Originally posted by divegeester
The initial logic is valid; either god exists or [it] doesn't. You are looking at it the wrong way in order to make the point (i.e. slightly facetiously).
The premise of the wager is incorrect; to state that if god exists that "I have everything to gain"; this is wrong because it assumes there is no cost involved in deciding that god exists - there i mathematical accounting but because it fails to take into consideration all the information.
I disagree that the initial logic is valid, indeed the logic is completely and utterly broken when we read the next line about how we're playing a game where either heads or tails will turn up (i.e. 50/50 chance)! This thread was motivated by grampy bringing up this old chestnut again, and he ignored my response - which was (almost - snipped a little):
Pascals wager fails (as I'm sure many have told you at earlier points) with the following:
His wager carries with it the assumption there is a fifty fifty chance "G"od exists.
Actually it would be vastly more accurate to assume there is a fifty fifty chance *at least* one *sort of* god exists*** (where that god or gods may be wildly different to anything you imagine it/them to be; and furthermore, even proving that this is a valid assumption would be difficult).
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***For example, If you turn over a random card (excluding jokers etc...) there is a fifty fifty chance it is black, not a fifty fifty chance it is the jack of spades!supposing of course, for the pedants amongst you, that they are a full set of conventional playing cards, undamaged, and that the faces of the cards are initially facing downwards!
Since there is an infinite number of possible gods that could exist (and we humans will collectively, even if we thought of a new god every second, only dream up a finite number of these) then when Pascal said:
"God is, or He is not"
A Game is being played... where heads or tails will turn up....
he should have said something like
"God is, or He is not"
A Game is being played with an infinite sided dice... where 6 will or will not be rolled.
and if we then work through the rest of his argument, then given your analysis of what its missing we see it is completely and utterly unconvincing