Saturday, January 23, 2010

The Real Thing

Philosopher and scientist, Blaise Pascal, is often cited as speaking of "the God-shaped vacuum" in everyone. I have been asked a few times where exactly he wrote that. To my knowledge, he never did; it is a paraphrase of this from Pensées:

What else does this craving, and this helplessness, proclaim but that there was once in man a true happiness, of which all that now remains is the empty print and trace? This he tries in vain to fill with everything around him, seeking in things that are not there the help he cannot find in those that are, though none can help, since this infinite abyss can be filled only with an infinite and immutable object; in other words by God himself (Penguin ed., 148/428).

2 comments:

CPCC Pastor said...

Very good to know, thanks. (Do you recommend one edition of the Pensees more than another, in terms of readability, etc.?)

Doug Groothuis said...

Don: The Penguin edition, editted by Krailsheimer is my favorite. I'm on my third token of the type.