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Blaise Pascal

1623-1662 ,  French thinker
Blaise PascalFrench mathematician, physicist, religious philosopher, inventor and writer. He laid the foundation for the modern theory of probabilities, formulated what came to be known as Pascal’s principle of pressure, and invented a mechanical calculator. His theories had an impact on such later philosophers as Jean-Jacques Rousseau and Henri Bergson and also on the Existentialists.

Following a religious experience in 1654, he began writing influential works on philosophy and theology. His two most famous works date from this period: the Lettres provinciales and the Pensées.

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If we examine our thoughts, we shall find them always occupied with the past and the future.

Habit is a second nature that destroys the first.

Faith embraces many truths which seem to contradict each other.

Clarity of mind means clarity of passion, too; this is why a great and clear mind loves ardently and sees distinctly what it loves.

All of humanity’s problems stem from man's inability to sit quietly in a room alone.

I have only made this letter longer because I have not had the time to make it shorter

Cleopatra's nose, had it been shorter, the whole face of the world would have been changed.

Curiosity is only vanity. We usually only want to know something so that we can talk about it.

Do you wish people to think well of you? Don't speak well of yourself.

I lay it down as a fact that if all men knew what others say of them, there would not be four friends in the world.

I would prefer an intelligent hell to a stupid paradise.

If you gain, you gain all. If you lose, you lose nothing. Wager then, without hesitation, that He exists.

In difficult times carry something beautiful in your heart.

In faith there is enough light for those who want to believe and enough shadows to blind those who don't.

It's not those who write the laws that have the greatest impact on society. It's those who write the songs.

Justice without force is powerless; force without justice is tyrannical.

Kind words do not cost much. Yet they accomplish much.

Little things comfort us because little things distress us.

Men are so necessarily mad, that not to be mad would amount to another form of madness.

Men never do evil so completely and cheerfully as when they do it from religious conviction.

Nature is an infinite sphere whose center is everywhere and whose circumference is nowhere.

Nothing is so intolerable to man as being fully at rest, without a passion, without business, without entertainment, without care.

Once your soul has been enlarged by a truth, it can never return to its original size.

People almost invariably arrive at their beliefs not on the basis of proof but on the basis of what they find attractive.

Reason's last step is the recognition that there are an infinite number of things which are beyond it.

Since we cannot know all there is to be known about anything, we ought to know a little about everything.

The eternal silence of these infinite spaces frightens me.

The heart has its reasons which reason knows not.

The more I see of Mankind, the more I prefer my dog.

There is a God-shaped hole in the life of every man.

To understand is to forgive.

You always admire what you really don't understand.

God would be unjust if we were not guilty.


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 René Descartes

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