World-renowned clinical psychologist Jordan Peterson cited biblical records and spiritual metaphors in his commencement address to graduates of Hillsdale College, Michigan, to encourage students at critical times in their lives Be confident when tempted.
In a speech on May 7, the Canadian author and professor warned students that they are at a “crossroads” in their lives where people encounter the devil and must “check” their conscience.He noted that students are no longer who they were four years ago, they “now have the opportunity to be the next generation [themselves] That [they] Can. ”
“Then you might ask, well, why do you meet the devil at the crossroads?” he said.
“The answer is, most fundamentally, because when you get to a place in your life where you have to make choices…because the choice that’s in front of you now matters, whether you’re aiming up or down, and There are goals that always tempt you at every choice point,” the psychologist continued.
Peterson cites the biblical account of Cain and Abel as an example of the “spirit of temptation” of how God punished Cain for making “an inappropriate sacrifice” rather than “serving the best interests.” Instead, his choice was “deceitful and arrogant at the same time.”
“Because when we make undue sacrifices, we believe in the deepest part of ourselves, we’ve pulled a person past God,” Peterson said. “And I think that’s the temptation that you might want to avoid, which is hypothetical.”
He points to the story of Genesis 6:9-9:17, where God flooded the earth because humans lost their way, but He spared Noah and his family. He draws a personal anecdote that parallels Noah’s story involving his daughter, who was “very ill” for a long time when she was young. Peterson warned her not to use her illness as an excuse, even though she had good reason to feel “painful”.
“So it’s a temptation, right? It’s a hopeless temptation of infidelity, you might say existential anxiety, that you allow yourself to permeate,” he said.
“I would say that when you’re at a crossroads and you’re advised to despair, take courage and see if you can resist it,” Peterson continued. “It’s better for you, and it’s better for the people around you. So this is the flood, man.”
He also cites the story of the Tower of Babel in Genesis 11:1-9, when Noah’s descendants attempted to build a structure high enough to reach heaven. Peterson calls it the story of “Lucifer” because Lucifer is a symbol of “proud wisdom” who rose too high and fell after challenging God.
“Celebrating your ingenuity, building your own empire for your own narrow purposes… Part of the reason you shouldn’t do it, even if it’s tempting in a sense, especially if you’re capable, because, do you want to rule hell ?”
The self-help author advises students to break down their lives into “practices,” making sure they have things like careers, relationships and civic obligations to help them “build their image.” A vision of themselves should enable them to assume that, with “appropriate sacrifice,” they can have “[they] need and want. ”
“So by practicing any good in any strict sense, and making appropriate sacrifices in that direction, you simultaneously learn to approach the good that is the sum or essence of all these proximal goodes,” Peterson said.
“I would say that the fundamental insistence of Christianity is that the good that binds all of these together is the same good that is reflected in the image of Christ, the image of accepting the sufferings of life, and the need to serve the lowest. The highest calling.”
Peterson argues that the Christian promise may be “more true than anything else.”
The Canadian psychologist has a large online following and is a sought-after speaker, known for giving life advice – especially to troubled young people – and using biblical archetypes to explain The complex truths of human nature.
Although Peterson is Protestant, he doesn’t seem to consider himself a Christian yet. In a February 2018 podcast interview with Roman Catholic author Patrick Coffin, the thought leader said it may take “another three years” before he can say whether he believes in the resurrection of Christ.
In a podcast interview with Orthodox Arts Journal editor Jonathan Pageau in March, Peterson choked up while discussing Jesus, prompting fans to pray for his journey of faith. He admits that he still doesn’t know what to make of Christianity, claiming that “it’s terrifying to fully believe this reality.”
In October, Peterson’s daughter Mihaila revealed on her podcast that she started believing in God after traveling to Austin, Texas to see if she wanted to move there. She admits she was thinking about four main questions at the time. When Mikhail confided in a stranger in Texas, he told her to seek God and he would “reveal himself.”
After a night of prayer, Mihaila said it seemed like a strange coincidence that all four problems were resolved the next day. While the podcaster felt an unusual sense of “calm,” she did wonder if the experience was just a fluke.
“Then I had the craziest dream…Woke up at 5:30am and I had a dream….This loud thunderous voice was just shouting, ‘Do it!’ I was at 5:30am Wake up and think, “I think I just got yelled at by God. I think that just happened. “That’s what it feels like.”
“It hit me, I think it means going all out and not doing it like 75 percent. It’s been a crazy month. I’m doing well. It’s just; I’m a little bit shocked,” she added.