Jean Meslier Jean Meslier (French: [melje]; also Mellier; 15 June 1664 – 17 June 1729), was a French Catholic priest (abbé) who was discovered, upon his death, to have written a book-length philosophical essay promoting atheism. Described by the author as his "testament" to his parishioners, the text denounces all religion. Life Thought
There is a glaring inconsistency in light of all that has been presented and that is how the realization that God is all-loving can be reconciled with the existence of suffering, which is the so-called Problem of Evil. This must be taken into account, however. If this were a world without misery, the prevailing mood on it undoubtedly would have been one of complacency. There would have been no real need to ponder the meaning of life if everything seemed just right; if the earth were a Utopia, life itself would have provided its own meaning. But compared to what divine union will be like, such an existence would have been a relative form of hell, and there never could have been any escape from it, for no one would have been able to “suffer” death first. Also, it is completely plausible that after millions of years of life, even the most pleasurable activities would have become excruciatingly boring.
One formulation of the Atheist's Wager suggests that one should live a good life without religion, since Martin writes that a loving and kind god would reward good deeds, and if no gods exist, a good person will leave behind a positive legacy. The second formulation suggests that, instead of rewarding belief as in Pascal's wager, a god may reward disbelief, in which case one would risk losing infinite happiness by believing in a god unjustly, rather than disbelieving justly. Explanation The Wager states that if you were to analyze your options in regard to how to live your life, you would come out with the following possibilities: