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Document Details :
Title: Intieme rebellie
Subtitle: Pascal over de onmacht van de mens
Author(s): CAUDRON, Vincent
Journal: Tijdschrift voor Filosofie
Volume: 76 Issue: 3 Date: 2014
In a comforting letter to his sister over the death of their father, Pascal seems to claim that man should be able to subjugate his will to knowledge. However, knowing that death is neither a contingent nor natural accident but the result of God’s eternal will does not enable one to get rid of their natural horror and sorrow towards death. Our will refuses to conform to the insights that reason may acquire, whether it be in a natural or supernatural way. In this article, I will show that Pascal considers grief and sorrow over death to be symptoms of a human condition that is generally characterized by a form of impotence, man’s inability to control his own will. According to Pascal, the seat of our autonomy (the will) is tainted with an inalienable kind of ‘rebellion’. I will explain how and why Pascal comes to this conclusion by referring to his doctrine of man’s ‘double nature’.