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Re: Awareness of the absurd

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  • louise
    [ALBB] I m so sorry; here you go . . . I would rather live my life as if there is a God and die to find out there isn t, than live my life as if there isn t
    Message 1 of 15 , Aug 5, 2008
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      [ALBB]
      I'm so sorry; here you go . . .

      "I would rather live my life as if there is a God and die to find out
      there isn't, than live my life as if there isn't and die to find out
      there is. Albert Camus

      [CSW]
      That is not a Camus quote -- It is a paraphrase of Blaise Pascal that
      has taken numerous forms and been quoted by several thinkers,
      including Pasteur.

      "Belief is a wise wager. Granted that faith cannot be proved, what
      harm will come to you if you gamble on its truth and it proves false?
      If you gain, you gain all; if you lose, you lose nothing. Wager, then,
      without hesitation, that He exists."

      Louise
      From an aesthetic point of view, I have always found the Pascalian
      wager quite repulsive. To gamble on truth is to make a rational
      choice, as though belief could be manufactured. Possibly it can.
      Human beings differ considerably. At any rate I can see no
      connection between what Pascal reckons to be faith, and what
      Kierkegaard means by the leap. Scepticism as a starting-point always
      has my trust. Even when Voltaire is not enjoyable to read, he proves
      most sound.
    • Jewel
      ... From an aesthetic point of view, I have always found the Pascalian wager quite repulsive. To gamble on truth is to make a rational choice, as though belief
      Message 2 of 15 , Aug 5, 2008
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        --- In existlist@yahoogroups.com, "louise" <hecubatoher@...> wrote:

        From an aesthetic point of view, I have always found the Pascalian
        wager quite repulsive. To gamble on truth is to make a rational
        choice, as though belief could be manufactured. Possibly it can.
        Human beings differ considerably. At any rate I can see no
        connection between what Pascal reckons to be faith, and what
        Kierkegaard means by the leap. Scepticism as a starting-point always
        has my trust. Even when Voltaire is not enjoyable to read, he proves
        most sound.
        **********

        Skepticism has firm footing in Camus's theory of the absurd, and who
        has greater need of it than the person about to plunge to their
        literal death? Living isn't a leap or a gamble. It might be the
        ultimate skepticism.

        "In a man's attachment to life there is something stronger than all
        the ills of the world. the body's judgment is as good as the mind's,
        and the body shrinks from annihilation. We get into the habit of
        living before acquiring the habit of thinking. In that race that daily
        hastens us towards death, the body maintains its irreparable lead. In
        short the essence of the contradiction lies in what I shall call the
        act of eluding because it is both more and less than diversion in the
        Pascalian sense. Eluding is the invariable game. The typical act of
        eluding, the fatal evasion that constitutes the third theme of this
        essay, is hope. Hope of another life one must 'deserve' or trickery of
        those who live not for life itself but for some great idea that will
        transcend it, refine it, give it meaning, and betray itÂ…The leap does
        not represent an extreme danger as Kierkegaard would like it to do.
        The danger, on the contrary, lies in the subtle instant that precedes
        the leap. Being able to remain on that dizzying crest--that is
        integrity and the rest is subterfuge. I know also that never has
        helplessness inspired such harmonies as those of Kierkegaard. But if
        helplessness has its place in the indifferent landscapes of history,
        it has none in a reasoning who exigence is now known." (Myth of
        Sisyphus, Albert Camus)

        Camus feared that existentialism, which he confused with anarchistic
        nihilism, logically led to suicide. He recognized that faith can lead
        to suicide as well; and he thought people who lived without hope for
        eternity lived more responsibly, because this life is what we have
        now. Only we can create it.

        Jewel
      • louise
        ... Fatigue at the time of composition prevented me from seeing the carelessness of this remark. In fact, I have been engaged with reading the novel,
        Message 3 of 15 , Aug 6, 2008
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          > Even when Voltaire is not enjoyable to read, he proves most sound.

          Fatigue at the time of composition prevented me from seeing the
          carelessness of this remark. In fact, I have been engaged with reading
          the novel, "Candide", for the second time, and meant only to express my
          appreciation for the author's genius in this respect. Although I will
          have encountered the occasional quotation from other works, there is no
          other book of his that I have read. Louise
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