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La dissertation philosophie pdf capstone training and development llc how to write a language analysis on two articles [Music] [Music] thank you all for coming I'm going to begin by introducing Jordan Peterson and then I will talk a little bit about how this event is going to work and then we'll get underway so Jordan Peterson has been called quote one of the most important thinkers to emerge on the world stage for many years by The Spectator he has been a dishwasher gas jockey bartender short-order cook beekeeper oil derrick bit rita / plywood mill laborer and railway line worker he's taught mythology to lawyers doctors and businessmen consulted for the UN Secretary General's high-level panel on sustainable development helped his clinical clients manage depression obsessive compulsive disorder anxiety and schizophrenia served as an advisor to senior partners of major law firms identified thousands of promising entrepreneurs on six different continents and lectured extensively in North America and Europe he has flown a hammerhead role in a carbon-fiber stunt plane piloted a mahogany racing sailboat around Alcatraz Island explored an arizona meteorite crater with a group of astronauts built a Native American longhouse on the upper floor of his Toronto home and been inducted into the coastal Pacific quoc waka waka tribe Malcolm Gladwell discussed psychology with him while researching his books Norman Doidge is a good friend and collaborator thriller writer Greg Hurwitz employed several of his quote valuable things as a plot feature in his number 1 international bestseller orphan x and he worked with jim balsillie former RI m CEO on a project for the UN secretary-general with the students and colleagues dr. peterson has published more than a hundred scientific papers transforming the modern understanding of personality and revolutionized the psychology of religion with his now classic book maps of meaning the architecture of belief as a Harvard professor he was nominated for the prestigious Levinson teaching Prize and is regarded by his current University of Toronto students as one of three truly life-changing teachers dr. Peterson is a Cora most viewed writer and values and principles and Perrin in education he has innumerable Twitter followers and Facebook followers his YouTube channel now has about a million subscribers and his classroom lectures on mythology were turned into a popular 13 part TV series on TV Ontario dr. Peterson's online self-help program the self authoring suite has been featured and oh the Oprah Magazine on CBC Radio and on NPR's national website it has helped over 150,000 people resolve the problems of their past and radically improved their future without further ado please join me in welcoming dr. Jordan Peterson tilapia so the way this is going to work is that I'm going to have a conversation with dr. Peterson for 90 minutes and then there is going to be a 90 minute Q&A this event is being video recorded and will be published online for non-commercial non advertising purposes during the Q&A session when you were handed a microphone please speak directly into it our viewers on YouTube will appreciate it and finally I am a moderator between professor Peterson and the audience but also a biased participant in this conversation okay well it's a relief that's all over okay so I thought we would start things off with this I assume that many in the audience are curious but relatively unfamiliar with you or have heard a lot about you without ever reading or listening to you so I thought we might start with you introducing yourself to the audience and maybe telling them some of the main things that you think they might be interested in knowing about you well I guess the most relevant detail is that I spent about 15 years writing this and I worked on it about three hours a day every day during that period of time and at at the same time I was finishing off my doctorate and I started lecturing at Harvard but I was doing that continually and thinking about it continually and reading the material that I needed to read in order to write the book continually as well and I didn't realize until more recently that what I was doing was at the heart of the postmodern conundrum I would say I was very much obsessed by the events of the Cold War for reasons I don't exactly understand I had a lot of dreams about nuclear annihilation for years on end I mean it wasn't that uncommon to be obsessed by that when I grew up I mean because it was a preoccupation of everyone who was my age I suppose there there were lots of years probably between 1962 I would say probably in 1985 where people were pretty convinced that the probability of a nuclear war was high much higher now than people considered now and I was curious about this I was curious about why everyone wasn't obsessed about this all the time first of all because it seemed like the fundamental issue that two armed camps were pointing something in excess of 25,000 hydrogen bombs each at each other I couldn't understand how anybody could concentrate on anything other than that since it seems so utterly insane and I was curious what was going on exactly was this one leaked the explanation was that there's a very large number of ways that human beings could organize themselves in society like a large number of games that we could hypothetically play and they're all equally arbitrary in an in an equally arbitrary universe and that the Communists had decided to play one kind of game and the West and the Western free-market Democratic types have had decided to play another game and it was all arbitrary in some sense and so that's what I was trying to figure out was what the hell was going on with this conflict and was it merely a battle between two hypothetically equally valid interpretations of the world drawn from a set of extraordinary large potential interpretations which I think would be essentially a postmodernist take on it and I think I went into the problem neutrally in that I didn't think I knew what the answer was you know so so lots of times when you talk to people who think or wouldn't you talk to people who write they have an idea and it's right and then they write whatever they're writing to justify the idea that's how they look at it but it's not a good way to write a good way to write and think is to have a problem and then try to solve it right to actually solve it not to demonstrate that you're a priori commitment is true and you know one of the signs I would say that my a priori commitments weren't the purpose for the writing was that I walked away from that 15-year project with a view of the world that was completely different than the view that I had going in and learned all sorts of things especially about the role of narrative and and religious thinking in life that I had no idea was possible when I started and a lot of that was a consequence of reading the great people who I read deeply you know I read well all the great works of Friedrich Nietzsche and the great works of Dostoevsky and Tolstoy and most of us collected works everything that had been published up to that point and a very large swath of the relevant clinical literature the great clinicians of the 20th century and a huge stack of neuroscience and etc etc because I was reading constantly during this time and I realized some things that I think are true the Communists were wrong they weren't and not just a little bit wrong and not wrong in some arbitrary way they were playing a game that human beings cannot play without descending into a murderous catastrophe and there's something about what we've done in the West that's correct and I it's hearts complicated because our our cognitive structures that's one way of thinking about it or our socio-political arrangements they're actually they actually parallel one another in an important way aren't are grounded in a you know strange set of axioms and the axioms aren't rational precisely it's more like their narrative their narrative axioms their stories and the story of the West is that the individual is sovereign over the group and that that's the solution to tribalism and I think that's the correct solution now what that means metaphysically because it's it's also embedded in our religious doctrines right because especially in Christianity although not exclusively to Christianity the individual is sovereign the suffering individual is sovereign and there's something about that that's true at least psychologically and I don't know what that might mean metaphysically because who the hell knows what anything means metaphysically right I mean your your knowledge runs out at some point anyways I worked all these ideas out and then I taught for a long time courses that were based on the ideas and the courses were very impactful I would say they had the same impact on the people that I was teaching as walking through the material had on me and well it was out of that that all of this political controversy arose I mean I was never focused on political controversy even though I'm interested in politics and I thought it many points in my life about a political career I always put it aside for a psychological and philosophical career I would say and but but things started to shift badly in Canada over the last five years and our government dared to implement legislation that compelled speech and one of the things that I had learned when I was doing all this background investigation was that there isn't a higher value than free speech it isn't free speech it's not the right way of thinking about it because it's free thought and even that's not the right way of thinking about it because thought is the precursor to action and life so there's no difference between free speech and free life and I was just not willing to put up with restrictions on my free life and so I made some videos pointing out the pathology of this doctrine and the fact that the government had radically overreached its its appropriate limits and well then you know well and maybe you don't know but I've been enveloped in continual scandal since for 18 months as a consequence which to me as a clinician indicates that I got my damn diagnosis right right it's not about pronouns it's about something deeper than that and I stand by that I believe that it's the case and I don't think that we would all be here tonight if that wasn't the situation so so I wanted my first or my next question to be about Lafayette and so I thought I would read a couple of Facebook posts that certain students who are critical of you read in the lead-up to this event and just ask you to respond to them okay so this is a student writing Lafayette College I'm utterly disappointed that you're allowing this to take place on our campus I thought we went through this last semester with roaming Millenial inviting hateful speakers who make wildly unsubstantiated claims is not going to fly with the student body I get it the mill series events are private and not endorsed by the college but you absolutely have the power to make a statement on this the fact that you're not is an embarrassment to our community if you believe this man is a legitimate source of knowledge because he has a degree in clinical psychology feel free to ask our psychology department faculty and Counseling Center staff about the validity of his claims I'm certain they would not endorse this speaker do better in all caps for those of you unfamiliar Jordan Peterson is known for denouncing the me2 movement claiming that women are in no way marginalized in the West arguing against the existence of gender-neutral pronouns arguing against gun control in the US and claiming that identity politics and social justice movements are part of a devious Marxist agenda and then another student responded and this is briefer College conservatives know that if they bring in a speaker who was willing to blatantly insult a portion of the audience and the libs get angry enough about this for good reason then they may get an op-ed written about them in the New York Times as a result there are a whole group of hacks like Milo and Peterson who get famous and invited purely for their promise to misgender trans students and advocate provocative but ultimately toothless arguments about social Darwinist race theory what I'm saying is that you have every right to be pissed Jordan Peterson is a harmful moron but know that but know that you being pissed is also a hundred percent at the point of why he was invited he's not a conservative he's just a guy who's mildly racist enough to offend College liberals and therefore secure wins for the cultural right comparatively mild stuff it's the chattering buzz of ideologically possessed demons so there's nothing in it that's that's not entirely predictable that's that's one of the things you know you notice when you're talking to people if you if you want to find out whether the person is there or the ideology is there you listen to see if you're hearing anything that someone else of the same ideological mindset couldn't have told you you know like I've had thousands of conversations with people because I've spent 20 years as a clinical psychologist and one of the things I've learned about people is that they're unbelievably interesting if you get someone to sit down and you move past the superficial which you can actually do quite rapidly they'll tell you all sorts of things that only they know that are unbelievably enlightening about their own peculiar problems about the way they look at the world about their their idiosyncratic familial dynamics like just fascinating personal stuff it's the stuff of great novels you know and just and this is ordinary people I don't really think there is an ordinary person exactly there the facade of ordinariness but behind that people are very rarely ordinary and so they're the conversations are almost instantaneously fascinating and one of the one of the guidelines that I used in my clinical practice constantly was like I had this sense I probably learned this mostly from Carl Rogers was that if the conversation wasn't really interesting then we weren't doing anything that was therapeutically useful but the interesting all of the interesting elements of it were were very very personal and so to replace this and I learned this mostly from sold from Alexander Solzhenitsyn in his detailed analysis of what would call ideological possession I talked to people he talked about people he met in the gulag camps who were under the sway of of rigid communist orthodoxy and noted very clearly that it was like there was a crank in some sense on the side of their head and you could just crank the crank and out would come the ideological dogma and it's all entirely predictable and people who are in a situation like that don't understand that they're possessed by an idea rights Carl Jung said people don't have ideas ideas have people it's like so there's nothing in that that's anything other than exactly what you would predict and then there's a deeper issue - and this is one that I think has bedeviled me ever since I made my initial videos which is the rally it's impossible for those on the radical left to admit that anyone who opposes what they're doing might be reasonable because what that would mean would be that you could be reasonable and opposed the radical left and that would imply that what the radical left was doing wasn't reasonable and so instead of dealing with the fact that I actually happened to be quite reasonable the attempt is to assume that anyone who objects must be part of the radical right it's like well actually no there's lots of space between the radical left and the radical right there's the moderate reasonable left for example and you and then there's the center and then there's the moderate reasonable right and then there's the far right and then there's the extreme right all of that exists in opposition to the radical left but it's very convenient for the radicals on the left to say oh well you don't buy our doctrine and and and then to immediately make the presupposition that you must be the most Highness example of that entire array of potential objection it's like yeah well whatever you know it's just not a viable stance and so but it's convenient and it it it it's a bad thing because it drives polarization and that's a bad thing but it also it doesn't address the issue so one of the things that I've been thinking about over the last couple of weeks and plan to write about here's a mystery for all of you I don't care what your political background isn't it isn't like I'm anti left I've made videos documenting this I know why there's a left wing there's a left wing because inequality is a problem it's a way worse problem than the radical leftists liked to admit because you can't lay it at the feet of capitalism and the free market inequality is a way worse problem than that but it's definitely a problem and because inequality is a problem you need part of the political structure to speak up to the for the people who end up arrayed at the bottom of hierarchies it's crucial someone has to speak for them that's the place of the left but then but then consider this get so we can get we can state that the right speaks for hierarchy and the left speaks on behalf of those who are oppressed by inequality good we need that dialogue the radical left okay we know from 20th century history that things can go too far on the right no one disputes that and that things can go too far on the left and we also know that when things go too far it's seriously not good right so when things went too far on the right then we had 120 million people died in the Second World War and when things went too far on the left we had god only knows how many people murdered as a consequence of internal repression at least a hundred million and we risk putting the entire planet we risk putting the planet into flames okay so that's the consequence all right so now in the aftermath of world war two let's say we've come to some sort of sociological agreement I would say that you can identify the radical right wingers when people make claims of racial superiority you put them in a box and you say well you're outside of acceptable political discourse and so you saw that with will William F Buckley in the 60s when he started his conservative review he dissociated himself from the David Duke types and you saw it more recently with people for example like ben shapiro who immediately distanced himself from the Charlottesville types okay so now we we kind of have a sense of where you've crossed the damn line in your ethno-nationalism right as soon as you move into the racial superiority domain at the superiority domain it's like no you've got to be dangerous all right here's a question where the hell do you cross the line on the left exactly well the answer is who knows well that's not a very good answer I would say it's incumbent it's incumbent on people in the center and in the moderate left to say look things can go too far on the left and here's how we know that's happened and that hasn't happened at all now I think there's a reason for that I think there's a technical reason as well as a motivational reason too technical reasons it's harder for people on the left to draw boundaries because people on the left aren't boundary drawing types their boundary dissolving types temper mentally speaking so that's a problem the second problem is is it doesn't look to me like there is a smoking pistol on the Left that's as obvious as racial superiority doctrines you know it's like there in Canada there's a lot of push for this triumvirate of radical ideas diversity inclusivity and equity which diversity it's like well who's against that it's like being against poverty inclusivity well yes of course we want people included equity that's a more bitter pill to swallow because that's equality of outcome and for me that's a marker it's like if you're talking about equality of outcome you've gone too far and if you're talking about diversity inclusivity and equality of outcome equity then you've gone too far and you might disagree you might disagree that's fine disagree if that isn't the marker for going too far then what's the marker because obviously you can go too far and obviously that's not good and to close on that I would also say to the people on the moderate left if you want your doctrines to have purchase and to continue to speak for the for those who stack up at the bottom of inevitable hierarchies then you owe it to yourself to dissociate yourself from the dangerous radicals because otherwise they invalidate your ideas and that doesn't seem to be you'd think the Democrats might have learned that in the last election but they haven't they haven't learned that so well so that's my spiel about those comments I guess ok so you've changed the lives of many young people and adults in this country in the Anglosphere in the West in the world you have a massive following my girlfriend's parents call you uncle Jordan for example on the other hand and this is just a fact tons of people on the left as we've just seen because of your power and also your frontal attack on a lot of their views hate you and viciously caricature you then there are these other figures like Jonathan Hite and Robbie George they have a lot in common with you they are respected academics they are at least relatively well known outside academia they share your critiques of the humanities of student activists of trends in Western culture they don't have nearly the following that you do but they also aren't as hated or viciously caricatured moreover they may have changed the minds of more people on college campuses that is people on campuses who have some sympathy for left activists or who may agree with much of what you say but react negatively to confrontation and harsh criticism height has appealed to such individuals by taking the Dale Carnegie win friends and influence people approach so my questions are first do you agree with this dichotomy second did you consciously choose one path over the other and if so why well I mean with height for example was more power to him as far as I'm concerned you know he has a different temperament than me he's he's more introverted he's less volatile I would say he's probably more agreeable or more polite anyways and I think that what he's doing is extremely effective especially from the perspective of very carefully documenting the empirical facts about the ideological what the ideological a left-leaning ideological tilt of campuses which is something that needs to be explored on empirical ground so so like I said more power to him and there's nothing wrong with being reasonable I guess and then you asked well is that the right pathway for me it's like well apparently not what happened when I made my initial videos was that you know I had I had spoke I talked to people a lot I've worked with people a lot about negotiation it's one of the things that I specialized in I would say in my clinical and consulting practice was teaching people how to negotiate and I can tell you some things about negotiating that you might find interesting and useful the first is you can't negotiate from a position of weakness so all of you who are going to be developing your careers in the future you need to understand that if you want to push your career forward well first of all that you do in fact have to push it forward because if you're competent and silent you will be ignored and and you know that's rough because you might think well people should reward you because you're confident and yes of course they should but if you're competent in silent then you're just not you're not a problem you're just part of the background that's keeping everything functioning and so if you want to develop your career in terms of promotion say and salary is like you have to be competent and you have to be strategic and to be strategic when you negotiate for a new position or for a new salary you have to be able to say if you don't give me what I want then something you don't like will happen to you and what that means it's not a physical threat it's it's that you have an option you know so you have your CV your resume an order right you're educated and competent and desirable to people outside of your immediate job you're willing to instantly put yourself on in the job market and undergo the stress of finding a new position and undergoing interviews and all of that and you have that all planned out so that when you go talk to the person that you're negotiating with with regards to your salary you're credible and you see because they it's very seldom that you're talking to the person who's at the top of the pecking order let's say what you need to do that with them is to tell them a story they can tell to their boss to make you not a problem and one good story is look we really need this person because they're hyper competent and they have a better offer it's like well then you're gonna win the negotiation but if you go in there with no power well you're gonna lose obviously so the first thing that you need to know if you're gonna negotiate is that you have to be able to say no and what no means is that you're not going to do it and when I made the videos about Bill c16 I thought it through and I thought there's no damn way I'm following this law I don't care what happens and I didn't say that lightly I thought it through I thought okay well let's assume the worst case scenario in the worst case scenario would be that a student would report me to the Ontario Human Rights Commission and then they would do an investigation and they would find me guilty because the Ontario Human Rights Commission finds 99% of the people brought to it guilty because that's what totalitarians do and then I would refuse to pay the fine or cooperate with whatever the reeducation they would put me through would be and then that would move to civil court and then I would be fine for contempt and then it would you know then the whole legal capacity would unfold and I thought well I could either do that or I could allow the government to regulate my speech it's like nope that's not happening so you might think about that as confrontational and it is confrontational it's like there isn't a goddamn thing that can be done to me to make me allow the government to compel my speech that's not happening and the reason for that I believe the reason for that is because I spent decades studying totalitarianism it's not good and the way the totalitarian states develop is that people give up their right to be their right to to exist with their own thoughts they lie they that's what happens is that individuals the individual sacrifice their own souls to the dictates of the state and then everything goes badly sideways it's like and you think well how much evidence for that do we need you know you're looking at a quarter of a billion deaths it's like isn't that enough well the people that I read who were profound Viktor Frankl is a good example for beginners if you want to read about this sort of thing he wrote a book called man's search for meaning and Frankel and also Solzhenitsyn and a variety of other commentators as well who really looked into what happened in in in both in Nazi Germany and and in the in the communist States their conclusion was universal is that the lies of this state the lies and tyranny of the state are aided and abetted by the moral sacrifice of the individual it's not top-down the Nazis are telling you what to do and you're all innocent and obeying that's not how it works is you you falsify your your being bit by bit and you end up where you don't want to be and that's a bad idea and if you're interested in that there's a great book but called ordinary man you read that and you won't be the same person afterwards so I would beware of reading it but it's a story about these policemen in Germany so they were middle-aged guys you know and they they'd been they grew up and were socialized before the Nazis came to power so they're just your typical middle-class policemen and they were brought into Poland after the Nazis had marched through and and charged with keeping order in the occupied state and they knew their commander knew that it was going to be brutal because they were in war a war time and they regard the Jews for example as enemies and so there was going to be a fair bit of rounding up with all that with all of what that implied and the commander told the policemen that they could go home if they wanted to that they didn't have to participate in this and then what ordinary men does is document document their transformation from ordinary policemen the sort of people that you know two guys who were taking naked pregnant women out into the middle of fields and shooting them in the back of the head and it documents one step at a time how an ordinary person turns into someone like that you think well we don't want that sort of thing to happen anymore well then you don't want to be that sort of person that's how it's fixed and if you're not gonna be that sort of person then you don't take the first steps because the first steps lead you down a pathway that at least in principle you don't want to go so well I think part of what makes me combat himse compared to someone like height is that I spent years looking at the worst things there are to look at and I've learned from that and I've learned certainly learned things that I won't do and one of them is I won't let the government regulate my speech it's a mistake I don't care what compassionate principles hypothetically motivate that move it was an unprecedented in English common law that move and was all buried under this leftist compassion which is mostly it's mostly a lie so I have reasons I think other than those that motivate someone like Jonathan hight to be particularly passionate about this issue on the subject of totalitarianism I wanted to do something very quickly so I'm guessing that even though most people in the room have negative views of both men they have a more intensely negative view of Hitler than of Stalin I'm guessing almost everyone in the room has a far more negative visceral reaction to the swastika than to the hammer and sickle some of the protesters at your event at McMaster University stood behind a banner with a hammer and sickle you've said that a hammer and sickle is no funnier than a swastika that quote the reprehensible the reprehensible ideologies that are based in fundamental Marxism killed at least a hundred million people in the 20th century unquote I've discussed this proposition with numerous people in recent months and almost no one seems to buy it no one disputes the body count under socialist regimes few dispute that Stalin was a vicious murderer roughly on par with Hitler in moral terms most think that communism should not be tried again in other words they share your critique of the argument that previous communist experiments did not represent proper communism and that proper communism should be tried nevertheless they still disagree with you that we should react as negatively to the hammer and sickle as we do to the swastika why because they say the two ideologies are not morally comparable National Socialism is much worse morally than Marxism or Marxism Leninism so what do you say to this well I would say the first thing is that it's highly probable that you were talking to intellectuals students well we'll call them budding intellectuals it's it is a it is a mystery you know it's a it's a it is a mystery because it is the case that there is something about the Nazi doctrine that seems to have a visceral impact that that the Communist doctrine doesn't have and I said when I opened my room remarks tonight that it might be the issue of racial superiority you know it's a it's something single that you can put your finger on whereas what's happening on the left that's horrifying is murky it might even be multi-dimensional like maybe there isn't a single radical leftist idea that's murderous like the racial superiority doctrine maybe it's a combination of three or maybe at some set of four out of ten who knows so and because of that it doesn't seem as repugnant and there was also a universalizing tendency among the communists that seemed to be less morally reprehensible than the ethno-nationalism of the nazis so you know you think to go back to 1914 it's complicated but if you go back to say 1918 at the time of the Russian Revolution it's not like the Communists knew that their attempts to bring about the socialist utopia would be doomed to absolute murderous catastrophe right they were they were working in in ignorance now it's not that simple because by that time Dostoevsky had already written the devil's the possessed and he outlined very very clearly what he thought would happen if people like that got the reins of power and Nietzsche had done the same thing in his writing so people knew that there was something toxic let's say and deadly about the doctrine but it hadn't been played out on the world stage but now it's like well this is why I said what I said at the beginning fine you know if I don't know exactly how to make the moral distinction but it's a distinction that has to be made I think that people who apologize who say something like I think I think that that it's virtually I don't know if it's as reprehensible to say that a given ethnic group should be consigned to the fire and to say that wasn't real communism but they're damn close and when I hear someone say that wasn't real communism I know what they mean what they mean was if I was the dictator in Stellan shoes I personally would have brought in the utopia that's what that statement means and or it means an ignorant of history that's so utterly appalling that that any political statement made on behalf of that person whatsoever should immediately be followed by a paroxysm of extreme embarrassment I just want to be clear that these students were conceding that they don't agree that they share your critique they don't share it enough ok fair enough I just want so they would more or less agree with what you just said I think about it's not okay to say those regimes weren't proper communism and the proper communism should be tried they still dispute though that socialism as an ideology is on par with Nazism so I just wanted to make well we could say communism let's say we could say radical leftist ideology as I said already there are reasons for the left and the right wing right the right wing stands for hierarchy and the left wing stands for the for those who are displaced by hierarchy right an endless problem but that doesn't mean that still leaves it in the camp of the people speaking on behalf of egalitarianism to figure out just what the hell went wrong and to take some responsibility for it you know it's no joke and we see these things play out continually still look at what happened to Venezuela here's a fun story do you know that it is now illegal for physicians to list lists starvation as the cause of death for a Venezuelan child in a hospital that's how they're dealing with the fact of starvation right you just make it illegal to have that diagnosed as your cause of death that'll solve the problem it's like you know we have a group of of well-meaning socialists in Canada who just produce something called the leap manifesto a couple of years ago and it's a pretty radical it's a pretty radical document they're trying to move our Socialist Party the NDP new democratic party towards the acceptance of this leap manifesto which doesn't look like it's going to happen but they were all radical promoters of the Venezuelan government before everything went like badly sideways you know I think the average Venezuelan now has lost 17 pounds that's not because they were put on a voluntary dieting program right it's not good and so if you're tilting towards the left and your temper mentally inclined that way and half the population is then you have an ethical problem on your on your hands which is how do you segregate yourself from the radical policies that produce the catastrophes of the 20th century and you can't just say well that's not my problem it's like well okay if it's not your problem now it certainly might become your problem in the future so and I would say it's actually everybody's problem in the aftermath of the 20th century it's everybody's problem so so it's it's it's it's complicated like there is a genuine desire like I worked for a Socialist Party for quite a while when I was a kid you know when I saw both sides of it I saw some very very admirable people I was privy for for a variety of chance reasons to the leadership of the Socialist Party in Canada at the provincial and the national L I met the people who ran the provinces some of the provinces and who ran the party and a lot of them were really admirable people like they'd spent their whole life I would say working on behalf of the working class you know so they were genuine labour leaders and and and and there was also a lot done in Canada on the left that looks like it was actually pretty good standard work week the income you know that the establishment of pensions the introduction of our health care system which I would say probably overall works better than the American system although not at the upper end and they were working hard on behalf of people who had working-class lives but then I also encountered the sort of low-level activist types and I didn't have any respect for them at all I just thought they were pea dish and resentful and irritable and that those two things exist in a very uneasy coalition on the west there's care for the poor and hatred for the successful and those two things aren't the same at all and it looks to me like one of the things that really happened when the Communist doctrines were brought into play and it also by the way we did the multinational experiment right it doesn't matter where you put these policies into play the same bloody outcome occurred didn't matter whether it was Russia or China or Cambodia or Vietnam or to pick a random African country or Cuba or Venezuela for that matter it was an unmitigated catastrophe and so to me that's experiment plus replication enough enough well that has to be dealt with and it's not an delay that intellectual left in the way has been absolutely appalling in their socks silence on the Communist catastrophe like for my students a lot of my students really haven't heard about anything that happened in the Soviet Union in any detail until they take my personality class in the second year of university it's like well what the hell why are they learning about that in a personality class in the second year of university that's not that should be first and foremost in in their in their historical knowledge what happened in the 20th century I mean it was almost fatal what happened and we still haven't completely recovered from it right I think isn't your President Donald Trump going to talk to like insane totalitarian number one sometime here in the near future but that's still a soviet-era State those people are armed to the teeth you know they have the weapon they they have weaponry that could easily take you out and so we're not I don't know if you know do you know what happens if you blast a single hydrogen bomb 100 miles above the United States just one you lose all your electronics right they're all done tractors cars trains subways computers phones all of them burn out and that's it so we're not done with this yet and and the Korean State North Korea as an emblematic representative of the communist catastrophe you know everyone there starves there's millions of people died 20 years ago it's had not got any better so it's not like it's not like we solved this problem and there's a deafening silence on the intellectual side of the spectrum with regards to what happened on the egalitarian left and there's no excuse for it so so somewhat relatedly I think it's fair to say that even though you have criticized segments of both the left social justice warriors and the right the alt-right your critical commentary over the last year and a half has focused significantly more on the left than on the right a lot of people I've talked to here at Lafayette at Lafayette take issue with that they say that we're so far from a Marxist takeover of our culture and political institutions but to suggest otherwise is to engage in a classic kind of right-wing exaggeration and hysteria that we've seen before in Western countries in the early to mid 20th century they also say and this is important to them that the nationalist authoritarian right poses more of a threat to freedom of the individual than the left does today as it has in the West since the early 20th century they argue that the left may have sway in the Academy and large segments of the media but nationalist right parties figures and movements with authoritarian tendencies have risen become potent and often been victorious in recent years and they point to trump brexit the National Front pointing to Trump is rather pointless I mean I don't know what Trump is but to think of him as a figure of the radical right is a little on the absurd side so I mean we are polarizing and so who god only knows where the ultimate danger will come from if it's the ethno nationalist saan the right or if it's the radical leftists on the left who knows right I I suspect to some degree that's a matter of happenstance I mean that's what you'd expect if you looked at 20th century history but I emerged out of the Academy and the Academy like there aren't right-wing people in the Academy not to speak of that's completely that's thoroughly documented and it's certainly not the case in a country like Canada there's no threat whatsoever in Canada from from the radical right it's like I don't know if you rounded up everybody who was in the radical right in Canada you might be able to scrape up like what three or four thousand people if you're really like if you really worked at it you know so I just don't see that at least in my own country that's just a non-issue it's it's a non-starter I mean the last time there was any kind of radical right-wingers in Canada was probably in Quebec in the 1950s and maybe from the 1930s to the 1950s but it's never been a political issue what about the AFD or the Italian I remember the name of the Italian party the National Front in France where would you put would you oh well I mean you're in Europe it's more there's more polarization I would say but the Europeans also have problems that we don't have you know they've been they've been struggling with the consequences of non ending violence in the Middle East and the wave of refugees that has emerged as a consequence of that and so the situation in Europe is different and I would say there is more movement and activity on the right so but and you know I'm not a admirer of identity politics well and that's for the reasons I brought up to begin with think that you have to decide conceptually psychologically familiarly and socially what your vision of a human being is and if your vision of a human being is essentially tribal so that you're defined by your collective identity in some manner then you're going to play identity politics on the Left you're gonna play identity politics on the right it's like well I think the identity politics types on the Left pose a bigger threat in my country it's not so obvious in your country because you guys you're your political landscape is more balanced I would say than ours if the radical right posed a threat to the Academy which they most decidedly do not then I would be just as upset about that and so I think again it's it's part and parcel of the radical left failure to take or the left's in general failure to take responsibility for the radicals it's like oh well why aren't you criticizing equally on both sides well that the threat doesn't exist equally on both sides not in my country so I think identity politics is murderous game no matter who plays it you know and on the Left it's well we've already talked about that so what's wrong on the right well you stand up and wave your flag and talk about your ethnic identity or your racial identity and you take pride in that it's like what the hell did that have to do with you yeah god damn loser you know it's like you're you're one of the great heroes of the past are you that's why you're standing up and waving your flag it's no you're not you're your identify with your group because you don't have anything of your own to offer and so it's pathetic and I've said that many times and in my lectures too and people know this if they've actually watched my University lectures I spend tremendous amount of time and have for 30 years convincing my students that if they had been in Nazi Germany there was a very high probability that rather than being Oskar Shindler and rescuing the Jews they would have been a Nazi persecutor because there's like five oscar schindler's and like many million Nazis so you can do the math for yourself and if you don't think that if you think that you would have been one of the few heroes then you're either someone truly remarkable or you're unbelievably deluded and so I would suspect that you're in the unbelievably deluded camp because truly remarkable people are rare and I've really I've really seen this in the last year or two because one of the things I have noted like I knew that people were timid you know and I knew why it's dangerous to stick your head up above the rest I mean it's predator avoidance strategy to keep your head down and I mean that technically it truly is to blend in with the crowd is a predatory avoidance strategy that's what fish do in schools of fish like it's very low-level behavior and if you stick your head up there's some real danger and the advantage to that is that people are pretty civilized and they go along with the group and that's that's a good thing because you know we should be civilized and go along with the group but it's a really bad thing when the group goes sideways and I've had many people colleagues and but many other people to say wow really we agree with what you're doing but we can't really take the risk of standing up and saying so it's like well now and then so most people fall into that camp when I went to Queen's University a month ago and was subject to that chilling demonstration I would say we're the radicals climbed up into the stained-glass window window wells and pounded you know unendingly for ninety minutes well we were all inside I had a professor write me the day before and say look my wife and I work at the University we really support what what you're doing but we can't even risk coming to the talk because what if the students see complain it's like well yeah there's courage for you man there's courage for you you know and so but that's par for the course and it's it's unsurprising to some degree but well but anyways on the right it's like it's an excuse by people on the left not to take the things that I'm saying seriously that's what it is it's like well he's not attacking the right as much it's like well they're not after me they're not trying to close down my speech so I took that personally so had it been right-wingers coming after me well it would have been the same thing so it's a foolish objection I think for decades ethnic groups have on average scored significantly differently on IQ tests according to psychology professor Richard hare whom you interviewed on your channel YouTube there is no scientific consensus on the causes of these average differences in IQ test scores yet according to hare psychologists do generally agree that general intelligence exists that IQ measures it well and in a non culturally biased way that IQ is highly predictive of success in educational and professional terms and that for decades ethnic groups have on average scored significantly differently so assuming this is true should we talk about it Sam Harris raised this question in a podcast conversation with Charles Murray some argue that we should not talk about this as doing so could fuel the racial supremacist movements that you mentioned with potentially horrific consequences others mainly on the intellectual dark web and to a very limited extent in academia think we should talk about this topic because average differences in IQ scores have existed for decades they may have played a role in generating the disparate educational and professional outcomes that we observe and care about and thus that we cannot properly analyze these disparate outcomes unless we do talk about this subject Oh geneticist David Reich recently argued in the New York Times that if scientists do not openly discuss the biological basis of race pseudo scientists could fill the vacuum with dangerous consequences furthermore you professor Peterson are highly critical of the oppression narrative that permeates segments of the Academy and activists left and knowledge about average differences in IQ scores between ethnic groups while tough to assimilate could puncture this narrative so the question is what is your view on all that I've just said Jesus you guys already did take a long time to prepare these questions didn't you all right so when I went to Harvard I came from McGill and I had spent a lot of time with my advisor there and a research team that he had trying to understand the genesis of antisocial behavior and among adolescents mostly so well as kids as well antisocial behavior is very persistent so if you have a child whose conduct disordered at the age of four the probability that they will be criminal at the age of fifteen or twenty is extremely high it's unbelievably stable it's a very dismal literature because you see these early onset aggressive kids and and it's persistent and then you look at the intervention literature and you throw up your hands because no interventions work and believe me psychologists have tried everything you could possibly imagine and a bunch of things that you can't in order to ameliorate that so we're really interested in trying to understand for example if you're antisocial by the age of four then there isn't an intervention that seems to be effective so and the standard penological theory is really quite horrifying in this regard because what you see is that male aggression Peaks around the age of 15 and then it declines fairly precipitously and and and sort of normalizes again by the age of 27 and standard phenological Theory essentially is this cold-hearted it's like if you have a if you have someone who's a multiple offender you just throw them in prison till they're 27 then they age out of it and that's all there is to it that's that's what we've got now there's some downside to that because there's a corollary literature that suggests that the worst thing that you can do with antisocial people is to group them together which is what we do in prisons so so that's a whole mess anyways one of the things we were doing was trying to see if there might be cognitive predictors of antisocial behavior and so we used this battery of neuropsychological tests that was put together at the Montreal Neurological Institute took about 11 hours to administer and hypothetically assess prefrontal cortical function and we computerized out reduced it to about 90 minutes and then assessed antisocial adolescents in in Montreal and found out that they did show deficits in the problem-solving ability that we associated with with prefrontal ability when I got to Harvard I thought well that's interesting we could use the neuro psych battery to predict negative behavior perhaps we could use it to predict positive behavior so I thought well what if we turned the neuro psych battery and over and thought well can we predict grades for example because you know that's a decent thing to predict so we ran a study we ran a study that looked at Harvard kids University of Toronto kids line workers at a Milwaukee Factory and managers and executives at the same Factory and what we found was that the average score across these neuropsychological tests they were kind of like games they were game-like you know so in one in one test you had there were five lights in the middle of the screen and a box was associated with each light and you had to learn by trial and error which box was associated with with each light that was one of the tests so we took people's average score across the tests because they seemed to clump together into a single structure you can do you can find that out statistically if you take a bunch of tests you can find out how they clump together statistically by looking at their patterns of correlations and you might get multiple clumps which is what happens with personality research where you get five or you might get a sing clomp which is what happens in cognitive research and we got a single clump essentially and then we were trying to figure out if at the same time I was reading the literature on performance prediction and there's an extensive literature on performance prediction a lot of it generated by the Armed Forces by the way indicating that IQ is a very good predictor of long-term life success and so here's the here's the general rule if your job is simple which means you do the same thing every day then IQ predicts how fast you'll learn the job but not how well you you do it but if your job is complex which means that the demands change on an ongoing basis then the best predictor of success is general cognitive ability and and I learned that the general cognitive ability test clumped together into a single factor that's fluid intelligence or IQ and then we didn't know if the factor that we had found was the same factor as IQ and and we still haven't really figured out whether or not that was the case because it kind of depends on how you do the analysis but anyways I I got deeply into the performance prediction literature and I found oh well if you wanted to predict people's performance in life there's there's a couple of things you need to know you need to know their general cognitive ability if they're going to do a complex job you need to know their trait conscientiousness some of you might have heard that rebranded as grit in a very corrupt act by the way because it's a good predictor of long-term life success freedom from negative emotion low neuroticism is another predictor but it's sort of third on the hierarchy and then openness to experience which is a personality trait is associated with with expertise in creative domains the evidence that now I should tell you there's such a complicated question I should tell you how to make an IQ test is actually really easy and you need to know this to actually understand what IQ is so imagine that you generated a set of 10,000 questions okay about anything it could be math problems they could be general knowledge they could be vocabulary they could be multiple choice it really doesn't matter what they're about as long as they require abstraction to solve so they'd be formulated linguistically but mathematically would also apply and then you have those 10,000 questions now you take random set of a hundred of those questions and you've give them to a thousand people and all you do is sum up the answers right from so some people are gonna get most of them right and some some of them are gonna get most of them wrong you just rank order the people in terms of their score correct that for age and you have IQ that's all there is to it and what you'll find is that no matter which random set of a hundred questions you take the people at the top of one random set will be at the top of all the others and in with very very very high consistency so one thing you need to know is that if any social science claims whatsoever are correct then the IQ claims are correct because the IQ claims are more psychometrically rigorous than any other phenomena phenomenon that's been discovered by social scientists now the IQ literature is a dismal literature no one likes it here's why here's an example so here's a little here's a fun little fact for you for liberals and conservatives alike because conservatives think there's a job for everyone if people just get off their asses and get to work and liberals think while you can train anyone to do anything it's like no there isn't a job for everyone and no you can't train everyone to do everything that's wrong and here's one of the consequences of that so as I mentioned the Armed Forces has done a lot of work on IQ and they started back in 1919 and the reason they did that was because well for obvious reasons say let's say there's a war and you want to get qualified people into the officer positions as rapidly as possible or you'll lose so that's a reason and now the Armed Forces has experimented with IQ test since 1919 and in the last 20 years a law was passed as a consequence of that analysis which was that it was illegal to induct anyone into the Armed Forces who had an IQ of less than 83 now the question is why and the answer was all of that effort put in by the armed forces indicated that if you had an IQ of 83 or less there wasn't anything that you could be trained to do in the military that wasn't positively counterproductive now you got to think about that a because the military is chronically desperate for people right it's not like they're it's not like people are lining up to be inducted right they have to go out and recruit and it's not easy and so they're desperate to get their hands on every body they can possibly manage and then especially in wartime but also in peacetime but then there was another reason to which was the Armed Forces was also set up from a policy perspective to take people in the underclass let's say and train them and move them up at least into the working class or maybe the middle class so there's a policy element to it too and so even from that perspective you could see that the military is desperate to bring people in but well with an IQ of 83 or less it's not happening okay so how many people have an IQ of 83 or less 10 percent now if that doesn't if that doesn't hurt you to here then you didn't hear it properly because what it implies is that in a complex society like ours and one that's becoming increasingly complex there isn't anything for 10 percent of the population to do all right well what are we gonna do we're gonna ignore that we're gonna run away from that and believe me we have every reason to or we're gonna contend with the fact that we need to figure out how it is how it is how it might be possible to find a place for people on the lower end of the general cognitive distribution to take their productive and and worthwhile place in society and that isn't just gonna be a matter of dumping money down the hierarchy because giving people who have nothing to do money isn't helpful it doesn't work it's not that simple well so that's kind of an answer to the question of whether or not we should deal with uh with IQ forthrightly it's like if you can find a flaw in that logic like just go right ahead it's not like I was thrilled to death to discover all of this by nose by no stretch of the imagination was that the case so so what so IQ is reliable invalid that's the first thing it's more reliable and valid than any other psychometric test ever designed by social scientists by a factor of about three that's fact number one fact number two is it predicts long-term life outcome at about 0.3 0.4 which leaves about 85 percent 70 to 85 percent of the story unexplained but it's still the best thing that we have well it's also the case that in places like Great Britain when IQ tests were first introduced they were actually used by the Socialists and they were used to identify poor people who had potential cognitive potential and to move them into higher into Institutes of higher education so there's an upside you know a social upside as well ethnic differences this is something you can't say anything about without without immediately being killed so I'm hesitant to broach the topic but I'll tell you one thing that I did in the last week that's relevant to this so though and this just shows you how complex the problem is first of all we should point out that race is a very difficult thing to define because racial boundaries aren't tight right so and so when you talk about racial differences in IQ you you're faced with the thorny problem of defining race and that's a big problem from a scientific perspective but we'll leave that aside and I wrote an article this week somebody stood up at one point one of my talks and vice bless their hearts took this particular question and used it as an indication of the quality of the people who are my so-called followers and by the way the quality of my so-called followers is pretty damn high and you can find that out quite rapidly just by going looking at the YouTube comments which are head and shoulders above what the standards said of YouTube comments I can tell you that so someone asked me they're both the Jewish Question right and the the implication it was actually someone Jewish and the implication was that Jews are over-represented in positions of authority and power and and I was had just spoken for like an hour and a half and you know this guy had an axe to grind and I thought there's no goddamn way I'm getting into this at the moment and so I I said I I said I can't answer that question but that's not a very good answer so I wrote a blog post this week and I said look here's that here's the situation all right Jews are over-represented in positions of power and authority but then let's open our eyes a little bit and think for like two or three seconds and think hey guess what they're also over-represented in positions of competence and it's not like we have more geniuses than we know what to do with and if the Jews happen to be producing more of them which they are by the way then that's a pretty good thing for the rest of us so let's not confuse competence with power and authority even though that's a favorite trick of the radical leftists who always failed to make that distinction well why does this over representation occur because it does it also there's also over representation in political movements including radical political movements okay why well answer one Jewish conspiracy okay that's not a very good answer we've had we've used that answer before all right but but do we have an alternative well here's an alternative the average Ashkenazi IQ is somewhere between 110 and 150 which is about one standard deviation above the population average and so what that means is that the average Ashkenazi / European Jew has an IQ that's higher than 85% of the population that's a lot higher now that doesn't make that much difference in the middle of the distribution okay but geniuses don't exist at the middle of the distribution they exist at the tails of the distribution and you don't need much of a move at the mean to produce walloping differences at the tails and the tails are important because a lot of where we draw we draw exceptional people from the exceptions right so here's an example of the same thing most engineers are male why because men are more interested in things and women are more interested in people and you might say well that's socio-cultural it's like no it's not and we know that because if you stack up countries by their by their egalitarian social policies which you can do quite if effectively and then you look at the over-representation of men in STEM fields the over-representation increases as the country's become more egalitarian so it's not socio-cultural okay now men aren't that much more interested in things than women it's one standard deviation which is about the same difference by the way between the population norm and they ask you now Zhi Zhu's but if you're looking at the person the one person in 20 or the one person in 50 who's most who's hyper interested in things and that's likely to become an engineer then most of them are men here's another example of the same thing men are more aggressive than women now you might ask how much and answer that is best place to look at that is in Sweden where the Galit Aryan policies have been laid out for a long period of time and you can you can get a more direct inference about biology if you took a random man and around and woman out of the population and you had to bet on who was more aggressive and you bet on the man you'd be right 60 percent of the time so that's not that much right it's it's deviates from 50/50 but it's not like ninety ten it's 60/40 okay so so what does that mean well we got a tail problem here again let's say that now you decide to go out on to the extremes of aggression and you identify the most aggressive one in a hundred persons they're all men guess who's in prison those people that's why most of the people in prison are men and so this is elementary part of the problem in our society is that we don't understand statistics we don't understand that you can have relatively small differences at the population level that produce walloping consequences at the tails of the distribution okay so back to IQ one final thing to say about IQ the ethnic differences are difficult to dispense with it's not easy to make them go away you can say well the tests aren't culture fair well here's a test of that so imagine you you test group a we an IQ test and you test Group B with an IQ test and then you look at their actual performance in whatever you're predicting if the test was biased against ethnic group a then it would under predict their performance and that doesn't happen now you could say well there's systemic bias in the performance measures and the potential measures and that's a possibility all right now one other thing about that there's a real danger in the ethnicity IQ debate and the the danger is that we confuse intelligence with value or that we include we we confused intelligence with yet with human value that's a better way of thinking about it and one of the things that we're going to have to understand here is that that's a mistake is that being more intelligent doesn't make you a better person that's not the case it makes me you more useful for complex cognitive operations but you can be pretty damn horrific as a genius son of a bitch right it's morally neutral and we also know that from the psychometric data by the way there doesn't seem to be any relationship whatsoever between intelligence and virtue and so if it does turn out that nature and the fates do not align with our egalitarian presuppositions which is highly probable we shouldn't therefore make the mistake of assuming that if group a or person a is lower on one of these attributes than group B or person B that that is somehow reflective of their intrinsic value as human beings that's a big mistake now that's I don't have anything else to say about that okay so I had three more questions and so maybe slightly shorter answers to these three like maybe around hopefully there's simpler questions Avra average five minutes okay and then and then we will open it up so another taboo is to celebrate European culture multiculturalists get pretty unhappy when Europeans start expressing in their culture or heritage many especially on the left do not draw much of a distinction at least in practice between European pride and white supremacy you care about freedom of the individual the individuals freedom to think to speak to associate in short to act as he sees fit without external compulsion as long as he doesn't infringe on the similar liberties of others professor Ricardo duchesne a historical sociologist and professor at the University of New Brunswick argues that quote individualism is a unique attribute of European peoples quote it has been exported to some degree to other nations but in my view it is not something that comes to them naturally so he continues quote you can't play the game of we're all individuals we have to affirm and be proud of our ethnic identity and heritage to preserve the West's curious individualism if Europeans become minorities in the West he argues the founding idea of the West that no entity not an individual not a community not the state can justly deprive an individual of life liberty or property by force no matter what the individuals race class or religion I wouldn't be surprised if Duchene when he made this statement had you in mind look the medieval Europeans identified seven deadly sins for a reason and one of them was pride it's like let's make the presumption I do believe that for for reasons that aren't obvious that the West has got some things right we've got the sovereignty of the individual right that's the most fundamental thing we've got right we've articulated that I think you know in a remarkable way not only theologically philosophically in our body of laws in our societies and one of the consequences of that as it's had its effect on the rest of the world is that everyone is getting richer quite fast and that's a really good thing okay having said that it's like am i proud of that it's like I didn't do that what the hell pride what's that that's not the right response how about responsibility for that how would that be it's like you're part of this this great and unlikely set of propositions this strange set of propositions that says that in some ineffable manner the poorest person is as valuable as the king it's like how the hell did we ever figure that out that's an impossible thing to think and yet that's the that's the bedrock of our legal system that's nothing to be proud of that's something to tremble before to take on as a an ethical burden and not to wave a flag for how wonderful you are that you happen to have the same skin color as some of the people who thought that up it's not the right response it's like it's it's to open your eyes and recognize that as a miracle and a relatively relatively new miracle on the world stage and to and to participate in the process of upholding that in your personal and your public life that's not pride in European tradition like when I go to Europe and I love going to Europe and the European cities are there are unbelievable masterpieces which is why they're completely flooded by pilgrims right tourists pilgrims who go there to look at the beauty soak I don't feel pride about that I feel I feel like I have something to live up to that's not the same thing man and so these right-wingers and this it's like look what we've done it's like no it's not you that did that that's something man you got him you're going to have your act together before you would dare to say well that was me it's like yeah sure sure it was you Yeah right no that's hard to stand up and take your place in that in that kind of historical process that unlikely miraculous historical process not to just feel ashamed at the way that you're presently constituted in the face of that means that you're you're deluded and you're using your your your great fortune at being a beneficiary of that system look at what we've got here this great piece that we're inhabiting right now you're using your unearned the unearned gift that's been granted to you as a source of personal pride in your accomplishments due to your skin it's like no not good not a good argument so and that doesn't mean that well there's nothing valuable about European culture there's plenty there's plenty about it that's value it's not even so clear to what degree its European I mean it came out of the Middle East you know I mean who it's so muddle-headed that you hardly know where to start so hopefully that was less than five minutes there we go dispensed with the radical right-wingers in four minutes I've heard a number of interesting things about Islam from you and one of your intellectual soul mates Camille Paglia Talia says that men and women benefit in many ways from living in largely separate worlds as they did in traditional European societies and obviously as they do in much of the Muslim world today relatedly palea considers passionate masculinity a critical force for defending sustaining and advancing civilization and she argues the passionate masculinity while virtually moribund in the Western middle and upper classes is alive and well in the Muslim world you have expressed some sympathy for the Muslim critique of the West it's godlessness its spiritual void its materialism it's technology induced removal from life's elemental realities you've said it is extraordinarily naive to believe that the that the differences between European culture and Islamic culture are not about anything fundamental you've expressed concern that Islam is a totalizing system and in a quote that stood out to me you said in a patreon chat on YouTube that in your view quote the only countries in the world that are essentially worth living in in any real sense are the ones that are predicated on the judeo-christian tradition and manifested in the Western body of laws unquote so an open-ended question how would you synthesize your perspective on Islam and the fact that the Muslim populations of Europe and Canada a product of recent immigration are growing and reproducing much faster than the European descended populations in these countries yeah and you guys already did spend a lot of time coming up with troublesome questions didn't you we can see the problem is the problem one of the problems is is that I'm an ignorant man and there's lots of things that I don't know know and I don't know I don't understand Islam I don't know enough about it to be an intelligent commentary on it I've done my best to peck away at the edges but you know it would require multiple years of study to understand the similarities and differences between the two viewpoints it looks to me like what Islam did was take a group of radically disparate tribes and unite them under a single ethos of course the the Muslim civilization expanded rap more rapidly than any other civilization ever had and and and and occupied a very large part of the world which of course it still does perhaps there's something to be said for that unifying tendency there's a problem and maybe this is at the core of the problem there's no distinction between church and state in Islam and there is a distinction between church and state in the West it isn't obvious to me if it's the case that our culture is grounded in an underlying let's call it literary metaphysics something like that a religious metaphysic part of the bedrock of our culture is the idea of the separation between church and state and as far as I can tell that idea doesn't exist in the Muslim world and so I cannot understand how that faith is commensurate with the institutions of the West it doesn't seem to me that there's any evidence that it's commensurate because the number of Islamic democracies is let's call it finite the best example is probably been Turkey and Turkey as far as I can tell isn't doing that well at the moment on the Democratic Front and it looked like the great shining hope and a lot of that was a consequence of secularization you know I've spent a lot of time when I was reading maps of meaning for example looking for commonalities among religious viewpoints and I was able to find deep commonalities I thought between Buddhism and Christianity and Taoism and Christianity and Hinduism and Christianity for that matter was a lot harder when it came to Islam it's not a faith that's opened itself up to me I don't understand it well but I hope that people of goodwill can build a bridge between the two cultures because the alternative is too gloomy to contemplate and finally you've stated quote women are more agreeable by nature than men and agreeable people are compassionate toward those they see as suffering and that seems to include any minority especially when you combine that with a kind of neo-marxist doctrine that claims that anyone who has an advantage swiped it unquote women have been voting for a century now and this you suggested in a patreon chat may help to explain why in the West we've collectively decided that quote egalitarianism and conflict avoidance constitute the two highest virtues and Trump everything else including free speech unquote you've said that in the West today we are perhaps for the first time in history seeing on the political left or on segments of the political left quote what a female totalitarianism would look like unquote elaborate I did a research project with one of my students we haven't published it unfortunately for a variety of reasons she's been quite ill and I've been quite preoccupied so those are the two barriers at the moment but the first thing we wanted to do was to find out whether there was actually such a thing as political correctness you can actually do that technically as a social scientist so what you do is this is what we did is we got a group of people together and we collected a whole bunch of statements that seem to be vaguely associated with the idea of political correctness so maybe you could think well it's a media construct and that's fine you can go to analyze media statements and then you can collect ideas that seem to be associated with whatever political correctness is we collected about 400 of those and then we asked we turned them into questions and we asked a thousand people for their opinions then you can do this statistical process called a factor analysis and it's the same thing that pulls out a single factor of IQ from a group of questions for example it's the same thing that produced the Big Five personality model what the factor analysis does is tell you which quest if questions group together so let's say you have opinion a well if you have opinion a if there's a hundred of you everyone who has opinion a also has opinion B an opinion C and if that's the case then those clumped together there's something about them that's the same now what we could have found was that when we analyzed these 400 questions there was like 50 clumps and so that would have blown there's such a thing as political correctness hypothesis out of the water but that isn't what happened we found two clumps one of which looked like something like moderate leftism and the other that looked very much like totalitarian political correctness and it was very very robust finding and and we replicated it as well she did this for her master's thesis by the way and then we looked at what predicted these beliefs first of all that the correlation between the moderate leftist clump of questions and the radical leftist clump of questions actually wasn't very high and so one of the things that we surmise is that there's an actual division on the left between the moderates and the radicals and that's just not played itself out and I think you can actually see that happening the proclivity of the radical leftists to devour themselves right so which happens on a very regular basis or perhaps you can see it in the proclivity of the radical leftists to go after the moderates when the martyrs criticize the radicals whatever so there's two clumps to political correctness both of them were predicted by trade agreeableness which is one of the traits that women score higher on than men it's the antithesis of aggression by the way and by also by being female which was a real shock to us because most of the so let's say females and males differ with regards to some outcome you try to figure out why that is it might be just because they're female but there's all sorts of things associated with being female or male that are like second-order complications what we found almost invariably with the personality literature's if you look at differences between men and women and then you control for personality the differences go away so they're not differences between men and women per se they're differences between personality but with political correctness we found an effective agreeableness which was a pure personality effect and an effect of being female so we also found a pronounced effect of having taken at least one seminar that was politically correct in its orientation so that had a walloping effect so there does seem to be something about political according to that research which you know it's I try to rely on better research but none has been done so that's the best that I thought and and the woman who did this research is very very smart and the study was well done so I think it's credible so and one of the things that's interesting to me about that is that it does tie into the Freudian nightmare of the devouring mother essentially which was Freud's I think signal contribution to psychopathology you know for most most of Freud's clients were people who were struggling to get out of the clutches of their family right and part of that is human beings are very dependent right because well because we have this incredibly long period of development 30 years maybe but certainly 18 years and so it's hard to struggle up from infancy mature and leave as an independent creature and lots of people you see this and if you're a clinician you see this all the time people are so tangled up in families that they can't get away from them and that's the eatable situation that Freud described so so so brilliantly and Jung also elaborated on it a lot of that's a consequence of hyper dependence right it's it's the danger of overprotection now there's a rule if you're dealing with elderly people say in an elder care institution and the rule is something like don't do anything for your charges that they can do themselves it's kind of a harsh rule you know if you see someone struggling with their buttons maybe they're three years old you want to rush over and help it's like well maybe you don't because they need to learn how to do up their damn buttons or if there are 85 they need to maintain their independence as much as possible without your compassion stealing it from them okay well we could hypothesize that there would be no pathology as a consequence of the female rise to political power but given that females are human beings too and we're pretty much rife with pathology the probability that there'll be a downside is like there is two male participation which would be more aggressive and hyper and hyper compressed nests and hyper competition the probability that there would be a downside is extraordinarily high well why wouldn't it be a downside associated with hyper protectiveness it's exactly what you'd expect and then what you see playing out in the political landscape as far as I'm as far as I can tell and maybe I'm wrong is wherever there's an inequality there's an oppressor oppression narrative and so anyone who's stacks up at the bottom of a hierarchy is a victim slash infant and anyone at the top is an oppressor slash predator and I think confusing the hierarchical structure especially when it's based on competence and Western structures of hierarchy are based in large part although not entirely on competence confusing that with a predator infant or oppressor oppression relationship is a very bad idea now having said that it's obvious that every social structure has a tyrannical element like nobody in their right mind is going to say well are cultural structures are a hundred percent fair and just obviously they're not and every single person in this room and some far more than others have been brutalized by the social structure which takes you around the neck shakes the hell out of you and says you better be like everyone else or else right that's the tyrannical aspect of the social structure so you have to be naive not to think that there's a some oppressor oppressor oppression dynamic in a social structure but to make that the only the only element of the discussion is extraordinarily dangerous I mean one of the things that looking at terrible things has done for me is make me a very grateful person like when I walk out on the street and I see that people aren't at each other's throats I really think that that's a miracle like I was just in Manhattan for a week you know if your eyes are open that place is an absolute miracle I mean there's way too many people there seven million people come in a day right it's it's there's way too many people they're just stacked on top of each other these all these massive skyscrapers and they all stand up there they all all standing up all the traffic lights work all the electricity works the buildings aren't blowing up one after another because of natural gas leaks they just don't blow up and people aren't like beating each other to death with clubs in the street it's like so when I go outside in New York I think my god how did we manage this because I'm a Hobbesian by Nature you know I think and it's not like I'm entirely pessimistic but I think that you're naive if you don't think that the natural state of human beings is one of brutality all you have to do is look at history and you'll be convinced of that very rapidly and so the fact that look at us we can all sit in here we don't know who we don't know each other and we're having a contentious political discussion and like nothing terrible is happening and if you don't see that as a miracle then you're way too protected for your own good so well so back to the back to the agreeableness issue there are tyrannies of care the psychoanalyst said the good mother fails and what that means is that when your kid is 3 years old 2 years old and stumbling around making mistakes you back the hell off and you let them make mistakes and you don't view the world as infant and predator and you don't project that onto the political system because it's not a good idea especially if those who especially for those who you're misdiagnosed as predators ok so now we are going to open it up for Q&A all right so the the idea that I've put thought into this is perhaps a optimistic one but as you might imagine you've been a topic of conversation on this campus a lot in the past week or so certainly among a lot of us who discuss politics and one of the things that's sort of United people who like and dislike a lot of your ideas is that we appreciate your defense of free speech and we appreciate you coming here to talk about it with us but one of the things I thought was really interesting is Professor Van Dyke addressed the distinction between you and Jonathan Hite and you mention this is sort of a temperamental one and I think I'm sure that's true to some extent but I noticed you've made a lot of more sort of substantively inflammatory claims like in the course of this lecture you called the authors of Facebook posts demons and totalitarians in past events you've called them things like neo Marxist cultural Marxists you've called them I believe a fifth column that is committing treason against the West and it seems to me this is more than temperamental this is a substantive difference and difference and another thing you've done is that unlike height you have a more sort of comprehensive political program you've talked a lot in defense of traditional hierarchies both gender of class so on though emphatically not race and so it seems like I haven't talked about defense of traditional hierarchies in terms of gender and class that's not true well you've talked about hierarchies in society you've talked yeah that's true I have done that but I haven't justified them on the basis of gender and class you you whatever okay not okay that's an important distinction but you defend hierarchies in society in a way that you talk a lot about the Pareto distribution yes that doesn't mean I defend it well okay no not well okay yes well I mean I think Utah serving that something exists it's the same as defending it how in the world people attack it right thank you don't people attack it apparently attack the hierarchies of society is inherently unjust right well they're they're unjust yes they're also useful okay so you you say they're useful so let's look at this question okay look at it this way you obviously think that it's worthwhile to stand up and ask a question yes so you think that standing up and asking a question is better than not standing up and asking a question yes okay that's a hierarchy yes of values yes okay without the hierarchy of values you couldn't act of course no no not of course wait it's hardly why I'm defending the hierarchy without the hierarchy right what's that there is a hierarchy in society no there's multiple hierarchies in society right yes and you say that they are based at you you invoke the lobster right that they are based in in nature I said that they were inevitable yes yes they were inevitable good but my point is that this is dude you have a broader point than free speech this is one of the things you talk about yes yes okay whereas I think there are some other activists who focus on more exclusive not an activist there's some other individuals who engage in public political speech okay yeah who focused more exclusively on free speech whereas you have other goals in mind but one of the things that you're more inflammatory language and fair it's the substantive disagreement has done I think is its politicized this free speech to an extent that someone like height hasn't I've noticed that when someone hears the term free speech now they associate it with a specific set of thinkers often as viewed as on the extreme right and I think I I think arguably that's the problem of all factions in society because free speech should be a universal value poles certainly suggest that it's coming under increasing threat from both sides but I suppose the heart of my question in addition to of course these other observations is that do you believe free speech is your primary end or do you believe these other points you're making important because I've heard you a bunch of times defend free speech sort of contextually like you've complained about some of the laws in Canada that you dislike that they institutionalize false facts into the law but it gives me that an absolutist defense of free speech makes no preference as to true or false the point is that's something you are being forced to say something it would be as bad as if you were forced to say something that is true because the point of free speech is that you can say whatever you want right no the point of free speech is so that you can think your way through life without running like butt headlong into a brick wall position a versus perfect position B is just as bad right even if one is true and the other is not okay well there was a bunch of questions yes good job by the way well actually what can I just ask you one additional addendum which is I I think the the politicization of free speech is by far the biggest threat to free speech because this is all the radical leftists are the biggest well eluded to in previous questions the substantive threats to free speech in much of the world in Europe certainly I think in the United States as well from the government have come from the radical right and I think it's fair to say that on the specific narrow subset of certain departments on liberal arts colleges it's fair to say a threat comes from the left though its scope is in dispute but my question is do you think that the way you talk about free speech the way you link it to specific issues the way you use inflammatory language and the way you seem to make it you seem to defend a specific set of frees because there's certainly plenty of instances of free speech attacked on the other side that you don't mention as much do you think you risk politicizing this because it seems to me this okay and RIT not think that's a far greater threat because for example the array oh sorry the NRA is a group in the United States the defense guns rights right now you hold it yes we need a question yes okay like I says you're doing fine it's just too much like I can't keep it you think that your behavior risk politicizing it and do you think that polarization is justified I think my behavior risks politicizing it yes I would rather it not be politicized and I'm doing what I can to manage that risk however it's become political in my country because the government implemented compelled speech legislation so I wasn't complaining about that before it Kame political now and there are there is a time even when you're detached in some sense from the political realm that you can't be detached anymore well I'm not happy with the fact that this has become politicized you could say that I haven't done a stellar job in ensuring in every possible manner that this has remained neutrally apolitical probably true you know but I'm not particularly unhappy with the way things have gone so far so and I'm not happy with the radical left and so if they're irritated at me so much the better as far as I'm concerned so have I conducted myself perfectly it's like undoubtedly no so I'm I've got more than my fair share of faults and a temper is one of them but I'm muddling through alright I'm almost well hesitant to ask a question now but so one thing I was wondering about was a lot of people I think would argue that have the values of Western civilization free-speech the right of the individual separation between church and state have developed through not so much in continues with the judeo-christian morality but almost in their overthrow through such things as the Enlightenment the Scientific Revolution and how these values would never have come out of just simply the continuous of the Middle Ages and that judeo-christian morality but my understanding of your view would be that those values are inherent in the judeo-christian morality I'm just wondering how you think yeah just what is the values you take around in my own world yeah it's a great question they're not rational values they're deeper than rational values I mean it was a surprise to meet going back into the past let's say to see how deep these values were but I would say that not only are they part of the judeo-christian story let's say but that they're grounded in phenomena that are even deeper than that there's been a fair bit of investigation into the emergence of fair play let's say among animals rats primates wolves and so forth there's an ethos that emerges behaviorally and and is then perhaps woven into narrative and then codified that seems to be isomorphic across these different levels and I think it's been well articulated in the narrative sense in the judeo-christian corpus of stories and that it's out of that that our legal systems and and institutions of rights have emerged people make the case that that was fundamentally an Enlightenment issue and it was certainly the case that the rational clarity that came along with the Enlightenment increased the degree to which that was articulated and transformed into law but I think to attribute it to that is a great mistake I think it's I think the time span view is way too narrow that's 500 years ago I'm a biologically minded guy it's like 500 years that's nothing 5,000 years well that's starting to register 50,000 years it's worthy of note 6 million years now you're getting somewhere there's the ethic that we're discussing is way deeper than something conjured up in like 1500 by some northern Italians so it's an articulation of a substructure that's much deeper than the articulation itself that's what it looks like to me now I think there's room for intelligent debate about that but I've looked at the Enlightenment thinkers and at the deeper at people who I regard as deeper and think the deeper guys Nietzsche Dostoevsky Jung in particular Solzhenitsyn to some degree they've got it right so I don't think it's I don't think that our rights are an Enlightenment project their instantiation into codified law that's more part parcel of the Enlightenment now that would be particularly manifest in a place like the United States you know so yeah if I can just ask a related question you mentioned each and because from what I understand of your work you just seem to draw from him a lot and again you said you agree with him so I guess you know well he thinks a lot of things yes I guess I I'm wondering where do you think because I mean I imagine you imagine he went wrong in his interpretation of the Christian morality and how he believes and how he believes that's kind of a pernicious slave-based morality so what do you what exactly do you think it because you agree with a lot he's really pretty Christian morality he creates critique Christian dogma and structures that's not exactly the same thing so you would agree with him then well like I said he's a complicated guy but I think the slave morality idea the idea that the oppressed are somehow virtuous which I don't think is a central Christian idea by the way it was something that he criticized as part and parcel of what was constructed and and and concretize din in an institutional Christianity and Nietzsche also and this is a deeper critique I think need to really criticized institutional Christianity particularly the Protestant and Catholic forms I would say for insufficient attention paid to the imitation of Christ and too much attention paid to the idea that the work of redemption had already been done which is something that also divides the Orthodox Christian types from the Protestants and the Catholics because the Orthodox types tend to tilt more towards the moral demand that you imitate Christ in your own life and so Nietzsche's a very it you can't some him up very easily and I found him extraordinarily useful in training me how to think to say to say that you agree with him I don't think that you can say with someone like Nietzsche that you agree with him because you know Nietzsche had this is one thing that Nietzsche said that I really got a kick out of because it was the it's the most most arrogant statement I've ever heard anyone make he said I can write in a sentence what it takes other people a book to relate and then he said no what other people can't even relate in a book and that's exactly right like if you read Beyond Good and Evil for example which is mostly a four isms so because he was a very sick man and he couldn't write for long periods of time so he would think for long periods of time and then write down a little bomb and beyond good and evil is just sequential pieces of dynamite and he wasn't trying to be systematic precisely and so that's why it's not so easy to agree or disagree with Nietzsche but you can sure let the bombs go off in your brain if you read what he has to say and he he was an interesting critic of Christianity because you know if you're all warped and bent and someone comes along and tells you how you're warped and bent in a manner that might enable you to straighten up it's not obvious that they're that you're their enemy that they're your enemy and I think that's the right way to read Nietzsche with regards to Christianity so he there was plenty of rot and that was part of what was causing let's say the death of God now it isn't obvious at all that Nietzsche was antithetical II opposed to the founding ideas in fact there's many places where he writes that indicate quite the contrary so thank you okay so we're gonna go to Alex and then Sayid is going to distribute them thank you for being here I really appreciate it so I was watching a few of your interviews in preparation for this and I heard you speak about religion quite a bit and if you look up what religion means in the Webster dictionary you get something like a system of faith centered on supernatural being or beings or something like that but I've heard you use religion to describe things like punk rockers for example that that's a religious experience so my first question would be how do you define what is considered religious and then sort of as a follow-up to that if say Sam Harris what's that religious is what you act out anything you act out everything you act out is is predicated on your implicit axioms and the system of implicit axioms that you hold as primary is your religious belief system it doesn't matter whether you're an atheist or not that's just surface that's just surface noise so it has nothing to do with divinity or or it doesn't necessarily have to do with those no it probably necessarily has to do with it too but it doesn't necessarily have anything to do with your voluntarily articulated statements about whether or not you believe in something like a transcendent deity so I mean what you act out is much more what you are than what you say about yourself and what the hell do you know about what you believe anyways you're complicated man fair question well seriously people are complicated you know like we're we don't we're not transparent to ourselves at all that's why we have that's why we have to go to university and study psychology it's like you know we're we're not exactly black boxes but we are the most complicated things there are right and we can't even program our VCR clocks so it's like how the hell can we propose to understand ourselves and you know I'm existentially oriented which is to say that I think that what you hold to be true is best determined as an enough as a consequence of an analysis of your actions rather than as a consequence of an analysis of what you purport to believe now in order to act you can't act without a hierarchy of value which I tortured the other poor questionnaire about you can't act without a hierarchy of values because you can't act unless you think one thing is better than another because why why would you act otherwise so that means that you're embedded within a hierarchy of values whether you know it or not or maybe multiple fragmentary and competing hierarchies of value which is all the worse for you by the way because it just makes you very confused that hierarchy of values has an axiomatic it's it's based on axioms and the probability that you understand them is very low because generally people don't understand their axioms but that axiomatic system is essentially your religious system and there's there's no way out of that as far as I can tell and you can say well it isn't predicated on conscious belief in a transcendent deity it's like okay have it your way but you know most people in this room act out a judeo-christian ethic and not only do they act it out if they're treated in a manner that's not commensurate with that ethic they get very very very annoyed so for example if I fail to treat you as if you're an embodiment of a divine fragment let's say that's characterized by the ability to the ability to make free choice and to determine your own destiny in some sense or if I fail to treat you as if you're a valued member valach member of the polity as a sovereign individual then you'll find that very offensive and become angry it's like okay then that's what you believe well if I ask you if you believe any of that well that's a whole different story you might give me some radical leftist nonsense but that doesn't come what you that doesn't take away from the fundamentals of your action as one final thing so when you and say sam harris argue about religion you're arguing about fundamentally different things it sounds like his conception of what is religious is very different from yours yeah well he tends to think of religious religious thought the same way that a smart thirteen-year-old atheist thinks about a fundamentalist Christian it's like yeah okay that's just you just not getting to the heart of the matter you know and I just finished reading all of Sam's books in the last couple of weeks and as far as I'm concerned he doesn't ever get to the bottom of the issue he doesn't address the fundamental thinkers there are some profound thinkers Dostoyevsky's one Tolstoy Nietzsche Jung's like they're completely absent from and the same with Dawkins it's completely absent all that conceptualization is completely absent from their corpus of works they don't even have an understanding for the psychological utility of religion and it's a big problem you know you you don't get to be an atheist with the people you attack or fundamental like naive fundamentalists and I have some some sympathy for the naive fundamentalist just like what they're basically saying is something like this look we have an ethos that's valuable you scientist types are casually dismantling it what the hell are we supposed to do what the fundamentalists don't know what to do about that so they say well creationism is science it's like well no it's not but that doesn't mean that they don't have a point their point is there's something valuable here it's like don't break it casually what are gonna replace it with the new atheist Swiss wish that everybody becomes rational it's like yeah sure that's gonna happen thank you thank you dr. Peterson I'm a I'm a student of religious studies and currently I'm writing an honors thesis on religious imagery in an intelligent literary genre there's a poet philosopher who said the following which I think you'll like who by the way was a huge fan of Goethe he said that in addressing God he says he calls him the hidden reality and he asks the hidden reality to reveal its but using the robe of metaphor because he thinks that metaphor is the only way I stories are the only way that human beings can comprehend you know the hidden reality I know you've written a lot you speak a lot about about the stories I just wanted to ask you although it may be a very broad question what is the place of the religious in stories and religious is something like the grammatical structure of stories like if you go down and you look at what makes a story a story that's religious yeah it's not a story otherwise like a story is a particular sort of thing again in a simplest sense the story is an account of how to get from point A to point B it's like a map but there's a value structure inherent in that obviously because otherwise you wouldn't go from point A to point B so just to make the map means to adopt a value structure but there but the story is actually more complicated than that because as you move from point A to point B processes of radical transformation are often necessary and the the deep stories about the processes of radical transformation that occur as you move from point A to B are basically they're they're indistinguishable from religious stories now the reason they I think the reason they they tend to become religious let's say is because it has something to do with the gap between the finite incomprehensible and the infinite and uncomprehensible it's like we live in the finite incomprehensible but we're surrounded by the infinite and incomprehensible and there has to be a border between those of some like a mediating border that's poetry and art that's narrative that's religion and it's that it's that strange metaphorical reality let's say that's not factual and it's not comprehensible but that's not infinitely incomprehensible either it's a bridge between the two so and as you move closer to the infinite and incomprehensible across that bridge you get farther and farther away from what you understand right but how could it be otherwise given that you're finite you are a finite being surrounded by infinite what's infinite incomprehensible and that was his critique of the strict rationalist that they can't that it's hard for them to make this - that's what poets come and that's exactly this is I learned a lot of this from young because Young's idea was that rationality is embedded in a dream like there's the infinite unknowable and then there's the dream and then inside the dream is the rational domain and I believe that to be the case why else would we dream we have to dream if we don't dream we we go insane it doesn't take very long and so there's there's an element of poetic conceptualization that grounds us and it has to be taken seriously you know them the rational critics of Dreams think about them as random neural activity it's like there's nothing right when you look at a TV screen that's not on a channel that's random when you dream something complex and sophisticated that's not random so yeah so the metaphor surrounds us let's say and we can critique it rationally and we can undermine it but there's real danger in that so take one question from here then take one on the other end yeah thank you for talk I like to find out from you what's your view of institutional racism is it a thing or is it some other left radical leftist agenda what was your view of institutional racism more systemic racism as some people may call it yes is it is it a thing is an actual thing is it a mother agenda that you might attribute to radical leftists it's a multivariate problem right like no society is without its biases and prejudices and some of them get built into the system's themselves and so when you look at unequal outcomes and you're trying to discover why those unequal outcomes exist if you have any sense then you do a multivariate analysis and you put in prejudice and discrimination as one of the factors one of the factors one of many many factors and we'll the problem with the radical leftist is that they take the fact that societal structures are tyrannical to some degree in arbitrary which of course they are because they're imperfect and then they obliterated the complexity with that claim so there's lots of reasons for inequality systemic bias is one of them - what - it's an open question to what degree systemic bias plays in in the inequality problem let's say but it's something that we could hypothetically address with a certain degree of detachment and intelligence so no system is perfect not and certainly not us reasonable reasonable answer okay that's that's wise all right so I think it's safe to say you're a fervent critic of post-modernism and there are times where I don't think you quite give it a fair shake and I'm no fan of you know a good amount of the literature or the theory but if you could point to one or two of the French theorists and some of their pieces whether it's their literature their theory you could point to that's culpable for this sort of cultural rot that you charge post-modernism with causing who would it be what would it be so and I've done my best to read LaCount and I think the reason I can't read it is because it doesn't make any sense so because I've read some very difficult things and I could understand them so Foucault I think is a ten-part genius I read madness and civilization for example it just seems to me to be self-evident psychiatric diagnostic categories are in part social constructions it's like great we've known that since like 1960 you know it's just not that big of Revelation and Derrida well he's a trickster you know and his critique of the West as fellow go centric is dead on point male dominated that's his theory and logo centric well he thinks that's a problem well I don't think it's a problem so and I think as well it isn't even that and I understand the post modernist viewpoint like look it is the case that a finite set of entities is subject to an infinite number of interpretations okay that's post-modernism in a nutshell the AI guys figured that out in like from 1960 to 1992 it took them that long to wade through that fundamental technical problem a real problem the problem of perception for example it's be very hard to solve the AI problem of perception because there are a lot of ways to look at the world like the objects aren't just there in any simple sense so okay there's an infinite number of interpretations no problem there's not an infinite number of viable interpretations okay that's a big problem okay and a little bit of thinking through that would have gone a long ways for the postmodernist so that's that's number one and then what's the other one oh yes then the other problem is okay there's an infinite number of interpretations we won't make any one canonical all right well then how the hell are you going to act because you have to make a value system canonical if you're gonna act oh well we didn't solve that problem how about we just slip Marxism in underneath the carpet and not notice the problem then that gives us something to do it's like people come out and criticize me and say dr. Peterson doesn't understand that post-modernism and Marxism are in commensurate it's like yeah actually I do understand that but the postmodern neo-marxists don't seem to understand that so how can you be a postmodern Isetta Marxist at the same time well the answer to that is actually to be found in the historical data the postmodernist types like Foucault and Derrida were Marxists before they became post modernists and the postmodern overlay on the Marxism was as far as I can tell mostly a cover story for going about the same old murderous idiocy under a new guys so you think it's possible that there are I'm sorry know that there are lenses like postmodern lenses that we can view culture from under that can at times be more powerful and useful than than other lenses like for example boji art the idea of the the simulator and the successive phases of the image Joan Didion no Gerard could at least think and I mean you can't throw all the postmodernist into the same jug you know but I would say it's still Derrida and Foucault of had the most pernicious effects well well the problem is they didn't deal with it seriously it's like you can't just say no meta-narrative it's like okay how are we going to unite ourselves then we're going to use multicultural well that's really work to produce a peaceful world hasn't it so you need a uniting narrative we have if we weren't didn't have a uniting narrative we wouldn't all be sitting peacefully in this room it's the Uniting narrative that governs our behavior in this room and look here we are all peaceful it's like they're not dealing with the fundamental issues and to slip Marxism back in as a backdoor route to having something to do with your life is intellectually repre intellectually and morally reprehensible okay thank you how are you sir my name is Steve I just wanted to ask you about this experience that I had after watching one of your lectures that really profoundly impacted me and I was I was wondering if you could kind of help me out with understanding this after watching your lecture on young and he's talking about his life you started talking talking about the Lion King and and kind of connecting what the intro scene was in the Lion King and the idea of archetypes and when I you know I started to understand what you were saying I had this unbelievable feeling in like in my stomach in my whole body there's just this smell like this right this very intense feeling so warning never to read you yeah oh no it was just this powerful feeling and I got so emotional you know and ask thinking of how to articulate this question to you a few minutes ago I was just getting so emotional it was it was uh it just seems like you know it scared the hell out of me that feeling but it was also a really meaningful so valuable amazing feeling and I thought you know it's kind of like would maybe what God is just you know yeah it was so and I usually get that that feeling too of after listening to like a band like the cro-mags or Black Flag you know some hardcore band or see like that music is so important to me like that and and and it just the question that just made me so emotional to is like what could my life you know and and that was something that I I just found myself asking myself you know just just what and I just I I wonder if you could you know give me some some extra stuff on that what that really was you know yeah well you've got to you've got to be very careful when you're when you're doing something like reading young yeah because he'll reorganize your cognitive structures and that's there's deaths and rebirths that go along with that you know there's what you're trying to do in part is to in a sense as you're trying to bring what you do and how you imagine yourself and how you articulate yourself into alignment so those three things are the same it's very hard because there's more to you in your action than there is in your articulation and there's more to you in your action than there is in your imagination and so partly what you're what you're experiencing is an expanded sense of self and possibility and you might think well that's a wonderful thing but it's a it's also a very daunting thing and it it can be a very dangerous thing i when I was dealing with all of this material when I was writing my first book I had to abandon a lot of the things that I was doing that were bad habits because it was so stressful to move through these systems of ideas that I couldn't afford any additional mental energy being wasted on things I was doing that wasn't that weren't together so so that wasn't very break wasn't no on march 9th actually with Noam Chomsky Noam Chomsky move on and so I want to ask you as like the leading because I'm old yeah so yeah do you think it is to like to be these intellectuals and do you think that you are you want oh god I always hesitate the hesitate to claim victory like to escape without abject defeat is a pretty good pretty good ambition so and plus I think it's rather improbable that I would win a debate with a quote bought so some people thought it was pretty close Twitter is a weird platform you know it's complicated it is a complicated platform and I've I've modified my approach to Twitter in the last month and a half I would say I've been trying to selectively retweet information I I pulled a bunch of people and asked them if they knew of credible Twitter sources that were producing valid good news and I found a bunch of sites that were doing that and then whittled them down I really like human progress org which has done a lovely job of detailing well they had they had a great tweet the other day I really loved it was a mock-up of a New York Times cover and it said 127 thousand people lifted out of abject poverty today you know in like large-type and then the tweet was we could have run this every single day for the last 20 years it's like you know because some of you know but perhaps some of you don't that between the year 2000 and 2012 and this hasn't stopped yet the number of people in abject poverty in the world fell by by half right it was the most rapid period of economic development ever in the history of the world and there's lots of things like that happening there's several hundred thousand people a day being hooked to the power grid which is a big deal for those of you those of you who have power might also appreciate that infant mortality has been plummeting you know we're gonna Plateau in terms of population at about 9 billion and it's going to level off and decline pretty rapidly after that people are getting access to fresh water in record numbers like there's so many good things happening that it's not even funny and that we that are real cause for celebration and so I've been trying to select trying to tilt what I've been distributing more in that direction and I've also put a buffer between me and my use of Twitter so because it it does it does reward an impulsive 'ti that isn't always let's say my impulsivity that isn't always in anyone's best interest I made an agreement with my son to because he's been watching I have lots of people watching what I'm doing and trying to keep me under some degree of control let's say and his comment was that if I was going to if it was serious enough to engage in a Twitter combat about it was serious enough to write a blog post about and so I've kind of made this rule which is I'm not going to comment on anything on Twitter in that sort of manner unless I feel that writing about it at some length is justifiable and so I started doing that this week I wrote three blog posts and that seems to have gone pretty well so I hope that answered your question yep kind of go on a different topic I have a personality psychology question okay so when I did the understand myself quiz I was very surprised to find out that I was on the bottom two percentile for conscientiousness which openness yes you're not your venereal type I'm gonna need to partner with someone whose discipline that's exactly see there seems to be a real tension between openness and and especially orderliness you know who's open people while they think laterally and they blow boxes apart and they tend to make a mess when they're transforming things and they're all over the place and and they have to be because otherwise they wouldn't be open but it's hard to do that and also be orderly and conscientious and so and corporations suffer from this tension all the time right because they're started by open people but when they get going and get algorithm eyes they're run by conscientious people but then the conscientious people can only go down one track and if the environment transforms the whole company disappears so I would say you take a look at the conscientiousness score you see if you can figure out how to discipline yourself a bit more and see if you can figure out how to schedule your time not like a prison but like like a structured set of opportunities and then you understand that in order to be successful in life likely in the medium to long run you're going to have to find someone could be someone close to you or it could be business partners or whatever that fill in that missing conscientiousness gap so I guess the Part B was my boyfriend we've been together for a very long time we're not that old it's also very high in neuroticism and I feel that's where like our conflict comes and as far as long-term what are some things that you know lowly conscientious and erotic we'll look into that yeah well I mean the simple I can only its it high levels of neuroticism are problematic in a relationship it's probably why 75% of divorces are initiated by women because women are higher in neuroticism than men and I think the reason for that is that they have to be more sensitive to infant distress and so that makes them more sensitive to distress in general now I don't know that for sure it's a supposition but high levels of neuroticism do tend to make a relationship volatile and and to put a fair bit of negative emotion into it now the question is where what the source of the high level of neuroticism is it might be purely temperamental but it also might be indicative of an underlying anxiety disorder depression or or a physiological problem because they can manifest themselves in high levels of negative emotion and so there's always the possibility of doing something about that what I usually tell my clients who are high in neuroticism is two simple things number one get up at the same time in the morning okay because that helps stabilize your circadian rhythms number two eat a large meal before you stress yourself in the morning and mostly protein and fat based because if you're high on neuroticism and you stress yourself before you eat you you dis regulate your your emotional reaction systems essentially and you can tree regulate them till you sleep again so other than that goodwill and understanding is about what you've got are you doing tonight dr. Pearson nervous to uh talk in front of you because you've got to be one of the most formidable people that I've ever heard up or ever listen to her ever seen so my question is again you're one of the best communicators that I've ever listened to if I could be half as good at you or at communicating as you are I would be set how can I teach myself to do that practice you know really like well there's a couple of things is helps to read a lot it really helps to write so if you want to make yourself articulate which is a very good idea then not only should you read but you should write down what you think and if you can do that a little bit every day 15 minutes maybe you could steal 15 minutes and do it every day but if you do that for ten years you really straighten out your thinking if you're gonna speak effectively you have to know way more than you're talking about you know so if you this is often difficult for beginning lectures at university because they'll do a lecture on a topic but they only know as much as they're saying in the lecture and they get kind of stuck to their notes because of it but you want to know ten times as much as you are saying in the lecture and then you can specify a stepping path through it and elaborate with the other things that you know but to do that you have to do a lot of reading but you also have to do a lot of reading because that's where the synthesize that's where the synthesizing comes so that's on the input side and then on the output side well there's some tricks techniques let's say is like if you're speaking in front of a group you are not delivering a talk to a group that's not what you're doing the talk isn't a package thing that you present to a group there isn't a group there's a bunch of individuals and you talk to them so when I talk to a group I always talk to people one at a time and that makes it easier to because you know how to talk to a person it's like can you talk to a thousand people well probably not because it's too intimidating but there isn't a thousand people there there's a thousand individuals and so you just look at an individual and you say something and you can tell if they're engaged they look confused or they look interested or they look angry or they look bored or maybe they're asleep in which case you look at someone else and they give you feedback about how you're doing and so one thing is to to have something to say yeah thing is pay attention to who you're talking to because unless you're very badly socialized then that seems unlikely in your case because you know you present yourself at least moderately well you know and well I mean I don't know you very well but at first but on first sight you know you're doing fine so the probability that if you pay attention to the individuals that you're talking to that your natural wealth of social skill will manifest itself is extremely high and so you don't deliver a talk to an audience that's a really bad way of thinking about you're actually engaged in a conversation with an audience even if they're not talking they're nodding and shifting position and you know looking like this or and you can you can pull all that in and and and use it to govern the level at which you're addressing the entire audience so the last thing I would say is well having the aim to be a good communicator is a good start and you think well I could bunch us that to some degree well there isn't anything that you can possibly this is the whole point of a liberal education there isn't anything that you can possibly do that makes you more competent in everything you do than to learn how to communicate I don't care if you're gonna be a carpenter I mean being a carpenter by the way is very difficult especially if you're a good carpenter but if you're good at communicating as a carpenter you're like 10 times better as a carpenter so the and this is something that the liberal arts colleges I think I don't know if they've forgotten it but they don't do a very good job of marketing it's like what's the use of a bachelor's degree a Bachelor of Arts it's like well you can think you can write you can speak you've read something it's like the economic value that is incalculable the people that I've watched in my life have been spectacularly successful are they have skills clearly that that's a minimum precondition but they're also very very good at articulating themselves and so whenever they negotiate they're successful well that's kind of like the different success in life right you negotiate and you're six it doesn't mean you win because if you're a good negotiator if you're really good negotiator everybody walks away from the negotiation thrilled and so then people line up to do things with you so and that's all that's all dependent on your ability to communicate so practice thank you very much oh thanks sorry I have to stop there's a section of the book in here that I use man talk about here confident young man what's rule 11 in this book here don't bother children when you're skateboarders well the small bone to pick with Lafayette College is that my brother does get stopped skateboarding here but um that's not that sir mines my question today really I have two key questions you said in one lecture that Alexander soldier nation basically memorized all of the rare work to bring it out and to show the world but I've had professors have cert to me and ones that are very you know studied on Slavic culture and studied on the gulag tell me essentially that he was a KGB agent I mean would you agree with that statement the only way that he would have been able to get all that stuff out of there live in there for twenty years and not die or you know starve to death was from that what do you know anything's possible but probably not that probably not that know right KGB agents I don't would tell you that like what's their evidence for that it's impossible for him to documented that that's done so he must have been a KGB agent so I memorize all that and bring out a trick yeah you you know I mean you want with you writing in prison and he really couldn't he couldn't store anything yeah you'd be amazed at what people can remember when they have to remember so people remember very large volumes of material when they're when that's what they have maybe like preliterate people know all they did was remember I have a friend who's not literate and what he can read by two friends that aren't really very literate but one of them is really not literate and what he can remember you just can't believe our modern people don't remember much because we don't have to we write it down and externalize it but our capacity for memories is far greater than you realize the shape from when the Greeks you know switch from Oracle to a literary culture is very fascinating but my second question before I go sit back down with um how do you feel at the influence of and I you know with reading Terence Mckenna think along these lines evens of psychedelics within our culture and how that and what that does of human psyche I know that the guy god only knows I don't think we own I don't think we understand we don't understand psychedelics one bit so and I don't think we understand the force they be what you play the role that they played in our religious and cognitive evolution so we don't understand them they're an absolute mystery so and play with them at your peril yeah yeah Swiss a pretty strange place for that emerge from but yeah in a lot of you talks you speak about the things of the West dude correct and I'm curious yourself being a psychologist what your thoughts are on Edward Bernays and the impact that he had on Western society the the guiding of masses are controlling them and being able to take control in that way I don't know enough about am afraid to give you an intelligent answer so do you have another question because that's rather disappointing I imagine sure my other question would be that it's my understanding that worker control and people's control is instrumental in the idea of socialism and if these countries that we call socialist and communist are totalitarian states ruled by a single party or a single man why do we continue referring to them as such as referring them to as as socialist as when they don't follow the the mean heart of it which is weird quite worker control it's a good question I don't I don't really know the answer to that it looks like who knows right maybe maybe the the inevitable end product of a collectivist viewpoint is something like a totalitarian state it seems probable because most human governments have been essentially totalitarian states of one degree of severity or another so the tribal tendency might manifest itself in the rigid hierarchy but it is it is a perverse fact right and you think that it's one of the mysteries about the continual apologetics for the radical left it's like well didn't China just announced that its president is now president for life like that's actually a big problem and then well and despite the fact that they've moved quite a distance in the free-market direction obviously that underlying totalitarian impulse is still alive then and well and thriving I mean then what the Chinese are doing with electronic surveillance should make everyone's hair stand on end so yeah thing yeah hi dr. Pearson okay - are you out of mic range it's a pleasure to ask you a question I wrote it down - okay minimize in articular bility oh yeah so you you put a great emphasis on truth in your work so this is you writing in 12 rules for life and above all don't lie don't lie about anything ever lying leads to hell it was the great in the small eyes of the Nazi and communist states that produced the deaths of tens of millions of people you've also talked about how Nietzsche foresaw the nihilism implicit in European culture in the 1800s that would likely lead to the authoritarianism and death tolls mentioned at the end of the previous quote and I find this interesting for the following reason so here's Nietzsche in the will to power radical nihilism is the conviction of an absolute unten ability of existence when it comes to the highest values one recognizes this realization is a consequence of the cultivation of truthfulness so in other words Nietzsche saw the that valuing truth to its fullest undercuts valuation itself within a Christian context by the way it can mean one of the things that that needs you in his role as Christian critic pointed out was that the death of God was a consequence in his formulation of the Christian insistence on truth so his his idea was essentially that as Christianity elevated the truth to the position of highest moral virtue and then that truth seeking spirit developed scientific and rational viewpoint that the logical consequence of that was the turning of the spirit of truth on the metaphysical presumptions of Christianity itself that's the context for that right so what I wanted to ask you is that you appear to care deeply about meeting and the philosophical problem of nihilism so I was just wondering if you could elaborate on this between nihilism and valuing truth light of what you're saying and whether there's a way in which you see your ideas as elaborated in in your latest as a solution to the problems nihilism - the great question I think I think really that the Jung's work is the answer to that question because Jung was profoundly influenced by Freud obviously and if you read the Freudian biographers let's say it's easy to conceptualize Jung as a an acolyte of Freud but it's not really accurate I wouldn't say or it's insufficiently accurate because Freud had a great influence on you but you know was also exceptionally influenced by Nietzsche and you I think you can also view Piaget in this manner by the way although not directly as a consequence of the influence of Nietzsche it be more indirect but you really regarded what he was doing as an answer to Nietzsche's question and the question is something like well the inquiry inquiring Western rational mind has murdered or the metaphysical presuppositions of Western society now what now Nietzsche's idea was well we would have to invent our own values we would have to become a new type of being but Jung's response to that especially after world war two was and after encountering Freud was something like what makes you think we can invent our own values Sonia was to rediscover the values of the past to go within that was his hero's journey to go within in the landscape of the imagination and to rekindle the archetypes that isn't necessarily something that has to be done as an internal voyage but that made it that made the process something that was more akin to an archetypal transformation so if it's the father that's dead then you go into the belly of the beast to revitalize the father that's the pathway forward and that's been the pathway forward for human beings for for as long back as we know for tens of thousands of years yeah well machiya I think I'm saying that right some Romanian wrote me the other day and tried to teach me how to say it Mirchi I think that's right le ah de talked about the the death of God as a recurring phenomena I mean that's what he that's what he realized when he did his large scale surveys of religious belief systems is that God dies very frequently and then that's part of a divot that's part of what you might describe as a developmental process it's very much akin to what happens to you when your dreams die you know we put forward a hypothesis about a mode of being that you would like to embody you have a dream a vision and ambition maybe a love affair or something like that and it collapses on you well there's a period of death that follows that you could call it psychological death but then there's a reconstruction of the value system and a rebirth and that's that's the eternal human story it really is the Hirogen now Jung's contribution to Nietzsche's body of thought and this is where I think also dusty asked Dostoevsky surpassed Nietzsche was that you realized that we didn't invent our own values we rediscovered those values that we always harbored within us now that doesn't mean they that that they still have to be given new form though you see this in an old story of the Egyptian there's an old story of Horace and Osiris and Horus goes to rescue his father Osiris who's basically living like a dead ghost in the underworld he goes to rescue him after defeating his evil uncle he goes to rescue his dead father and when he goes down into the underworld he has an eye in his hand that set the evil ones tore from his head during their combat and instead of putting the eye back in his head he gives it to his father and then his father can see again and then they both go back up to the surface of the world and it's their union that constitutes the spirit of the Pharaoh it's an absolutely unbelievably remarkable story because the idea is well you will be damaged in your confrontation with life particularly if you confront malevolence because the confrontation with malevolence damages people it will damage your vision but if you if you take that damaged part of you and you re United with the dead spirit of your father then you can revitalize that that will strengthen you and that will enable you to move forward into the future it's like that's just exactly right and it's one of the deepest religious presuppositions of humanity you see it everywhere that idea that's what you're doing in university if you take a liberal arts course degree it's like you're you're you're resurrecting your dead ancestors so they can live again in your form but in conjoined union with you you're the vision that gives the dead past its its vitality and spirit and that's the purpose of being educated that's a that's your initiation and and partly what you do when you're initiated properly in that regard is you develop a comprehensive philosophy of good and evil a deep philosophy of good and evil evil and that protects you against the confrontation with malevolence and I know that you know I know that not least because one of the things that's happened to me as a consequence of putting all these lectures online is that I've had many military people write me and come and talk to me who had post-traumatic stress disorder and that's almost always a consequence often of them viewing themselves to something dreadful but sometimes viewing that occurring as a consequence of other people's actions until they have a philosophy of good and evil they can't recover from their post-traumatic stress disorder and like you you if you're naive metaphysically naive and you come in contact with someone who truly wants to hurt you the probability that that will undo you psychologically is very very high so you have to be wise as serpents that's the old saying you have to be wise as a serpent because otherwise you have no protection against serpents maybe we'll do two more because I'm starting to get fuzzy minded and I've learned to quit at that point mostly so we talked a bit before yeah before you started don't know exactly how to phrase this and I think that this will be like I do what I like acknowledge that all of this Q&A has been amazing because it's basically been a lecture mixed with reality and that's a good combination yeah it's a good combination and I don't think many speakers I go to actually know how to combine that the way you did so thank you for that but uh I guess this question is a bit of a departure from that and it's sort of going to something more of a say I don't think everyone can relate to because it's in your book you say don't lie and I think that after living 21 short years I learned that the hard way but you and your life and me and my life I feel like we both a moment where we've had to confront a sope alienating instance of nature where there is no path forward that we really have at our disposal and there's a point where an unnatural amount of growth had to come out of us so I just wanted to know where you drew that line at your own ability to develop as a person to where you didn't become tunnel visioned with trying to face life's problems on your own earth okay well we had talked just before this the second part of this Q&A both my daughter's illness and about this gentleman's have illness in his family too so that's kind of the background to this well the first part of that is like if we were going to be pessimistically realistic about all this I would say that your best that is truth but that doesn't necessarily mean that's always going to do the trick right I mean sometimes you go fight a dragon and it eats you and if the if you being eaten wasn't a real possibility it wouldn't be a real fight and so you see people like I've seen people in my clinical practice sometimes I had one client in particular who was undergoing a particularly vicious divorce with someone who was really seriously inclined to take him out and would do pretty much everything at her disposal to do so and I strategized with him for about three years and we did everything like and hyper carefully he was a very conscientious and diligent person and he put into practice everything that we discussed and strategized and he still pretty much he got backed into a corner so hard that I didn't know how to help him anymore so I would say however that he like he was a very truthful person throughout that and one thing he did do was part of it was a custody battle and he did manage despite his decline in consequence of being repeatedly cornered I would say he did manage to establish what I think was a lasting relationship with his kids so he might have got enough out of what he did to justify it even though the whole landscape was pretty awful I think that not lying is your best bet but life is hard and people get run over and it doesn't necessarily mean that you're going to emerge in any obvious sense triumphant but if you take the alternative path path especially when you're facing severe tribulations let's say and you complicate those with deceit you can be sure that whatever tragedy that you're confronting is going to turn into not only tragedy but something very much akin to hell and so you might be able to at least minimize the degree of suffering even if you can't overcome it or transcendent and that's something you know it's something I I'm always reminded in a discussion like this of what I watched when my my wife's family were around the deathbed of her mother she had frontotemporal dementia which is like Alzheimer's had quite an awful way to go and her husband my father-in-law really stepped up to the plate like he was quite the man about town very extroverted partier type and quite disagreeable but when his wife got sick man he was there it was something to watch and so he turned what could have been absolutely dreadful into just miserable and then when their entire family was gathered around her deathbed like my wife and her sister had both dealt with dying people before and the other sister was a pharmacist and they were attentive to their mother and there was no foolish catastrophes going on between the family and they all pulled together and so their mother died but what I observed was that their bonds were strengthened as a consequence and that they gained something from the tightening of the remaining relationships that was at least partial compensation for the loss of their mother and that beat the hell out of squabbling about everything while she was dying because that's a real possibility and people certainly do that so one more and maybe we'll call it a night the one thing that has been kind of going to my mind in this discussion in general when I watch their videos personally one of the most interesting aspects of neuroscience to me is no robusticity when the brain capacity to change the adaptive but I think that a dynamic issue and your toxin you know in your arguments is that people both on the left and on the right can be possessed by it they all need five key points that will then be stagnant and not to change their they don't really understand that maybe to the one that they should but big plus sign right and so my opinion is that that makes a little bit of a paradox because you know we are wired we're hardwired essentially become adept to change we're able to change ourselves to respond to the thing on our environment our brain itself James I have to start behavior though the actual the heaters at the derivation of what's actually changing so you're arguing is that a lot of people will become you know it touch this and they'll stay stagnant so how do you explain you know what aspects of political phenomena or you know just social discourse what is so powerful about that that it overcomes our predisposed to different well changes changes especially if it's the more radical the necessary change the more pain that accompanies it like the more opportunity as well but and a lot of what we learn we learn painfully and so it's not surprising that people shrink away from learning we learn in pain and anxiety very frequently everyone knows that like the things that really that you really learned in life it's like there was no joy man like it took you out and so the fact that people flee from that is hardly surprising but it doesn't help that's the thing it just stores up the catastrophe for later and so the better the better idea is to eat a little poison every day so that you don't have to overdose in a month it's something like that and it is the case that I think because you don't you aren't forced first of all you don't learn unless you're forced to learn I know there's alternatives to that there's the voluntary search for knowledge and that's a fine thing and that is an antidote to this but apart from that speaking more practically you tend not to learn unless you're forced to learn and it's and what you tend to learn by force are difficult lessons and so people are very prone to not do not seek that out it's not surprising but it's because they don't understand the consequences very well you know you you it's because maybe it's because they're convinced that there's some way of for stalling the necessary learning and there isn't any way of for stalling it all you do is make it worse in the future you make yourself smaller and you make the lesson harder and so that's why in so many religious doctrines there's emphasis on humility you know and humility is to debase yourself it's to understand that you don't know enough so that your life isn't going to be miserable and so every chance you get to grab something new that will help you along your way you should take it as fast as you can but you have to have a very tragic I would say view of reality and also a harsh one because it's not just tragedy it's also malevolence you have to understand that those are waiting for you and that makes you desperate enough to learn and that might be make you desperate enough to fall out of your ideology but that's that's a hard way of looking at the world it beats living through it though it was very nice talking to [Applause] dissertation titles in educational management Eastman School of Music.