On Thursday 13 January 2022, Robert Maggiori, a founding member of the Philosophical Encounters of Monaco, will present a conversation at Monaco’s Vocational and Catering School on the theme “What to believe? Who to believe?” Camille Riquier, a philosopher and member of the jury, and Laurent Cordonier, a sociologist, will debate belief in the broad sense of the word.
If miracles exist, says Pascal, then God exists. If miracles exist, echoes Spinoza, then God does not exist. What exactly does it mean to “believe in God”? Is this belief identical to the one which believes in the resurrection of Lazarus? Is it the same as believing in ghosts or in bad luck as a result of broken mirrors or black cats? If we believe what you say, then we have grounds not to consider you a liar. But if we believe in you, we do not need proof to think that you will be better. And if we only believe that the weather will be nice on Sunday or that the Khor Virap Monastery is near Yerevan, that just means we don’t have enough information to know for certain. As we can see, defining what we mean by “believe” is decidedly tricky. When we believe, we can be a believer or we can be credulous, we can have a religious, moral or superstitious belief, have faith in the Other, in Humanity, in Science, expect the dead to speak to us or that the tables will turn, swallow everything we are told, be taken in, find ourselves with a lack of knowledge, hope, trust... But is it possible to “not believe”? What would we need to give to – or take away from – people to enable them not to believe in nothing or to believe in anything and everything, but to “no longer believe”? And if it were even possible to imagine such a person, what would they gain from living without belief?
Free and open to all.
Full information is available from: www.philomonaco.com
Friday 11 March 2022: Play
Thursday 7 April 2022: Freedom
7–12 June 2022: Philosophy Week