Jordan Peterson is a combatant to the secular-materialistic encroachment on Christianity. He is brilliant and extremely well-read. Ever since he graduated from Fairview HS (1979) in northern Alberta, Canada, he has been on a quest as to why humankind seems basically evil. He logically concludes since there is this dark-side to humanity, there must also be light.
The Bible gives many answers to his searching’s. Peterson often debates atheists and the leftist in their socialist agendas.
I write this blog article because of Jordan’s innate understanding of Christianity, which are the principles he stands for.
Well-Accepted / Unpopular
Jordan has amazing popularity on the internet. Jordan is brilliant and extremely well-read. He is reaching the millennial’s in droves because of his insights. He continually has people coming up to him thanking him for helping them have a better personal life and a better family life. The accumulated good that I see him doing across the globe is impressive to me.
However, most of the media hate him as well as many university professors because of his criticism of their leftist-socialist view of life. Peterson often debates atheists and the leftist in their socialist agendas.
The Salt Lake City, Utah Lecture
More people need to know about him and his work of avoiding evil and moving toward the good. He outlines this concept so well in his book: 12 Rules for Life antidote to Chaos with several scriptures from the Bible.
Our youngest son, Nathan, is a fan of Jordan’s, and a year ago he took our youngest daughter, McKaylee and her husband, Scott, and Nate’s son, Jason, and myself to hear Jordan at Abravanel Hall. I had previously purchased a copy of his book and had summarized his 12 Rules For Life with several scriptures.
After hearing him speak, I was hoping to get him to sign the book so I could share my scriptural find, which I thought would be of interest to him. However, he was so popular, and we were way up in the balcony, therefore there was not a chance to visit with him.
Dennis Prager Interview
McKaylee recently sent me a link to an interview with Jordan by Dennis Prager, an American conservative radio talk show host, and writer. https://youtu.be/j0GL_4cAkhI
I pulled several gems out of that interview, which I share with you here in synoptic form. I highly recommend you listen to the interview, but if you don’t have time, below are some highlights. I use quotes when they are exact; otherwise, I have summarized what they shared. When I insert my commentary, it will be in italics. I have tried to be true to all the content and context.
(DP) Dennis Prager opened the interview with, “I was born with a goodness detector… I can always tell when I am around a good person… I am batting 1000. When I heard you read your book,” I felt your passion wanting to help people lead a better life. “Everybody knows you are bright, but I know you are good.”
(JP) “I have something to say about that… I don’t think it is true.” I have been motivated to do what I’ve been doing since about 1979. I learned in the early ‘80s that people have a great capacity for evil. “I would never claim to be good; I think it is dangerous.” Then I became terrified of how terrible I could be. [as well as others]. I try to lead people to avoid the paths that lead to dark places, and “maybe that approximates good.” In my perspective, if you don’t know what Satan is up to, he will deceive you. He is always about evil and Christ is always about good. Being Christ-centered is the key.
(DP) “If you don’t have a tragic view of life, you can’t be happy.” Dennis also gave Jordan a big compliment when he said, “You are such an intense listener… I am not sure when you are going to respond.”
An intense listener, as I share in my book, It’s About Time, is listening with love: [What you are saying matters and I believe you know some things I don’t know. I want to learn some truths from you.] Most people are not good listeners. It is an indication of a lack of love and their insecurities in society.
(JP) Jordan referred to the story of Pinocchio. You have to go to the darkest abyss to free the spirit of your father. When exposed to challenges (life’s journey) you grow new genes to help you deal with those challenges. As you work through the labyrinth of life you end up in the center “which is the center of the church, it’s the center of the crucifixion, it’s the center of suffering, and you can’t get to that center without you have journeyed everywhere.” Find your father and the spark of divinity, but you will never release that until you are willing to go everywhere you have to go.
(JP) “I don’t like the question, ‘Do you believe in God?’” If you truly believe, then why do we act like we do? Nietzsche said, “There is only one Christian, and that is Christ.” God himself in the mortal form on the cross, cried out, “Why hast thou forsaken me?” For that moment lost faith because of the evil overwhelming tragedy of human suffering. I try to act as if God exists because totally living that belief as mortals, is too much of a challenge. If we totally believed, it would be a transfiguring event.
Jordan, after quoting G. K. Chesterton, “If you cease believing in God, then you will believe anything.” In summary shared: there is value in human beings and relationships: value yourself; love someone; help your community; attribute value to the divine nature of human beings. When people are acting properly, it shows this divinity and reflects divinity itself.
(JP) It isn’t that I discovered God; it is that I discovered Satan. If you look at what happened in Nazi Germany or in the Soviet Union or in Mao’s China and many other places in the world, there is great darkness. And if there is great darkness, then it seems to me there must be a great Light. That this darkness exists is a reality; logically then there must be the great Light.
(DP) “I was having a debate with two leftist students at Berkeley and asked them, ‘Do you believe that people are basically good?’ And they answered, ‘Yes.’ And I said that is so demonstrably wrong. The only way you can have that belief is because you live in such a good country!”
(JP) To be naive and childlike means you are uninformed of evil. The default position is evil. It takes faith and commitment and the more the better to move toward the good. I can speak of this clinically. The people who are most prone to Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) are naive people. People who have done really bad things have a hard time. They often suffer from PTSD “because it damages them psycho-physiologically.” Very common among soldiers. It’s not so much what they saw; it’s what they did. Keeping people naive then the malevolent takes control. Saying there is no evil takes you there.
(DP) That is why I believe that a twelve-year-old in a Jewish or Christian school is likely to be happier than a professor of philosophy who is 50 years old. I knew at age six that the world could be really bad because of the flood. God had to destroy them all…” [Except for Noah and his family.]
(JP) “To assume that peace is the default position is deep insanity. It requires work to maintain peace.” The Old Testament is full of stories where people got off the path and all hell breaks loose. We should do everything we can to stay on the “strait and narrow path.” I am appalled at the absolute lack of gratitude that characterizes the teachings in our universities. “There is a damnable shortage of gratitude in the modern academy.”
(DP)“If all North Americans graduating from high school decided, ‘I’m not going to college.’ Would North America be a better or worse place?”
(JP) I believe our universities, not necessarily colleges, do more harm than good now. The post-modern collectivist doctrine is so psychologically and politically toxic. [They] deny the existence of the individual.” We have something to say because of our unique individuality.
Our spirit can speak to another spirit and produce a negotiated peace. The idea that human beings are made in the image of God, fundamentally is what is being attacked by academia — the idea of the sovereignty of the individual. The reason the collectivists hate me is that I’ve got their number. I know what they are up to. They do not want to shoulder the responsibility of being a sovereign individual.
They are trying to weaken the spirit of those they are teaching. It’s a group against group. The individual has no voice. The world is a messy state, and whose fault is it? Yours! The truth of the West, “Things would be a lot better if you were a lot better.”
Almost weekly I am involved in some political scandal, and it is ongoing in recent times. I have gone through about 30 scandalous episodes that anyone of which would have finished me. They’ve all backfired! The press hates me. Wherever we (with my wife) go in some 30 or 40 countries, someone comes up to me almost every ten minutes, being very polite, “things are way better. THANK YOU.” “That is as good as it gets,” to have people come up to me from all over the world and say, my life and family are better because of what you have shared. [He had tears in his eyes as he shared these feelings!]
(DP)“My instincts are right. You are a good man; you are doing a lot of good. I thank God he made you.” Prager shook Jordon’s hand and said, “I mean it!”
David W Allan