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Transcript: Truth in the Time of Chaos — Jordan Peterson

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As described in my last post, there are many great uses for transcripts, and I’ve started creating them for video and audio I’d like to have in text format.

This first transcript is of a documentary interview with Jordan Peterson conducted by David Fuller for Rebel Wisdom.

Copyright © 2017 Rebel Wisdom, Jordan Peterson

I recommend this documentary as a starting point for Peterson’s material. David Fuller does a masterful job of capturing and distilling many of Peterson’s key insights.

The transcript is 21 pages. The excerpts, below, are two of many exchanges between David and Jordan worth watching (and reading.)
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The Principle at the Heart of Western Civilization

JP is Jordan B. Petersen

RW is Rebel Wisdom (David Fuller Interviewing Jordan & Narration)

RW: Peterson thinks we have to discover these timeless truths, but most of all, the idea of transcendental truth itself: the logos.

JP: There’s a principle at the heart of western civilization and it’s older than Christianity and it’s older than Judaism, although both Judaism and Christianity developed it to a great degree. It’s the idea of the logos, and logos is also the root word of logic, but it means something like coherent interpersonal communication of the truth. And from an archetypal interpretation, it’s the action of the logos that extracts order from chaos. It’s the fundamental proposition and we’ve lost it. And, we will not survive without it.

JP: The West will die without the rebirth of the logos because the West is that. So, with that gone, it’s gone and we’ve seen what’s arisen to replace it. There’s fascism, there’s communism, and then there’s the New Age mess, because it’s a mess, and most of it is wish fulfillment and fantasy and inability to, there’s creativity in it, but there’s no capacity to edit, whatsoever. There’s no coherence and so that stuff is so weak that anyone with any commitment can just push it aside. And there’s no justification for the Marxism and or for the fascism. It’s like, we already had that experiment.

Archetypes vis-a-vis Human Biology, Mythology, Psychology, Morality, Religion, and Science

RW: Peterson is reviving Jung and grounding his discoveries in the latest neuroscience, explaining how these mythological archetypes are encoded in our brains and bodies, tying together mythology, psychology, morality, and religion, with science.

JP: You’re adrift without it. You have to you have to have a conscious relationship with the archetypes. There’s no way if you don’t then you’re susceptible to possession, that’s basically, or to despair so and no wonder.

RW: Well, you’ve got to have axioms so the right axioms are the archetypes?

JP: Yes, that’s why they exist.

RW: You see archetypes as biological structures?

JP: They are at least that, yeah. They’re preexisting. They’re pre-existing categories of perception in the Kantian sense, that’s a good way of thinking about it, is that, you know, that the pure empiricist thinks that you get all your information from the outside world. But that’s not true because you bring on a priori interpretive framework to the world and that’s instantiated biologically but then it’s also enculturated. So, separating the archetype from the underlying biological reality isn’t easy. So you have the snake, you have the propensity to perceive reptilian predators, the manner in which those things are represented in the culture fill those holes essentially and so that can summarize…

RW: It’s the same thing for language instinct so yeah …

JP: That’s right, exactly. It’s the same thing, it’s the same thing. Like, the archetypes are manifestations of the universal grammar of emotion and motivation, that’s a good way of thinking about it. Now, they may be more than that …

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I’m Terence, a musician, writer, father, believer, consultant, pilot, and former computer guy. is the primary outlet for my contribution to the world. It’s the virtual home base of my legacy. Here, I write and create things I hope will truly benefit others. Fore more, please see