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Demonising the devil by underground

Pascal’s Wager is surely one the worst reasons to be religious. If he is right and I am wrong, Pascal spends eternity in heaven, and I suffer in hell. If I am right and he is wrong, we both just die, and he loses nothing (apart from 1/7 of his life in church). Of course there are many religions, so how does Pascal know he has the right one? So it is flawed reasoning. And it is not evidence that persuades him, but fear. Let us not take Blaise Pascal as an idiot. Let us forgive his perverted religiosity, his weak convictions and his desperate faith, faith based not upon the bible or on the supposed teachings of Jesus, but on his fear of eternal damnation. Let us conjure up the notion that he was on to something, let us delude ourselves with the possibility he could be correct. As a ‘Christian’ (albeit a fairly shit one), upon death he will be granted entry though the pearly gates of heaven towards the outstretched arms of Jesus and Mother Theresa, preparing for an eternity of love and all that. Meanwhile, heathens, atheists, and all abhorrent non-believers will be destined for eternity in hell. But what would this hell be like? Still assuming that Pascal and his ilk are correct about God, Jesus and heaven, must their view of hell also be entirely true as well? Are we destined for eternal damnation, fire and brimstone and all that? Perhaps it is more likely the hell would be completely different, and that its portrayal is merely propaganda. For what better instrument does Christianity have at its disposal the threat of eternal torture for non-believers? I challenge anyone to provide an example of a better recruitment tool than hell.

Would it not be expected that hell would be, mind the use of the word, demonised? Just like during the Cold War, where both the USA and USSR postured themselves as more powerful and more virtuous than their opponent, heaven and hell would be the same. Propaganda served to rally the citizens behind each superpower, to create an unwavering belief that their nation was superior to their sick, immoral adversary. Could it not be plausible that heaven may not be all its cracked up to be, and that perhaps hell is as nice a place to spend all eternity. Perhaps the devil, portrayed in the bible as the epitome of evil, a harnesser of hate, a malevolent torturous being, would be favourable towards those who shunned the blind faith of religion. As God’s staunchest opponent, would the devil not appreciate those who caused his followers the most strife in the material realm?

So Pascal, if you were alive for me to debate with you, I urge you to enjoy your eternity with a god who professes to condone gang rape of virgins, genocide, slavery, sexism and racism. Don’t let me stop you from having a good time. As for me, who can be certain? I must say I do look forward to meeting Charles Darwin, John Stuart Mill, Bertrand Russell, Albert Einstein, Stephen Hawking, Richard Dawkins and other fascinating individuals who share my abominable views on humanity, religion and the universe!

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