Thursday, July 14, 2022

Ken Wilber, Jordan Peterson, and John Vervaeke

Collated by Tusar Nath Mohapatra
I've refrained from commenting about Jordan Peterson for quite a while, I was hoping to address some of these concerns and questions in an interview with him, but that looks highly unlikely to happen, so I am releasing this piece now.

What Happened to Jordan Peterson? There seems to be a turning point in his audience, in this lengthy analysis, asks what has changed and why.
Follow up Substack piece and new interview with Ken Wilber, his view on the trajectory of Jordan Peterson and the culture war dynamics of the last years.
David's recent reflections on are a must read for anyone who's had an opinion about his influence on the culture wars. There were times when he played a socratic role. He made myth cool again (though hardly original). But man has he been shadow boxing lately...

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Your article makes several fair criticisms, however characterizing Peterson's shift as his 'downfall' feels too clever by half. The political left, by and large, is not open to reason and moderation. Maybe anger is what's needed to stop the encroachment of a totalitarian ethic.

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Peterson's understanding of the world is inconsistent, and this inconsistency is too evident when he steps out of his domain of expertise. Not all "traditional values" deserve to be defended.

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The rise and fall narrative is alright, but I can tell there were cracks in his worldview pre-Benzos. Leftists were highly critical of him in 2017 where I was 70% critical. For example, postmodern neo-Marxism was a contradiction and he was skeptical of science (on climate).
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Didn't take me long to stop exploring Peterson in depth because he didn't mention any practice. It was all about thought and will. Shortly after I found Vervaeke and his work still floors me. He's the real deal. An authentic philosopher.
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The problem is that what a lot of people saw this from the very beginning. The fact that people liked him because he challenged the reductionism of the New Atheists was part of the problem. Reductionism doesn't look so bad after being confronted with JP chaotic sophistry.
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My own take is that Peterson has a very sharp intellect, which helped him glimpse some spiritual truth from a purely intellectual perspective. However the reality is not the description, and with guides like Jung, the reality can be stormy. He should go to church every week :)
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The "necessary, but not sufficient" integral lingo to describe the new right and/or postmodern conservatism as described by #michaelbrooks & is quite catchy. I can't wait to see the rest of that Wilber interview. Well done! =)
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An interesting dynamic of “audience” capture is the degree to which the “audience” itself is a mirage. With backing out of the twitter deal due to bots, one has to wonder how much of our intellectual capcity is effectively being hijacked by nefarious sources.
John Vervaeke
Several people whom I deeply respect are predicting a major disruption or even collapse in the next 1-3 years. Can we comport ourselves to realize the contraction of our civilization as the birth pangs of the next? Augustine did, can we?