Article Title

On the Validity of Pascal’s Wager

Journal Title/Source

The Heythrop Journal

Publication Date

2014

Volume

55

Issue (if applicable)

1

Page Numbers

86-93

DOI (if applicable)

10.1111/j.1468-2265.2011.00717.x

Document Type

Journal Article

Department

Philosophy

Abstract

Recent scholarship has shown that the success of Pascal’s wager rests on precarious grounds. To avoid notorious problems, it must appeal to considerations such as what probability we assign to the existence of various gods and what religion we think provides the greatest happiness in this life. Rational judgments concerning these matters are subject to change over time. Some claim that the wager therefore cannot support a steadfast commitment to God. I argue that this conclusion does not follow. By drawing upon the line of reasoning employed in getting married, I explain how unstable considerations can provide a sufficient rational foundation for a stable commitment.

Comments

First published online: November 2011