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6 Profound Quotes from "12 Rules for Life" by Jordan Peterson

Jordan Peterson

"The first step, perhaps, is to take stock. Who are you? When you buy a house and prepare to live in it, you hire an inspector to list all its faults–as it is, in reality, now, not as you wish it could be. You’ll even pay him for the bad news. You need to know. You need to discover the home’s hidden flaws. You need to know whether they are cosmetic imperfections or structural inadequacies. You need to know because you can’t fix something if you don’t know it’s broken–and you’re broken. You need an inspector. The internal critic–it could play that role, if you could get it on track; if you and it could cooperate."

Jordan Peterson

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The Flaw in Jordan Peterson’s Argument On Hierarchy

Peterson suggests human hierarchies aren’t socially created, but are effects of human evolution. His evidence for this is the fact that lobsters also have hierarchies.

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The Flaw In Jordan Peterson’s Comparison Between Humans And Lobsters

Serotonin is linked to aggression and is found in the brains of most animals, humans and lobsters include, as expected of creatures with a common ancestor. But serotonin has a completely different effect in arthropods and vertebrates.

In vertebrates lowered levels of serotonin has been shown to lead to increased aggression, the opposite happens on humans.

Ideologies ≠ Ideologues
Ideologies ≠ Ideologues

Ideologies: ideas that, disguised as science or philosophy, claim to explain the complexity of the world and offer remedies that will perfect it.

Ideologues: people who pretend ...

Virtue ≠ Virtue Signaling

Jordan Peterson observed that virtues aim for balance and to avoid the extremes of the vices. Cultivating judgment about the difference between virtue and vice is the beginning of wisdom.

Modern relativism asserts judging how to live is impossible, because good and virtue are relative. Thus relativism’s version of “virtue” is “tolerance.” This leads to people broadcasting their tolerance as a form of self-promotion, and secret vice, which is also known as virtue signaling.

Order and Chaos

Order is where the people around you act according to the established social norms, remaining predictable and cooperative. Society is simultaneously structure and oppression.

Chaos is where the unexpected happens. 

Jordan Peterson

"You’re not as nice as you think. And you’re not as useless as you think"

Jordan Peterson
The Aim of Living
Psychology Professor Jordan Peterson's self-help book 12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos provides some out-of-the-box ways of living life, borrowing from the works of Nietzsche, Freud, Jung, and Dostoevsky, which are unconventional sources for this kind of work.
Life as a Tragedy
Jordan Peterson’s view of the world around him is complex, and he tries to simplify this with books.
  • We are just a speck in this huge, complex world, inviting us to be humble. 
  • Happiness, he says, is a pointless goal,
  • Only compare yourself with your yesterday, not with others.