Paul-Henri Thiry d’Holbac

Paul-Henri Thiry d’Holbac

What shall be said for the unjust cruelty of some nations, in which the law, that ought to have for its object the advantage of the whole, appears to be made only for the security of the most powerful; in which punishments the most disproportionate to the crime, unmercifully take away the lives of men, whom the most urgent necessity has obliged to become criminal? It is thus, that in a great number of civilised nations, the life of the citizen is placed in the same scales with money; that the unhappy wretch, who is perishing from hunger and misery, is put to death for having taken a pitiful portion of the superfluity of another whom he beholds rolling in abundance? It is this, that in many otherwise enlightened societies, is called justice, or making the punishment commensurate with the crime.More Paul-Henri Thiry d’Holbac quotes [09/30/2011 05:09:41]
If God be infinitely good, what reason have we to fear him? If he be infinitely wise, wherefore disturb ourselves with our condition? If he be omniscient, wherefore inform him of our wants, and fatigue him with our prayers? If he be omnipresent, wherefore erect temples to him? If he be Lord of all, wherefore make sacrifices and offerings to him? If he be just, wherefore believe that he punishes those creatures whom he has filled with imbecility? If his grace works every thing in man, what reason has he to reward him? If he be omnipotent, how can he be offended; and how can we resist him? If he be rational, how can he be enraged against those blind mortals to whom he has left the liberty of acting irrationally? If he be immutable, by what right shall we pretend to make him change his decrees? If he be inconceivable, wherefore should we occupy ourselves with him? If he has spoken, wherefore is the universe not convinced? If the knowledge of a God be the most necessary thing, wherefore is it not more evident and more manifest?More Paul-Henri Thiry d’Holbac quotes [09/30/2011 05:09:37]
The present state has served as the model of the future. We feel pleasure and pain - hence a heaven and a hell. A body is necessary for enjoying heavenly pleasures - hence the dogma of a resurrection.
But whence has the idea of hell arisen? Because, like a sick person who clings even to a miserable existence, man prefers a life of pain to annihilation, which he considers as the greatest of calamities. That notion was besides counterbalanced by the idea of divine mercy.More Paul-Henri Thiry d’Holbac quotes [09/30/2011 05:09:52]
The funeral ceremonies of the most powerful monarchs, have rarely been wetted with the tears of the people - they have commonly drained them while living.More Paul-Henri Thiry d’Holbac quotes [09/30/2011 05:09:22]
If he must have his chimeras, let him at least learn to permit others to form theirs after their own fashion; since nothing can be more immaterial than the manner of men’s thinking on subjects not accessible to reason, provided those thoughts be not suffered to embody themselves into actions injurious to others: above all, let him be fully persuaded that it is of the utmost importance to the inhabitants of this world to be just, kind, and peaceable.More Paul-Henri Thiry d’Holbac quotes [09/30/2011 05:09:19]

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