a great fool.” “Yes, master,” the friar replies, “but what if there is a hell? Then art thou a greater fool.”
A comical modern parody of the Wager occurs in difference phd, the 1951 Broadway musical Guys and Dolls . Professional gambler Sky Masterson challenges a group of fellow professionals with a proposition: on a single roll of a pair of dice, he’ll pay each player $1000 if he loses. But if he wins, the gamblers will have to attend a midnight revival meeting at the Save-a-Soul mission. As in thesis twitter, Pascal’s Wager, the bet seems irresistible: there’s a large payoff if you win, with only a small sacrifice, and even a shot at salvation, if you lose. Sky wins his wager. The gamblers are “saved.”
Voltaire called the Wager “indecent and literature childish” and thought it strange that Pascal reduced questions of the highest gravity to the mathematics of twitter, games of chance. As for the Wager itself, he points out that just because someone promises me that I shall enjoy a great benefit doesn’t mean that it’s true. X Racism? For example, suppose a fortune-teller tells me that she has a strong presentiment that I’ll win the lottery. Of course I hope she’s right, but should I be willing to twitter, wager on her presumed foreknowledge? If so, how much? In the end, Voltaire claims that Nature offers far more evidence for God’s existence than Pascal’s mathematical subtleties. Following up on Voltaire’s objections, Diderot pointed out that Pascal’s same basic argument (better to believe than not to believe) would apply equally well to any other religion: “An imam could argue just as well this way.” Indeed, by this logic, it could be argued that the more fanatical the religion, and the more extreme its promised rewards for belief and punishments for difference dissertation, non-belief, the thesis twitter, more powerful the argument in its favor. Although he doesn’t specifically address the issue raised by Pascal’s Wager, John Stuart Mill in his essay “Theism” provides a utilitarian defense of the concept of religious hope. Menu? In effect, he argues that in a case where the truth is uncertain and the alternatives, immortality of the soul vs. extinction; existence of God vs.
His non-existence, appear equally probable, it is legitimate to prefer the more hopeful option as being the choice more likely conducive to thesis twitter plugin, overall happiness. In his essay “The Will to Believe” William James offers a sharp critical assessment of the Wager and finds Pascal’s basic argument to be weak, sophistic, and insincere: . . . When religious faith expresses itself thus, in the language of the gaming-table, it is put to difference, its last trumps. Surely Pascal's own personal belief in thesis plugin, masses and summary holy water had far other springs; and this celebrated page of plugin, his is but an argument for others, a last desperate snatch at a weapon against the hardness of the unbelieving heart. We feel that a faith in punctuation for essays, masses and holy water adopted willfully after such a mechanical calculation would lack the inner soul of faith's reality; and thesis plugin if we were ourselves in the place of the Deity, we should probably take particular pleasure in cutting off believers of this pattern from their infinite reward (224). However, having said this, James goes on to makes a pragmatic case for voluntary belief similar to essaysreasy, Mill’s utilitarian defense of twitter plugin, “hope” and to some extent comparable to Kierkegaard’s “leap of faith”. He argues that there are matters where the truth is in doubt and science is incapable of passing judgment as in thesis theme menu, the question of whether God exists. Where that choice is, in his terms, live (meaning that it seems of vital interest and value to us and engages us emotionally), momentous (meaning that it is non-trivial and has serious consequences), and forced (meaning that we must choose one way or the other and twitter plugin cannot simply sit the fence or stand aside), then it is lawful, indeed even necessary for us to weigh the risks and evidence and choose . In the end, James basically recasts Pascal’s Wager in a new form, re-focusing on its existential and psychological dimensions and dispensing with what he regards as its stagy and cheapening gambling metaphors. Besides his two major works (the Pensees and thesis the Provinciales ), Pascal also wrote several shorter works touching on plugin a wide range of topics – from history political legitimacy and social order to Stoicism and romantic love. A brief overview and precis of some of the better known and more important of these minor works follows.
Essentially an extensive commentary on human nature and the doctrine of divine grace, the Ecrits represent Pascal’s most ambitious venture into the arena of Catholic theological debate. Thesis Plugin? First published in 1779, the work was written at the same time as the history, provinciales and covers much of the same ground (proximate power, concupiscence, free will, and so forth), though in thesis, a more serious and less cavalier manner and in a more direct and difference between thesis phd methodical form. Along with other deep matters, Pascal here explicates Augustine’s distinction between human nature in its unfallen state as pure, innocent, and twitter plugin naturally just, though capable of choice and degree autobiography error, and our postlapsarian condition, which is in thrall to concupiscence and naturally prone, indeed practically bound to do evil if it were not for God’s prevenient grace. Adam was upright but free to fall; we children of plugin, Adam are weighed down by sin, and incapable of rising by degree literature autobiography our own effort. But, we are free to twitter, accept grace and can therefore be lifted up. Pascal dissects the problem of free will in a similarly Augustinian fashion. Adam had free will in difference thesis phd, the sense that he could freely choose either good or evil, though he naturally inclined to the former. We, in our concupiscent state, are also free to choose. However, we are naturally inclined to thesis twitter plugin, prefer evil, which in our ignorant, fallen condition we commonly mistake for good. Pascal also points out that through the essays autobiography, grace of Jesus Christ, a grace instilled by thesis twitter the Holy Spirit, we can achieve a redeemed will – a will sufficient to overcome concupiscence and capable of recognizing and choosing good.
Commentators on the Ecrits have questioned whether its depiction of grace (which is presented as something largely mysterious yet vital for salvation) is consistent with the rational apologetic approach and systematic style of argument that Pascal sought to use in the Pensees . Pascal’s essay on the “geometric spirit” outlines both a theory of knowledge and essay an intellectual capability or logical mental faculty. He asserts that geometry and mathematics are the only areas of thesis, human inquiry that provide knowledge that is degree essays both certain and infallible. He then supports this claim with arguments and demonstrations. He goes on to describe a certain quality or faculty of mind that he calls l’esprit geometrique , which he defines as the ability to take known or perceived truths and to present them in such a way – with such precise steps, perfect elegance, and logical rigor – that their truth cannot help but be recognized and approved by others. Such an irrefutable and triumphant persuasiveness – the ability to twitter, vanquish all doubt and essaysreasy code counter-argument – seems to have been Pascal’s goal in all his writings, whether on scientific subjects or in twitter, matters of thesis theme navigation, theological dispute. In any case, the “geometric spirit” is both a prominent characteristic of Pascal’s own genius as well as an important epistemological idea (illustrating both the powers and limitations of the human mind) that he returns to repeatedly throughout his writings. iii. Discourse on the Passions of Love. Pascal’s authorship of the plugin, “Discourse on the Passions of Love” has been disputed for the obvious reason that its subject (romantic love) and sentiments (that love exalts the x racism essay, soul, that those with the greatest souls make the truest lovers, that secret or undeclared love entails both exquisite joy and agonizing pain, and so forth) are highly uncharacteristic of the writer and would seem to be far outside his range of interest and expertise.
Yet the style of the Discourse is distinctively Pascalian and some of the ideas contained in it (such as the distinction between the “geometric” mind and the spirit of “finesse”) are certifiably his own. Thus his authorship, while dubious, is at least possible, and so the question for his critics and thesis plugin biographers becomes: how to account for essaysreasy discount, a work that seems so utterly contrary to Pascal’s own modest habits and reputation, so much more in the spirit of the salons of Paris rather than the cells of Port-Royal? The most popular way of dealing with the Discourse has been simply to dismiss it as uncanonical and thesis plugin regard it as, at bottom, some kind of anonymously composed pastiche that incorporates bits and echoes of Pascal along with selections from difference between thesis dissertation phd other sources. Twitter? Alternatively, it could be argued that the Discourse is written in the style and essaysreasy code spirit of the Paris salons because Pascal himself intentionally wrote it in that vein, possibly as a kind of literary exercise or demonstration on thesis his part for the amusement of his friends Mere and Mitton and their circle. (One can indeed easily imagine the essaysreasy discount, pair challenging their shy friend to attempt such an exercise and then delighting in his successful performance.) So even though the Discourse may indeed be Pascal’s, its content and sentiments are for the most part artificial and insincere, many of the expressed opinions being mere restatements or variations of age-old commonplaces and platitudes about romantic love taken either from the pr ecieuse poetry of his own era or from earlier literature. (See, for example, the medieval Rules of Courtly Love of Andreas Capellanus, a compendium of witty, lofty, acerbic, or tongue-in-cheek observations about love very similar to twitter, Pascal’s.) iv. Discourses on the Condition of the essaysreasy code, Great. Despite its minor status, the “Discourses on thesis plugin the Great” is nevertheless of degree essays literature, interest since it is the thesis twitter, only work of between thesis dissertation, Pascal’s that attempts to formulate something like a social or political philosophy. Thesis Twitter Plugin? The work (which is addressed to a young man of high degree) begins with a parable about a castaway on an island whom the summary argumentative, inhabitants (owing to his close physical resemblance) mistake for their long-lost king. Twitter Plugin? Such, Pascal argues, is the condition of american history x racism essay, those born to thesis twitter, nobility or wealth within society: it is thesis custom only by coincidence or lucky accident and by the power of custom and convention, not by nature, that they have their status. From this it follows that persons of rank are obligated to conduct themselves with due humility and must never allow themselves to treat those on society’s lower rungs with insolence or disrespect. Pascal concludes the Discourses by reminding his young learner of his true condition and thesis enjoins him to rule and lead with beneficence. Simply stated, the political philosophy expressed in difference thesis dissertation phd, the Discourses is noblesse oblige . Plugin? Pascal acknowledges that the difference between thesis phd, origins of human inequality are of thesis, two kinds, natural and institutional.
The former arise from relative abilities or deficiencies of mind or body. For instance, A has better eyesight than B; X is taller and stronger than Y).Institutional inequalities, unless they are sanctioned by divine law, are entirely conventional and sometimes even arbitrary and can be rescinded or overturned. That, as far as social theory is concerned, is about as far as Pascal goes in the Discourses. Since his primary purpose is to offer moral instruction to a young nobleman, he doesn’t address topics like property, the social contract, divine right theory, which was a view recently and avidly affirmed by Louis XIV, or the ethics of revolt. Summary? From scattered comments in the Pensees , we know that he was politically conservative and despised violence. Apparently his experience during the Fronde led him to believe that even oppressive order is twitter better than anarchy and that there is no worse social evil than civil war (see Pensees 94/128, 81/116, 85/119).
v. Prayer on the Proper Use of Sickness. Pascal’s “Prayer to God on the Proper Use of Sickness” is a striking work that has perplexed and offended some readers while stirring sympathy and admiration in others. Readers of the first sort, knowing of Pascal’s persistent illnesses and degree essays chronic pain, are disturbed to twitter, find him here not only begging forgiveness for the few pleasures he enjoyed during his brief intervals of difference between dissertation phd, health, but even thanking God for his lifetime of afflictions and earnestly beseeching Him for thesis twitter, more of the same. These readers view the “Prayer” as an expression of almost pathological morbidity and difference thesis phd the testament of a fanatic. Interpreted in this way, Pascal’s portrayal of the pleasures of life as cruel and twitter deadly and essaysreasy discount of disease and twitter affliction as salutary and healing seem not so much holy paradoxes as evidence of the extent to which the gloom of Jansenism had darkened his entire outlook. This reading is defective in at least two ways. Correct? First, it ignores the thesis twitter plugin, fact that the discount, paradoxes invoked in the “Prayer”—life is thesis twitter plugin death; death is life; health is american history illness, illness is health; pain is pleasure, pleasure is pain; and thesis twitter plugin so forth — are Christian commonplaces and that the rhetorical use of thesis theme custom navigation, such figures had long been a standard feature of Christian discourse. (See, for example, the writings of Augustine or John Donne’s sermons and Holy Sonnets.) Second, any accusation of exaggerated melodrama or overstatement in the “Prayer” also overlooks the twitter, degree to which serious illness and devastating rates of mortality – plagues, deaths, executions, amputations – were an everyday part of life in discount code, Europe during the 17th century. Viewed in this context, the “Prayer” may still strike modern readers as unnaturally bleak, but it expresses sentiments and feelings that many of Pascal’s contemporaries would have been familiar with and twitter shared. The “Prayer” can be more accurately characterized as a simple statement of custom navigation menu, faith and humility and a plea for patience and thesis twitter courage. Navigation Menu? It expresses the blend of neo-stoicism and contemptus mundi that was common in prayers and sermons of the day. Christian stoicism had been recently introduced into French literature via the writings of Guillaume du Vair, and Pascal had likely read Epictetus’s Enchiridion in thesis, du Vair’s translation.
Although he remained critical of classical stoicism, he was apparently more accepting of du Vair’s version – a philosophical and theological view that holds that we should willingly accept, as a revelation of divine will, whatever fate God bestows on us. Far from for essays being a fanatical doctrine, this was a code that even non-believers found agreeable. Indeed most of us find it admirable when individuals who are sorely afflicted with a disease or who have suffered the loss of an organ or limb accept their condition with fortitude and thesis twitter equanimity. vi. Thesis Menu? Pascal’s Conversation with M. de Saci on Epictetus and Montaigne.
The minor work Entretien avec M.de Saci is not actually Pascal’s, but was composed by Nicolas Fontaine, a member of the Port-Royal community. It is the record of a conversation that took place between Pascal and his spiritual director Lemaistre de Sacy shortly after Pascal took up residence at Port-Royal in 1654. The work wasn’t published until 1736, but it’s an important document nevertheless since it represents the fullest discussion that we have of Pascal’s views on Western philosophy. Thesis Twitter? The portrait of Pascal that emerges from the Conversation is well drawn and between phd seems authentic, and the words and style are recognizably his own. Many of the ideas presented in the work can be found scattered throughout the Pensees , where they are expressed in nearly similar language and where once again Epictetus and Montaigne stand as mighty opposites: the former championing but over-estimating the greatness and nobility of humankind, the latter recognizing but exaggerating our folly and ignorance. Pascal praises Epictetus as a brilliant philosopher whose knowledge of our essential moral duties and especially of our need for patience, courage, faith, and humility is unsurpassed.
Unfortunately, the philosopher’s “diabolic pride” leads him astray. For example, Epictetus wrongly supposes that human reason is thesis a perfectly reliable guide to truth. He also errs in holding that the mind and the senses are sufficient for perceiving and understanding the true nature and thesis theme overall justice of the twitter plugin, cosmos. Of Montaigne, Pascal remarks that although he was a professed Catholic he nevertheless chose to forego Christian doctrine as a source of moral law and turned instead to his, admittedly fallible, personal judgment and natural instinct as ethical guides. Pascal then goes on to criticize Montaigne for his utter and thoroughgoing Pyrrhonism symbolized by the device of a scales that Montaigne had emblazoned on the ceiling of his study with his famous motto Que sais-je? (What do I know?) inscribed beneath.
Pascal argues that, in punctuation for essays, contrast to Epictetus, Montaigne’s error consists not in glorifying or over-estimating human reason and knowledge but rather in denying them any credit or status whatsoever. Thesis? Pascal confesses that it is pleasant sport to watch Montaigne poke holes in the arguments of his opponents and see “proud reason so irresistibly baffled by its own weapons.” Of course, ironically, Montaigne’s skepticism effectively undermines not just his opponent’s views but his own arguments as well. Near the end of the conversation, Pascal launches into an oratorical peroration describing how the errors, imperfections, and opposing polarities represented by the two philosophers are ultimately mediated and reconciled in the person of between thesis dissertation phd, Jesus Christ. @ It is therefore from this imperfect enlightenment that it happens that the one [that is, Epictetus] knowing the duties of man and being ignorant of his impotence, is lost in presumption, and that the other [that is, Montaigne], knowing the impotence and plugin being ignorant of the duty, falls into laxity; whence it seems that since the one leads to truth, the other to error, there would be formed from correct punctuation their alliance a perfect system of morals. But instead of this peace, nothing but war and a general ruin would result from their union; for thesis, the one establishing certainty, the other doubt, the one the greatness of man, the other his weakness, they would destroy the truths as well as the falsehoods of each other. So that they cannot subsist alone because of their defects, nor unite because of their opposition, and thus they break and destroy each other to give place to the truth of the essaysreasy discount, Gospel. This it is that harmonizes the contrarieties by a wholly divine act, and uniting all that is true and expelling all that is false, thus makes of them a truly celestial wisdom in which those opposites accord that were incompatible in human doctrines. Thesis Plugin? . . . Such is the marvelous and novel union which God alone could teach, and summary argumentative which He alone could make, and which is only a type and an effect of the ineffable union of two natures in the single person of a Man-God. No single paragraph better summarizes Pascal’s philosophical and thesis theological views than this climactic comparison. 3. Mathematical and Scientific Works. Pascal made his first important mathematical discovery and published his first article, the Essay on Conics (1640), at the age of sixteen. Barely an custom menu, essay at all, the thesis plugin, work is a one-page document consisting of three diagrams, three definitions, and two lemmas.
Although it had little immediate impact beyond a small circle of mathematicians, it was nevertheless a breakthrough contribution to the emerging new field of projective geometry. His discovery (which he referred to as his “Mystic Hexagram”) is known today as Pascal’s Theorem. It states that if six points are situated on a conic section (an ellipse, parabola, or hyperbola), and if these points are then joined by line segments to form a hexagon, then if the sides of this hexagon are projected beyond the section, the pairs of opposite sides will meet in three points all of which lie on a straight line. Figure 1: Pascal's Mystic Hexagram. This illustration shows that when the opposite sides of a hexagon inscribed within a ellipse are projected, they will intersect at three points along a straight line. (In this case all the points lie entirely outside the ellipse.) After his death, Pascal’s unpublished mathematical papers (including what seems to american history essay, have been a full treatise on conics) were collected by his nephew Etienne Perier. Thesis? Eventually these manuscripts were turned over to the great German philosopher and mathematician Gottfried Leibniz for his evaluation and use. Leibniz left behind an extensive set of notes on the collection and registered his admiration for Pascal’s genius.
Unfortunately Pascal’s original papers have all been lost. In 1644 the history x racism essay, Italian physicist Evangelista Torricelli, testing a hypothesis suggested by Galileo, took a glass tube closed at one end and thesis plugin filled it with mercury. Discount? He then inverted the tube, open end down, into twitter plugin, a bowl also containing mercury and american x racism watched as the mercury in the tube dropped slightly leaving a vacant space at the top. Contrary to the prevailing scientific view upheld by Aristotelians and twitter Cartesians alike according to which a vacuum in essaysreasy, nature is a physical impossibility, Torricelli surmised that the space at the top of the twitter, tube was indeed a vacuum and that it was created by punctuation the pressure of the external air, which exactly balanced the plugin, pressure exerted by the column of mercury inside the tube. Pascal learned of the experiment from summary argumentative essay his former mentor Pere Mersenne. Excited by the controversial scientific issues at stake, he set to work devising his own experimental test of twitter plugin, Torricelli’s results.
Just obtaining the required apparatus posed a huge challenge. Thesis Custom Menu? Scientists of the era typically had to design, specify, oversee the production of, test, and twitter of course pay for their own equipment. Pascal did all that and essay then went to thesis twitter, work conducting his own experiments and demonstrations. Confident of his results, he went on tour to autobiography, demonstrate his hypothesis, which he was able to do using tubes of twitter, different length and diameter and a variety of liquids. He published his findings in a short pamphlet New Experiments concerning the Vacuum (1647). The decisive experiment, proving that the thesis navigation, level of mercury in the tube was due to external air pressure, was conducted at the Puy-de-Dome, the mountainous lava dome near Pascal’s native Clermont. Pascal designed and organized the twitter, experiment, but because of his health issues it was actually conducted by his brother-in-law Florin Perier along with a team of observers, clerics, and local officials. Using two identical tubes, the team measured the levels of mercury at a base point in the town. Then, with a portion of the party staying behind to monitor the mercury level in one tube, which remained at the home base, Florin and the rest of the party ascended the mountain with the for essays, other tube and measured the mercury level at twitter various elevations. It was found that the level of mercury in the mobile (or test) tube varied inversely with the altitude. Meanwhile, the mercury level in the stationary (or control) tube never varied.
Repeated experiments produced the same conclusive results: the level of mercury was due to air pressure, which also has the ability to create a vacuum. Pascal published a record of the experiment in a short document entitled “The Account of the theme menu, Great Experiment of the Equilibrium of Fluids.” to which he appended a closing note that deserves quotation since it marks a historic turning point in thesis twitter, the advance of degree essays literature autobiography, modern science vis-a-vis ancient authority. On the basis of his experiments, he asserts “that nature has no repugnance for the vacuum” and thesis “makes no effort to avoid it”: . Essay? . Thesis Twitter Plugin? . all the effects that have been attributed to her horror have their origin in argumentative, the weight and pressure of the air, that it is their sole and twitter true cause. . . . It is code not on this occasion only that, when the weakness of men has been unable to find the true causes, their subtlety has substituted imaginary causes to which they have given specious names filling the plugin, ears and not the mind. Thus it is said that the dissertation, sympathy and thesis plugin antipathy of natural bodies are efficient causes, responsible for many effects, as if inanimate bodies were capable of sympathy and antipathy; it is the same with antiperistasis and american essay with many other chimerical causes, which but give a vain solace to thesis plugin, man’s hunger to know hidden truths, and which, far from revealing them, serve only to cover up the ignorance of such inventors and to literature autobiography, feed that of their followers. One other document relating to the vacuum that dates from this period (October 29, 1647) and which bears special mention is Pascal’s reply to thesis, (the felicitously if improbably named) Pere Noel. A Jesuit priest who embraced the widely accepted doctrine (approved by both Aristotelian and Cartesian physicists) that nature is a material plenum and will not permit a vacuum, Noel had written a letter to Pascal defending the difference between phd, horror vacui viewpoint and twitter plugin arguing that the empty space that Pascal claims to difference between dissertation phd, have observed at the top of the twitter, tubes in his experiments was not empty space at all but a space necessarily filled with “rarified air” or some other subtle form of substance . Pascal’s response is a perfect specimen of understatement and polite forbearance in which the essay, tone often approaches but never quite crosses over into condescension or ridicule. The provinciales are usually cited as the twitter plugin, original instance of classic French prose style, but the letter to Noel and indeed a number of Pascal’s scientific papers – all notable for their force, clarity, concision, and theme custom navigation menu elegance as well as for their utter absence of bombast, fustian, and needless adornment – could also lay claim to setting the model.
An early paragraph in thesis twitter plugin, Pascal’s letter succinctly defines his criteria and difference between dissertation standards of truth in matters of scientific investigation; two later paragraphs illustrate his tactful but forceful way of thesis twitter, dealing with the thesis dissertation, kind of learned ignorance that Sir Francis Bacon had referred to as “vain imaginations” and the “idols of the theatre”: The rule [of scientific method] is never to make a decisive judgment, affirming or denying a proposition, unless what one affirms or denies satisfies one of the two following conditions: either that of itself it appear so clearly and thesis twitter plugin distinctly to sense or to reason, according as it is subject to one or the other, that the mind cannot doubt its certainty, and this is theme custom navigation what we call a principle or axiom, as, for example, if equals are added to equals, the results are equal; or that it be deduced as an infallible and necessary consequence from such principles or axioms . . . . Everything satisfying one of these conditions is certain and true, and everything satisfying neither is twitter considered doubtful and uncertain. We pass decisive judgment on things of the first kind and leave the rest undecided, calling them, according to their deserts, now a vision , now a caprice , occasionally a fancy , sometimes an idea , and at discount code the most a happy thought ; and since it is rash to affirm them, we incline rather to the negative, ready however to return to the affirmative if a convincing demonstration brings their truth to plugin, light…. For all things of this kind [that is, hypothetical entities] whose existence is argumentative not manifest to sense are as hard to believe as they are easy to invent. Many persons, even among the most learned men of the plugin, day, have opposed me with this same substance [that is, rarified air or some comparable ethereal matter] before you (but simply as an idea and not as a certain truth), and that is why I mentioned it among my propositions. Others, to fill empty space with some kind of matter, have imagined one with which they have filled the entire universe, because imagination has this peculiarity that it produces the greatest things with as little time and trouble as little things; some have considered this matter as of the literature, same substance as the sky and the elements, and others of a different substance, as their fancy dictated, for they disposed of it as of their own work. But if we ask of them, as of you, that you show us this matter, they answer that it cannot be seen; if we ask that it make a sound, they say it cannot be heard, and so with all the remaining senses; and they think they have done much when they have convicted others of powerlessness to thesis twitter plugin, show that it does not exist by depriving themselves of all power to show that it does.
Pascal later composed, but never published, two detailed monographs that were discovered among his manuscripts after his death: a Treatise on the Equilibrium of Liquids and a Treatise on the Weight of the Mass of Air . These two treatises represent seminal contributions to the sciences of hydraulics and hydrostatics and include the discovery that if no other forces are acting on phd a fluid, the pressure will be the same throughout the fluid and the same in thesis twitter plugin, all directions – an observation that is known today as Pascal’s Principle. It is in recognition of his important work in the study of fluid mechanics that a standard unit of pressure is today known as the pascal (Pa), defined as a force equal to 1 Newton per square meter. c. Pascal’s Triangle and Probability Theory. In 1654, Pascal responded to punctuation, a series of problems posed by his friend Antoine Gombaud, the self-styled Chevalier de Mere, an amateur mathematician and noted gambler. Suppose, Pascal was asked, that you are given 24 rolls of a pair of dice. What is the probability of your throwing double sixes at least one time? Mere also asked a related question known as the “problem of the points” (also known as the problem of the division of the stakes). Twitter? This problem asks, if a wager game is terminated before it has been completed, how should the contestants divide the stakes?
For example, suppose that A and B are playing a winner-take-all game in literature, which a point is thesis plugin scored on every try and the winner is the discount code, first player to reach ten points. How should the stakes be divided if the game is terminated after A has 7 points and B has 5? Pascal developed solutions to these and other problems relating to the calculation of gambling odds and in an exchange of letters shared his insights with the twitter, great Toulouse mathematician Pierre de Fermat. Together the two correspondents effectively founded the essays literature, modern theory of probability. Part of the foundation for the modern theory is provided in Pascal’s “Treatise on the Arithmetical Triangle,” which he composed in 1653. (He sent a copy of this document to Fermat during their correspondence, but it was never published until after his death.) The Treatise explains how to construct and apply the remarkable configuration (in essence a triangular array of binomial coefficients) known today as “Pascal’s Triangle.” The array had been generated and used previously by Chinese, Indian, Persian, and European mathematicians, and thesis twitter plugin Pascal never claimed to have discovered or originated it.
He was simply interested in demonstrating its fascinating properties and powers. Figure 2. Difference Thesis Dissertation Phd? Pascal's Triangle. Pascal calls the square containing each number in plugin, the array a cell . The numeral 1’s at the top of his triangle head perpendicular rows ; those on the left side of the triangle head parallel rows . He calls the third (diagonal) side of the essaysreasy discount code, triangle the base. Cells along any diagonal row are called cells of the same base . The first diagonal row (consisting of the number 1) is row 0. Thesis Plugin? The second diagonal row (1, 1) is row 1; and so on. The number value of each cell is equal to custom navigation, the sum of its immediately preceding perpendicular and parallel cells. For example, 120 in the base diagonal (item 4 in row 7) = 36 + 84.
Furthermore, the number value of each cell is also equal to thesis twitter plugin, the sum of all the cells of the preceding row (from the first cell to the cell immediately above the target cell). Correct Punctuation? For example, 126 (the number value of cell 6 in row 5) = 1 + 4 + 10 + 20 + 35 + 56 (the sum of cells 1-6 of twitter plugin, row 4). Pascal explains in detail how the Triangle can be used to calculate combinations (that is to compute C in cases where n C r = n things taken r at a time). As Pascal demonstrates, to find the answer we would move perpendicularly down to the nth row and then move diagonally r cells. For example, for 5 C 4, we would go perpendicularly down to row 5 and then move diagonally 4 cells and find that the number of history essay, combinations is plugin 5. Similarly, if we calculate for 6 C 3 ,we would move down 6 rows and degree essays literature then diagonally 3 cells and find that the answer is 20. And so on. Thesis Twitter? In another section of the Treatise, Pascal explains how to use the Triangle to theme custom navigation, solve the Problem of Points. Solutions to Mere’s problems: 1. Probability of at least one double-six in 24 rolls of two dice: 1 - (35/36) 24 = 0.4914.
2. Thesis Plugin? Problem of points: A needs 3 more points, B needs 5 more points. (Game will end after seven more tries since at that juncture one of the players must reach ten points.) Count 3 + 5 rows on the Triangle; then sum the essay, first 5 items. That sum divided by the sum of all items in the row is A’s portion of the stakes. Then sum the plugin, remaining 3 items in the row and divide that total by the sum of all the items in correct, the row. That will be B’s portion. From the Triangle: (1+7+21+35+35) ? (1+7+21+35+35+21+7+1) = 99/128 = A’s portion. (1+7+21) ? (1+7+21+35+35+21+7+1) = 29/128 = B’s portion. Expressed as a percentage, A receives 77.34375 percent of the stake; B receives 22.65625 percent of the plugin, stake. The idea of mathematical infinity – of a number that can be vaguely conceived but whose properties and nature can never be fully understood – has strong affinities with Pascal’s idea of summary essay, God and also relates to thesis twitter plugin, his Wager and to his personal anxiety as he contemplates the “eternal silence of these infinite spaces” (201/233). Imagine Pascal’s Triangle.
Now realize that there are an infinite number of such triangles, each stretching out vertically and horizontally to infinity, with each diagonal base in the structure containing within it a theoretically infinite subset of ever-smaller triangles. Such is the paradoxical notion of infinity, a concept that astounded and haunted Pascal, and which has teased, baffled, and intrigued a long list of theorists and commentators from Nicholas of Cusa and Giordano Bruno to Bertrand Russell and David Foster Wallace. Although the idea of infinity can fill the imagination with dread, it can also, as Pascal points out at essaysreasy code the conclusion of twitter plugin, his treatise Of the Geometrical Spirit , provide us with a true understanding of nature and of our place in it: But those who clearly perceive these truths will be able to admire the grandeur and power of nature in between dissertation, this double infinity that surrounds us on all sides, and to learn by this marvelous consideration to know themselves, in regarding themselves thus placed between an infinitude and a negation of twitter, extension, between an infinitude and a negation of number, between an degree autobiography, infinitude and a negation of movement, between an infinitude and twitter plugin a negation of time. From which we may learn to estimate ourselves at our true value, and to between thesis phd, form reflections which will be worth more than all the rest of geometry itself. A discovery that should have been Pascal’s final mathematical triumph wound up instead creating acrimony and controversy. In the thesis twitter, spring of 1658, supposedly as a diversion while contending with a toothache, he took up the problem of the roulette or cycloid, a problem that had puzzled some of Europe’s best mathematicians, including Galileo and essaysreasy discount code Descartes, for nearly a century. Figure 3: Cycloid. Imagine a point P on the circumference of a revolving circle. A cycloid is the curve described by P as it rolls along a straight line. The challenge is to discover and prove the area of this curve geometrically.
Pascal worked out his own solution and thesis twitter then, as was common practice at the time, issued a public challenge to fellow mathematicians. Phd? Under the thesis twitter plugin, name Amos Dettonville, an anagram of the pseudonym Louis de Montalte, which he had used to theme navigation menu, write the provinciales (an anagram of the motto Talentum Deo Soli – “My talent for God alone”—according to Morris Bishop), Pascal drew up a list of six problems relating to thesis plugin, the cycloid and offered a prize of summary, 600 livres to the first person to thesis twitter plugin, solve them (Bishop 222). If after a specified time limit, no solutions were reported, “Dettonville” would reveal his own. A problem arose almost immediately when Pascal discovered that his first four questions had in effect already been solved by his friend Roberval. The contest was therefore reduced to the final two questions, a change that, unfortunately, was not made clear to all the contestants. In addition, some contestants protested that the time limit was unreasonably short.
Christian Huygens and Christopher Wren published solutions, but did not compete for the prize. A few other eminent mathematicians participated and submitted answers. However, Pascal, finding none of the submissions fully satisfactory, eventually revealed his own solutions and declared himself the american x racism essay, winner. Predictably, this provoked bitterness and suspicions of plagiarism or misrepresentation on all sides. Though the controversy left a blemish on Pascal’s reputation, his work on the cycloid has been admired by twitter plugin later mathematicians for its ingenuity and elegance, and he is credited, alongside his great contemporaries Galileo, Torricelli, Descartes, Mersenne, Roberval, Fermat, Wren, and Huygens, as having helped to solve the curve once known for its power to attract and captivate all who studied it as the “Helen of essaysreasy discount code, geometers.” In 1672, after having obtained and thesis twitter reviewed copies of Pascal’s papers on conics and american x racism the cycloid, Leibniz attested to their brilliance and concluded that were it not for an “evil fate” (by which phrase it’s unclear whether he meant their author’s short lifespan or his absorption in Jansenist theology) Pascal would have almost certainly gone on to make further and deeper mathematical discoveries. Summarizing Pascal’s scientific and mathematical achievements, it can be said that in an age of amateurism, when everyone from priests and attorneys to soldiers and salonnieres dabbled in thesis, “natural philosophy,” he was a marvel who often found himself in a position analogous to that later experienced by Newton and Leibniz: that is, he had to communicate dramatically new, highly complex and abstract concepts to essay, readers who lacked his extraordinary mathematical imagination and facility. Having made his discoveries more or less instinctively, using his own private mathematical inventions and thesis plugin methods, he then found he had to “translate” his ideas into the conventionally accepted language and procedures of his peers and fellow numerophiles. Applying his own terminology, one can say that he made his discoveries through what he called l’esprit de finesse , that is, the intuitive mind, with its instinctive twists and turns, lucky hunches, and between inspired guesswork. Twitter? He found, however, that in order to communicate his findings to others he had to turn to what he styled l’esprit geometrique that is, the geometric mind, which he defined as the skill or capacity for “demonstrating truths already found, and of elucidating them in such a manner that the proof of them shall be irresistible”.
Excellence in x racism, science and mathematics, he argued, requires both capabilities. It was Pascal’s good fortune to possess both l’esprit de finesse and l’esprit geometrique in rare and powerful abundance. 4. Plugin? Philosophy of Science and Theory of Knowledge. Of the x racism, many great natural philosophers of the thesis twitter, 17 th century – a group that includes both theoreticians and experimentalists and such illustrious names as Galileo, Descartes, Bacon, Boyle, Huygens, and correct punctuation for essays Gassendi – Pascal arguably was the one who came closest to articulating a coherent, comprehensive, durable philosophy of science consistent with and comparable to the standard view that prevails today, except that he came up short. As Desmond M. Clarke has argued, Pascal was torn between his love of geometric proof and pure logical demonstration on the one hand and his skeptical, pragmatic instincts in favor of down-to-earth experimentalism and empiricism on the other.
As a result he seemed trapped in thesis plugin, a kind of philosophical limbo. (See “Pascal’s Philosophy of Science,” in american essay, Hammond, 118.) Similarly, although he seemed to thesis, recognize that our knowledge of the natural world is only probable and can never be certain, a part of him nevertheless remained enthralled by the “will-o-the-wisp” or “Holy Grail” of absolute certainty. In most other respects, Pascal’s outlook is ahead of its time and admirable in its self-restraint and in its awareness of literature autobiography, its own limitations. Unlike Bacon, he makes room for thesis plugin, hypothesis and even imaginative insight and conjecture ( l’esprit de finesse ) and also allows a deductive component a la Descartes ( l’esprit geometrique ). He acknowledges that all hypotheses must be tested and confirmed by rigorous experiments, and even if he didn’t actually carry out his experiments exactly as described, he nevertheless accepts the necessity of such testing. Boyle in particular remained skeptical of Pascal’s experiments, calling them “more ingenious than practicable.” He especially marveled at the availability of 40-ft. Torricelli tubes and of brass fittings engineered to nearly microscopic precision. Attempting to reproduce one of essaysreasy discount code, Pascal’s hydrostatic tests involving a fly in a chamber of water, Boyle attests that “upon tryal with a strong flie” the creature “presently drowned” (243.)
Pascal fully understood that once a hypothesis is tested and confirmed, the problem of determining the thesis plugin, true cause of the phenomenon still remains and american history x racism essay becomes itself a matter for further conjecture. For example, take his prediction, experimentally confirmed, that the level of mercury in a Torricelli tube will decline as altitude increases. Pascal claimed that this phenomenon was due to the weight of air, though he knew that other factors might also explain the same effect. Thesis Twitter Plugin? Indeed, for all he knew, an invisible emanation from the god Mercury may have influenced his results. (Ironically, the famous Puy-de-Dome experiment had been performed near an ancient temple to that deity). As Pascal observed to Father Noel, fanciful explanations for phenomena are as easy to imagine as they are impossible to disprove.
In his correspondence with Noel, Pascal at one point suggests that it is degree literature fatal for one’s hypothesis if an experimental test fails to confirm a predicted outcome. However, as he himself and thesis twitter plugin his fellow experimentalists certainly knew, there can be nearly as many reasons why an expected result does not occur, such as defective apparatus, lack of proper controls, measurement errors, extraordinary test circumstances, etc, as there are explanations for a result that occurs as expected. Apparently in his haste to champion the new science of argumentative essay, experimentalism against its critics, both Cartesian and Scholastic, Pascal wanted to at least be able to say that if experiments cannot conclusively prove a given hypothesis, then they may at least be able to disprove it. If this was his intention, he was anticipating by nearly three centuries Karl Popper’s theory of empirical falsification and thesis plugin opposed to (and seemingly fearful at the prospect of) any view similar to WVO Quine’s theory of essaysreasy code, confirmation holism, according to which all scientific claims are at best only probable and thesis there is american history x racism essay no such thing as a decisive experiment. Que-sais-je ? (“What do I know?”) asked the thesis twitter plugin, skeptical Montaigne, a question that in american x racism essay, his case was more rhetorical than sincere. Que puis-je savoir ? (“What can I know?”) was Pascal’s more earnest if also slightly skeptical variation. Anticipating Kant, he wondered with what limitations and twitter with what level of assurance we can confidently say we know what we believe we know. Pascal has been plausibly labeled an essays, empiricist, a foundationalist, even a positivist and a skeptic.
The confusion is understandable and is due largely to the fact that his epistemological views are complex and seem in certain respects equivocal or inconsistent. For example, he accepts the rule of authority in some areas of knowledge, such as ancient history, while opposing and even forbidding it in others, especially physical science. He also recognizes three different types or sources of knowledge related to his so-called “three orders”: body/sense; mind/reason; heart/will or instinct, each with its own domain or area of applicability, level of certainty, and tests of confirmation and reliability. In a perfect world human reason would be 100 percent reliable and thesis twitter hold sway. Presumably, Adam, prior to the Fall, had such a pristine and certain view of things, such that there was a perfect congruency or correspondence between his inner perceptions and the outer world.
Pascal believes that the axioms and first principles of between thesis, math, geometry, and twitter logic constitute knowledge of this kind. They are perceived directly by reason and (along with any consequences that we can directly deduce from them) represent the only knowledge that we can know infallibly and with certainty. It is thesis with respect to such axioms and thesis twitter principles alone that Pascal accepts Descartes’ criteria of discount code, clearness and distinctness as reliable evidence of truth. Everything else is subject to error and doubt. A critic of Cartesian rationalism and the deductive method, which he referred to as “useless and uncertain” – 887/445, Pascal was for the most part an empiricist and experimentalist who held that our knowledge of the thesis twitter, natural world is acquired through the senses and must be tested and empirically verified by experiment. Reason also has a role in this process. Thesis Dissertation? It guides our observations and twitter plugin assists us in the forming of argumentative essay, hypotheses and predictions. It is reason that also judges and approves (or disapproves) the final results, though it does so on the basis of empirical evidence, not deductive logic or some preconceived system. In the Preface to thesis twitter plugin, his Treatise on the Vacuum , Pascal declares that reason and sense alone must rule and authority has no place in the establishment of scientific truth. Authority is to summary argumentative, be respected, he says, in history, jurisprudence, languages, and thesis twitter plugin above all in matters of theology, where the authority of Scripture and the Fathers is omnipotent.
But, he argues that in the case of physical science reverence for the ancients can actually cloud the american x racism, truth and impede the advancement of knowledge, especially when such reverence is, blind, misplaced, or overly devout. He concludes the Preface with a witty reversal of roles in the heated, ongoing debate between “ancients and moderns”: Those whom we call ancient were really new in thesis, all things, and properly constituted the american x racism essay, infancy of mankind; and as we have joined to their knowledge the experience of the thesis twitter plugin, centuries which have followed them, it is in ourselves that we should find this antiquity that we revere in others. If there is an element of mystery in Pascal’s theory of knowledge, it is in the source of knowledge and inner being that he terms le Coeur . In scattered places throughout the Pensees he makes reference to a logique du coeur or an ordre du coeur . But what exactly he means by such phrases he never clearly explains. The term coeur appears most famously in fragment 423/680: The heart has its reasons, which reason does not know. We feel it in a thousand things.
I say that the heart naturally loves the essays literature, Universal Being, and twitter plugin also itself naturally, according as it gives itself to them; and autobiography it hardens itself against one or the other at its will. You have rejected the twitter plugin, one, and kept the other. Is it by reason that you love yourself? “The heart has its reasons, which reason doesn’t know.” Not only has Pascal’s famous aphorism become an oft-quoted cliche, it has also managed to enter and even permeate popular culture in the form of song lyrics, as the summary essay, title of a love memoir, and as a message of endearment or benediction on bumper stickers and greeting cards. Even people who have never read a page of the Pensees are familiar with the quote, and while it seems safe to say that Pascal had no such sentimental meaning in thesis, mind, amour , in its various senses from romantic love and self-love to charity and between maternal instinct, seems an inescapable association when we hear the phrase “reasons of the heart.” In fact, the Catholic scholar Romano Guardini has plausibly offered “love” and “charity” as appropriate translations or synonyms for coeur (133). It has also been suggested that by “heart” Pascal means something transcending reason and prior to it (Peters 168-171; Kearns 101-02), almost as if it were some kind of Kantian intuition, or as if it were a form of natural or divinely endowed intelligence on thesis twitter plugin the very cutting edge of perception; some instinctive faculty that, without contradicting reason, can either surpass it or supplement it. (110/142). Such a faculty, if it is american x racism indeed instinctive, would presumably be inborn and thus either a part of our basic nature and thesis something that all humans share or a special gift or grace bestowed by degree literature God to the elect. And if it is intuitive, then it possibly bears some relation to what Pascal elsewhere terms l’esprit de finesse , the subtle or intuitive component of intellect that somehow “sees” or penetrates directly into truths that l’esprit geometrique , the logical or sequential intelligence, can arrive at thesis plugin only via incremental, deductive steps. Heart-knowledge would then be like some faint glimmer or trace of the instantaneous, clairvoyant understanding that the for essays, unfallen Adam was believed to enjoy in Paradise. In any case, the notion of a raison du Coeur remains a critical crux in Pascal studies and posed a mystery and challenge to thesis plugin, his readers. Fideism can be defined as the view that religious truth is ascertainable by punctuation faith alone and that faith is separate from, superior to, and generally antagonistic towards reason.
Whenever the thesis twitter plugin, term shows up in a religious or philosophical discussion, it is typically in conjunction with a list that includes names like Tertullian, Luther, Montaigne, Kierkegaard, Wittgenstein, and literature William James. Plugin? Pascal’s name is often inserted into this group. Based on the foregoing definition of fideism, Pascal does not fit into essaysreasy discount, such a list, though the tendency to include him is understandable. Perhaps the most compelling evidence in favor of labeling him a fideist is the striking fact of his midnight conversion and “Night of Fire,” the thesis twitter plugin, powerful, visionary experience, clearly more mystical than rational, on the basis of which he wound up explicitly rejecting “the god of the philosophers.” However, just because the essay, medium or process through which a belief is twitter achieved may not be rational, doesn’t mean that the belief itself is unreasonable. For Pascal, that belief was his acceptance of Jesus Christ as his Lord and Savior. Kekule discovered the shape and structure of the discount, benzene molecule in twitter, a dream. Though his means of discovery was non-rational, what he discovered was quite reasonable and proved true.
Another reason why Pascal’s religious views are sometimes confused with fideism is his notion of an history essay, infinite and hidden God, who is thesis plugin essentially beyond our comprehension and understanding and whose existence and nature transcends the limited perspectives of reason and sense perception. However, once again, just because God surpasses or eludes empirical sense and reason doesn’t mean that He is contrary to or incompatible with them. “Faith,” Pascal writes, “indeed tells what the senses do not tell, but not the contrary of what they see. It is above them, and not contrary to thesis navigation menu, them” (185/265). As for God’s infinitude and incomprehensibility, they too surpass or confound reason, but aren’t necessarily contrary to thesis twitter plugin, it. The notion of mathematical infinity baffles us in the same way. As Pascal points out, just because something is incomprehensible, for example, God, infinity, “a sphere whose center is everywhere and history whose circumference is thesis nowhere,” doesn’t mean that it can’t exist (149,230/182,262). Some critics have even used the Wager itself (418/680) as a basis for linking Pascal to thesis theme navigation, fideism since that fragment sets forth and thesis twitter plugin vividly illustrates the view that God’s existence is uncertain and can’t be proved. Of particular significance in this respect is the paragraph in which Pascal, in an observation that seems to echo Tertullian almost as much as St. Summary? Paul, candidly acknowledges the “foolishness” of the Christian creed: Who then will blame Christians for not being able to give reasons for their beliefs, since they profess belief in a religion which they cannot explain?
They declare, when they expound it to the world, that it is foolishness, stultitiam ; and thesis twitter plugin then you complain because they do not prove it! If they proved it, they would not keep their word; it is between dissertation through their lack of proofs that they show they are not lacking in sense. But, again, not being able to prove or give a convincing explanation for a belief is not quite the same thing as saying that the belief is incompatible with or contrary to reason. Conspiracy theories are typically lamely supported and thesis twitter impossible to degree, prove, but they are seldom implausible or illogical. Moreover, it is thesis twitter plugin not just a fideistic claim, but a perfectly orthodox Catholic view (and indeed a widely observable fact) that reason has limits; that it is essays literature autobiography indeed, as Pascal claims, unreasonable to trust reason too much. “Reason's last step is the recognition that there are an thesis plugin, infinite number of things which are beyond it.” (188/220.) Pascal eschewed metaphysical proofs of difference dissertation phd, God’s existence not on fideistic grounds because he thought that, as rational constructions, they were contrary to plugin, faith, but because he felt they were emotionally sterile and summary argumentative too abstruse and technical to persuade a non-believer: The metaphysical proofs for thesis plugin, the existence of God are so remote from human reasoning and so involved that they make little impact, and, even if they did help some people, it would only american essay be for the moment during which they watched the demonstration, because an hour later they would be afraid they had made a mistake. (190/222) And this is why I shall not undertake here to prove by reasons from nature either the existence of God, or the thesis plugin, Trinity or the immortality of the soul, or anything of correct punctuation for essays, that kind: not just because I should not feel competent to find in nature arguments which would convince hardened atheists, but also because such knowledge, without Christ, is useless and sterile. Even if someone were convinced that the proportions between numbers are immaterial, eternal truths, depending on a first truth in which they subsist, called God, I should not consider that he made much progress towards his salvation. The Christian's God does not consist merely of thesis twitter plugin, a God who is the author of mathematical truths and correct for essays the order of the elements.
That is the portion of the heathen and Epicureans. (449/690) In the end, the strongest reason for denying Pascal a place within fideism is that he believed that even the most “irrational” proofs of Christianity – the prophesies, miracles, typological confirmations, and so forth – were not only not contrary to reason but were in fact perfectly compatible with it. (He declared the Old Testament and New Testament prophesies “the weightiest proof” of Jesus’ divinity – 335/368.) That Christianity is reasonable though not provable by reason effectively summarizes one of the central arguments of the entire Pensees . Pascal is twitter plugin frequently included in the ranks of “existentialist” philosophers, alongside names like Augustine, Kierkegaard, Nietzsche, Heidegger, and Sartre. Again it can be asked (as it was in the case of his alleged affiliation with fideism) whether he belongs in such a list . Once again, the strict, technical response would seem to be that he isn’t an existentialist–although in this case the label is degree arguably more appropriate and may even be justified. If a defining attribute of existentialism is endorsement of Sartre’s maxim that “existence precedes essence,” then Pascal doesn’t qualify. For in his view human beings enter the world with a largely defined and thesis determined nature and a destiny that is partly charted, partly free. We are made in God’s image–and thus capable of rational thought and freedom of choice–butour reason is degree literature clouded, and our wills are depraved. We are broken creatures and would be hopelessly lost if it were not for divine grace. If such a view of the human condition is incompatible with existentialism, then Pascal is no existentialist.
On the other hand, if Augustine and Kierkegaard (or for that matter any Christian thinker) can be considered existentialists in some broad sense, then it is hard to thesis twitter, see why Pascal might not also qualify. Essays Autobiography? Like Augustine and Kierkegaard, he emphasizes the priority of the twitter, individual and the deeply personal character of our choice to believe. Like them, he values and personally exemplifies an extreme inwardness , indeed at times displays an almost fanatical absorption in his mental and essay spiritual life. And even if he couldn’t fully accept the assertion that existence precedes essence , he could at least approve Sartre’s accompanying claim that even a tiny increment of free will is decisive. As Sartre puts the case, “if we are not entirely determined, then we are in effect wholly free.” Pascal would agree, though he would attribute this freedom to divine grace rather than accepting it as a mere donnee or product of happenstance. The Confessions , with its focus on the self and personal identity, and especially on the self as a cumulative record, inscribed in memory, of our life-altering decisions and events, is conceivably the first existentialist text. And in their strange way Kierkegaard’s pseudonymous texts, despite being oblique and seemingly self-effacing, also represent a form of personal confession and spiritual autobiography. The Pensees stands as an intermediate text in this series, an experiment in autobiographical apologetics linking the direct, confessional style of thesis plugin, Augustine with the multiple personae, lyrical vignettes, and history x racism essay pensive fragments typical of Kierkegaard.
That human life without God is wretched and twitter plugin that the human condition is theme custom menu marked by restlessness, ennui, and anxiety is an observation common to thesis twitter plugin, all three writers. Summary Argumentative Essay? Another common feature of their work is the recurrent image of a vast gulf or abyss. Augustine compares the twitter plugin, human soul to a deep abyss and likens it to the Nothingness preceding the Creation (Genesis 1:2). Without the light of God, he suggests, we are but a dark emptiness. Kierkegaard argues that human freedom necessarily entails a constant sense of anxiety, and his image of our condition is that of a person standing on the edge of a dark precipice. Pascal’s dread of the silence of infinite space (201/233) and similar images in history x racism essay, the Pensees of void and darkness echo these sentiments. And in the background of this imagery also stands the plugin, legend of his personal idee fixe – that is, his feeling that he was constantly shadowed by theme navigation menu a personal abyss. (This legend relates to plugin, the aforementioned story of summary, his accident on the Pont de Neuilly when his coach supposedly almost plunged into the Seine – an unconfirmed but oft-retold event that has been perpetuated and basically permanently enshrined in Baudelaire’s poem “Le Gouffre” and in Freud’s writings on thesis obsession.) In the Confessions Augustine describes the long ordeal that eventually leads to his conversion. But his narrative doesn’t end at that point. Discount? Instead, he must begin a new spiritual test and journey – that of actually living a Christian life.
Similarly, Kierkegaard never wrote of being a Christian, but always of becoming one. He regarded an authentic Christian life as a constant trial and task. Like Augustine, Pascal places even harsher spiritual demands on himself after his conversion. And like Kierkegaard, he believes that true Christianity is an thesis twitter, ever-striving imitatio Christi , a continual remaking of oneself in the image and spirit of Jesus. With these resemblances in thesis theme navigation menu, mind, it’s hardly a stretch to say that entire portions of the thesis plugin, Pensees , translated into Latin or Danish, could easily pass for summary essay, an excerpt from Augustine or from Kierkegaard’s Training in thesis plugin, Christianity or another of the author’s “edifying” texts. Similarly, if we place Pascal in a sequence of “Christian existentialist” writers, a line that arguably proceeds from Augustine to essay, Kierkegaard and then on to, say, Unamuno and Berdyaev, we find the same emphasis on personal experience and individual freedom and responsibility; the same rhetorical skill and verbal flourishes; the same flair for metaphor and self-dramatization. In short, if we accept existentialism as not so much a system or body of doctrine, but as more of a perspective or attitude towards life – an thesis twitter plugin, exacting and indeed tragic sense of difference dissertation, life (depicted graphically and with Dostoyevsky-like force in fragment 434/686) – then Pascal can be considered an existentialist philosopher.
7. Thesis Twitter? Conclusion: Pascal’s Reputation and essays literature Cultural Legacy. “Pascal never loses his capacity to thesis, offend as well as to edify”—Harold Bloom (1). “How few,” wrote Walter Pater in what was to be his last work, a sparkling critical essay on Pascal, “how select, are the between dissertation, literary figures who have earned the thesis, honor of summary essay, receiving regular ongoing criticism, both appreciative and thesis twitter deprecatory, from their successors.” Pascal has earned that honor and essays literature is of that rare and select company, having acquired during the nearly four centuries since his birth a long line of admirers and detractors, including many of the leading names in world literature. Voltaire, Diderot, D’Alembert, Condorcet, Sainte-Beuve, Chateaubriand, Nietzsche, Tolstoy, T.S. Eliot, Borges, Bertrand Russell, Paul Valery, Harold Bloom – the list of plugin, important writers and thinkers who have studied Pascal and gone on to voice their appreciation or discontent could be extended literally for pages. In his introductory essay to the Pensees published in 1933, Eliot referred to Pascal as “one of those writers who will be and who must be studied afresh by men in every generation. It is not he who changes, but we who change.
It is not our knowledge of him that increases, but our world that alters and our attitudes towards it.” (355) For some reason Eliot assumed that our knowledge of Pascal was basically complete eighty years ago and that modern scholarship would do little to alter or augment our understanding of his life and work. On this point he was quite mistaken. In fact, on the contrary, owing to theme navigation menu, the biographical and twitter textual labors of scholars like Lafuma, Sellier, and Mesnard, students of Pascal today have a much fuller understanding of the author’s personal life, family, medical history, intellectual and religious development, and social milieu, as well as a far better sense of the likely order, design, and method of the Pens ees , than any previous generation of readers. Nevertheless, Eliot’s main point – that Pascal poses a unique challenge to modern sensibilities – holds true. In this respect, Pascal stands as a kind of existential reference mark: a polestar in thesis theme menu, relation to which we as readers are able (and in Eliot’s opinion obliged) to locate ourselves.
He remains a fixed point against thesis plugin which we are challenged to measure the sincerity and essay durability of our own values and beliefs. Echoing what Pascal himself said about the experience of reading Montaigne, Pascal’s editor, translator, and commentator A.J. Krailsheimer has remarked that what we find when we read Pascal is actually something that we discover about ourselves (76). In effect, what both Krailsheimer and Eliot are suggesting is thesis twitter plugin that ultimately there is not one Pascal, but many – possibly as many as there are readers of his texts. Difference Thesis Phd? For example, Voltaire’s Pascal – the scientific genius and Enlightenment wit turned sour religious fanatic – is the reverse image of the Pascal adored by the Port-Royal community – the gentle saint who abandoned frivolous worldly pursuits to take up the twitter plugin, Cross. For Nietzsche, Pascal’s maxim “ il faut s’abetir ” (“one must become stupid”) is appalling, a crucifixion of the intellect; for Unamuno it is a profound paradox and the highest wisdom. Valery’s Pascal is a sententious and badgering preacher, oblivious to the beauty of nature; the Pascal of Sainte-Beuve is an “athlete, martyr, and hero of the invisible moral world.” What Gilberte Perier refers to as her brother’s “second conversion,” Bertrand Russell regards as an act of “philosophical suicide.” And so on.
In short, Pascal’s writings, and especially the Pensees , have served less as a window into the author’s soul than as a kind of essaysreasy code, mirror or prism reflecting the thesis twitter plugin, different outlooks and opinions of american history essay, his readers. Of course any proper summation of Pascal’s cultural legacy must include his contributions to probability theory and game theory and his invention of the mechanical computer (in honor of which the Swiss computer scientist Niklaus Wirth aptly named his new programming language Pascal ). And, one must include all the other eponymous scientific, mathematical, and theological concepts (Pascal’s Theorem, Pascal’s Principle, Pascal’s Triangle, Pascal’s Wager, and thesis so forth) that bear his name. In addition, every modern system of intra-urban or inter-urban shuttle transportation also owes a debt to the philosopher, who first conceived such a system and oversaw its original implementation in the city of Paris. However, Pascal’s most valuable gift to modern readers is arguably his unique style. His combination of wit, irony, and aphorism, his ease and clarity, his air of someone skilled both in urbane conversation and erudite technical debate was to a large extent already present and on dazzling display in Montaigne. The same features reappear in the writings of Voltaire and american history x racism the philosophes. And today, thanks largely to Pascal, these attributes have become a part of French literary tradition.
However, what sets Pascal’s style apart, especially in the Pensees , is that supplemental to his characteristic elan and luster he adds a tone of existential angst: a visionary quality, together with an element of strangeness that is utterly foreign to the works of Montaigne and Voltaire but which appears powerfully in plugin, writers like Dante, Kafka, and Borges. Pascal’s imagination, like theirs, seems haunted by the notion of infinity and by images of mystery and difference thesis turmoil; by circles, mazes, precipices, and plugin abysses: “At the far end of an infinite distance a coin is degree literature autobiography being spun . Thesis Twitter? . .” 418/680. “Nature is an infinite sphere whose center is everywhere and whose circumference is theme custom navigation menu nowhere” 199/230. Relatively few writers, and certainly few philosophers, have his uncanny quality, using that term in thesis twitter plugin, Freud’s sense as the ability to make familiar ideas seem strange and strange ideas seem familiar. Pater rightly called him the intellectual equivalent of history x racism essay, lightning.
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