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Although Pascal's social and political thought may seem at first glance to be of rather marginal interest, it is my aim in this chapter to show that elements of the sociopolitical form a fully coherent doctrine within a system where anthropology and theology meet. Pascal holds that if men are as they are and act as they do, it is because they have been both created by God and abandoned by God as a consequence of original sin. The establishment of a social and political order is necessary to curb the disorder catalysed by original sin, even if such a measure can only attenuate the effects of the Fall without addressing their root cause. I intend here to take such comments further and to suggest that Pascal's reflections on social and political order are to be related to his theory of the different orders of existence, and thus that they have consequences far beyond a limited sociopolitical sphere. If original sin deprived humankind of God, of the true and the good, nonetheless it did not destroy our capacity to attain these. From the moment that human beings judge things in relation to themselves instead of in relation to God, so Pascal argues, they embrace the false and the evil, disguising these as the truth and goodness of which they are capable and which remain in them as traces. Thus Christians are, for Pascal, faced with the need for a dual awareness. They are obliged to confess that men are abandoned to their own limited vision, unable to discern what is true and good. But they are obliged also to apply the insights of Christianity to human discourse as it confuses and blurs true and false, good and evil. In this way they can arrive at an understanding of the ultimate order and truth of this discourse.
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