Jordan Peterson Helped Me Find God In A Burning Bush

It was Friday. I was backing out of the driveway to take my daughter to school. As I did so, I happened to notice my neighbor setting his house on fire. Well, his shrubbery at any rate. In the car I watched as four foot flames leapt before his house while he stood there, smiling and waving at me with a can of lighter fluid in his hand.

We live in townhomes. All the houses are connected and this man is igniting a dead bush over a lawn of brittle, dry leaves. “Daddy,” my daughter asks, “is he burning his house down?” “Of course not,” I reassure her. The man waves as we pass. I wave back. He shoots another squirt of fluid onto the flames.

As married ROK readers can attest, wives never answer when you need them and I spent the drive frantically calling mine to warn her about the crazy man and to ask her to keep an eye out for growing flames in case she needed to call the fire department. No answer. I was worried. By the time I dropped my daughter off the fires in my imagination had already consumed the block and so rather than go to work I whipped around back to the house, speeding to check on the flames. I call my wife again. No answer still.

The smoke was almost back in view when she found her phone. “Sorry!” she yelled. “I was stuck talking to a crazy man burning his house down!” Right after we’d left my wife had decided to take the dog out and the man with the lighter fluid decided that was a good chance to tell someone his life story. A disjointed biography. One of those speeches where you can only pick out memorable words but not really detect a narrative. A vague swirl of phrases like “gold coins,” “Obama,” “on the farm,” and “the 80s,” she remembered. Everything else was a blur. I arrived back to find the bush still burning. The man was nowhere to be seen.

What does this have to do with Jordan Peterson?

By nature I am not very assertive. Like most raised in America, I learned that the highest value is minding your own damned business. Ours is a society deeply focused on removing all human interaction from our lives and without Peterson I honestly don’t think I’d have confronted the man with the fire. Not really out of cowardice, just a lack of social rules about how to address the situation.

Barren of conflict resolution tools, our culture’s primary response to them is to just ignore the problem and hope it goes away. The point where I have a right to interject myself into my neighbor’s affairs is never spelled out. Such would go against the primary American ethos: “Keep to Thy Self.”

However… my neighborhood was on fire. That ethos seemed inadequate.

Peterson piqued my interest because I’m a struggling Christian and he outlines a form of spirituality not only in-line with evolutionary biology but actually a consequence of it. By his reckoning there is The Known and The Unknown, Chaos and Order, things so real and fundamental that our bodies and brains evolved to deal with them.

I stood in the drive staring at the burning bush, finding myself exactly on the border of those realms. I was home. A place of security and comfort. Across the street was a crazy man and a fire. Order and Chaos. According to Peterson, this was where life happened. Using Christian themes, Peterson suggests that the proper way to conquer the unknown is to shoulder responsibility for it. To take up your cross. I’d listened to him say this but never put it into practice to see if it worked. It was worth a shot.

The man saw me

Before I could even get near he came bursting out the door, warning me about the smoke. “Watch out,” he said. “You’ll get covered in ash.” I told him I was uncomfortable with the fire and he told me it was his property and to agree to disagree. I said no, the fire needed to stop. He said it was safe. I said it wasn’t.

He then went on a diatribe similar to the one he’d given my wife and I picked up words like “gun,” “drug war,” “Jesus,” and “the CIA.” I also picked up a narrative about how the Home Owner’s Association was pocketing our dues and not paying for landscaping. His bushes had died. He’d complained for years. Nothing was done. He’d done something himself.

As he talked I realized he was speaking the truth. For ten years I’d heard repeated rumblings form other neighbors about their various petty feuds. They all hated each other. They all wanted to sue. They accused one another of stealing and vandalism and once a lady poured wasp spray into another woman’s face for letting her dog relieve itself upon her lawn. As he ranted beside the burning lawn decorations I realized I had known all this, but ignored it. It was petty. It was “Not My Problem.” True enough but things that aren’t your problem grow. Sooner or later they become your problem. Fires spread.

Peterson was right

Ten years I’d ignored all the burning Hells inside the people around me and now a piece of Hell had manifested into an actual roaring flame threatening to burn everything down. The underworld had come forth. Inner darknesses had been fed so long that they were sending real smoke up into a real sky. School shootings. Terrorist attacks. They all happen for the same reason. Because fires grow.

Christ said the Kingdom of God is within us and I think what he meant by that was that you can actually unfold yourself onto the geography. You can manifest the intimations of Heaven inside you out onto the exterior world. But… you can also do the opposite. Just as easily, you can call forth the demons of Hell. Talking with my neighbor I realized that by ignoring all these metaphorical dragons over the years I’d given them space to get bigger. I had not taken responsibility. I’d picked up no crosses. The logic behind “Love thy neighbor” boils down to the idea that the one on the scene is obligated to put the fire out before it spreads. What is the role of Man if not to slay the dragon?

Fires are burning all around you. Put them out.

Read More: How Jeb Bush Destroyed The Bush Dynasty And Tanked His Own Campaign

42 thoughts on “Jordan Peterson Helped Me Find God In A Burning Bush”

  1. Interesting. Definitely a type of article for a Monday and you’re absolutely right. Men need to stop ignoring the little dragons because they will feed and get stronger.

  2. This is going to sound pretentious, but the fact that Jordan Peterson is considered a Youtube prophet is to my mind only indicative of just how far Western men have fallen culturally and spiritually.
    And on the author’s point about how Peterson’s interpretation of Christianity is compatible with evolutionary biology, this is only true up to a point because he stops short on more controversial issues. Peterson is considered a cultural revolutionary because he says “boys have a penis, and girls have a vagina”, “clean your room”, “save your father from the belly of the whale”, etc. Sure he counters flabby feminists and semi-literate liberal arts students by pointing out the complete common sense obvious, but he utterly fails to address the real controversial issue of the day, namely, the conflicts of identity and biology between different racial groups and civilizations currently brewing within the West. Any serious statistician, psychologist, or evolutionary biologist understands that not all humans or populations of humans can be considered as having equivocal biological properties, never mind profoundly different histories, identities, and cultural norms.
    The man built his entire career pleading about the insights of the great Western philosophers, but completely ignores their most serious philosophical and political warnings and positions. Dostoevsky, Nietzsche, Solzhenitsyn, Jung, Heidegger, etc., all had a profound concern for the future of the West as they watched it reach its crescendo of nihilism, decadence, and violent disintegration. Peterson fights for a return of high culture and a rejection of post-modernism but denies the folkish historical and racial origins of culture that these philosophers openly discussed. What makes me particularly contemptuous of him is that he denies this basis for identity and culture only for Europeans, but claims that for Aboriginese and Jews identity and in-group preference are completely justified for no given reason. Is it just another coincidence that the promotion of identity politics for these groups, and not for others, coincides with the maintenance and growth of his professional career in academia, an institution which is run by Jews and provides government grants for propping up Aboriginal culture and identity? Is it just another coincidence?
    Jordan Peterson is the kind of thinker that claims Christianity is the absolute greatest religion, but has no problem flooding Christian countries with hordes of low-IQ sub-Saharan African Muslims. For someone so well spoken and successful he is childishly short-sighted with regards to his own marketable ideas, and strangely shows no concern for predictions that they might cease to exist in the near future. He considers it absurd to separate gender from biological sex, but not absurd to separate culture and identity from race, even though all of the philosophers he promotes as antidote would have considered this idea as treason.
    There is definitely value in Jordan Peterson’s lectures and such, but that value comes from the fact that he is presenting to people, in an easily digestible way, the cherished ideas of the great Western thinkers. These ideas should already be a part of our education system and in fact for most of the modern West, specifically in the traditional higher aristocratic class, they were in fact a part of our education. Western men have been separated from their own history and culture, but Peterson thinks it would be unpalatable if Western men came together to demand that they have control over their own culture again – unless he is making money selling it back to you of course.
    I’m glad people get value from consuming Peterson’s material, but understand that despite all the attention and publicity he receives he does not actually represent the highest elite of Western thought. And if this sounds pretentious, just ask yourself why he has never addressed, and even explicitly avoids, the conflicts between his own ideas and the ideas of the philosophers he heralds as the great masters.

    1. Brilliant deduction Clark.
      If we are to make any real progress in saving ourselves we need great thinkers and upwardly mobile men to say fuck you to the (((masters))) correct think and unleash some real red-pill action. Easier said then done I suppose when one’s career and livelihood is on the line. A soft Gulag if you will.

    2. Clark, I have always respected your comments. I am not as familiar with Jordan Peterson as you seem to be, so I can’t speak to specifics as well as you. From my own experience in religion (Christianity in particular) and common sense, I find that in our age of decline people can’t handle obvious truth, like children who want something NOW. That the item they want is too expensive, might be a little too dangerous for them at their age, they would not maintain it even if they had it, etc., while all true, is just plain beyond their ability to comprehend. Yes, the child would do better by understanding the reality of things that they are dealing with, and “walking in the light” of that understanding, but as a child, that understanding is over their head. People now, to borrow the phrase, “can’t handle the truth”. In the religious sphere that I walk in, I find that people often need reality in smaller, somewhat watered-down pieces to make it palatable to them. I find the same dynamic in non-religious situations: people can’t handle straight up reality, they need it in small, very light pieces with time between doses for them to process it. Jordan Peterson may not hit all the points that really need hitting, but people usually need reality doses in small increments. If Peterson is doing something to move people more toward the right direction, then that is a good thing, even if it is incomplete. Hopefully those who listen to him will be ready for greater doses of reality in the future.

    3. The aptly named Clark Kent. Fantastic post. But I think you know as well as I that no one can talk about these things on TV without being labeled racist, etc.; and there’s no solution, because if people don’t read a book about this stuff … where am I going with this … that “no one reads anymore?” Not really true … I don’t know. It’s just that I can’t believe that the West is done with and that it happened in my lifetime.

    1. I absolutely agree. From academic point of view I define him average, but he has made a name by addressing to everyone via youtube. I do like and respect him, but he doesn’t actually stand out with something memorable from an intellectual point of view. The reason for his success is the alienated society we’re living in.

  3. Jordan is smart but cucks on the JQ and race realism.
    He knows the truth but leads men to good but naive conclusions. In this way we can act as a gate keeper for some newly RP men.

    1. If he were to make IQ a race thing, his career would be over and reputation tarnished forever. Some people prefer to keep a normal, high-status job, as compared to staying stuck on YouTube forever, making a few measly dollars and being ostracized from society, unable to have a normal job because the minute an employer googles your name, “Alt-right, neo nazi” pops up.
      Its not that hard to figure out. Not sure why you alt-right autist fail to realize why he doesn’t delve into that issue. He is doing more good for white men (telling them to improve their own life, become better men, etc) than any Alt-right figure will ever be able to. And thats the irony of it all.
      I’m not saying that these issues do not exist (whites under attack by the media, IQ differences between races etc) but you all have to understand that every person on the right political spectrum has their purpose. Is there any other conservative professor on the spotlight like JP?? no… he’s just about the only one, so cut the guy some slack.

      1. The irony that white men should live in fear of raising the JQ or lose their stable jobs and be ostracized by correct think society. The Message of this article is that you can’t ignore the problem forever or it will eventually destroy you.
        “He is doing more good for white men” yeh sure, he is merely pushing the boundaries of accepted narrative. In other words tolerated by the zionists because it’s just another destraction. But you be careful now goy!

      2. Mr. Correcto, you’re goddamn right. JP is single-handedly destroying the left’s insane and destructive social narratives. The reason the Alt-Right will never gain real legitimacy with the masses is they are fighting identity politics with identity politics.
        JP rejects identity politics while ripping the left to shreds with logic and reason. Meanwhile giving young men a sense of purpose through virtue which makes him hard to attack. He is the most powerful weapon we have right now against the Progressives. We should embrace him.

        1. Unless you acknowledge the source of your problems you will forever be chasing your tail. To the (((source’s))) amusement.

        2. Yes, but what you don’t realize is that the eventually the Left will stop caring about logic and reason entirely, and when that day comes whites will have no option but to band together based on race.
          That’s something that cucks like you don’t understand, Critical Masquerade: identity politics will be forced into your life whether you want it to be or not. Your feelings on the matter are 100% irrelevant.
          Wake the fuck up.

        3. We all should, Critical. Clark Kent above us stated some reasonable criticism of JP. However, it’s the same criticism you see everywhere from the Alt-Right. Again, it doesn’t take a genius to figure out why he doesn’t delve into the race issue. If he did, he would not have a platform to publicly stand on anymore and the west every bullhorn it can get right now.
          Does anyone remember the fairly recent interview he did on Channel 4 (UK) destroying Cathy Newman? As of right now, almost 8 million people have watched that interview and saw how weak the feminist doctrine truly is, as well as how poor the mainstream media is when it comes to debating. Have Richard Spencer, Enoch, Andrew Anglin, etc, come anywhere close to that reach? No. JP is fortunate enough to still be able to appear on national television and completely destroy the Cultural Marxist. He cannot jeopardize that by getting into more controversial, though legitimate topics unfortunately.
          Finally, JP has made thousands to start thinking about Christianity. I’ll admit, it used to be an atheist, with more recent years spent here having me question god. Listening to JP’s podcast/videos on religion has made me believe again, and I know im not the only one. He’s also reaching out to thousands of men and making them realize that they have the potential for greatness.
          Are any of the above mentioned Alt-righters doing that? no, all they’re doing is stating the obvious, of whites and the west being attacked. The best they can do is have debates with other right wingers on YT. Again, im not saying that is useless, debating ideas is great, but thats where their utility stops.
          The Alt-right needs to realize that all those that are red pilled, to whatever degree, have their purpose in the west. Why do they want JP to talk about race so bad? why cant they prop up their own figure with millions of viewers? that is the question they should be asking themselves.
          Sure, JP’s message is simplified, which is why he’s popular. However, as a man, it is up TO YOU to do the in-depth research of the western thinkers he mentions. He says that all the time, and if you want the complete message handed to you on a silver platter, perhaps you need a hard look in the mirror.

    2. Dr. Jordan Peterson would rather be shamed on the media as a potential discriminator against trannies, than to be labelled a white nationalist or Return of Kings meetup lie. He also lost hundreds of thousands in dollars in funding because he only protested against the tranny gender law.

  4. Anyone who lives under the dictator’s thumb of any homeowners association needs to get out immediately.

    1. A place with a homeowners fee is like a timeshare. The fees keep going up while the property value falls. Any place with a homeowners association is not for red pill men.

    1. The neighborhood burned down, but everyone (who had a talent for it, that is), lived happily ever after.

  5. Of course.
    It never ceases to amaze me how people will take Genesis and Evolution, two totally irreconcialible things and try to force fit them together, with the supposedly “Christian” man claiming his faith comes first in life and them tossing out the Bible when it means macroevolution, a bad hypothesis at best, isn’t true.
    You made your choice. Now stop being like the Feminists who pretend you can have both things.
    Fact: the entire rest of the Bible is based on Genesis being literally told history. And you can’t believe the end, if you don’t believe the beginning, since it’s tied to that.
    Jesus believed it. But you go ahead and tell Him that He had it wrong and so taught error and you know more. Go ahead, I dare ya! 🙂

    1. I say believe what you want, but the real problem is giving 10% of your income to any kind of religious organization. Cucks do that. And you don’t need another man to tell you the facts of life anyway. Have some self-respect…

  6. I burned a bush once, & then i saw god. It was a marijuana bush!
    No offence but i truly can align with christian mentality. Then i realized why. Its imagination land steeped in fear.

  7. Can we here at ROK agree to leave religion in the past along with the other failed theories and ideologies.
    Sincerely, someone with a 140 IQ

  8. You’re probably just saying it’s God because that’s easier than dealing with your problems the hard way….the red pill way.

    1. And you’re equating God with religion, I have no interest in religion other than what I can take from it that makes sense, the rest is just mind control filler, regardless of the religion being practiced. God, on the other hand, does not need to be defined, interpreted or worshipped. No fees due, no blessings either way. You’re given free will to do as you please, if it pleases you to go against what you know to be right then that’s your lookout.

  9. Wasn’t it the philosophy of Jesus that essentially stated, “Practice your own faith in your own home”? Well, that’s fine and all. Some folks need and or enjoy the communal experience of attending church and shouldn’t be judged by others for it. Besides, what is it to you? While admittedly- and thankfully not possessing an arrogant IQ of 140, allows me to leave my life open to the possibilities that the current state of lockstep science is politically destructive bullshit. And that the divine spark in all of us is meant to peacefully push through the insanity swirling around us to achieve a richer, fuller life. That article is both thought provoking and inspirational having experienced portions of it myself. So in the spirit of Aesop’s stories and their quest for an ethical and moral life, perhaps one should reflect in the same manner and refrain from smearing the messenger. Rock on ROK.

  10. I found this article incredibly neat, in the sense that the entire story folds back like an origami crane into the metaphor of Moses finding God in the burning bush.
    I like the notion of locating our spirituality in places of duress, and how a serendipitous meeting with a crazed neighbor speaks of an entire neighborhood filled with interpersonal enmities.
    Great writing sir, I read it all the way to the end.

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