Pascal is one of my favorite Parisians.
As a young man he created havoc on the streets of Paris as he would race his fathers eight hours carriage recklessly.
Pascal was born with a brilliant mind. His parents recognized it quickly and were concerned about how others might seek to take advantage of their son.
Pascal should be loved by those who love the latest gadgets. He invented the first programmed calculator for his father who was an accountant. He created it to save his father time after he saw the hours he had to put in. He was a student of math, but something else grabbed the attention of Pascal...faith in Christ.
Pascal behaved ecumenically. A Catholic, he spent time interacting with various branches of the faith including Jansenist. He was instrumental in working with another hero of the faith Antonie Arnauld of The Port Royal Society. It is believed Pascal influenced much in Arnauld's "The Art of Thinking" also know as "Port Royal Logic".
Pascal contributed to a greater love and understanding of the Christian faith through his thoughts that he wrote. The thoughts were assembled by his sister after his death at 39 years of age in what we know now as, " The Pensees" .
He had no collision with his knowledge of science, math, technology and faith. He had access to many of the same theories and philosophies of are time. As a contemporary of Rene Descartes he often disputed Descartes views on rationalism.
Pascal keeps us aimed at the truth while exploring the great details of the world. He permits us ti doubt and dig deeper to affirm our faith.
Even as a genius in math he never dismissed the miraculous. From transubstantiation to the virgin birth he shook his finger at those who could not grasp the miraculous.
Today his former home a few blocks from Notre Dame is a sushi restaurant.