As the days of coronavirus quarantine turn into weeks and the prospect of months, we are getting stir crazy. I have come across several references to Blaise Pascal’s observation about the human inability to sit in a quiet room alone.
I’m a big fan of Pascal (1623-1632)–the mathematician, scientist, inventor of the calculator, and computer pioneer–who experienced a dramatic conversion to Christianity and became one of its great apologists. His approach was not to devise abstract arguments but to plunge into the depths of the human heart and how Christ alone can resolve our contradictions. (Pascal was a French Catholic, but he was a Jansenist, a movement that was close to that of the Reformation, which Rome condemned as a heresy.)