Stripped to its nub, Pascal’s Wager reads simply:
You may as well believe in God, in case He really exists.
Those capital letters—G and H—tip Pascal’s hand.
His heart was in the right place, though:
offering an easy out to budding agnostics
as the Enlightenment began its long predawn.
Clearly, though, the wager is premised
on a vindictive god who punishes disbelievers
with endless fire solely for their disbelief.
Place your bet, Pascal whispers to the uncertain;
Work to convince yourself of God; what have you
to lose but eternal damnation?
But the wager is a loser’s bet: such a god would
see through that dodge in a New York minute.