Fair to say that atheists might be the biggest believers?

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Re: Fair to say that atheists might be the biggest believers

Postby Peter Kropotkin » Tue Dec 27, 2016 5:27 pm

phyllo wrote:
We assign probability to every possibility based on data that we possess. The possibility that "God exists" has 0% probability so it's safe to say He does not exist.
Zero probability is called 'certainty'. (As is 100% probability.) :D

It's good that you are certain but you are in disagreement with the multitude of people who think that there is adequate data/evidence for the existence of God. :confusion-shrug:



K: You have defenders of the faith like Phyllo and others
and you have defenders of Atheism like myself.....
ask yourself, whose side am I on and more importantly
ask yourself, why? Why is the belief in god so important
or why is the knowledge there is no god, important?

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Re: Fair to say that atheists might be the biggest believers

Postby phyllo » Tue Dec 27, 2016 5:40 pm

K: You have defenders of the faith like Phyllo and others
and you have defenders of Atheism like myself.....
ask yourself, whose side am I on and more importantly
ask yourself, why? Why is the belief in god so important
or why is the knowledge there is no god, important?
In this thread, I have defended logic.

In other threads, I have defended the right of a person to decide whether God exists for themselves. I have also defended the right to religious freedom, and that includes the right not to believe.

As long as person conforms to standards of ethical and legal conduct, why should I care if he believes that Jesus/God spoke to him?
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Re: Fair to say that atheists might be the biggest believers

Postby James S Saint » Tue Dec 27, 2016 7:03 pm

Commonality in belief is important for the same reason commonality in laws, contracts, ethics, or agreements is important - so that sufficient trust in the behavior of your neighbors can be realized and utilized to produce more freedom for yourself and everyone else.

- What is your young daughter going to face when she walks outside?
Clarify, Verify, Instill, and Reinforce the Perception of Hopes and Threats unto Anentropic Harmony :)
Else
From THIS age of sleep, Homo-sapien shall never awake.

The Wise gather together to help one another in EVERY aspect of living.

You are always more insecure than you think, just not by what you think.
The only absolute certainty is formed by the absolute lack of alternatives.
It is not merely "do what works", but "to accomplish what purpose in what time frame at what cost".
As long as the authority is secretive, the population will be subjugated.

Amid the lack of certainty, put faith in the wiser to believe.
Devil's Motto: Make it look good, safe, innocent, and wise.. until it is too late to choose otherwise.

The Real God ≡ The reason/cause for the Universe being what it is = "The situation cannot be what it is and also remain as it is".
.
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Re: Fair to say that atheists might be the biggest believers

Postby phyllo » Tue Dec 27, 2016 7:07 pm

Too much "commonality in belief" produces stagnation.
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Re: Fair to say that atheists might be the biggest believers

Postby James S Saint » Tue Dec 27, 2016 7:26 pm

phyllo wrote:Too much "commonality in belief" produces stagnation.

..depends on the beliefs. If they include pursuits, as many do, then stagnation isn't the issue.
Clarify, Verify, Instill, and Reinforce the Perception of Hopes and Threats unto Anentropic Harmony :)
Else
From THIS age of sleep, Homo-sapien shall never awake.

The Wise gather together to help one another in EVERY aspect of living.

You are always more insecure than you think, just not by what you think.
The only absolute certainty is formed by the absolute lack of alternatives.
It is not merely "do what works", but "to accomplish what purpose in what time frame at what cost".
As long as the authority is secretive, the population will be subjugated.

Amid the lack of certainty, put faith in the wiser to believe.
Devil's Motto: Make it look good, safe, innocent, and wise.. until it is too late to choose otherwise.

The Real God ≡ The reason/cause for the Universe being what it is = "The situation cannot be what it is and also remain as it is".
.
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Re: Fair to say that atheists might be the biggest believers

Postby Magnus Anderson » Tue Dec 27, 2016 7:27 pm

phyllo wrote:
We assign probability to every possibility based on data that we possess. The possibility that "God exists" has 0% probability so it's safe to say He does not exist.
Zero probability is called 'certainty'. (As is 100% probability.) :D

It's good that you are certain but you are in disagreement with the multitude of people who think that there is adequate data/evidence for the existence of God. :confusion-shrug:


You sound like Biguous. Who cares if there are people who think otherwise?
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Re: Fair to say that atheists might be the biggest believers

Postby James S Saint » Tue Dec 27, 2016 7:36 pm

Magnus Anderson wrote:You sound like Biguous. Who cares if there are people who think otherwise?

You have a choice of;
      proof,
      elitist propaganda,
      possibility/probability,
      popular belief
      personal opinion.

Biguous denies proof and relegates everything to opinion.
Clarify, Verify, Instill, and Reinforce the Perception of Hopes and Threats unto Anentropic Harmony :)
Else
From THIS age of sleep, Homo-sapien shall never awake.

The Wise gather together to help one another in EVERY aspect of living.

You are always more insecure than you think, just not by what you think.
The only absolute certainty is formed by the absolute lack of alternatives.
It is not merely "do what works", but "to accomplish what purpose in what time frame at what cost".
As long as the authority is secretive, the population will be subjugated.

Amid the lack of certainty, put faith in the wiser to believe.
Devil's Motto: Make it look good, safe, innocent, and wise.. until it is too late to choose otherwise.

The Real God ≡ The reason/cause for the Universe being what it is = "The situation cannot be what it is and also remain as it is".
.
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Re: Fair to say that atheists might be the biggest believers

Postby Magnus Anderson » Tue Dec 27, 2016 9:06 pm

Isn't the purpose of proof to establish agreement -- to communicate one's thought process in an effort to replicate it in others -- rather than to establish truth?

When people ask you for proof, they are asking you to convince them that what you're saying is true is indeed true.

Truth is established through pattern recognition -- through what is probable -- and it is this that Biguous denies.

Like agnostics, Biguous is doing everything he can to avoid confrontation. He'd rather stop believing his senses than hold an unpopular opinion.
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Re: Fair to say that atheists might be the biggest believers

Postby James S Saint » Wed Dec 28, 2016 1:01 am

Magnus Anderson wrote:Isn't the purpose of proof to establish agreement -- to communicate one's thought process in an effort to replicate it in others -- rather than to establish truth?

Purpose might be different for different people.

Magnus Anderson wrote:When people ask you for proof, they are asking you to convince them that what you're saying is true is indeed true.

Very true (despite the actual reality of truth).

Magnus Anderson wrote:Truth is established through pattern recognition -- through what is probable -- and it is this that Biguous denies.

Truth is established by the lack of any alternative. But Biguous appears to believe that anyone's belief is another alternative. Logic has no say in the matter. That is his curse.

Magnus Anderson wrote:Like agnostics, Biguous is doing everything he can to avoid confrontation. He'd rather stop believing his senses than hold an unpopular opinion.

I wouldn't accuse agnostics of that, but I agree that Biguous does that. He tries to handle confrontation by going to the opposite extreme of declaring everything to be wrong (a conflict), therefore even good is wrong, therefore he cannot be declared wrong, but is instead commonly good - a common attempt by many of the currently lost and confounded ("If everyone is bad then I'm as good as anyone thus should not be punished").
Clarify, Verify, Instill, and Reinforce the Perception of Hopes and Threats unto Anentropic Harmony :)
Else
From THIS age of sleep, Homo-sapien shall never awake.

The Wise gather together to help one another in EVERY aspect of living.

You are always more insecure than you think, just not by what you think.
The only absolute certainty is formed by the absolute lack of alternatives.
It is not merely "do what works", but "to accomplish what purpose in what time frame at what cost".
As long as the authority is secretive, the population will be subjugated.

Amid the lack of certainty, put faith in the wiser to believe.
Devil's Motto: Make it look good, safe, innocent, and wise.. until it is too late to choose otherwise.

The Real God ≡ The reason/cause for the Universe being what it is = "The situation cannot be what it is and also remain as it is".
.
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Re: Fair to say that atheists might be the biggest believers

Postby pilgrim-seeker_tom » Wed Dec 28, 2016 1:05 am

I recently saw a movie on Brooke Ellison story (about the first quadriplegic woman who went to Harvard), and in one scene where she's still in deep coma after accident the doctor was worried that she may regain consciousness but not her cognition, and I wonder if the state of consciousness without cognition is the same state as Buddha mind.
Wouldn't Buddha mind state, in a sense, be imitating brain damage? :-k


Pandora ... for me ... a very interesting query.

If we are open minded enough to contemplate the possibility that the human mind has utility that transcends cognition ... is superior to cognition ... one could argue that cognition imitates brain damage. :-)

Is 'cognition' synonymous with the axiom ... "familiarity breeds contempt?
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Re: Fair to say that atheists might be the biggest believers

Postby Ierrellus » Thu Dec 29, 2016 3:20 pm

Proof of God's existence can be found in experience of God within us. Christian mystics such as John of the Cross and Meister Eckhart proclaimed personal knowledge of a God.
It is difficult to describe to some atheists the real experience of knowing God simply because they cannot believe a description of God that is morally superior to the fundy, popular straw man. . Who would want to believe in a loser god who allows the majority of humans to suffer excruciating torture for all eternity? The older I get the more I tend to believe in a god who is not a loser in the salvation game. Instead I see a supreme creator who considers all creations good and worthy of reclamation.
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Re: Fair to say that atheists might be the biggest believers

Postby Magnus Anderson » Fri Dec 30, 2016 6:31 am

James S Saint wrote:Truth is established by the lack of any alternative. But Biguous appears to believe that anyone's belief is another alternative. Logic has no say in the matter. That is his curse.


Yes. Every option is an alternative. Every choice is equal to every other choice. It's a game of chance. A dice throw. There is nothing to limit, to direct, movement. There are no probabilities, only possibilities.

Which is a lie. Because there is no absolute chaos. You cannot not choose. A container of liquid cannot not leak into one of its adjacent containers.

The question always boils down to how we should restrict, limit, bound, direct our motion.

Motion cannot cease. Its coordination can cease. But motion cannot. Does not. It merely becomes subject to, controlled by, external circumstances.

In the case of Biguous, he clearly is making a choice. Though one can say his choice is less of a choice, it is nonetheless more than complete surrender to chaos.

What does he choose? How does he choose to direct his motion?

By negotiation, moderation, compromise . . . he's choosing to dilute his opinions, to mix them with other people's opinions, so that people can reach some sort of agreement and semblance of truth.

And he absolutely despises those who refuse to do so.

The evil objectivists.
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Re: Fair to say that atheists might be the biggest believers

Postby Uccisore » Sat Dec 31, 2016 5:33 pm

Atheists are a bit like anybody else- some of them are dogmatic in their faith, others are just mad and in a state of rebellion. A few of them actually have a rationally defensible position. A big problem with atheist these days is that because of the culture they tend to think they are quite a bit more intelligent and knowledgeable than they actually are. For whatever reason, a religious person who frequently argues to defend religion seems aware that there are books they need to read and history they need to be familiar with in order to defend their position. An atheist attacking religion seems more likely to have watched 1 YouTube video or to have just decided that they are more intelligent than anybody else without actually doing the legwork.

I mean, take PK for example- he's obviously an atheist with strong opinions and a strong confidence in his ability to defend them. Nothing wrong with any of that. But is anybody convinced, based on what he writes, that he has in fact studied philosophy of religion even a little bit? No, he's just ranting, like people do when they have strong opinions and little experience. But then why the adamantine confidence? Certainly he is aware of his own ignorance on the subject?
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Re: Fair to say that atheists might be the biggest believers

Postby iambiguous » Sat Dec 31, 2016 8:41 pm

But is anybody convinced, based on what he writes, that he has in fact studied philosophy of religion even a little bit?


How then is a proper distinction to be made between those who do pursue God here -- http://www.iep.utm.edu/religion/ -- and those who rely more on the actual word of God [in their Bible] or on the sermons of those ecclesiastics who tend the flock in their own particular denomination.

Are the scholars with their precisely defined terms and their clarity of thought really any closer to a God, the God, my God? And are they not equally stumped when, academically, the examination gets around to the question of theodicy?

Of course my own interest here revolves almost entirely around the extent to which these well educated folks are then able to take their findings and situate them out in a particular world where mere mortals struggle [more or less] to connect the dots between morality on this side of the grave and immortality and salvation on the other side.

Any scholars here care to go there?
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Re: Fair to say that atheists might be the biggest believers

Postby iambiguous » Sat Dec 31, 2016 9:32 pm

Magnus Anderson wrote:
phyllo wrote:
We assign probability to every possibility based on data that we possess. The possibility that "God exists" has 0% probability so it's safe to say He does not exist.
Zero probability is called 'certainty'. (As is 100% probability.) :D

It's good that you are certain but you are in disagreement with the multitude of people who think that there is adequate data/evidence for the existence of God. :confusion-shrug:


You sound like Biguous. Who cares if there are people who think otherwise?


Quite the contrary, Biguous is actually preoccupied more with exploring the reasons that, with respect to God, people have in fact thought "otherwise" throughout the entire length [historically] and the breath [culturally, experientially] of human history.

He merely suggests that this revolves around the manner in which he construes the meaning of dasein, conflicting goods and political economy.

Out in a "particular world" ever and always evolving over time in a sea of contingency, chance and change.

In other words, to what extent is God more an existential contraption rather than an actual existing entity that, using the tools of theology, science and philosophy, can in fact be demonstrated to exist?

James S Saint wrote:Biguous denies proof and relegates everything to opinion.


No, Biguous makes a distinction between 1] those able to demonstrate that what they believe constitutes proof is applicable to all rational human beings and 2] those who insist that if they believe something is true "in their head", that is proof enough.

So, where then is your proof for the existence of the Real God, James?

James S Saint wrote: But Biguous appears to believe that anyone's belief is another alternative. Logic has no say in the matter. That is his curse.


But James appears to believe that anyone's belief that is not wholly in sync with his own is necessarily illogical. That is his...salvation.

James S Saint wrote:[Biguous] tries to handle confrontation by going to the opposite extreme of declaring everything to be wrong (a conflict), therefore even good is wrong, therefore he cannot be declared wrong, but is instead commonly good - a common attempt by many of the currently lost and confounded ("If everyone is bad then I'm as good as anyone thus should not be punished").


Note to others:

I challenge you to be even more abstract than this in distorting Biguous's point of view.

Also, I challenge you to challenge James to bring this accusation down to earth pertaining to an actual conflict of note.

Magnus Anderson wrote:In the case of Biguous, he clearly is making a choice. Though one can say his choice is less of a choice, it is nonetheless more than complete surrender to chaos.

What does he choose? How does he choose to direct his motion?

By negotiation, moderation, compromise . . . he's choosing to dilute his opinions, to mix them with other people's opinions, so that people can reach some sort of agreement and semblance of truth.


As opposed to clubbing "one of them" over the head with that which he insist is the only truth -- his own. Indeed, when folks like Magnus refuse to dilute their own "truths" [about God or anything else] others end up in re-education camps, or in dungeons, or in gas chambers.

And Biguous doesn't despise the "evil objectivists". That's just the polemicist persona he sometimes embodies here. Instead, he probes the extent to which the objectivists either are or are not able to yank him up out of this:

If I am always of the opinion that 1] my own values are rooted in dasein and 2] that there are no objective values "I" can reach, then every time I make one particular moral/political leap, I am admitting that I might have gone in the other direction...or that I might just as well have gone in the other direction. Then "I" begins to fracture and fragment to the point there is nothing able to actually keep it all together. At least not with respect to choosing sides morally and politically.

And demonstrating to him the actual existence of a God, the God, your God? Yep, that'll do it.
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Re: Fair to say that atheists might be the biggest believers

Postby Kriswest » Sat Dec 31, 2016 11:28 pm

Gods are not the focus of modern religion, obedience is. There could be a superior entity out there watching and pushing here and there but, religion has warped beyond what it was. If an entity approves modern religions , it can kiss my ass.
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Re: Fair to say that atheists might be the biggest believers

Postby Uccisore » Sun Jan 01, 2017 2:04 am

iambiguous wrote:How then is a proper distinction to be made between those who do pursue God here -- http://www.iep.utm.edu/religion/ -- and those who rely more on the actual word of God [in their Bible] or on the sermons of those ecclesiastics who tend the flock in their own particular denomination.


Well, there's certainly quite a bit of overlap, so there's no reason to draw any absolute distinction. I'm sure any decent sized church has at least a couple parishoners that visit sites like that from time to time.

Are the scholars with their precisely defined terms and their clarity of thought really any closer to a God, the God, my God?


I wasn't talking about 'being closer to God', I was talking about competency to argue about religious philosophy. I thought I made that clear.

Any scholars here care to go there?


It's postmodern gobledegook, so no.
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Re: Fair to say that atheists might be the biggest believers

Postby iambiguous » Mon Jan 02, 2017 7:18 pm

Uccisore wrote:
iambiguous wrote:How then is a proper distinction to be made between those who do pursue God here -- http://www.iep.utm.edu/religion/ -- and those who rely more on the actual word of God [in their Bible] or on the sermons of those ecclesiastics who tend the flock in their own particular denomination.


Well, there's certainly quite a bit of overlap, so there's no reason to draw any absolute distinction. I'm sure any decent sized church has at least a couple parishoners that visit sites like that from time to time.


However much overlap there might possibly be neither approach seems to have actually come up with a narrative [let alone a God] that everyone can agree on. And whether you are a renowned religious scholar or merely a member of the flock, there is still the part about connecting the dots between morality on this side of the grave and imortality and salvation on the other side of it.

And with that at stake, it would seem rather important that mere mortals be shown a path to God -- the God -- that is considerably more...reliable?

Are the scholars with their precisely defined terms and their clarity of thought really any closer to a God, the God, my God?


Uccisore wrote: I wasn't talking about 'being closer to God', I was talking about competency to argue about religious philosophy. I thought I made that clear.


Religious philosophy:

Religious philosophy is philosophical thinking that is inspired and directed by a particular religion. It can be done objectively, but may also be done as a persuasion tool by believers in that faith. There are different philosophies for each religion such as those of:

Buddhist philosophy
Christian philosophy
Hindu philosophy
Islamic philosophy
Jain philosophy
Jewish philosophy
Sikh philosophy


But what is it all ultimately in the service of if not an attempt to answer the question, "how ought one to live?" in order to attain immortality and salvation?

Are scholars more qualified to answer it? And how are the particular answers that they come up with any less the embodiment [historically, culturally, experientially] of dasein and conflicting goods?

Just out of curiosity, what do you suppose Donald Trump's religious philosophy is? "Show me the money" perhaps?


Any scholars here care to go there?


Uccisore wrote: It's postmodern gobledegook, so no.


Sure, you would like it to be construed as just that. After all, you've got a lot to lose if it's not.
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Re: Fair to say that atheists might be the biggest believers

Postby pilgrim-seeker_tom » Tue Jan 03, 2017 3:21 am

Are scholars more qualified to answer it?


The story of Christianity points to a "yes" to the above question.

Jesus in his earthly ministry selected ... lived with ... and taught 12 (un)scholarly men. Presumably with the hope that these men would carry on his ???.

Jesus ... in his 'afterlife' realized his mistake ... came back as a flash of light and selected Paul ... no training necessary ... Paul already being a scholar. :-)
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Re: Fair to say that atheists might be the biggest believers

Postby iambiguous » Tue Jan 03, 2017 6:42 pm

pilgrim_tom wrote:
Are scholars more qualified to answer it?


The story of Christianity points to a "yes" to the above question.

Jesus in his earthly ministry selected ... lived with ... and taught 12 (un)scholarly men. Presumably with the hope that these men would carry on his ???.

Jesus ... in his 'afterlife' realized his mistake ... came back as a flash of light and selected Paul ... no training necessary ... Paul already being a scholar. :-)


Jesus Christ. The very embodiment of religious philosophy. And yet we're not even certain that He actually existed.

Though some clearly do have faith that He did.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: Fair to say that atheists might be the biggest believers

Postby Kriswest » Tue Jan 03, 2017 7:24 pm

You know, some years back there were stories of finding the grave site of Jesus's brother or supposed to be. I recall they were from a couple reliable sources . Damned if I can recall the details. The stories might be online if you are interested in searching and have the time.
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Re: Fair to say that atheists might be the biggest believers

Postby pilgrim-seeker_tom » Wed Jan 04, 2017 2:33 am

Jesus Christ. The very embodiment of religious philosophy. And yet we're not even certain that He actually existed.

Though some clearly do have faith that He did.


The foundation(s) of the story seem to have been built on sand and the sand continues to shift. :-)

OTH ... surviving 2,000 years of 'shifting sands' points to a living 'core'.

You know, some years back there were stories of finding the grave site of Jesus's brother or supposed to be.


Such paucity of supporting physical evidence for a 'story' of such magnitude. Contrast this with the story of Confucius ... in Qufu a cemetery with 75+ generations of one family ... survived the vicissitudes of 2,500+ years. Hmmm!
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Re: Fair to say that atheists might be the biggest believers

Postby Kriswest » Wed Jan 04, 2017 11:28 am

What support? It was just a comment about the history of this type of discussion. If some wish to research for or against it , this is just an avenue.
I will be bitchy, cranky, sweet, happy, kind, pain in the ass all at random times from now on. I am embracing my mentalpause until further notice. Viva lack of total control!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! This is not a test,,, this is my life right now. Have a good day and please buckle up for safety reasons,, All those in high chairs, go in the back of the room.
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Re: Fair to say that atheists might be the biggest believers

Postby pilgrim-seeker_tom » Wed Jan 04, 2017 12:38 pm

Kriswest wrote:What support? It was just a comment about the history of this type of discussion. If some wish to research for or against it , this is just an avenue.


oops! ... likewise ... I was just generalizing.

Been thinking about it some more though ... the paucity of physical evidence may be a blessing in disguise ... sort of unintentional consequences.

Substantial corroberating evidence would have chained the "story" to the visual facts. In the absence of substantive evidence the story was free to travel beyond the boundaries of fact ... into la la land.

Afterall, most people believe the essence of the story is a journey through la la land ... until this particular la la land ... the place/time/space becomes part of human consciousness.
"Do not be influenced by the importance of the writer, and whether his learning be great or small; but let the love of pure truth draw you to read. Do not inquire, “Who said this?” but pay attention to what is said”

Thomas Kempis 1380-1471
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Re: Fair to say that atheists might be the biggest believers

Postby phyllo » Wed Jan 04, 2017 3:15 pm

Either Jesus' proposed moral system is worth trying or it's not. Jesus didn't have to exist for the moral system to be effective or ineffective.

But I tell you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who mistreat you and persecute you,
This is one of the most important verses in the entire New Testament. Luz states that the ideas expressed in this verse are "considered the Christian distinction and innovation." "Love thy enemies" is what separates Christianity from all earlier religions.[1] Nolland disagrees with this, seeing a number of historical precedents. The Babylonian text the Counsels of Wisdom contains a similar call as does the Egyptian Instruction of Amenemope. In Greek and Roman philosophy the idea of loving one's enemies had been advanced by writers such as Cicero, Seneca, and the Cynics.[2]

This verses matches well with a passage in the Old Testament, in which King Solomon says that one should feed one's enemy if he or she is hungry.[3]

The author of Matthew places this verse in the final antithesis, a summary of all that been stated in the Sermon. Early church thinkers also saw this as one of Jesus' most important teachings. The exact wording does not appear in prior Jewish texts, but there are examples of previous thinkers sharing Jesus' sentiments. Other traditions do have similar views. The Greek stoics expressed similar dicta of universal love. It is theoretically possible that Jesus could have been influenced by these ideas, but unlikely. The eastern faiths of Buddhism and Taoism also share this outlook. Nietzsche rejected the command entirely, arguing that love of one's enemies is weakness and dishonesty. Mao Tse-Tung also wrote a commentary on this precept, arguing that universal love is an ultimate goal, but that it is impossible until the class system is removed.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Matthew_5:44

Good idea or dumb idea?
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