What a great snippet of a talk this is, so densely-packed with insight and challenge to our conventional way of thinking. So glad this voice is active in this world, and so freely available.
For some reason, my fellow progressives want to keep Sam Harris and Jordan Peterson at arm’s length. But I think it is because these two minds speak so fearlessly about the excesses in the way the excellent goals of progressivist thinking are reached. Identity politics, cancel culture, the excesses of #metoo (while they also justly credit the core importance of why the #metoo movement needed to arise, as do I), the idiocy of the way the (again, humanisticslly noble-minded) leftist-agenda is enforced in Western academia — they are two uber-prominent voices of great intellectual heft who actually speak about the leftist emperor having no clothes, and that bothers people i love on the left because right-wing nut cases employ Peterson’s and Harris’s speech for their own ignorant purposes. I get that.
Jordan Peterson is clearly more on the right-hand side of the social/political spectrum then I am ordinarily comfortable with, to say the least. But his thinking is extraordinarily rigorous, it is backed up by data, and it is so clearly and meticulously expressed, even scientifically so. It is not mere partisan cant. Interestingly, he helps me to see the strengths and weaknesses of progressive thinking far, far more clearly than a Cornel West does.
Again, I am always put off by his predictable Judeo-Christian emphases, and I think he copped out on truly answering Sam Harris’s questions in their debate. I also find it quite glaring that he does not bring light on to the extraordinary power of Buddhism‘s mind-technologies — even if just as a scientist — preferring rather to lean on the tired and predictable myths of the Judeo Christian tradition.
But you can’t have everything, can you? I still get enormous benefit anytime I can listen to one of his talks.