Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Pascal's Wager

My reasoning below is completely hypothetical.
I wanted to try to define an objective approach.
I am not claiming these are the steps I ever followed myself, either.

Pascal's Wager implies that we should give serious consideration to question of whether or not believe in (any?) God(s).
Because the potential loss or gain could be infinite.

If we chose not to believe then I think there is nothing further to consider. Because we have our answer.

But let's say if we chose to believe then what? Which God(s) we should believe?

Then the question becomes what world religion(s) we should choose, isn't it? Because I think it is obvious is that not all religions are compatible with each other. So there is no way we could choose to believe all of them together to cover all available options.

Is there really any way to objectively compare all world religions to make a decision about which one to believe? How we could compare any two religions objectively?

I think first thing to do would be to gather available information about all world religions in a common comparable format. For that we could create a standard list of questions for all religions.

For each religion we could list:
Which God(s) we should believe and what are their powers and properties (like shape, size, age etc).
Do those God(s) want us to believe in them and offer rewards/punishments (finite/infinite)?
Are those God(s) would treat us with justice? Are they good?
What are their explanations for existence of universe and its creation; how universe works; why it was created?
Why and how humanity was created?
What are the descriptions for afterlife, life in hell, life in heaven?
Are there any serious logical inconsistencies or absolute physical impossibilities in their explanations/beliefs/claims?
How each religion sees all others (like, also okay to believe (now), was okay to believe in the past but not today, never okay to believe)?
How we should live our life (any kind of sacrifices needed?)

So after we collected info about all religions in an objectively comparable way,
would that be enough for each one of us to make a choice?

Assume each person on Earth examined our comparable information about all religions,
and somehow each and everyone completely understood the information,
and also agreed it is all completely objective statements about each and every religion.

I wonder what percentage of people would choose which religion and what their reasoning(s) would be for their choices.

That's it? Cannot we even try to choose a religion absolutely objectively?

I think for that we could try to approach the problem mathematically, like in game theory or in probability theory.
But still, can really any method of calculation (algorithm) provide a clear and objective answer without requiring any subjective input values?
I think the answer maybe no.

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