Rules for Life, Psychedelics, The Bible, and Much More | Jordan Peterson on The Tim Ferriss Show

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Key Takeaways

  • Be careful of being resentful, arrogant, or deceitful
    • Pay attention to your resentment and use it as a guide for further development. If you’re resentful, there’s probably something you need to say or do.
    • If you’re angry, understand that it’s not going to help you make better decisions
  • Don’t hide things in the fog
    • If your partner does something that bothers you or you feel isn’t right, have a conversation with them to fix it
      • If you’re constantly hiding problems, eventually they will get too big or complex to solve
  • Do not casually denigrate social institutions or creative achievements
    • Instead of being a social activist, start improving the world by first getting your own life in order
      • “You want to make changes? Start with what’s under your control.” Jordan Peterson
  • Jordan sees psychedelic as a door to Pandora’s Box because it can have a major impact on your neurological wiring:
    • Psychedelics increase a person’s creativity and interest in ideas. However, if a person is already high in openness, taking psychedelics can push them too far in a sense and cause them to become interested in too many things or lose their identity.
  • Jordan’s hypothesis as to why the Bible so is deep and packed with wisdom:
    • As a story gets passed down and retold over time, any superfluous details are stripped away, and only the most memorable and important parts of the story remain 
  • “Outside of what you know is everything you don’t know and there are untold riches to be gathered from the domain of everything you don’t know” – Jordan Peterson

Intro

  • Jordan B. Peterson (@jordanbpeterson) has taught mythology to lawyers, doctors, and business people, consulted for the UN secretary-general, helped his clinical clients manage depression, obsessive-compulsive disorder, anxiety, and schizophrenia, served as an adviser to senior partners of major Canadian law firms, and lectured extensively in North America and Europe. 
  • Host: Tim Ferriss (@tferriss)

Books Mentioned

Influenced By Books

  • Growing up, Jordan was influenced by several authors including Aldus Huxley, George Orwell, Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, 
    • Jordan read One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich by Alexander Solzhenitsyn, when he was 13 or 14
      • After reading books from those authors, Jordan started to think about the world from a more psychological and political perspective 
  • Around 25, Jordan moved from reading mostly literature to reading mostly non-fiction books
  • Jordan has a list of 100+ books he recommends reading on his website
    • “People can get a whole education if they read those hundred books that I have on my website” – Jordan Peterson
  • For a stunning philosophy book, Jordan recommends reading Crime and Punishment by Fyodor Dostoyevsky

Morality vs Cowardice

  • People who don’t commit crimes aren’t necessarily moral, they just might be cowards who are afraid of getting caught and punished
    • A moral person doesn’t commit a crime even when they know they won’t get caught
      • “If you don’t have the courage to commit a crime, it doesn’t mean you’re moral for not doing it; it just means you’re afraid.” – Jordan Peterson
  • Similarly, people who are good know how to harm others, but choose not to:
    • “The best people I’ve meant are dangerous people, but they keep themselves in check” Jordan Peterson

Lessons From Jordan’s New Book

  • Be careful of being resentful, arrogant, or deceitful
    • Pay attention to your resentment and use it as a guide for further development. If you’re resentful, there’s probably something you need to say or do.
    • If you’re angry, understand that it’s not going to help you make better decisions
  • Don’t hide things in the fog
    • If your partner does something that bothers you or you feel isn’t right, have a conversation with them to fix it
      • If you’re constantly hiding problems, eventually they will get too big or complex to solve
  • Do not casually denigrate social institutions or creative achievements
    • Instead of being a social activist, start improving the world by first getting your own life in order
      • “It’s better, I think, to put your life together than to go worry about parading around and being a social activist. I think most of that’s fraudulent, and I think it’s appalling that people learn to do that mostly at universities.”  Jordan Peterson
        • “You want to make changes? Start with what’s under your control”

Psychedelics

  • Jordan is fascinated by the psychology and the physiology of drug and alcohol use, which is why he did his Ph.D. in alcohol addiction
  • Jordan sees psychedelic as a door to Pandora’s Box because it can have a major impact on your neurological wiring:
    • Psychedelics increase a person’s creativity and interest in ideas. However, if a person is already high in openness, taking psychedelics can push them too far in a sense and cause them to become interested in too many things or lose their identity.
  • If you have schizophrenia or have a family history of schizophrenia, you should stay away from amphetamines
  • Some psychedelic experiences can feel so real that the person has trouble distinguishing them from reality
    • “If you go deep enough into the psyche, it becomes increasingly difficult to separate what you discover from reality.” – Jordan Peterson
  • There are a number of animals that seek psychedelic experiences and eat psychedelic mushrooms 

The Bible & Writing Books

  • Even if you aren’t religious, you may want to study the Bible to better understand the human culture
    • When Jordan gave his Biblical lectures, tons of atheists and people from different religions attended to better understand the meaning behind the stories in the Bible
      • “The deepest questions are religious questions and the Bible is the answer we have” – Jordan Peterson
  • Jordan’s hypothesis as to why the Bible so is deep and packed with wisdom:
    • As a story gets passed down and retold over time, any superfluous details are stripped away, and only the most memorable and important parts of the story remain
  • When Jordan writes a book, he views himself as the reader and writes advice that he needs to hear himself
  • Writing a book can be the meaning an author needs to keep going in life
    • Viktor Frankl was motivated to survive in the concentration camps because he wanted to write a book one day and Jordan Peterson was motivated to beat his drug addiction to finish writing his book
      • Once an author finishes a book, they can feel like something is missing because they lose the structure they had in their life  

Order & Chaos

  • Life is made of two components: Order and Chaos
    • Order tends to be represented with masculine symbols whereas chaos tends to be represented by feminine symbols (this doesn’t mean order is male and chaos is female)
      • Too much of either component isn’t good
  • “My first book concentrated more on pathologies of chaos and the second book more on pathologies of order” – Jordan Peterson
    • Both pathologies are right in a sense, there’s no single final solution

Additional Notes

  • “Outside of what you know is everything you don’t know and there are untold riches to be gathered from the domain of everything you don’t know” – Jordan Peterson
Tim Ferriss Show : , , , ,
Notes By Alex Wiec

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