Bible Lecture #7

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Discussion thread for The Psychological Significance of the Biblical Stories - Lecture #7

study group discussion

Discussion as part of our Jordan B Peterson Study Group.

podcast

my notes

Nature of the reality and Body you inhabit - It’s always corrupt and insufficient.

  • Gratitude

    • You should be grateful that the structure you inhabit is not a absolute complete mess.
  • What’s the meaning of life - what you should do in life ?

    • Try to improve and fix the structure no matter where you are. Start with highest resolution (locally first). Yourself -> Family -> Community -> State.

    • Confronting the chaos and improving the structure that you inhabit. At least it gives you something to do.

      • << That what progressives are trying to do - don’t you think ? >>

      • << I remember a my friend in India told me how in west there isn’t much to do since basic infrastructure is already there and seem to work while in India there is so much to improve - so many basic problems. >>

      • Why do I want to waste time improving trivial things ? I want to do big things.

        • JBP’s argument is that “anything done right” is not trivial at all and it pays of in ways that you can’t think right now.
      • I don’t have much power - influence how can I improve things ?

        • You weakness is a necessary ingredient in your heroism. Fragility is build into courage.

          • If you knew all the answers and were invincible - then what’s so heroic about that.
    • Meaning at workplace - the idea that certain kind of jobs are trivial and don’t have much meaning e.g. Waiter

      • You can either turn the job into absolute misery for yourself and other people or you can act out in a civilized manner regardless of the job.

        • No matter where you are there is richness and complexity. Maybe I didn’t expect to be a waiter but it’s not nothing.

          • Treat your customers and colleagues properly.

          • Prepare for better opportunity if it comes along.

        • **Exercise 7.1: **In your day job, try to figure out one thing you can do or something you can change about yourself that will make everyone’s life (yours/co-workers/customers) better. Then start doing that thing.

  • What will lead to satisfaction in life ?

    • Upward Trajectory - headed somewhere better than you are right now.

      • And realization that it has something to do with your direct action.

      • **Exercise 7.2: **Pick an area of your life and analyze it with the goal of figuring out whether you are on upward or downward trajectory.

        • If on upward trajectory - figure out if it’s an accident or can be traced back to your actions.

          • If it’s an accident you gotta ask yourself one questions “Do I feel lucky ?” If yes for how long you think will be lucky punk ?

          • If it’s because of something you are doing, you are not a punk and keep doing it. Maybe even do it better over time.

    • In life you have got a choice b/w two paths.

      • Taking responsibility or being bitter/resentful.

        • What makes you think where you are is not as good as a place to start as any ?
      • CJ - modern people won’t see God because they don’t look low enough.

        • << WTH is this supposed to mean ? >>
  • What you are made of is what you become when you voluntarily encounter the unknown.

    • << Interesting idea, I have always thought you can tell a lot about a man based upon the society/culture he inhabits. Because the direction in which you grow is a response to that structure that you inhabit. If you create safe-spaces where people are shielded from what they don’t want to hear then you are just creating a generation of pussies. They will not get to exercise their mental muscles to deal with chaos which is a terrible thing to happen to a person because these days the job market changes so fast - you are always on your toes trying to acquire new skill (at least that’s the way it is happening in tech sector). How are you going to deal with all that ? >>

    • Aim is so that if you can become the kind of person who repairs the city and not just the repair. It’s about transforming yourself.

    • Desire to make things worse and avoid responsibility.

      • << He didn’t give much details on that. Is there some other lecture where he talks about it ? I would love to know more about a human having a desire to make his own life a living hell. >>
    • Incremental progress. If you make 0.01 % improvement in your life then over time it will build up.

  • Why does the city fall apart ?

    • Entropy.

    • Deception/Corruption.

    • How to identify what’s true ?

      • << He doesn’t answer that question in this lecture. >>

      • He just says you know what the truth is based upon the game you have decided to play.

        • So, stop cheating on whatever game that you have decided to play.
    • Satanic arrogance that you can lie/deceive - twist/bend the structure of reality and get away it with.

    • Destroy order and let the chaos rise back up.

      • << Sounds very similar to what progressives are doing with their contempt of pillars of western civilization. >>
    • Aiming up vs Aiming down.

      • If you aim down enough and if enough of you aim down - things will become so chaotic as it was in beginning of time.

      • Taking from the corpse of you father - without any gratitude and without replenishing anything.

        • << Where does this corpse of father come from ? >> (@john: early mesopotamian mythology)

        • Don’t do it for long enough because things will happen that are so bad you can’t distinguish them from hell.

    • Cain destroying the ideal.

      • My punishment is more than I can bear.

        • Where are you once you destroy your own ideal ?

        • Milton’s Paradise Los**t **- Hell to the extent that you are distant from good.

        • Pulling down people whom you look up to.

        • He does it voluntarily.

        • God decides to wipe the whole thing to the ground.

        • Cain vs Abel as a struggle b/w short term and long term activities.

    • What led to the downfall of societies ?

      • The downfall of the individuals who inhabit it - there were not just following orders.

        • Fear of punishment does not completely explain it.
      • People each and everyone decided to lie and turn blind eye to what was happening.

        • << This is unbelievable, just unbelievable. >>
      • Your moral degeneration contributes in no small way to the degeneration of entire cosmos.

        • Ripples of our actions have consequences that are far beyond our immediate perception.

        • People knowing things at deep emotional level. They can feel them.

          • But they don’t let those things become articulate. They don’t want to know.
        • Feeling guilty because of things you have done or not done.

          • There is a part of you that is aiming at the worst things.

            • CJ - Shadow of a human reaches all the way down to the hell.
          • There is a part of cosmos also that want worse things to happen.

            • << That’s what I was waiting for. Now even the cosmos is out to get you man. WTH ! >>
          • << Why do people keep meaning and realization at an arm’s length ? >>

        • Recognizing yourself as a Nazi Prison Guard.

        • **Exercise 7.3: **Thought Experiment: Imagine yourself as a Nazi prison guard and try to do despicable things that they did in your imagination. Is there any way - pressure/motivation under which you would do something like that ?

          • << I believe mental circuits for this can be very similar to circuits for addiction. Once you start to enjoy torturing others and drive certain amount of pleasure from it - you just keep going looking for that high again. You become more and more vicious but the high eludes you. >>

          • JBP did a similar experiment. He thought he was a good guy till that point in time.

            • Respect for yourself because you understand the monstrous side of your psyche.

            • Regarding yourself as a loaded weapon esp around children.

        • His psyche split into two around this point - doer and observer.

          • Observer will just observe and make comments on his behaviour.

          • Which of these two things is me ?

          • If you say things that are as truthful as they can be - they come from the core of your being or at least somewhere more near it.

            • He had to stop saying anything at all. You are mostly dead wood.

              • Realization that you lie a lot.
            • << That’s the feeling I got while listening to Steve Jobs - he seemed to speak from a pretty deep place. >>

        • Exercise 7.4: Try to observe what you are saying and try to be as true as you can be. Try to speak from the core of your being.

        • If you have nothing much to do and if you are not pushing yourself to your boundaries then you have plenty of resources left to causing trouble.

        • Hatred and resentment are very attractive emotions.

        • Exercise 7.5: List down examples from the past where you were hell bent on your own destruction and failure.

      • **Exercise 7.6: **Awareness - Think how your moral failures are contributing to larger problems in your environment. What kind of impact you are having on those around you ?

        • Note that you could be hurting others by being nice to them on the surface - by not telling the truth (because of fear of offending them) you deprive them of critical feedback that they need to improve themselves.

        • You don’t wake up on time, work hard, waste your time - hence never write that book/never makes that music etc…

        • You might be causing harm just by not bringing the best version of yourself into existence - the one who would have inspired so many other to improve themselves otherwise.

    • Humans are the only creatures that are willfully malevolent and deceitful. This can get so bad that it take imagination of a very bad person to describe them.

      • Gods repented their creation so much that they decided to wipe it out.
  • Noah’s story

    • Noah is perfect and he walked with God.

      • << What does walking with God mean ? >>
    • What to do when things are going bad ?

      • How to build an arch and go through it or ride it out ?

      • Do something that you consider worthwhile.

    • What is the mode of being the protects you ?

    • NRA ad shocked JBP.

      • Women with contempt on her face with images of antifa rioters in the background.

      • Get your guns to fight back against hollywood and corrupt intellectuals.

      • << If anyone can find the URL for that add please add it here. >>

      • We are in a political situation where every act of individual foolishness will move us close to the end.

    • Sermon on the Mount
      There is so much different b/w the archetype and you that it feels distance. It needs to be defined in various aspects so that you can strive for it and try to implement it.

      • Aim for the highest possible good and strive to achieve it. Your daily needs will work it out. Leap of faith.

      • Ant vs the Grasshopper.

      • Ex****ercise 7.7: Introspect: What is the highest good that you can achieve ?

      • Exercise 7.8: Introspect: When in a difficult situation, ask yourself is there anything you did in last 6 months that contributed to this ?

        • Taking the beam out of your eyes first.

        • Do the same when you are in argument with someone - how are you wrong in that situation (even if it’s by 2%) ?

    • What is your life not what you want it to be ?

      • They don’t actually figure out what it is.

      • You don’t try - you don’t say here is what I would like to have I can have it ?

      • Exercise 7.9: Looks at yourself as another person - someone you care about. Then ask yourself - what would the better life for this person look like ?

        • 3 years from now you can have what you need if you figure it out and aim at it. If you aim you will get it.

        • As you take steps towards what you want - you might update it if it’s not correct.

        • The chances of random success is zero.

      • Faith makes being good - if you act properly in the world being will reveal itself as good.

    • Golden rule is misunderstood somewhat - Conceptual how great things can be for you then work to make them true for everyone.

      • Budhha was tempted with the offer to stay in nirvana forever he reject the offer and came back to help more people attain that.

      • JBP call this the most important law/rule humanity has come up with.

    • Very narrow path if you are doing things right - the path to hell is very wide.

      • Your deepest instincts are sensitive to this issue. When you are meaningfully engaged in the world (timeless feeling) - you are in the right place at the right time.
    • Exercise 7.10:** **Watch yourself for two weeks as if you don’t know yourself - notice when things are perfectly arrayed for you. You are in the right place.

      • Think how you go there and how to make it happen more often.

      • Overtime you will be able to make it happen more and more often.

    • Corrupt tree bring forth evil fruit and false prophets.

      • Why can’t a miracle just manifest itself ?

        • You will forget about it in six months.

        • Negative miracles happening all the time.

        • Homework 1: Learn more about what happened in the 20th century.

      • If you are mostly dead wood a spark will light on fire.

    • Entering heaven - christianity

    • Judgement day - everyday is judgement day.
      "And then will I profess unto the, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity."

      • Your own ideal sits in the judgement of your own iniquity.

      • Without ideal you have got no meaning in life - the more perfect the ideal the harsher the judgement.

      • Dispenses with the ideal because you don’t want to be judgement.

    • Christ taught people with authority as opposed to just saying stuff because it sounded good.

  • Liberal vs Conservative

    • Libs tend to focus on corruption that comes from the past.

    • Conservatives tend to glorify the past.

  • There are certain things that you can do so that the divine impulse will abandon you.

    • What are these things ?

      • << Knowingly do things that you know are wrong ? >>
  • Feedback to Peterson

    • JBP met a waiter who was promoted two times in last 4 months after he started listening to him (and follow his advice).

my notes

16, Anything done right is not trivial, will pay off. Net consequence over time was good.

17, Fragility is built into courage. Transform yourself into becoming the on capable of transforming the city.

48, He (Peterson) separated into 2 being, one that was a critic.

1:16, What stupid thing am I doing on a regular basis that is hurting me in the long run.

1:24, Watch yourself to 2 weeks and keep track of how often and when everything is arrayed properly, then use that info to try to recur those scenarios.

1:44, These stories can be taken concretely so as to be understood by every type of person, but it’s incorrect to read them as a child would if you’re an adult… (paraphrased)