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Petersonian Philosophy, and other vexations

Reader comment on item: Conservatism's Hidden History
in response to reader comment: Can the wisdom of ages be gained outside the cloud of philosophy?

Submitted by Michael S (United States), Sep 5, 2018 at 16:39

Thank you for the compliment, Martin. Indeed, I expend some (i.e. a little, but not too much) effort in not being a philosopher. Solomon warned us against being over-wise.

"Cloud of Unknowing?" I said "clouds of philosophy" Is that what you referred to? The whole field of Philosophy is like clouds, ever-changing and always on the move. The various philosophies are named after their authors, pretty much on a 1:1 basis -- one unique philosopher corresponds with an equally unique philosophy, hence, "Freudian", "Jungian", "Kantian", etc. Your own brand is doubtless "Mallietian" That is why I spoke of "clouds".

You seem to have presented Jordan Peterson as a quiz question. Just relying on what you said about him, here are my answers:

1. "aimed at reforming Western civilization" -- definitely liberal. A conservative might "tweak" Western civilization; only a liberal would try to reform it (according to the definition presented in the OP)
2. "...to provide a RATIONAL justification..." Liberal again, I would venture: leaning on human reason... for what? Justification?? As a conservative, I don't try to justify anything: That's God's job. I just try to come up with workable solutions.
3. "(questioning) why the materialists... should root themselves in the soil of Christian ethics..."
Liberal again. I understand that you are trying to present a logical conundrum; and indeed, I (a conservative) do ever strive to be logical. That said, I would never question why someone would want to root himself in the soil of "Christian ethics"; for those ethics are deeply entwined in traditional Western thinking.

"...how the spirit is at work to preserve common sense culture in the depth of cultural destruction and philosophical illiteracy?"

I don't understand that statement. Which spirit are you referring to? The Holy Spirit? or the Spirit of the Age? The two oppose one another.

"Common sense" culture: I'm certainly for it, if the opposite is "Foolish culture". This has nothing to do with Thomas Paine's pamphlet, "Common Sense", which played a large part in mobilizing Americans against British rule. Paine went back to Britain after the war, to become a "father of British Atheism" (hence, a liberal).

You have probably noticed by now, that my actual definition of a "conservative" is, "someone who thinks like me!" I suppose there are precious few of us.

I just looked up your link about Jordan Peterson. It begins,

"Here in a guest cottage at the summit of a high hill in northern California..."

UC-Berkeley comes to mind. I never attended there, but tried to make a purchase on Telegraph Ave., right next to it. I also knew some former taxi drivers from the place, which we referred to as "escapees from Berserkeley". One of those drivers was convinced that he was God; the other two were more normal.

It goes on,

"...The emotional burden he bears as a virtual father figure to millions of wayward young men."

I was going to mention earlier, about what a heavy burden it is, to try to be a philosopher (which is probably why I am not one). Solomon said,

Qoh.1
[12] I the Preacher was king over Israel in Jerusalem.
[13] And I gave my heart to seek and search out by wisdom concerning all things that are done under heaven: this sore travail hath God given to the sons of man to be exercised therewith.
[14] I have seen all the works that are done under the sun; and, behold, all is vanity and vexation of spirit.
[15] That which is crooked cannot be made straight: and that which is wanting cannot be numbered.
[16] I communed with mine own heart, saying, Lo, I am come to great estate, and have gotten more wisdom than all they that have been before me in Jerusalem: yea, my heart had great experience of wisdom and knowledge.
[17] And I gave my heart to know wisdom, and to know madness and folly: I perceived that this also is vexation of spirit.

I will stop there, lest I vex you and myself further; and will leave an analysis of Petersonian Philosophy to others.

God bless and keep you and yours :-)

Submitting....

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Note: Opinions expressed in comments are those of the authors alone and not necessarily those of Daniel Pipes. Original writing only, please. Comments are screened and in some cases edited before posting. Reasoned disagreement is welcome but not comments that are scurrilous, off-topic, commercial, disparaging religions, or otherwise inappropriate. For complete regulations, see the "Guidelines for Reader Comments".

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