Monday, April 30, 2018
"humans are weird creatures because we are much more activated by having an aim and moving towards it than having it -- and that means you have to have an aim and that means you have to have an interpretation; it also means the nobler the aim, the better your life and that's a really interesting thing to know...
you can't make yourself interested in anything...interest manifests itself, and grips you. that’s a whole different thing. so what is it that’s gripping you? how do you conceptualize that? is that a divine power? well, it’s divine as far as you’re concerned, because it grips you, and you can’t do anything about it. so there’s a calling in you towards what you’re compelled by, and what you’re interested in...
truth is not arrived at by consensus...
how would you like your life to be, what would you like your character to be, three to five years down the road, if you were taking care of yourself like you were taking care of someone that you actually cared about? you kind of have to split yourself into two people, and treat yourself like someone you have respect for and want the best for. that’s not easy, because people don’t necessarily have respect for themselves, and they don’t necessarily want the best for themselves. they have a lot of self-contempt, and a lot of self-hatred, a lot of guilt, a lot of existential angst, and a lot of self-consciousness, and all of that. and so people don’t necessarily take care of themselves very well. i think you have an obligation—it’s one of the highest moral obligations—to treat yourself as if you’re a creature of value that is, in some sense, independent of your actions.
is there something that you can do that has a value so high that the fact that you are mortal and vulnerable and prone to suffering inescapably, that you'd find that not only acceptable but desirable?
what do I do next? well, I’m going to sacrifice my life to this aim. what is it that I should do that’s worth sacrificing my life to? that’s a serious question. maybe that’s the sort of question that people don’t ask, because they’re afraid of the seriousness of the question and the potential magnitude of the answer. do you really want to know what you should do that would be worth sacrificing your life to?
the worst punishment isn’t waiting for those who committed to something and did wrong: the worst punishment is reserved for those who committed to nothing and stayed on the fence.
that’s really something to think about. it’s also something I believe to be true, because I see that stasis is utterly destructive. there’s no progress; movement backwards is all there is. there’s aging, suffering, and no progress. and so to not commit to anything is the worst of all transgressions. to commit means to put your body and soul into something. to offer your life as a sacrifice means that you’re willing to make a bargain with fate. the bargain is, i’m going to act as if, if I give it my all, then the best possible thing will happen because of that.
one of the things that I’ve noticed in my life is that nothing I’ve ever done was wasted. by ‘done,’ I mean put my heart and soul into it—attempted with all of my effort. that always worked. now, it didn’t always work the way I expected it to work. that’s a whole different issue. but the payoff from it was always positive. something of value always accrued to me when I made the sacrifices necessary to do something worthwhile.
i’ve watched people put themselves together, across time, incrementally and continually. they become capable of things that are not only jaw-droppingly amazing, but, sometimes, metaphysically impossible to understand. so we don’t know the limits of human endeavor. we truly don’t. it’s premature to put a cap on what it is that we are, or what it is that we’re capable of.
this is the issue about going into the unknown. if you leave your country and your kin and your father’s house, and you go out into a land that your intuition guides you to, you’re going to undergo these radical transformations. this is a sacrificial transformation too, because you’re moving forthrightly and voluntarily into chaos. that’s the same as the dragon fight. that’s the hero’s story. what will happen there is that you will transform yourself. and so the call to an ideal is also the call to a sequence of deaths and rebirths that move you closer and closer to the ideal.
there’s an idea that Jung developed about the trickster, or the jester, or the comedian. the trickster is the precursor to the savior. that’s one of the things I learned from Jung that was just so unlikely. you’d never think that. it’s so amazing that that might be the case. the satirical and the ironic and the troublemaker, the comedian—the fool is the precursor to the savior. why? because you’re a fool when you start something new. and so, if you’re not willing to be a fool, then you’ll never start anything new. and if you never start anything new, then you won’t develop. and so the willingness to be a fool is the precursor to transformation. that’s the same as humility. if you’re going to write your destiny, you can do a bad first job. you’re going to get smarter as you move forward."
-- Jordan B. Peterson
what you most need to find
will be found where you least want to look
"thinking is difficult, that's why most people judge.
emotion is the chief source of all becoming-conscious.
there can be no transforming of darkness into light
and of apathy into movement without emotion.
the most terrifying thing is to accept oneself completely.
do not compare, do not measure. no other way is like yours.
all other ways deceive and tempt you. you must fulfill the way that is in you.
a man who has not passed through the inferno of his passions has never overcome them.
the creation of something new is not accomplished by the intellect but by the play instinct acting from inner necessity. the creative mind plays with the objects it loves.
one does not become enlightened by imagining figures of light
but by making the darkness conscious.
people will do anything, no matter how absurd, to avoid facing their own souls.
there is no coming to consciousness without pain.
in all chaos there is a cosmos, in all disorder a secret order.
show me a sane man and I will cure him for you.
when an inner situation is not made conscious, it appears outside as fate.
the privilege of a lifetime is to become who you really are.
if the path before you is clear, you're probably on someone else's.
your vision will become clear only when you can look into your own heart. who looks outside, dreams; who looks inside, awakes.
people don't have ideas; ideas have people.
beware of wisdom you did not earn"
-- carl jung