Some of the best experiences in life take time to ferment and mature in our minds before they can be distilled to a traveler. In April of this year, I had the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to meet one of the people I look up to the most, Jordan Peterson.
November of 2021 was a big month. I was lucky to have long been following Dr. Peterson on Twitter and know that he was going on tour in support of his book “Twelve More Rules for Life”, as VIP tickets sold out within twenty minutes. Thankfully, I managed to acquire the tickets… and the anticipation began!
Fast forward to April 6th of 2022
Dr. Peterson lectured for over two hours, the longest of the entire tour. He spoke about freedom, economics, American politics, Parisians, pseudo-intellectuals, and so much more.
A high point of the lecture, which piqued my interest and of many in the audience, was Dr. Peterson’s mention of the Parisian pseudo-intellectuals. He spoke about such people in the sense of communism prevailing in the 60’s culture that transpired into the reality of the world we face today. Dr. Peterson mentioned how they hide behind the smoke of their cigarettes and have no real substance to their arguments. At the same time, they advocate for socialistic or communistic ideals in conditions only describable as luxurious. They pretend to have been victimized and harmed by the system. In reality, the majority are simply strange creatures who have been thrown out of the system for good reason! He then mentions how they have formed literary journals for well over a hundred years to spread their ideas in social circles and to the “masses”.
Dr. Peterson spoke about how people interested in becoming an established “intellectual” must chase after the acceptance of these progressive journals that have now become entrenched in academia—a cancer propagated by the higher education system.
To inject a bit of my own thought from my own experience into this narrative, I believe that people who want to become true intellectuals must reject these entrenched journals that publish nothing but frivolous theories on ridiculous subjects. I have personally seen how most of the essays published in these journals can go up to 15 words for a title! “The Metaphysics of Journalistic Integrity in the 21st century digital age in correlation to racial diversity”. While I do not believe this to be an authentic published piece, the reader may draw their conclusion from the joining of weighty words that veils a lack of substance in the realm of ideas.
End Lecture Q&A With Jordan Peterson
At the lecture’s conclusion, there was a time of Q&A for the general audience. Following this period, the public left, and those who had a VIP lanyard were to remain to meet Dr. Peterson and take a picture with him. You can see mine below. At this point, I was able to tell him the following: “Thank you for impacting so many young men around the world”. To which he replied with a smile, “it is my pleasure”.
After this magical encounter, the VIP guests were unexpectedly surprised by Dr. Peterson sitting down right in front of us on the stage to do a more intimate Q&A. I was one of only four people out of well over 50 to have my question answered, as I was second. From what I could tell, he was very curious to know what my question was, as there was an unspoken mutual understanding between us.
My Question to Dr. Peterson
I quickly decided upon my question, and I have no regrets for what I asked, as it has come true countless times since then. So, I asked Dr. Peterson, “What is the best thing that someone who is young, such as a high schooler, can do to positively impact the world on such a scale as you have?”
He thought it over for about a full minute while I waited in great anticipation, quite literally at his feet. At last, he opened his eyes and replied, and I paraphrase: “Read. Read as much as you possibly can. That is how you will get life experience that you would not be able to experience anywhere else. Check out the books that are on my reading list on my website, as I crafted that list specifically to provide a foundation in knowledge and understanding. That is the best thing you can do to impact people.”
This was quite an awesome answer and encounter, to say the least, one in which I was very encouraged. Three more questions were answered after mine, dealing with Bitcoin, fatherhood, and the hate JBP has received from the media. Again, I found the questions and answers quite fascinating!
He believes Bitcoin is incredibly valuable but that the current status quo will be hard to change economically. Then Jordan Peterson addressed everyone in the audience (though I felt he was making sure his point got across to me since I said how I wished to be like him). Dr. Peterson thus said that he wishes his position on nobody because the hate he receives from the media and social media is overwhelming. Yet, when Dr. Peterson goes on tour, he witnesses many people expressing their love for him. They remind him, he says, that he must keep going.
This incredible experience ended at 11 p.m, and all the VIP guests walked back in the dark to their cars with signed posters.
Truly an experience to remember.