Blaise Pascal

France
19 Jun 1623 // 19 Aug 1662
Philosopher / Mathematician

Texts

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Judgements are Always Influenced (1)

How difficult it is to submit anything to the judgement of another, without prejudicing his judgement by the manner in which we submit it! If we say, «I think it beautiful», «I think it obscure», or ...

Recognise your Faults and Defects (2)

The nature of self-love and of this human Ego is to love self only and consider self only. But what will man do? He cannot prevent this object that he loves from being full of faults and wants. He wa...

The Actions of the Will (3)

There is an universal and essential difference between the actions of the will and all other actions. The will is one of the chief factors in belief, not that it creates belief, but because things ar...

Custom Constraints Nature (4)

The most important affair in life is the choice of a calling; chance decides it. Custom makes men masons, soldiers, slaters. «He is a good slater», says one, and, speaking of soldiers, remarks, «They...

Our Natural Principles (5)

What are our natural principles but principles of custom? In children they are those which they have received from the habits of their fathers, as hunting in animals. A different custom will cause d...

The War Between Senses and Reason (6)

We cannot even see an advocate in his robe and with his cap on his head, without a favourable opinion of his ability. The imagination disposes of everything; it makes beauty, justice, and happiness, ...

Imagination Magnifies (7)

Man is only a subject full of error, natural and ineffaceable, without grace. Nothing shows him the truth. Everything deceives him. These two sources of truth, reason and the senses, besides being bo...

The Power of Imagination (8)

Imagination - It is that deceitful part in man, that mistress of error and falsity, the more deceptive that she is not always so; for she would be an infallible rule of truth, if she were an infallib...

Our Natural Condition is Ethernal Ignorance (9)

This is our true state; this is what makes us incapable of certain knowledge and of absolute ignorance. We sail within a vast sphere, ever drifting in uncertainty, driven from end to end. When we thi...

Extremes Escape Us (10)

We naturally believe ourselves far more capable of reaching the centre of things than of embracing their circumference. The visible extent of the world visibly exceeds us; but as we exceed little thi...
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On Anger: "For every minute you remain angry, you give up sixty seconds of peace of mind."
Essays
On Destiny: "Our destiny exercises its influence over us even when, as yet, we have not learned its nature: it is our future that lays down the law of our today."
Human, All Too Human
On Friendship: "A crowd is not company; and faces are but a gallery of pictures; and talk but a tinkling cymbal, where there is no love."
Essays