Jordan Peterson - Developing Your Inner Psychopath

Exploring Theravāda's connections to other paths - what can we learn from other traditions, religions and philosophies?
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LG2V
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Jordan Peterson - Developing Your Inner Psychopath

Post by LG2V » Sat Oct 20, 2018 10:41 pm



Interesting vid about confronting evil. How do you guys think this squares with Buddhist lay practice?
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Re: Jordan Peterson - Developing Your Inner Psychopath

Post by Meggo » Sun Oct 21, 2018 5:52 am

This is pretty much BS. Not only because JP is a narcissist himself, but also because Psychopathy is so deeply ingrained that it would be very hard to develop it from scratch. Funny enough some form of perceptual stability can help with that - that's why breivik used meditation to dissociate himself from the suffering of his victims - because psychopaths have attention locked on themselves on a very basic level, similarly to autism. Both seem to represent an extreme of the male brain (which doesn't mean females can't develop it) Both are unable to shift attention easily away from self centered perceptions to someone else, both have difficulties even feeling empathy. Psychos have problems activating the insula and they are much less stressed, similar to people with damaged amygdalas.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/S.M._(patient)
What peterson here is talking about is much more about sadism than psychopathy. Not every psychopath is a sadist and vice versa.
So if you want to become a psychopath use some concentration to keep attention locked in one place, use alcohol to dissociate yourself from you surroundings, use cocaine for inducing a hyperactive thrill seeking state and hit yourself a few times really hard 10cm above your right ear and then take this test to see if you were successful:
https://qst.darkfactor.org/

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Bundokji
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Re: Jordan Peterson - Developing Your Inner Psychopath

Post by Bundokji » Mon Oct 22, 2018 7:19 pm

Jordan Peterson is influenced by Nietzsche and Jung which is different than Buddhism especially Theravada as i understand it.

The idea of enlightenment according to the above two intellectuals is to be a complete or authentic human being while in Buddhism it is to end suffering by developing wisdom. Both teachings promote going beyond good and evil but the former through integrating evil and acknowledging it as a part of who you are hence keeping it at bay. Such acknowledgement exists in Buddhism but it takes a different form altogether:

https://suttacentral.net/mn19/en/bodhi
And the Blessed One addressed the bhikkhus, saying: "Behold now, bhikkhus, I exhort you: All compounded things are subject to vanish. Strive with earnestness!"

This was the last word of the Tathagata.

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Re: Jordan Peterson - Developing Your Inner Psychopath

Post by Pseudobabble » Tue Oct 23, 2018 5:58 am

The Shadow wrote:Who knows what evil lurks in the hearts of men? The Shadow knows!
The ability to recognise the evil in oneself is the precondition to lessening it. If one can't do this, one remains stuck and blind.
"Does Master Gotama have any position at all?"

"A 'position,' Vaccha, is something that a Tathagata has done away with. What a Tathagata sees is this: 'Such is form, such its origination, such its disappearance; such is feeling, such its origination, such its disappearance; such is perception...such are fabrications...such is consciousness, such its origination, such its disappearance.'" - Aggi-Vacchagotta Sutta


'Dust thou art, and unto dust thou shalt return.' - Genesis 3:19

'Some fart freely, some try to hide and silence it. Which one is correct?' - Saegnapha

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DooDoot
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Re: Jordan Peterson - Developing Your Inner Psychopath

Post by DooDoot » Wed Oct 24, 2018 12:46 am

LG2V wrote:
Sat Oct 20, 2018 10:41 pm
Interesting vid about confronting evil. How do you guys think this squares with Buddhist lay practice?
To me, the speaker is correct when discussing how a naive person cannot comprehend how certain types of evil could exist & befall them. But, to me, the solution of the speaker is not Buddhist. In other words, a loss of innocence does not require oneself to develop any inner psychopathy to resolve it.

There is a rel event sutta, as follows:
This was said by the Lord…

There are, bhikkhus, two successive Dhamma-teachings of the Tathāgata, the Arahant, the Fully Enlightened One. What are the two?

‘See evil as evil’— this is the first Dhamma-teaching.

‘Having seen evil as evil, be rid of it, be detached from it, be freed from it’—this is the second Dhamma-teaching.

These, bhikkhus, are the two successive Dhamma-teachings of the Tathāgata…”

Regard the ordered words he spoke,
The Tathāgata, the Awakened One,
Compassionate for all beings,
And the two things he proclaimed:

“See what is evil” is one,
The other “Be detached from it.”
With a mind become detached from evil
You will make an end of suffering.

https://suttacentral.net/iti39/en/ireland
Becoming dispassionate towards evil means to totally shun it; including when your mind is the object of it. This takes a very dedicated effort of mind & discernment to do because trauma is certainly something very deep in the psyche. The type of effort is like squeezing dirty water out of a sponge without breaking the sponge.

The idea of the speaker that is non-Buddhist is the idea all people are the same. Buddhism does not teach this. Buddhism teaches people have different dispositions, as follows:
13. (4) "Again, the Tathagata understands as it actually is the world with its many and different elements. That too is a Tathagata's power...

14. (5) "Again, the Tathagata understands as it actually is how beings have different inclinations. That too is a Tathagata's power...

15. (6) "Again, the Tathagata understands as it actually is the disposition of the faculties of other beings, other persons. That too is a Tathagata's power...

https://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitak ... .ntbb.html
This is probably why the speaker must refer to the Old Testament because the Old Testament is essentially "Kabbalah", namely, that good & evil are Yaweh's divine and universal creation. The speaker also speaks ideas similar to St Paul's Christian idea that sin and evil are "human nature". In Buddhism, it appears to be "asura" and "animals" that engage in evil and "humans" that engage in non-harming; as quoted below:
Vepacitti the asura-king recited this verse:

'Fools would flare up even more
if there were no constraints.
Thus an enlightened one
should restrain the fool
with a heavy stick.'

I see a fault
in... forbearance:
When the fool thinks,
"He's forbearing
out of fear of me,"
the idiot pursues you even more —
as a cow, someone who runs away.'

https://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitak ... .than.html
Sooner, I say, would that blind turtle, coming to the surface once every hundred years, insert its neck into that yoke with a single hole than the fool who has gone once to the nether world would regain the human state. For what reason? Because here, bhikkhus, there is no conduct guided by the Dhamma, no righteous conduct, no wholesome activity, no meritorious activity. Here there prevails mutual devouring, the devouring of the weak. For what reason? Because, bhikkhus, they have not seen the Four Noble Truths. What four? The noble truth of suffering … the noble truth of the way leading to the cessation of suffering.

https://suttacentral.net/sn56.47/en/bodhi
The feeling & vibrations of trauma are "sankhara" (mental formations). We should try to dissolve them by being aware of them & breathing with them.

Regards :heart:

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Modus.Ponens
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Re: Jordan Peterson - Developing Your Inner Psychopath

Post by Modus.Ponens » Wed Oct 24, 2018 11:00 am

Pseudobabble wrote:
Tue Oct 23, 2018 5:58 am
The Shadow wrote:Who knows what evil lurks in the hearts of men? The Shadow knows!
The ability to recognise the evil in oneself is the precondition to lessening it. If one can't do this, one remains stuck and blind.
:goodpost:

Reminds me of Soljenytsin's quote
Gradually it was disclosed to me that the line separating good and evil passes not through states, nor between classes, nor between political parties either -- but right through every human heart -- and through all human hearts.
Peterson's philosophy is not a doctrine of transcendence. Some doctrines/religions aim at transcending suffering (like buddhism), while others aim at dealing well with suffering (like stoicism, or Peterson's philosophy). It seems to me that there are a few inevitable contradictions between the two kinds of doctrines, since transcending suffering requires a level of pacifism that is not reciprocated, for example, by psychopaths, or hostile nations. So Peterson's philosophy is for those not aiming at transcending suffering.

As for the video itself, the message is that in order to deal with psychopaths and other kinds of evil actors you have to "integrate the shadow". What this means is that all human beings have both noble and destructive instincts. If we ignore, or suppress our destructive instincts, we are susceptible to be overtaken by those instincts when we face a really bad situation. The alternative is to acknowledge our destructive instincts, bring them to our conscious awareness, and thus having more control over them. If we are aware of our destructive instincts, it is easier to control them, and to channel them to constructive goals.

If you have your shadow integrated and develop your strength of character and your physical strength, you are able to stand up to bullies, to defend your family, or those too vulnerable to defend themselves. A good concrete example of this is explained in this video about Joe Rogan.




As for what it means to buddhists, it depends on what goal we have in mind. But whether we are aiming at transcending suffering or not, all of us can learn valuable things from Jordan Peterson.
"He turns his mind away from those phenomena and, having done so, inclines his mind to the property of deathlessness: 'This is peace, this is exquisite — the resolution of all fabrications; the relinquishment of all acquisitions; the ending of craving; dispassion; cessation; Unbinding.' " - Jhana Sutta

Laurens
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Re: Jordan Peterson - Developing Your Inner Psychopath

Post by Laurens » Tue Nov 06, 2018 9:48 am

A lot of people deny their own capacity for evil, thinking themselves wholly good. I certainly used to think that of myself. This is misguided because it can allow you to act selfishly in small ways whilst believing oneself to be good. It can create a blind spot as it were. Being aware of the ways in which you can be a bad person to their full extent is an important first step in overcoming our capacity for ill will and selfishness.

I think the solution is to realise that evil, or selfish impulses are not self, and impermanent. To use mindfulness to watch them arise and pass away without getting caught up in them, and most importantly to cultivate loving-kindness so that our ill will and selfishness towards ourselves and others is more easily let go of and less likely to arise.
"If only it were all so simple! If only there were evil people somewhere insidiously committing evil deeds, and it were necessary only to separate them from the rest of us and destroy them. But the line dividing good and evil cuts through the heart of every human being. And who is willing to destroy a piece of his own heart?"

Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn

chownah
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Re: Jordan Peterson - Developing Your Inner Psychopath

Post by chownah » Wed Nov 07, 2018 1:32 am

Seems like the buddha teaches us to develop our inner equanimity, compassion, discernment, calm, etc.
Seems like peterson teaches us to develop our inner psycopath and malevelance.
chownah

kevin52193
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Re: Jordan Peterson - Developing Your Inner Psychopath

Post by kevin52193 » Wed Nov 07, 2018 3:49 am

He said it himself, victimization. The way out of a situation, is to unidentify with it, to NOT be a victim, not to use the same forces of evil that you're trying to do away with. But i see his point. I think it's good, just a more narrowly-defined perspective on how to deal with conflict, as opposed to something more transcending that the Buddha would teach.

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Re: Jordan Peterson - Developing Your Inner Psychopath

Post by Modus.Ponens » Wed Nov 07, 2018 4:56 pm

chownah wrote:
Wed Nov 07, 2018 1:32 am
Seems like the buddha teaches us to develop our inner equanimity, compassion, discernment, calm, etc.
Seems like peterson teaches us to develop our inner psycopath and malevelance.
chownah
It's not an incentive to malevolence. It's an incentive to recognise the dormant malevolence in every human being, especially ourselves, so that we can bring it under voluntary and conscious control. It's similar to the psychological principle that labelling our emotions allows us to have better control over them, particularly over anxiety and sadness.

In this particular case, human beings have wholesome and unwholesome instincts. The way to deal with the unwholesome instincts is to recognise them consciously so we can have more control over them, instead of the other way around. The (mundane) alternative is to let the malevolence remain dormant until the moment it takes over you and you do something awful. The "supramundane alternative" is to transcend the malevolence through the cultivation of the noble 8 fold path.

But I don't think the noble 8 fold path is in complete contradiction with Peterson's views. We can only transcend what is unwholesome through liberating insight _ that much is clear. But until then we have to deal with what is unwholesome within us. And part of that involves recognising our negative instincts and channel them to constructive ends, such as not being a doormat, defending our family, or those who are vulnerable, having the courage to do the right thing when it involves some unpleasant confrontation, etc. I think it's important advice for those of us who are not monks, as long as it doesn't contradict the buddhist teachings.
"He turns his mind away from those phenomena and, having done so, inclines his mind to the property of deathlessness: 'This is peace, this is exquisite — the resolution of all fabrications; the relinquishment of all acquisitions; the ending of craving; dispassion; cessation; Unbinding.' " - Jhana Sutta

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Re: Jordan Peterson - Developing Your Inner Psychopath

Post by Manopubbangama » Sun Nov 11, 2018 2:40 pm

chownah wrote:
Wed Nov 07, 2018 1:32 am
Seems like the buddha teaches us to develop our inner equanimity, compassion, discernment, calm, etc.
Seems like peterson teaches us to develop our inner psycopath and malevelance.
chownah
Unfortunately his views are so popular due to the natural tendency of people to turn 180 degrees from the irrationality of society with more irrationality.

Right now the predominant value system in the West is this:

As a result, people are starving for an alternative and there will always be an abundance of people willing to provide an alternative view point.
Sabbe Sankhara Anicca - Sabbe Sankhara Dukkha - Sabbe Dhamma Anatta

2600htz
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Re: Jordan Peterson - Developing Your Inner Psychopath

Post by 2600htz » Mon Nov 12, 2018 12:15 am

Hello:

Jordan Peterson is a smart reasonable man with clinical experience, he is just making statements like "become a monster" to shock the audience and make a fair point. But even if he is right on many things, he has depression and some mental health issues (im just pointing this in order to make the point that psychology its very far from solving the human condition).

He is right stating that a phedophilic predator, seeing a landscape full of children, will go to the one who is "timid and won`t fight back".
The difference with Buddhism is the way he proposes to solve the issue. He says: If you are timid and won`t fight back, then become a boxer. Get into a professional ring, in order to get in touch with fear in a more healthy way. So you are not longer afraid.

The Buddha would just advice that timid person to become an Anagami, so they don`t have any more fear or hate arising ever in their mind :).

Regards.

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Re: Jordan Peterson - Developing Your Inner Psychopath

Post by manas » Fri Nov 30, 2018 7:43 pm

2600htz wrote:
Mon Nov 12, 2018 12:15 am

The Buddha would just advice that timid person to become an Anagami, so they don`t have any more fear or hate arising ever in their mind :).

Regards.
That might take some time, though. In the meantime, we do need to have the courage to stand up for ourselves, otherwise people tend to just walk all over us, which causes unnecessary stress and a less-peaceful mind. Being a Buddhist doesn't equate to being a doormat. Letting others treat us like crap, in effect teaches them it's ok to do so, and that does them no good either.

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Re: Jordan Peterson - Developing Your Inner Psychopath

Post by Circle5 » Sat Dec 01, 2018 4:14 am

2600htz wrote:
Mon Nov 12, 2018 12:15 am
The Buddha would just advice that timid person to become an Anagami, so they don`t have any more fear or hate arising ever in their mind :).

Regards.
Not really. If I am not mistaken, the Buddha said that in the same way as one should not tolerate abuse done against others, one should not tolerate abuse directed towards himself either.

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cappuccino
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Re: Jordan Peterson - Developing Your Inner Psychopath

Post by cappuccino » Tue Dec 04, 2018 6:26 am

On very many occasions the Buddha explained the disadvantages of an angry temper. Here is one of his admonitions:

Suppose some bandits catch one of you and sever his body limb from limb with a two-handed saw, and if he should feel angry thereby even at that moment, he is no follower of my teaching.

— Kakacupama Sutta

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